Religion plays a crucial role in the Philippines. Heck, it’s even quite amusing how most Filipinos are named after biblical figures. Then here comes drugs and Death Penalty; for a city like Ormoc which seems to be tightly-knitted to the vestibules of the dogmatic Christian religion, the idea of “killing” is obviously highly considered as one of “God’s” seven deadliest sin. However, as religious a Filipino might be, it is still unavoidable for them to deviate from the basic laws of social norms.
Take the case of a “druggie”. When they are so into the act of committing a crime, we have to remember that the brains of these individuals are totally hijacked by a cocktail of highly expensive illegal drugs that makes it virtually impossible for them to formulate higher levels of thinking at that specific period of time. So it is safe to say that these people are exercising a barbaric primal instinct that overdrives the common desire to conform to society’s normal ethical standards. This, then leads us to conclude that barbarism is at work here.
On another case, let’s say one of your immediate family member is a victim of a druggie. Automatically, because human as you are, your first reaction to such a brutal action is grief and to nurture your reptilian instinct for a planned retribution.
Revenge. It feels good right? Especially if you’re overdriven by your emotional desire to exterminate that “druggie’s” life by making him feel the pain of his own actions towards you and your family. In this case, revenge is –by its very nature– entirely selective and just a function of personal perspective. However, according to the laws that governs the land –the only limiting force that separates you from that “druggie” – you are not permitted to commit an act, i.e. murder, whether intended for emotional pleasure or not.
So here comes the inception of Death Penalty –the ultimate hope of those who wanted revenge for their lost loved ones. But is Death Penalty entirely plausible for those who wants to be emotionally satiated by revenge? Apparently, the city’s District Representative –Lucy Torres-Gomez– thinks so. Since Lucy’s decision is so mainstream today, here is my cent to help Ormocanons see light in her decision for approving the re-imposition of capital punishment.
It’s not going to come as a shocker to me if the coven of the city’s Jesuits blasts their horn with the intention of ostracizing the Gomez family from entering the city’s Catholic Church; of course, given the fact that the Gomezes are devout Chatolic family. After all, the church has the absolute power to do so, right? But is it really worth it for the city’s Catholic Church to call out Lucy Torres with her decision for voting YES to Death Penalty? I don’t think so. Just because she decided to agree with the re-imposition of capital punishment doesn’t automatically associate her to that of being an “Antichrist” or being an “un-Christian”. Think about it, just because someone doesn’t give a beggar an alm doesn’t automatically mean he’s “not generous”. Sometimes, it’s more like a case of “self-preservation” where that someone has to tend to his own needs first rather than tending to others’. In this case, he’s trying to weigh his options after formulating reasons as to why he shouldn’t help the beggar first.
The above analogy, as I’d like to believe, has the same analogy Lucy Torres used after weighing the conditions of the situation in front of her –that is the rampant distribution of illegal drugs; after all, Death Penalty is heavily anchored on drug related cases. Again, just like the above analogy, what Lucy Torres is doing is merely preserving the common good of her people. It doesn’t come new to me when a woman like her will rather protect her people, even if that means using the extreme of measures to do it, and will rather act fierce in a situation that could escalate into a large scale disaster. Of course, Lucy knows better than to waste the vote of Ormocanons and of course, she’s also aware of the fact that the bastion of one of the country’s biggest drug cartels is only less than an hour drive from Ormoc. So to say that Lucy Torres is somewhat delusional in her decision to approve the re-imposition of capital punishment, then you have an issue of not seeing things the way we are seeing it.
The city’s Catholic Church should not play the good man here just because they’re seeing this as an act of Human Rights violations. The church should not keep a blind eye to the cruel reality that the victims of these feared druggies, though it might sound cruel to say this but, were not saved by the word of God. It’s time for the church to take a small step back in order to get a good grasp of how the situation was during their “intervention” from the state’s decisions. Now, it’s time for the church to let the state do it’s job by protecting the people from further damaging each other just because the church has been meddling from the state. It’s time to make a wise choice.
Photo courtesy: PinoyStop.com