In a series of discussions, the Center for Social Action, along with a children’s rights group, emphasized the dangers of reimposing the death penalty and lowering the age of criminal liability.
A flawed judicial system can cost an innocent life.
This was the message of De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde’s Center for Social Action (CSA) and the Children’s Legal Rights and Development Center (CLRDC) last March 6 in “Huntahan: Kwentong May Kwenta – Death Penalty and Lowering the Age of Criminal Liability.”
“For the human rights violation victims, we never wished death for the perpetrators,” said Reference Speaker and Executive Director Rowena Legaspi, adding how protecting human rights reflects respect for the right to life.
Opposed to the death penalty, she also mentioned our country’s judicial system is flawed because human justice is fallible due to human errors. Reimposing the death penalty increases the chance that innocent people will be executed by the flawed system—leaving no valid reason to pass the death penalty bill.
In addition, Legaspi emphasized putting the criminal to death cheapens the value of human life. She said death penalty transgresses the inviolability of life and harms the human dignity with extent to all human lives. She added the death penalty fosters no closure or justice for the victim’s family, but instead, only fosters vengeance.
Stating an alarming increase of instances when minors are criminalized, Legaspi pointed out minors may soon be imprisoned heavy or face the possibility of capital punishment.
The discussion recapped the Juvenile Justice Law, which former President Noynoy Aquino signed in 2006, stating the Local Councils for the Protection of Children must develop a comprehensive intervention program for children at risk and no prior conviction to criminal liability within local government units.
Since the implementation of the law in 2006, it is required to establish 115 Houses of Hope. However, Legaspi confirmed there are currently only five Houses of Hope licensed and accredited for the youth.
Earlier today, March 8, CSA also held a participatory noise barrage open to the community against the reimposition of death penalty along Taft Avenue.
Photos by Ysabel Victoriano