Cincinnati’s Aggressive DA and a Vatican Priest (His High School Classmate) Spar About the Death Penalty

Our shame

Pope Francis’ recent declaration committing the Catholic Church to opposing capital punishment in all circumstances has produced an unusual public war of words about the practices of Catholic public officials in one of the country’s most aggressive death-penalty counties. Hamilton County, Ohio, has produced more death sentences and executions than any other county in Ohio, and is one of the 2% of U.S. counties reponsible for a majority of death sentences and executions in the United States. Its County Prosecutor, Joe Deters (pictured, left) is Catholic but, while pursuing a death sentence in the resentencing of Anthony Kirkland, made dismissive comments about Pope Francis’ declaration that the death penalty is “inadmissible.” “My dear friends who are priests don’t understand what we’re dealing with,” Deters said. “There is evil in this world and there comes a point where society needs to defend itself.” Those comments provoked a rebuke from Rev. Paul Mueller (pictured, right, with Pope Francis), vice director and superior of the Jesuit community at the Vatican Observatory, and a high school classmate of Deters. In a letter to the prosecutor, Father Mueller wrote, “I am disappointed, embarrassed, and scandalized that you, not only a Catholic but also a fellow alumnus of St. Xavier High School, have used the platform of your public office to oppose and confuse the moral teaching of the Church in so open a fashion.” Deters reiterated his stance in comments to WLWT television on August 21, saying, Pope Francis is “in an ivory tower, God bless him. … I’m just telling you they don’t know what we’re dealing with.” St. Xavier High School, which both Deters and Mueller attended, weighed in on the issue, as the school’s president, Tim Reilly, wrote, “St. Xavier is a Catholic school, and we intentionally and specifically follow the teachings of the Catholic Church. The Church teaches that people are obliged to follow a well-formed conscience. One of the key components of a well-formed conscience is a serious consideration of and reflection upon Catholic moral and social teaching.” Kirkland was resentenced to death on August 28. At his sentencing, Judge Patrick Dinkelacker, also a Catholic, tangentially referred to the religious debate about capital punishment, saying, “As a person who morally believes in the sanctity of life, to judge another to determine if the imposition of the death penalty is appropriate is not a duty I take lightly. … I took an oath to follow the law and I will do that. To do otherwise, is morally, legally, philosophically and theologically wrong.”

(Sharon Coolidge, Joe Deters reconciled his faith with the death penalty: ‘There is evil in this world’, Cincinnati Enquirer, August 2, 2018; Byron McCauley, Schools: Catholic Church trumps Joe Deters on death penalty, Cincinnati Enquirer, August 21, 2018; John London, Prosecutor stands by death penalty after getting letter from Vatican, Associated Press and WLWT, August 21, 2018; Sharon Coolidge, Kirkland judge imposes death penalty, references theology during sentencing, Cincinnati Enquirer, August 28, 2018.) See Religion.

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Stunning Victory for Indigenous Nations as Canada Halts Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion

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How Often Do Smartphones ‘Phone Home’?

The results are pretty clear: even when not used, Android phones send information to Google around 40 times per hour, compared to just 4 times iPhones send info to Apple’s servers. During normal use, that total rises to 90 information requests per hour for Android phones compared to 18 for iPhones. Interestingly Google even collects more data from iPhone users than Apple itself does. This however, only works when the phone is used. In idle mode iPhones very rarely communicate with Google’s servers.

Source: How Often Do Smartphones ‘Phone Home’?

Police in El Salvador round up hundreds of alleged MS-13 members

Salvadoran police and prosecutors moved against the gang MS-13 this week in an operation across the nation.   Authorities indicated they were arresting more than 400 gang members in another attempted blow at the finances of the gang.   Authorities seized weapons, property, drugs and vehicles associated with the gang.

Some notes to help you understand this news:

1.   Salvadoran authorities have a tendency to arrest many more subjects than they actually have proof against.

2.   Prior mass raids have not had any measurable effect on levels of crime and violence in the country so far as I can tell.

3.   A question being raised is why authorities have only staged these large scale raids aimed at finances of the gang MS-13.   To date, there has not been a similar attack on the two “18” gangs — 18-revolucionarios and 18-sureños.   Authorities say only that they combat all criminal groups andonly make such raids when they are prepared to do so.

4.   Although proof might not exist, those caught up in sweeps will be incarcerated for years in hellish conditions in prisons for gang members because pre-trial release is highly unusual in El Salvador and gang members are kept in high security prisons subject to the now normal, “exceptional measures.”

‘Utterly stupid’: Samoan PM hits out at climate change sceptics in fiery Sydney speech

Samoa’s Prime Minister urges Australia to make deeper cuts to carbon emissions to help save Pacific Island nations from the disaster of climate change.

Source: ‘Utterly stupid’: Samoan PM hits out at climate change sceptics in fiery Sydney speech

Asian-American Students Suing Harvard Over Admissions Win Justice Dept. Support – The New York Times – Friends of your enemies not good for your cause – Justice Department only interested in doing away with reasonable methods to overcome 300 years of discrimination!

The agency has filed a so-called statement of interest in their case, saying that Harvard “has failed to show that it does not unlawfully discriminate.”