It’s tempting to chalk up Pope Francis’s recent announcement—that the catechism has been revised to decree the death penalty as always “inadmissible”—to his perceived leftism. But that would be a mistake not only from a theological perspective, but also from a conservative one.
The two main conservative arguments for the death penalty are surprisingly weak. The first is that it acts a deterrent. The factual basis for this is, at best, debatable: the number of penal executions spiked in the 1990s and the U.S. murder rate crashed. However, as the use of capital punishment has declined since 2000, the homicide rate has also continued to go down. (See data here and here.) Moreover, the disparity in executions relative to murders undermines the credibility of the argument: executions peaked at 98 in 1999; that same year there were 15,522 murders.
A letter from a Pennsylvania reader, with a few small changes to protect his identity:
I was a seminarian for the Diocese of Pit
America’s Gulf “allies” are making the world a more dangerous place. Kate Kizer ties together the reckless and destructive behavior of U.S.
The Case Against Impeaching Trump, Alan Dershowitz, Hot Books, 590 pages
Law professor Alan Dershowitz’s new book, The Case Against Impeach
Some nice things about Your Scandalized Working Boy in The Economist today:
Rod Dreher is one of America’s most influential reli
The Catholic writer and activist Austin Ruse and I go way back, though our paths separated at some point after 2002, when I star
Seymour Hersh, Reporter: A Memoir, Sy Hersh. Knopf, June 2018, 368 pages
When people are comforted by government lies, trafficking the trut
Without quite being aware of it, humans dream meaning into the world together. The stranger parts of our own minds are engaged in occult di
Earlier today, Mike Pompeo announced the creation of the Iran Action Group in the State Department dedicated to advancing the administratio
“The evidence against Trump and Russia is huge and mounting every day,” declared liberal celebrity activist Rosie O’Donnell at a protest in
There have been dozens of Saudi coalition airstrikes on civilian vehicles in Yemen this year, and coalition investigations almost never fau
I know y’all are worn out by all my takes on the Catholic abuse scandal, but if you can stand it, Megan McArdle’s column on it i
On December 5, 2016, a college student running late for an exam rear-ended me as I was stopped in a turn lane waiting for the li
In July of 2001, the British government loaned President George W. Bush a bust of Winston Churchill, which was prominently displayed in the
Washington has been supremely embarrassed—by a nominal ally, as usual. After the Trump administration insisted that its involvement in Yeme
Dividing U.S. politics and culture into old and new, 1968 remains a landmark year in the public mind. Amid failure in Vietnam, the much-det
In 1998, I took my first self-driven road trip into the vastness of rural America. No GPS. No destination. No reservations. Just myself, my
John Nienstedt, retired Catholic archbishop of Minneapolis-St Paul (MpCatholic screengrab)
An important update on the story I p
They’re at it again: Colorado leftists, abetted by the state’s civil rights commission, are harassing Masterpiece Cake Shop bake
The New York Times reports additional details about the aftermath of the school bus massacre in northern Yemen:
Ali Abdullah Hamlah, a loca
When I interviewed former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating recently about his past work on the lay sex abuse panel the Catholic bisho
A new Pew Research poll released on July 24 shows that Republicans are rapidly losing faith in the FBI. While there are a slew of legitimat
Micah Zenko calls for a halt to U.S. support for the war on Yemen:
It is time to phase out and terminate America’s support for the Saudi-le
Reader Becky writes, regarding the Catholic Church crisis:
I commented with this story several years ago, but it bears repeating
David Ignatius complains about an American “disengagement” from the Middle East that never happened:
Since Otaiba’s remarks, I’ve seen new
My column on the unfolding disaster.
Two Chinese academics have proposed a controversial idea to encourage childbirth as their country faces an ageing population:
On Thursday evening, three players from the Philadelphia Eagles stayed behind during the national anthem before their game against the New E
Once again, the Left has taken a swing at one of the most qualified SCOTUS nominees in history. Once again, it has missed.
Some Republicans think that President Trump would be better off if the party loses control of the House this fall. It’s not a crazy idea.
Formal protections for free speech are important and necessary, but they do not amount to very much without a free-speech culture to back th
This is a "tragedy" in the original Greek dramatic understanding: people undone by their fatal flaw, based on pride.
Hey, media! Slightly more than Omarosa’s lies.
Via Fox News:
The Pentagon warned in a startling new report that China is li
Before you begin cheering too loudly, I’ll warn you in advance that this is a problematic story. It deals with two residents of New York
The federal judge overseeing the Paul Manafort criminal trial said he is “optimistic” a verdict would come Friday as jurors start their seco
“If we dismiss them in a sort of capsule, an aberration of history, saying ‘well, they weren’t really human, so they don’t count,’ then we’r
The essence of James Bond is not identity politics, but shooting a villain with a spear gun, making a joke, and getting the girl.
Pen and Phone Obama ‘governed’ largely unconstitutionally, by rule that violated the Constitution. Trump tries to correct it and he gets
Elon Musk is a genius but is he pushing himself too hard?
A few of us were discussing the topic of the "Growth and Opportunity Project," universally known as the post-2012 election "GOP Autopsy Repo
The jury in the bank and tax fraud trial of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort will deliberate for a second day on Friday after as
Fear and Loathing of Jordan Peterson - Suzanne Fields: Ah, men! This is the ultimate exclamation of women, frustrated, .08/17/2018 0:56:30AM
The potential impact of this bill should not be downplayed.
John covered an interesting story out of Sweden the other night which really struck me as a bit odd. It’s a tale of arson and vandalism,
The Washington Post reports that Democrats are taking a “wait-and-see approach” to allegations of abuse surrounding Rep. Keith Ellison. B
Researchers may have discovered a jar of the world's oldest cheese in the tomb of an ancient Egyptian mayor, but - frustratingly for turophi
China's military has expanded its bomber operations in recent years while "likely training for strikes" against the United States
William McRaven, commander of the US Navy SEAL raid that killed Osama bin Laden, condemned President Donald Trump on Thursday for revoking t
The North Korean authorities have reportedly stepped up a crackdown on “non-socialist” behaviour, including unapproved hairstyle
Tonga's prime minister on Friday backed down on calls for Pacific island nations to collectively lobby China to forgive their mounting debts