In a recent issue of America Magazine, an article noted two important facts: executions have declined and support for them still polls by a sizable majority.
The reason for this is simple; public leadership, judges, and most of the media, accepting the narrative that the major reason people commit murder is because they have had a tough life, continues to do what they can to reduce executions.
The public, understanding that the major reason people commit murder is because they are, by and large, evil, continues to do what they can to ensure executions continue.
For Catholics, it is important to realize, even in the face of recent papal comments, that the Church has always supported capital punishment, which we documented in our book: Capital Punishment & Catholic Social Teaching: A Tradition of Support.
An excerpt from the America article.
In 2013 the use of the death penalty continued its steady decline by almost every measure, according to a report released in December by the Death Penalty Information Center. Executions in the United States dropped by about 10 percent from 2012, to 39 from 43, marking only the second time in the past 19 years the number was below 40….
Public support for the death penalty, measured in an annual Gallup poll, declined to 60 percent, its lowest level in 40 years.
Retrieved January 14, 2014 from http://americamagazine.org/issue/decline-death-penalty