On death row (capital punishment)

I just watched Majalah TV3, a documentary about prisoners on death row. The documentary took the viewers into the cell, the place where the prisoner spend their last night and the chamber where they are hang.

There are interviews with an Imam (I think), police and a doctor. This not the usual Made-In-Hollywood suave and hip style of filming where everything seems much more glamourous, suspenseful and just plain entertainment. This documentary hits home, right into my heart. Simple and truthful.

I know the guy there (they cover the face) must have committed some great crime. He ought to be punished and put to death. But still, it breaks my heart to see a person in that vulnerable situation.

The Imam and police related some very touching parts. Like sometimes it rains just on the spot where the death punishment is taking place. Or even the hardest of men who previously have no religion and will start looking for a place to turn to at the last moment.

The police also told Majalah TV3 about a guy who refused to acknowledge his mother previously but reunited with her before his death after counselling from the police. It is so touching.

This makes me wonder….When a person hits deep shit, where do they turn to? I am sure the atheist of the very atheist will still run somewhere for cover.

Whatever it is, I know my God will forgive. He will forgive the criminals, sinners, suicide persons, just anyone. If only they turn to Him.

Looking at the man in a kneeling position, deep in prayers, with his palm open for blessings, I know that God will still take Him up to Heaven. No matter what grave mistakes he had done. God forgives.

God bless the deceased souls. If God forgives, should we mere mortals learn to forgive too?

**Do you know that death sentence is carried out at 6.00 am in the morning? Several witnesses have to be around like a doctor, Imam (or whatever religious leader the prisoner chosed), hakim (judge?) and others. It is rather elaborate. The prisoners usually are not able to walk to the loop as they will be too weak by then. Sometimes, they struggled and broke their necks when they are hanged. The doctor’s role is to certify the death and help ‘repair’ some of the visible injuries. Sometimes, their tongues dangled out. Some of their eyes are terbeliak (open wide) and some closed. Of course, their head is covered before hanging. **

Want to read more?

Aliran wrote something about this. I can’t verify anything. Just that this is the only thing I can get from the internet.

This site from Wiki placed China as the country with the highest capital punishment. And tiny Singapore in the 10th position. Malaysia is not one of the 12.

10 Replies to “On death row (capital punishment)”

  1. Yes had the same experience when we went on a Prison tour in Frementle recently. The feeling of how the prisoners that are going through before been hanged.
    I feel the moment they are going to be hang must be awful. Just wonder what they might be thinking.

  2. Yakah, my censorboard so great? This is a new blog. I had deleted the old one and moved here. Yeah, imagine the last night. The police said some prisoners bath 5-6 times before being hanged.

  3. coincidently, i was thinking about this just this afternoon, after watching “the green mile” the previous night and then re-reading the book…

    for quite some time, i’ve been strongly against capital punishments, firmly believing that every life on earth be it an innocent baby or a violent murderer is a gift from God, for no sin is greater than the other, who are we, as fellow men who have sinned, to judge and decide if one man should or should not die, it is, by all means, God’s decision… for God gave us life, is anyone has the right to take it away it is God and God alone…

    yet, after reading “the jennifer ertman and elizabeth pena story” i do sympathise with their friends and families, and somehow it seems there is no other way out than to pass this particular inhumane judgement which in the first place was not ours to even consider.

    still, some families are so haunted and broken, claiming that the only way they may ever find closure is to know that the murderer is dead… which only makes me think, can society no longer forgive?

  4. imagine if someone murders someone your really close to. (*touch wood)

    Can you really forgive that person? I think you might be able to,but I cant.

    As time passes,i might forgive,but i will never forget.

    as they say,an eye for an eye.

    Capital punishment has been abolished in many countries,but msia is still practicing it.

    capital punishment vs life imprisonment without parole.

    i guess some prisoners,if they could would choose life imprisonment.But getting locked up in some place for your whole life? Thats almost the same as no life to live.

  5. re emily.
    as a muslim, i believe that death (unlike destiny) is already written for us (the hows, wheres and whens). even if they were sentenced capital punishment, if God never meant for them to die, they wouldnt. thats disguised as pleas, and the likes. but eventually they would die.

  6. Kiasi – Pretend to die mah. And then belanja kopi lor.

    pb – I agree with your point.

    RB – It is harder to live with all the anger, bitterness and etc. Even if another life have been taken, that will stay and still eats up the lives of the people if they did not forgive. So, making an effort to forgive offers a more permanent answer. As Christians, we also know our weaknesses and know it is hard to forgive but God reminds us to place our trust in Him. He said, ‘Revenge is mine’. This is often repeated through the books (in the Bible) for 4,000 years by different prophets. So eventhough, you often hear Christians like to preach about forgiveness, I think it is because we have the faith that God will take care of things for us. We just have to step back and try to go on living.

    Emily – Yeah, also agree with your point. But sometimes, we must have a few scapegoats to scare off the rest. So, I suppose capital punishment does have its positive points.

    ali – Actually, I still pity her. I am sure she is sincere with her faith pleas. And it is not she alone who is wrong. She is after all, just a Gov. servant. There are bigger players and probably she get it hardest because she is a woman? Hahaha, ignore me. I don’t really care about the AP issue. I don’t get any richer or poorer with them.

  7. I agreed with RB. If me, can only forgive after sentense been carried out on those who’s responsible. If not, rage will be there.

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