Tiny goes for the jugular of her "Pure Catnip" kitty toy -- a hostess gift from Sarah and AJ, who stopped by for good food and conversation yesterday afternoon before heading into town for a date with "The Blue Man Group" at the Charles Theater. Not vindictive, her attitude toward prey seems to be more aligned with Avery Cardinal Dulles's "just retribution, which seeks to establish the right order of things."
When it comes to capital punishment, while some -- especially our betters amongst the international progressivist crowd -- just say no, others, like Avery Cardinal Dulles in his April 2001 First Things article "Catholicism & Capital Punishment" are more nuanced. Professor Bainbridge explains:
Although a "top Vatican official condemned the death sentence against Saddam Hussein in a newspaper interview published Thursday, saying capital punishment goes against the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church," I think that under the magisterial teaching of the Church -- which is what is binding on those of us who are Catholics -- a case can be made for an exception in Saddam's case. It is the "very rare" case to which JP II referred [in Evangelium vitae].
"JP II's encyclical on the Gospel of Life, which is probably the most anti-death penalty Church document to date, contemplated that the death penalty remains licit in rare cases," notes Professor B, citing Avery Cardinal Dulles's 10 theses from the Magisterium. Excerpts:
The purpose of punishment in secular courts is fourfold: the rehabilitation of the criminal, the protection of society from the criminal, the deterrence of other potential criminals, and retributive justice.
Just retribution, which seeks to establish the right order of things, should not be confused with vindictiveness, which is reprehensible.
Just in from David's Medienkritik comes word that common sense may yet be overtaking groupthink, at least when you look outside the Pauline Kael bubble of the European citizenry:
The German media is clearly attempting to create an "us versus them" -- "Europe versus Bush and America" wedge issue out of the death penalty. But they totally ignore the opinions of the average German: When asked whether they favored the death penalty for Saddam Hussein, a majority of respondents in Germany, France and Spain responded in the affirmative.
Oriana Fallaci's words regarding her own and Pope Benedict XVIs shared concern over the threat Islamicism poses to Western Civilization come to mind:
I am an atheist, and if an atheist and a pope think the same things, there must be something true. It's that simple! There must be some human truth here that is beyond religion.
The same could be said of the average citizen vis-à-vis Avery Cardinal Dulles:
If a Catholic theologian and everyday folk think the same things, "there must be something true."
It bears repeating as our friends on the left side of the aisle get themselves all worked up over the Iraqi justice system's decision to hang the Butcher of Bagdhad:
Just retribution, which seeks to establish the right order of things, should not be confused with vindictiveness.
For the left, Saddam's hanging is -- like everything else that comes down the pike -- just one more Bush-bashing opportunity. For the rest of us -- especially the Iraqis who suffered the tyrant's jackboot first hand -- his execution re-establishes the right order of things.