The Greatest Indignity of All

I’ve been reading Jim Wallis’ blog lately at Beliefnet and I’ve been enjoying what is there. Today he has a post about Sr. Helen Prejean’s reaction to the hanging of Saddam Hussein and last week’s executions. It’s worth your time to read and think about this. Follow this link.

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One Reply to “The Greatest Indignity of All”

  1. I said at the time that they denied themselves justice when they hanged Saddam Hussein, and I stand by that statement.

    Saddam Hussein will never have to listen to another of his victims tell the truth. He will never have to think about the impact his life has had, or the impact it could have had. He will never repent and cry out for the violence to stop. Perhaps he never would have, but unless we claim that we have the foreknowlege to say what seed will sprout in the heart of any person, we cannot know.

    What we do know is that executions do not end the impact of a person’s life. There are those who follow a rabbi who was executed nearly two thousand years ago. The Shia remember the sons of Ali who were martyred, and David captured in a few pencilled lines the dignity of Marie Antionette, rising above the rabble who executed her a few months before she would have died of cancer. They gave Saddam Hussein the opportunity to be the dignified monarch to their rabble.

    Every execution denies the fallability of human justice. It denies the possibility of repentence. It denies the shared humanity of us all, even as it affirms it in the most final way possible. When we look at the face of death, we should all remember that it is a path we will all travel sooner or later.

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