The recent execution of Troy Davis brought to the front once more the issue of capital punishment, especially arguments about the very real possibility of executing the wrong person, the unreliability of eye witness accounts, law enforcement pressures for conviction, and the possible brokenness of many of the safeguards that are in place to assure that miscarriages of justice at this ultimate level do not happen. This podcast uses this moment of reflection to discuss Mormon attitudes about the death penalty, and especially what social and theological aspects of Mormonism play into these attitudes. It discusses things such as agency and whether all persons are equally able to freely choose, the dubious doctrine of “blood atonement” that still lingers as a factor in some Mormons’ minds, as well as other LDS concepts and angles. It also discusses the deep spiritual resources some victims’ families are able to access to offer forgiveness to perpetrators.
We hope you will join Mormon Matters host, Dan Wotherspoon, and panelists Ken Driggs (an LDS death penalty lawyer who has worked on some 75 capital punishment cases), Heather Olson Beal, and Tom Grover for personal stories and important insights pertaining to this very sobering subject that deserves everyone’s careful attention.
After listening, please join in the discussion below!
Links to articles mentioned in the podcast: