Lent: A Time to Learn About the Death Penalty


Lent is a fitting time to learn more about death penalty sentencing. Jesus was a victim of the death penalty!

Capital punishment does not deter crime.
Scientific studies have consistently failed to demonstrate that executions deter people from committing crime any more than long prison sentences. Moreover, states without the death penalty have much lower murder rates. The South accounts for 80% of U.S. executions, and has the highest regional murder rate.

States are unable to prevent accidental executions of innocent people
The wrongful execution of an innocent person is an injustice that can never be rectified. In the United States at least 124 men and women have been found innocent and released from death row – some only minutes away from execution. Moreover, in the past two years, evidence has come to light that indicates that four men may have been wrongfully executed for crimes they did not commit—an error rate that is appalling and unacceptable when talking about life and death.

Race plays a role in determining who lives and who dies.
Since 1977 blacks and whites have been the victims of murders in almost equal numbers, yet 80% of the people executed in that period were convicted of murders involving white victims. Only 14% of U.S. people are black, but half of the people on death row are black! Half of those killed are also black, witnessing to the high rate of murder and crime among African-Americans.

Learn More

National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty 

Death Penalty Information Center
Provides state-by-state information on executions, history of the death penalty, discusses mental retardation, race, innocence, deterrence, and botched execution.

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