Honor Killing Vs. Mercy Killing



Honor Killing and Mercy Killing

When I was mentally processing the thought about honor killing, I came across Rifqa Bary and her book : Hiding in the Light: Bary was 16-year-old, her Muslim parents found out she had renounced Islam and had become a Christian. That's when she ran away from home in Ohio, USA and took refuge with Christians in Florida she had met on Facebook. Bary knew that her father's only resource was to take her life and call it as Honor killing. Now she's telling why she risked everything to leave her home and follow Jesus in her book. 

Honor killing is another worse tragedy which happens in the world especially in different parts of South East Asia. This is a murder by a family member for behavior deemed "shameful," such as a relationship outside of marriage. Honor killing is the death that is awarded to a woman by her family members mainly for marrying against her families interest or having pre-marital or extra marital sexual relationship, marrying outside of the caste system. It is a crime against humanity and human values and human freedom. There is no honor in killing another human being. Murder is murder and can’t be named it as honor killing.  Nearly 1000 "honor" killings are reported in Pakistan alone each year according to Unicef.

Around the globe according to UN estimates over 5,000 honor killing or murders takes place annually. Around 800 million women are girls live under the threat of honor killing, a sexual abuse or rape can eventually lead to honor killing. These murders are based on the belief that a woman is the property of her family.  Honor killings have been reported in Bangladesh, Brazil, Ecuador, Egypt, India, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Morocco, Pakistan, Sweden, Turkey, Uganda and the United Kingdom.  


When the woman’s virtue come into question such as refusing to obey her father, husband or brother, her family’s “honor” is thought to be disgraced and the woman must be killed by a male relative to restore the family’s good name in the community.  Many times the women are killed because of the mere suspicion that they have engaged in illicit sexual activity or in some cases talking to another man in the same village. Honor killings, which are typically the result of two young people marrying without the consent of their families and often across caste barriers, bringing "dishonor" on the family are widespread in India, among all ethnic groups and religions, but especially in rural regions of the north and northwest. This is in contradiction with the centuries old arrange marriage system in India.

Mercy killing on the other hand is the killing of a patient suffering from an incurable and painful disease, typically by the administration of large dose of painkilling drugs. Some time this is also administered by removing the life supportive equipments. Mercy killing also known as euthanasia. This is administered by another person because they believe it is the best interest of the suffering individual who lives with the life supportive equipments. There should be dignity in dying for every human being. There is many controversies concerning mercy killing, but unfortunately there is no enough voice against honor killing.

This enlightens us about the grave need of women empowerment in the South East Asian Countries through education, entrepreneurship and social awareness. The story of God’s mercy in the "John gospel" is evident through Jesus forgiving a woman taken in adultery. Jesus neither found fault with the law, nor excused the prisoner's guilt; nor did he countenance the pretended zeal of the Pharisees. Those are self-condemned who judge others, and yet do the same thing.

Chaplains and pastors who work in the palliative care and intensive care encounter death and dying every day. No one wants to die. Even the people who have hope eternity don’t want to die to get there. I have also not seen anyone who could escape death even though the medical science is working hard to prolong death. Death is the single best invention of life, but never infiltrate death to another human soul.

Blessings 
Binu Peniel(C)2015


Dr. Binu Peniel

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