The death penalty dies a natural death

The long time attempts to revive the death penalty in the country was given a glimmer of hope in the lower house as the House of Representatives managed to get a bare majority through on the second reading of the bill. However, the said bill died a natural death in the upper house as the Senate failed to unite with a single voice for its revival.

There is no need to reiterate the long debated issues on the morality (or the lack of it) of the death penalty, human rights, the right to life, and the list goes on of the repeated arguments to trample the most brutal form of capital punishment. Nor is there a need to dwell on the emotionally charged arguments raised by human rights victims and their advocates, the main theme pointing to the ease of fighting for the rights of criminals until you, or someone close to you, become one of their victims.

What is seriously wrong with the Philippine version of the death penalty is its focus on drug related crimes, at the neglect of all other heinous crimes plaguing the nation. The drafted bill that made it past the lower house was clearly an attempt to validate the controversial extrajudicial killings which have made the current administration notoriously popular with the international community.

Laws should be based on reason and they should be made to address long term problems of the whole nation – and not just to satisfy the whims of a current administration. Laws should not single out a certain category of crimes when there are other crimes equally deserving of the same penalty.

The death penalty is not wrong per se – there is just something wrong with the Philippine version.



The possible rebirth of the death penalty

Reciprocal death penalty

Justice, Davao Death Squad style

The Smoke Screen for Reality

via Daily Prompt: Denial

We’ve all been in that situation where we choose to turn a blind eye to what is right in front of us. Either because reality hits too close to home and facing it becomes a terrifying prospect. It could also be because reality is forcing us to confront something we’re just not ready to deal with.

Some people live life pretending everything is okay, then go home at night and cry in the privacy of their solitude – a place where there is no need to put on a front to fool other people, a place where one is stripped naked of the veneer of denial that there is nowhere left to hide.

They are everywhere – the macho gay neighbor who prefers to keep his lovers inside the closet, his parents who pretend not to see the longing look their son sends to the family driver, his wife who prefers to believe his excuses not to hold her at night. It could also be your other neighbor who used to own a house and a car, who now borrows a few bucks from you now and then, who you’ve seen holding solo pot sessions after a declaration of bankruptcy.

Living in denial is the fastest way towards hitting rock bottom. Refusing to face problems won’t make them go away – they continue to grow in the backyard of your reality. And, one day, you realize the problem has become too big to ignore. Much better to face problems early and nip them in the bud.

No Man is an Island

via Daily Prompt: Devastation

Devastation is such a sad word with such a strong impact that you cannot ignore the onslaught of sadness. But to put things in perspective, a totally shattering experience in life is a test to the fortitude of the human spirit. The human ability to rise above challenge, and to adapt to the ever changing seasons of life.

Sadly, there are no guarantees that a devastating experience can be surpassed successfully. Some of us are strong enough to move foreward. Some need other people to cope. Some refuse to take the hand reached out by other people and sink inevitably into oblivion.

There’s a saying that goes: no man is an island. Sometimes life just gets too difficult to stand alone….and sometimes, even the strongest among us, need a helping hand.

Its good to reach out to others – they may just need a hand.


Everyone has a Dark Side

via Daily Prompt: Privacy

Two faced people are people we love to hate. But, come to think of it, is there really a human being who only shows one face to the entire world? With all honesty, I cannot claim to be such a person. My hats off to anyone who can, while maintaining the utmost sincerity to one’s self.

Truth be told, we all face circumstances in life when we need to put up a front. A brave face when confronted with a dangerous situation. A white lie to spare the feelings of a loved one. A yes where one’s heart is screaming no…sounds familiar?

Only we know what is truly going on inside. Only we know what aspect of ourselves we want the world to see. To me, this is the essence of privacy – taking control of what we wish to reveal, and what we wish to remain in the dark side of our being.

Everyone deserves a chance in the spotlight

via Daily Prompt: Shine

People are judgmental. We all take to what we see on the outside, and its common to assume that a seemingly quiet, seemingly plain human being will have nothing to offer. No matter how common or ordinary a person may appear to be, I can assure you they know something you don’t, and they can do something you can’t. How can I be so sure? Because I am also sure that every human being is unique. There is something in each of us that no one else has. Once a person you cherish is gone, trust me on this, no one can take their place.

Thus, a journey towards self discovery is of paramount importance so we can make the most of who we are. The world imposes conformity through rules, and it is so easy to lose one’s individuality in the process. Losing one’s individuality is tantamount to blowing out one’s light – a light, that no matter how bright or dim, will have its own unique effect on the world.

Find out what makes you different and carry your uniqueness like a torch because there is no one else like you.


The Journey of Life

via Daily Prompt: Crossing

The journey called life is full of crossroads. As any living person knows, no one can stay at a crossroad forever. You eventually have to decide which road to take, no matter whats holding you back, and even if you have no idea what lies ahead in the road you eventually decide to take.

But, unlike a literal road where all it takes is a U turn to go back, the road called life allows no turning back.. All we can do is make the most of the situation we end up in. Mistakes will be made, and we either learn from them and move forward, or allow our mistakes to consume us alive – just another crossroad where a tough decision needs to be made as to which way to go next. I guess this is what is meant by we mold our own fate. After all, we make our own decisions. What happens to us is beyond our control, how we decide to react to what happens to us is not..

Life is just a journey of decisions that need to be made – just one crossroad after another.


The permanence of change

via Daily Prompt: Gone

Love comes, love goes. People change. Seasons change. Time waits for no one no matter how many words you long to say. Time doesn’t care about love that goes unconfessed, apologies left unsaid, or hugs and kisses not given. People fear rejection and embarrasssment which causes them to hold back emotions. People with a sense of urgency are willing to take the risk of wounding their pride knowing that with the blink of an eye, the snap of a finger, the tick of a clock, the people who matter most can be….gone.