Yes to death penalty, no to divorce
WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez (The Freeman) - August 22, 2016 - 12:00am

Among the proposed legislation being put forward in the current session of Congress are two bills, which are quite controversial and divisive. One of them is for the reinstatement of death penalty into our penal system, and the other is for enactment of a divorce law for dysfunctional marriages. These two pieces of proposed laws are expected to divide the nation. The Church, the self-appointed guardians of morals and social norms, the modern pastors, and messengers of the Word are expected to oppose both proposals.

At the outset, we are making our position very clear, categorical, and unequivocal. We are in favor of death penalty but only for heinous crimes and those cruel and shocking offenses that are committed by hardened and habitual criminals who murder, rape, and terrorize innocent victims and communities.Death should be imposed on drug lords and gambling lords, traffickers, and illegal recruiters in syndicates.

But we oppose divorce because we do not want to condone irresponsible spouses who rush into marriage and then run away from their responsibilities, and inflict trauma upon helpless and faultless children.

To our mind, death penalty is a just, appropriate, and fitting penalty for recidivists and habitual delinquents, who rape young children, kill defenseless persons, ravage and burn entire villages of peaceful citizens. It should be imposed on serial criminal and serial rapists and murderers. Death penalty is also proper for high government officials who are proven guilty beyond the pale of doubt, of plunder and high crimes, treason and insurrection, and kidnapping for ransom, and those who rob the national coffers and steal money that is intended for the poor victims of calamities and wars.

Divorce should be denied because, if granted, it will weaken even more the family as the basic foundation of the nation. It will grant a stamp of legality to the highly irresponsible act of abandoning young sons and daughters. Those who enter into marriage should not be given an escape route. If there are problems, then the couple must discuss and solve them. They must not run away from the challenges. They were not compelled to get married. They entered it with free will, full knowledge and with voluntariness. They should then honor their commitment.

Almost all ASEAN countries have death penalty, like our three closest friends, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. The late Flor Contemplacion was executed in Singapore for the murder of Delia Maga, her fellow OFW. We have a Filipina drug convict in Indonesia.Mary Jane Veloso is awaiting her ultimate fate of possible death by musketry after having been convicted of being a drug courier. There are hundreds of Filipino death convicts in China, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and other Middle Eastern countries.

In the Philippines, death penalty should become the strongest deterrent against crimes. In crime prevention, deterrence is what matters most.

josephusbjimenez@gmail.com.

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