Currently 34 states have the death penalty, including New Hampshire. The good news it that New Hampshire hasn't executed a prisoner since the 1930's and doesn't even have a death chamber. There is one prisoner on death row in New Hampshire, Michael Addison, who killed Manchester Police Officer Michael Briggs in 2006. Interestingly enough, Brigg's partner that night, retired Officer John Breckenridge, is now an anti-death penalty advocate.
There have been some bills introduced in the New Hampshire Legislature to expand the death penalty but they have not passed and a bill to repeal it outright was vetoed in 2000 by Gov. Jeanne Shaheen.
The Catholic Church teaches that capital punishment should only be used in the absolute rarest of circumstances, if at all. While there are currently no pending bills in the legislature, I thought it would be a good opportunity for our students to write to their state representatives and senators urging them not to expand the death penalty or, to consider repealing it.
I made up postcards for our students and they will have the chance to write to their legislators all day on Friday and to express their views. I will then mail them to the State House on their behalf.
Let us pray that all human life - even the worst of the worst - will always be respected.