Update 7/20/07 1240: Now CBS News is carrying the story so it has officially hit the national media. I am sure that this whole thing will now become even more of a circus. My heart is breaking for the family of Officer McPhail.
I am not Catholic. I am a born and bred Episcopalian (not the gay marriage supporting wing of the Episcopal church). I have always held the Pope and the Vatican in the highest regard. But today's news really makes me sick.
The Savannah Morning News is reporting that the Vatican is joining Amnesty International, Daily KOS, Rep John Lewis and other activists in calling for a reprieve for Troy Davis.
In a letter sent on behalf of Pope Benedict XVI to Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue, the Apostolic Nunciature, the Washington office of the Vatican, asked that Troy Anthony Davis not be executed.
"In the name of Pope Benedict XVI, I am respectfully asking you to commute Troy's sentence to life in prison without parole," wrote Monsignor Martin Krebs, charge d'affaires for the Apostolic Nunciature. The letter also says Davis' pending execution is "disturbing" given that many witnesses have come forward to say their testimony implicating him was false.
Davis' lawyers have said seven of nine witnesses who testified at his trial about his involvement in the shooting have since recanted or contradicted their testimony.
I am sure that Amnesty International and Davis' attorneys petitioned the Vatican to weigh in on this case due to the Church's stance on the death penalty. The Vatican's opposition to the death penalty is well known.
BUT to have Monsignor Krebs issue an opinion on a legal issue (the witnesses recantations) that he knows NOTHING about in an effort to subvert our justice system and sway public opinion is reprehensible and not worthy of the historical respect for the Vatican.
With all due respect, Monsignor Martin Krebs and Pope Benedict XVI, butt the heck out and let the US Justice System work the way it has for 200+ years.
Previous Posts about Officer Mark Allen McPhail
Where Are the Cries for Justice for Officer Mark Allan McPhail? - UPDATED Pardon and Parole Board Delays Justice