We need our police to be human again

Ours is supposed to be the time of humanism, yet many have died in custody. Some went for supper, their last. They never made it home.

God must have cried an ocean when He saw the police stapling N Dharmendran's ears.

How could one creation of his torture another, just as precious in his eyes?

Would anyone dare to surrender himself to the police now, for whatever reason? Would anyone dare to walk into a police station now, for whatever reason? I'd think twice!

It isn't bad enough that we cannot trust them to arrest the alarming crime rate in the nation. Precious lives are now lost in their hands. That, too, after being tortured! How can this be?

What kind of people are being enlisted into the police? What does it take to be a policeman, here in Malaysia?

Pope John Paul ll once said, "We recognise that in the creative restlessness of every man, there beats and pulsates what is deeply human - the search for truth, the insatiable need for the good, hunger for freedom, nostalgia for the beautiful and the voice of conscience."

And it's because of this, one man cannot force himself on another, take away from the other or to enslave another human being.

Society is made up of a group of individuals who share something in common. That "something" may be made up of such things as land, possessions, colour, religion, or anything at all.

The important thing is that each person within that group recognises the right of his neighbour to a share of what they hold in common.

This is the 21st century; we cannot have entire groups of humans violated and denied by clear injustice of civil laws and the right to integrity.

Humanity of this age tells us we must rightly acknowledge the greatness and misery of individuals; manifest, sustain and foster the total dignity of the human person.

Do our police not know that the very next person, under whatever and however the circumstances they meet, possesses an equal dignity?

Yet, when merely a suspect or in some cases just a witness, once brought into custody or for questioning, this man can be subjected to degrading and humiliating forms of treatment that reduces him to a "non-person".

With some, this culminates in death. And we worry about perception and morale? What about a human life? Is it not more precious by far?

Our police must learn that the dignity of the person constitutes the foundation of equality of all people among themselves. That a man or a woman, is a conscious and free being and precisely for this reason, the centre and summit of all that exists on earth.

It is this dignity that demands everyone to treat another the way he wants to be treated, not merely tolerated or even respected but to be revered as life is to be revered.

Our police has to be in solidarity with their people, with a firm and persevering determination to commit themselves to the common good - the good of all Malaysians. I, for one, long for the day when I can feel safe once more, walking around in the city.

When I have a problem, who do I call? Can I call the police? Can I walk into a police station and come out alive? Or is it a point of no return?

Honestly, I wished it wasn't so. I believe there are good cops out there but who's to know our luck which type we would meet.

Please, all these unnecessary loss of lives and property, including the sense of insecurity we live with every day, is a result of sheer irresponsibility and incompetence on your part.

My dear police, you really need to arrest this decline. It's hardly funny when a life is lost, even if he is suspected to have committed a crime. He has a right to a fair trial.

If he were your son or husband, you would want justice, too. You would want the truth, too. Not to be tortured and have your ears stapled! How does a man, once he dons a uniform of authority, become an animal? A murderer?

Yet, only in Malaysia can we have authorities still unconvinced we need the IPCMC, mooted way back in 2005.

How many more must fall victims to crimes? How many more must die in custody? Apa lagi kau mahu, (what more do you want BN?) Your own flesh and blood to die in custody?

Take my word, you cannot afford to wait till then. You are human, too.