|Jeff the Baptist, vol. 1, #6 Feedback &
A little tidbit to follow up the last column. Anthony Parker was just freed from death row
in Illinois after a Northwestern U professor and three students proved that he was not
guilty of the crime he was to be sent to his death for. He spent sixteen years on death
It gets worse: the university Sherlock and his team of amateurs neither discovered any new
evidence, nor brought in any new witnesses. All they did was work down the same list of
witnesses that the prosecutor's office had had. They simply came up with an incredibly
different verdict. Along the way, they learned the identity of the real killer who, when
Anthony makes the seventy-fifth person freed from death row since we reinstated the death
penalty in 1976. Not that I'm counting or anything
Also a nod to the reader who pointed out that a great source of a lot of violence in our
culture may very well be the Bible itself. Very good point. What do we do with these
passages? I mean, it's great to talk about the Exodus, but we should include Joshua's
sweeping military strikes into the land of milk and honey, too. Makes a great story if you
were one of the Israelites, but what if you were one of the Canaanites?
Well, more on this another time, but perhaps it is time to leave those passages aside. Oh,
I know, we're talking about the Bible here. But, hey, it's just a book. Okay, it's more
than that: it's a splendid record of the development of humankind's relationship with God.
But, that development continues. The story doesn't end with the New Testament.
We have evolved as a species to the point where we now question the wisdom of using
violence to resolve our differences; hopefully, someday we shall evolve to the point where
we definitely reject it as an option. Along with that development, we shall have to set
aside the old tools and develop new ones to take their place.
- Jeff the