I am so glad that Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has abolished the death penalty on Saturday. Now, it’s up to Malaysia and Singapore to follow her enlightened path.
The death penalty had actually been abolished in the Philippines in 1987 but was restored in late 1993 for heinous crimes such as murder, child rape and kidnapping. But executing someone, even a criminal, reflects on the State’s morality of taking a life prematurely. Additionally, there have been cases especially in the USA where people had been sent wrongly to the gallows by over-eager but unscrupulous state prosecutors.
Arroyo sought to assure the nation that her opposition to capital punishment had not undermined her commitment to fighting crime. She said:
"We will never be intimidated by these treacherous acts, and we shall fight terror as seriously as we embrace peace. We shall continue to devote the increasing weight of our resources to the prevention and control of serious crimes, rather than take the lives of those who commit them."
More than 1,200 death-row convicts - including at least 11 al-Qaeda-linked militants - will benefit from the ban on the death penalty.
Papal Nuncio Archbishop Fernando Filoni, the Vatican's envoy to Manila, congratulated Arroyo and legislators who supported the measure. And I will send her my love too.
I knew I was justified in having the hots for Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. ;-) Let it not be said that KTemoc doesn’t have taste.
Stupid if He's Smart, Smart if He's Stupid!