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Pope Francis Calls for Global Abolition

During his recent visit to the United States, Pope Francis included a call for the global abolition of the death penalty in his September 24th address to the U. S. Congress. He also reiterated his support for the U. S. Catholic Bishops’ call for abolition in this country. While the concern for executing the innocent is important in our discussion of the death penalty in this nation, it is also important to remember that this is NOT an appropriate penalty even for the guilty and even if we had a perfect system of justice. The fact is we don’t and can’t.

When even victim family members are raising money in Kentucky to abolish the death penalty, it is time for lawmakers to pay attention and heed all these voices that are crying out for true justice: holding murderers accountable, but not risking the execution of the innocent, putting victim families through even more pain and wasting tax dollars on a system that is arbitrary and discriminatory.

Video: C-SPAN

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Victims’ family members issue challenge grant

benIn what KCADP believes is a first-of-a-kind event, a group of death penalty repeal supporters, all of whom lost loved ones to murder, are challenging the rest of us to match a pledge $1640.

Ben Griffith, our Board secretary and a murder victim family member survivor, has written a letter which has been sent to more than 2000 abolition supporters. He writes:

To show how strongly we oppose the use of the death penalty in Kentucky, I and several others – Patricia Griffith, Ray Schweri, Maria Hines, Sellus Wilder, Ruth Lowe, Joyce Frazier and Reba Rye – are opening our wallets to challenge other KCADP supporters to match our gift to the coalition of $1640. We are pledging to match up to $1640 to support the work of the coalition. Each $1 the coalition receives as a result of this letter will be matched with a $1 from us, up to $1640. By giving now, you can double the value of your gift up to $1640.

Ben also wrote that

As the surviving family members of murder victims and as Kentuckians, we want to send a message that not only will we not stand by as human beings are murdered by the state in our name, but we will commit our money and time to getting the death penalty repealed.”

None of us can afford to stand by and not act as the state continues to kill in our names. Please consider a generous donation in response to this challenge from some friends of ours who know the painful loss of loved ones to murder. They are shining models for us and KCADP is honored to work together with them.

You can also help by sharing this post on your own Facebook page and by visiting our Facebook page and sharing the announcement about this challenge that you will find there. Click on the photo of Ben at the top of the page to see a video he made urging supporters to contribute. You can share that video from our YouTube channel.

Click here to read the entire letter from Ben.


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The Trial of Jesus and the Death Penalty

The Newman Foundation, INC, in Lexington Ky is hosting Professor Mark Osler, author of Jesus on Death Row, for its next presentation in its Distinguished Speakers series. Wikipedia describes him as an American legal scholar, law professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and critic of narcotics policy and capital punishment in the United States.

He has published extensively comparing the trial of Jesus and its legal flaws with what happens time and time again in our own day when we use a broken system that risks the execution of the innocent. He believes, as a Baptist Christian, that those who consider Christ their savior ought to let that faith form their opposition to executions in Kentucky and the nation. He speaks at 7:30 pm at the W. T. Young Library in Lexington.  UK’s Young Library (where the presentation will be held) is on Woodland/University Avenue (south of Main Street, on the UK campus near the new dorms and cafeteria on south campus).  Click here to view a campus map.

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Northern Kentucky Conservatives Concerned Create Facebook Page

CCATDP-logo-NKentucky-for-FB-profileA group of persons who count themselves conservatives created a Facebook page promoting their work. Northern Kentucky Conservatives Concerned About The Death Penalty writes that “NKCCATDP is a network of political and social conservatives who question the alignment of capital punishment with conservative principles and values.

This is a project of the Kentucky Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. KCADP supporters should LIKE this Facebook page to learn more about how conservatives frame their opposition to killing prisoners. You can also stay abreast of activities of NKCCATDP, like an upcoming event in October that Northern Kentuckians won’t want to miss.

KCADP welcomes the voices of everyone in Kentucky interested in seeing the death penalty repealed regardless of where they fall on the political spectrum. We have built a strong non-partisan coalition around this issue evidenced by bills introduce by both Republicans and Democrats. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle and in both the Senate and the House have co-sponsored and endorsed these repeal efforts.

Recent posts to the page include statements from prominent conservative thinkers like Michael D. Ostrolenk, co-founder of the Liberty Coalition; Drew Johnson, senior fellow at the Taxpayers Protection Alliance; George Will, columnist for the Washington Post; and Dr. Ron Paul, father of U. S. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky.


Marc Hyden, advocacy coordinator for CCATDP

Having this newly organized group of individuals in northern Kentucky is exciting.

In October Marc Hyden, a former staff member of the NRA, and now an organizer for the national office of Conservatives Concerned About The Death Penalty, will visit Covington for an evening presentation about the organization and what it plans to achieve here and in other states.

A video of an interview between Dr. John Chowning, Vice-President for Church and External Relations at Campbellsville University as well as Executive Assistant to CU President Dr. Michael V. Carter, and Marc Hyden is posted to the NKCCATDP Facebook Page. Marc was at the university last April where he spoke to students and faculty about repealing the death penalty and why this is called for by conservative principles: limited government, responsible use of tax dollars, and respect for life.

Graphic: courtesy of Conservatives Concerned About The Death Penalty and River Birch Productions

Photo: courtesy of River Birch Productions, ©2015 All Rights Reserved 

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Needed: just a few more great volunteers

Young supports sign up to help us by working together to end the death penalty.

Young supporters sign up to help us by working together to end the death penalty at a recent State Fair.

On August 20 the Kentucky State Fair opens for an 11 day run and KCADP will be there again. Why? Look at the picture of these youngsters and see the future: repeal of the death penalty in Kentucky. It takes a lot of help to staff this booth and we are fortunate to have so many loyal supporters who have already signed on to help.

But we need a few more on the following days: Saturday 8/22 – 4 persons needed; Sunday 8/23 – 6 persons; Tuesday 8/25 Quakers – 4 persons; Wednesday 8/26 – 4 persons; Friday 8/28 – 2 persons; Sunday 8/30 – 4 persons . Please contact Outreach Coordinator Shekinah Lavalle using the information in the graphic below. She can give you exact times volunteers are needed for the days listed above.

state-fairPhoto: courtesy River Birch Productions

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