I was in the passenger’s jeepney travelling to the city. When we were approaching the government hospital, my eyes were hooked on the Bureau of Jail and Management vehicle on the opposite lane. There came out some prisoners handcapped and escorted by some police officers. As I could see they were less than ten.
I noticed that they all walked down the busy street with heads facing the ground. I could feel they were ashamed to face the public. They were leading towards the entrance gate of the hospital for whatever reason I just don’t know.
But what really moved me was that they looked shameful of their situations.
Whatever crimes they have committed or being involved in, I am not in the position to judge. I do not have the right to judge either. We just do not know. Maybe some of them were just victims of injustice.
We are all human and life is never perfect and is far from being one. We all have our own failings and shortcomings sometimes we even sin. Maybe some are just unfortunate that they seriously violated the law of man and of God.
On the other hand, there are also bad people mingling in the outside world with others. They continue and freely do what they want, depriving the poor and lowly, the powerless and voiceless of their benefits in the society.
Here in the Philippines the prisoners are not totally without rights. For example, they have the right to vote. Still serving their sentence facing four corners of prison wall is never a joke and never easy. Their agony is obvious. They may be longing for love, acceptance and forgiveness.
Pride is hard to deal with in this highly competitive society. It can lead people to the greed for money, power, fame and influence where arrogance and selfishness are tolerated. Sometimes truth is denied while lies are supported and promoted.
I think what people need is a humble and remorseful heart, like that of a prisoner regretting over sins and go back to the loving and forgiving embrace of God. He is the one and only perfect judge who sees not our failings but our hearts.