Humberto Leal Garcia

Once again, after an execution in the United States I am left saying: What he did to 16-year-old Adria Sauceda was despicably evil, but I don’t understand why killing him was justice.

Political muscle-flexing surely is not a good reason.

That is what Toby Harnden sees it as, considering the controversial nature of this execution in particular, with citizenship and states-rights issues raised — and the potential presidential run by Texas governor Rick Perry.



  • tz1

    Except what are we doing with our wars and assassinations by executive order and the rest.

    The death penalty might be on the inside of the edge that separates good from evil, but it is rarely necessary and we aren’t in an extreme situation (much like the TSA molestation).

    The more specific evil is that the justice system is clearly and demonstrably corrupt. We are executing people who are innocent. The death penalty isn’t proportional in most cases, at least there are many others who cause far more damage but don’t serve much if any time – this despicable act was concentrated, but what about Texas based Enron?

    If we have a corrupt system instead of one that does justice, the penalties ought to be the lightest practicable.

  • dudley sharp

    The justice of execution is based upon the same foundation as with all sanctions, that we find them just, approproiate and proportional to the crime committed.

    See Stephen Long, below:

    Both the EV and the newest CCC, wrongly, use a secular foundation of “defense of society” based upon the wildly varying and human based system of imprisonment to, wrongly, limit the death penalty based upon the confused assessment of the near perfection of that system of imprisonment.

    The clear teaching, not cafeteria selections, is that the Church’s newest and recent position on the death penalty is a prudential judgement, which any good Catholic is free to disagree with, based upon their own solid and thoughtful prudential jdugement.

    In addition, CCC2267 not only is in conflict with earlier comments from that same section, but also with 2000 years of biblical, theological and traditional Church teachings, inclusive of prior CCCs.

    from Stephen Long
    “Evangelium Vitae, St. Thomas Aquinas and the Death Penalty”, The Thomist, 63 (1999): 511-552

    “While punishment does serve the purpose of protecting society, it also and “primarily” serves the function of manifesting the transcendent, divine order of justice–an order which the state executes by divine delegation.” ” . . . it may be argued that such a conception of punishment, rooted in the restoration of moral balance, always presupposes an awareness of the superordinate dignity of the common good as defined by transcendent moral truths.” p119

    “Yet the presence of two purposes–retributive and medicinal justice–ought not obscure the priority of assigning punishment proportionate to the crime (just retribution) insofar as the limited jurisdiction of human justice allows. The end is not punishment, but rather the manifestation of a divine norm of retributive justice, which entails proportionate equality vis-à-vis the crime.” “The medicinal goal is not tantamount merely to stopping future evildoing, but rather entails manifesting the truth of the divine order of justice both to the criminal and to society at large. This means that mere stopping of further disorder is insufficient to constitute the full medicinal character of justice, which purpose alike and primarily entails the manifestation of the truth. Thus this foundational sense of the medicinality of penalty is retained even when others drop away.” p122

  • Cygnus

    What irks me about posts like these is it puts the focus all on the killer and takes it away from the victim. I am perfectly at ease with opposing the wanton killing of innocent babies in the womb (which is how Casey Anthony could have perfectly legally killed Caylee and we’d never heard of her) and supporting the execution of filth like Garcia. Kathryn, please tell me when you made any other post about Adria and I’ll see your point of view.

  • MIT

    Long-silent family of victim speaks

    The Sauceda family waited for justice for their daughter’s death seventeen years; this sentence was given in 1994!



Receive our updates via email.