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Showing posts from June, 2015

NATURAL DISASTERS: Are the gods angry?

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It happened all so quickly and unexpectedly, as is often the case with natural disasters.

On iconic Mount Kinabalu in the Malaysian state of Sabah on the island of Borneo, 277 people were on the mountain, including 187 climbers. The date was Friday 5 June 2015. Suddenly and without warning, a massive earthquake measuring 5.9 on the Richter scale rocked the picturesque mountain. Boulders were dislodged and began to tumble downward. The Malaysian mountain guides like Robbie Sapinggi, Valerian Joannes, and Joseph Solgin valiantly tried to rescue their climbers but tragically perished. When it was all finished 18 people were dead: 9 from Singapore including students age 11-12 on a school outing; 6 from Malaysia, 1 Filipino, 1 Japanese and 1 from China.
Flags flew at half-mast in Sabah and Singapore. Athletes at the SEA games observed a minute of silence. Makeshift memorials were found in various places.
Statements came out of Sabah that the earthquake was the result of 10 foreign climbers w…

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT: Is it Really the Way to Go?

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It was 12:30 AM, April 29, 2015. The eight prisoners were brought out and tied to a cross-like figure. Blindfolds were rejected because they wanted to see their executioners. Each prisoner had 12 soldiers assigned to them. Nine soldiers’ guns were loaded with blanks while only 3 had live ammunition, so that no soldier knew who fired the fatal shot. The prisoners sang Amazing Grace. At the signal, shots rang out, and all went silent. Within 3 minutes, the prisoner was dead.
Among the prisoners were two Australians, Andrew Chan 31 and Myuran Sukumaran 34. They were part of the ‘Bali Nine’ arrested in 2005 and were executed for drug trafficking in Indonesia.
The foreign execution of the two Australians, the first in nearly a decade, brought back to the fore the issue of capital punishment, also known as the death penalty. The term comes from the Latin term capitalis, a reference to the head and beheading. A state exercises capital punishment when they take the life of the convicted person …