Scholars, Politicians and Religious Leaders Discuss Religion and the Death Penalty

In the past year, debate over the use of the death penalty in the U.S. has become louder and more focused as the first federal executions since 1963 took place. While public support for the death penalty remains high, it has fallen from a high of 77% five years ago to 63% in 2001. And 42% of death penalty opponents cite religious belief as an influence on their position.


Mary Schultz
Communications Manager

In light of this ongoing debate, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life will hold a conference, “A Call for Reckoning: Religion and the Death Penalty,” that will bring together diverse panels of scholars and practitioners, including Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, former U.S. Senator Paul Simon, Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating and Avery Cardinal Dulles. Panelists will discuss the broad range of views on the death penalty offered by representative faiths and traditions in the U.S.


Conference to discuss broad range of religious views on death penalty


Friday, January 25, 2002

9a.m. – 5p.m.


The University of Chicago Divinity School, Swift Hall

1025 East 58th Street, Chicago, IL

  • Khaled Abou El Fadl, UCLA School of Law

  • Victor Anderson, Vanderbilt Divinity School

  • J. Budziszewski, University of Texas

  • E.J. Dionne, Jr., The Brookings Institution and co-chair, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life

  • Avery Cardinal Dulles, S.J., Fordham University

  • Jean Bethke Elshtain, University of Chicago and co-chair, the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life

  • Richard Garnett, University of Notre Dame Law School

  • Hon. Frank Keating, Governor of Oklahoma

  • Gilbert Meilaender, Valparaiso University

  • David Novak, University of Toronto

  • Hon. Antonin Scalia, United States Supreme Court

  • Hon. Paul Simon, Former Senator (D-IL)

  • Beth Wilkinson, Former Federal Prosecutor of Oklahoma City bombing trials

RSVP: Register online

or call (773) 702-6943


Please note: Justice Scalia’s presentation will not be open to video cameras. All other conference proceedings will be available for all types of media coverage.