Bato's Frustrations

I feel sorry for Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa, the man on whose shoulders rests the responsibility of leading the attack against a seemingly soaring crime wave in general, and Pres. Digong Duterte's war on drugs in particular. Yes, there is a "seemingly" soaring crime wave, for in actuality, crimes have appreciably been reduced since Mr. Rodrigo Roa Duterte became president last year.

So it's just logical to suppose that, without law enforcers, the incidence of crime would rise, chiefly in the hands of drunken and drugged malefactors, not to mention riding-in-tandem vigilantes, terrorists, rebels and just plain outlaws. Who says our cops are underworked?! Why can't critics give them a chance?

The effects of intoxication on one hand, and being high on drugs on the other, are similar. The afflicted person's self-control is diminished to the level of his "real self", although the effect would be graver in the latter case.

For instance, if one is an amiable pacifist, he will tend to be, say, innocuously giggly while being under the influence of alcohol or a drug, but a neighborhood trouble-maker will tend to be uninhibitedly violent.


Armed And Hostile

In fact, it isn't uncommon for some to turn hostile with lethal weapons in their hands. Notably, the problems of peace and order are humungous because dipsomaniacs and drug addicts abound in the countless hundreds of thousands and, pathetically, the PNP can do only so much.

The sale and distribution of alcoholic drinks, and the manufacture and smuggling of prohibited drugs, are matters of crime prevention that are far graver than their regulation or interdiction is imperative. C'mon, do we have the capability to patrol all our peninsular waters???

Bato appears to be an oddity as he sometimes cries in his manly cops-and-robbers job, hurting in deep frustration when critics start nitpicking on the PNP's performance. But can anyone blame him? One thing is sure: He and his men have reduced the crime rate by over 7 percent since July 1, 2016, i.e., if their statistics are to be believed. Well, this writer happens to believe their digits.


Clangorous Jaundiced Critics

The usual peskily noisy group of Yellows, clerics, Maoist leftists and jaundiced human rights personalities  is back in harness, blowing out of proportion a handful of errors by policemen.

Certainly, the over-sensationalized killing of three minors must be investigated and, if warranted, the cops involved should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. However, exception must be taken to unfounded claims that the President's policy is to liquidate drug users and pushers.

The jaundiced critics prefer to see only the trees and not the forest in their destabilization moves against the president's administration. They choose to remain blind to the PNP's many heroic and humane deeds, and they refuse to admit they're engaged in demonization tactics. Yes, they are all charged up, eager to return to their euphoric past at our expense on the world stage!


EJK, A Misnomer

At this point, a propos would be a brief comment on the term "extrajudicial killing", or EJK, for short. The term EJK is a misnomer since it implies that our courts are authorized to impose the death penalty which, however, has long been outlawed in our jurisdiction.

Simply put, a killing is either lawful or unlawful. It 's lawful if done in defense of oneself or others; otherwise, it's which case, the felony committed would be either murder, which carries a penalty of life imprisonment, or homicide, which carries a penalty range from 10 to 20 years.

The term "judicial killing" may be defined as the snuffing out of a human life, as pronounced by a court of law finding an accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt of a capital felony, like murder, and the said ruling is later affirmed by the Supreme Court on automatic review.


Executioner's Limited Authority

If, in implementing a judgment, an accused's life is taken in any unlawful manner, an "extra judicial killing" may be said to have been committed. It thus behooves all those charged with carrying out death sentences to follow the process prescribed by both the final judgment and the law.

This is just a personal opinion, Wesley (Go). Assuming that, in a capital offense case, lethal injection is the prescribed mode for discharging the death penalty, and the apparatus for the same irreparably malfunctions before the time of execution, it will be unlawful to kill the accused another way, such as by musketry or hanging.

The capital offense of premeditated murder would have then been committed --- or homicide, depending on the facts --- even if the accused had already been judicially divested of his right to life.

All told, therefore, the PNP's claim of "EJK zero record" is "legalistically" sound. But then, Wesley, we can't really be serious about the technical vagaries of the law. Instead, let's all try to help the PNP by contributing to their cause of peace and order.



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Sunday, 19 January 2020
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