No less than Divinity gave the Commandment to humanity: Thou shall not kill. So it is that the Right to Life is not bestowed to anyone by anybody else – neither by any potentate by any State, by any government. And no one of these – much less their hirelings – has the prerogative, the privilege to kill. There is a whale of a difference between saving oneself through self-defense and killing another for any other reason – such as simply to show off, to be admired or feared, to get a pat on the back or to have an additional star on the shoulder. One may not be proud of being a killer – along the thinking and acting of “The Terminator” which may be a good movie but would be a bad reality. So it is that a killer-instinct is but appended to fierce and irrational animals – not to human beings.
Essential, primary, fundamental – this is the Right to Life. It is essential because without it, there is nothing to think, to talk, to bother about. It is primary whereas it is the most valuable human attribution in the absence of which there is really nothing left to care for, to protect, to save. And it is fundamental considering that all other human rights – be these of individuals, families or communities – are in truth not only based but also anchored on the Right to Life. So it is that take away the right to life, then, what are the other basic human rights? If no one gives life to himself, how dare someone take the life of others? And if suicide is taboo, more taboo is murder, homicide, manslaughter. So it is that there is no right to kill but a right to self-defense, yes.
Without life, so what if there is poverty and misery? In the absence of life, what are abundance and wealth for? Take away life, what is there to celebrate or to lament about? So it is that no matter how good-looking is the mausoleum, how impressive is the burial ground, how much decorations are placed thereabout, the dead remains dead. So it is that death is considered the great equalizer. And so it is that in death, there is no essential difference among kings and slaves, among the powerful and the helpless, among the rich and the poor. It is death that is wherefore known and called as the Great Equalizer.
Life is the most precious gift anyone can receive – considering that no one, yes, absolutely no one ever gives life to himself. So is it that just as suicide is taboo, in the same way killing others is anathema. And so it is that Summary Execution is not the way of the righteous, neither the recourse of the civilized nor the option of the just. And woe to a community, a people, a Country that look at killing as a way of life, a part of living. It is both a shame and a pity to leave the Culture of Killing to the in-coming generation. Reason: Such would be going back to the way and the habit of the Stone Age. And so it that even the so-called “Death Penalty” is not something to look forward to. There are many ways of rightfully penalizing them but simply doing away with them. The dead is altogether beyond penalty here and now.
Let it be said once more – clearly and emphatically: Would that the national dear and endearing Welcome Greetings of “Mabuhay!” be not eventually and shamefully changed instead to “Mamatay!” – with the advent of the Culture of Death. Sad but true!