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He already received mercy: “RFK’s oldest son condemns possible parole of Sirhan Sirhan”

“The prisoner left a pregnant mother of ten without a husband and soon-to-be 11 children without a father.”

Joseph P. Kennedy, II, with mother, Ethel in 1978

… mercy is easier to receive than to give

The quality of mercy is not strained;

It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven

Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest;

It blesseth him that gives and him that takes:

William Shakespeare, “The Merchant of Venice”

My heart says one thing, my mind another.

Indeed, in so many ways, I am a very merciful person. However, when it comes to political assassinations, that mercy is definitely strained.

Making it worse is that I begin to sound like the people in the Old Testament, which I despise, and not those of Jesus Christ in the New Testament, which I love.

So, when I read what Joe Kennedy II, the son of former Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, said about the potential parole of his father’s assassin, Sirhan Sirhan, I was torn between what my heart said and what my gut reaction was.

Joe Kennedy II strongly opposes release

The third child of Bobby and Ethel Kennedy forcefully opposes the release of Sirhan, and he made it clear in a number of statements that he released,

Former congressman Joseph P. Kennedy II, the oldest son of Robert F. Kennedy, denounced the possible parole of the man convicted of killing his father in California in 1968.

“Two commissioners of the 18-member California Parole Board made a grievous error last Friday in recommending the release of the man who murdered my father,” Kennedy wrote in the emailed statement released Sunday. “I understand that there are differing views about ending the sentence of this killer, including within my own family. But emotions and opinions do not change facts or history” …

“I hope the full parole board will reverse the decision over the ongoing review period and that the California governor, if faced with the choice to release him, will keep him in prison to serve out his full life sentence,” Kennedy wrote.

“RFK’s oldest son condemns possible parole of Sirhan Sirhan,”

Associated Press, August 30, 2021

Sirhan is now 77-years-old, he has expressed remorse for what he did, he has said that he cannot even remember killing Kennedy, and he poses no threat to society, according to the parole recommendation.

He seems to be the ideal candidate for mercy, especially since that is the humanistic approach for the use of mercy with people.

Joe Kennedy said that he had received mercy

Sen. Robert F. Kennedy was killed by Sirhan after capturing the California primary for president in 1968. This occurred in the Ambassador Hotel after he had delivered his victory speech and was then walking out of the ballroom into a hallway.

He left behind 10 children and a wife pregnant with their 11th, but Joe Kennedy believed that Sirhan, who was convicted of the killing and had the gun wrestled out of his hand, does not deserve mercy,

Joe Kennedy said Sunday that anyone who kills for political reasons should “know that he will at a minimum spend life in prison without parole. ”

“The prisoner killed my father because of his support of Israel,” Kennedy wrote in a separate statement. “The man was tried, convicted and sentenced to death. Yet he now may walk free, no doubt to the cheers of those who share his views. Let there be no mistake, the prisoner’s release will be celebrated by those who believe that political disagreements can be solved by a gun.”

Kennedy, on a more personal note, spoke of growing up without a father.

“The prisoner left a pregnant mother of ten without a husband and soon-to-be 11 children without a father.”

He added: “We miss him every moment of every day, and struggle to understand why the prisoner should be able to enjoy the golden years of his life when he so viciously stole them from our father” …

“My mother, Ethel Kennedy, and my uncle, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, asked that his death sentence be reduced to life imprisonment as a demonstration of mercy. He received that mercy,” Kennedy wrote. “No one should have the right to alter the lesser sentence requested by the person most affected by my father’s death — his wife, whose last child would never know a father’s touch. Nothing written, said or done will ever change that reality.”

“RFK’s oldest son condemns possible parole of Sirhan Sirhan,”

Associated Press, August 30, 2021

Biblical view of mercy

Joe Kennedy’s view is personal, and he believes that saving him from the death penalty was mercy enough for Sirhan.

The problematic part of this for me is what Jesus Christ said about the essential need of people for mercy,

“I desire mercy, not sacrifice. For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Matthew 9:13

Those bloodthirsty people who call themselves Christians do not read the Book of Matthew and are not merciful whether it comes to the death penalty or to vaccines or masks.

However, I do, and that makes this a dilemma for me.

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