Torture is Wrong

Saw this as my wife and I walked down Newbury St., Boston, on a recent trip to visit family in New England. I don’t remember what church this was, but I am pleased to see the Christian community speaking out against all forms of violence done in the name of God or State.

It wasn’t long ago that the Church was the proponent of ugly methods of torture, as these examples from Medievality.com show. Thankfully, we have (mostly) emerged from this sense of physical power and domination over others, but it is also our duty as Christians to speak out against the torture we see in the world, which we as Americans unfortunately find right in our backyard. Phillipe Sands’ book Torture Team details the Bush administration’s torture policies. Sands is interviewed about the book on Fresh Air- the revealing interview can be found here– check out the book review of Jesuit priest Uwem Akpan’s short story collection as well.

William T. Cavanaugh addresses the relationship between Church and State with regards to torture in his bookTorture and Eucharist: Theology, Politics, and the Body of Christ. He focuses on the role the Church played in Chile under the brutal regime of Pinochet.

More than books, Christians, particulary young evangelicals, are actively engaging in social action and peace movements around the globe. I stumbled across the Sojourners magazine at Borders, and was happy to see profiles of numerous young Christians engaging in this very issue.

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