This week we read about the, "arei miklat," (the cities of refuge) that someone who murdered non-intentionally has to "run" to, so that a blood relative of the murdered person won't catch up to the murderer and kill the murderer in return.

But this brings up an obvious question: Why does the murderer have to escape to the arei miklat to save themselves from the blood relative? Just don't allow the blood relative to kill the murderer!! Why are we forcing the murderer to run to the refuge city??

And if you'd want to claim it's a punishment - well, this isn't the punishment yet - this is before the court case has even happened! And besides, why force the murderer to go to an ir miklat (city of refuge), and not just stick them in prison?!

What's this "running to the refuge city" all about?