February 2018
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Charles Dickens novels come to mind

Costumed man hangingwhen one reads of Filipinos cheering about killings, like in Singapore recently (link). Executions in 19th century England were public spectacles (link) even if there was due process involved. Justice originally developed out of a need to sate the very human need for retribution – the dark but very real side of human nature of course – in a manner controlled to avoid law of the jungle. Rewriting Oliver Twist to make Fagin a drug lord and Oliver a drug pusher in Manila would not be hard, I think. Punishment in 18th/19th century England also affected the poorest people:

During the 18th century, the number of crimes that were punished by hanging rose to about 200. Some, such as treason or murder, were serious crimes, but others were what we would call minor offences. For example, the death sentence could be passed for picking pockets or stealing food.

These were the kinds of crime likely to be committed by people in most need, at a time when many families lived in poverty. Towards the end of the 1700’s, the number of people hanged for petty crimes was causing public unrest.

Of course in the Philippines, things don’t happen institutionally but in a personality-based way. Let’s face it, institutions are often just a rubber stamp for what personalities in power want. This includes the Supreme Court of the Philippines, which seems to go by what the President wants, or the Congress, which is for sale via pork barrel. A non-commissioned Filipino officer who experienced the coup attempts of the late 1980s told me that for enlisted men and non-comms, the choice was simple – one followed the orders of one’s higher ups and fought on their side.

It is allegedly barangay officials who help draw up drug lists in the Philippines (link). Setting aside the matter of extrajudicial killings (EJKs) right or wrong, how does one guarantee that these officials do not abuse their power to harrass people they don’t like? Power in the Philippines is often narcissistic, abusive and petty. Not ordering, nurturing and constructive. Can that change?

Irineo B. R. Salazar, München, 17. December 2016

5 comments to Charles Dickens novels come to mind

  • Mariano Renato Pacifico

    Let us not forget the world became Christians because of the brutality of “spreading God’s word”. Philippines became irresponsible Christians is the product of priests’ extreme enhanced “religious education”.

    What bothers me the most is Filipino knows this religion is rammed down their throat they even revolted against the Spanish conquistadores purportedly sparked by two books, El Feli and Noli Mi YET Filipinos lovingly protect this religion that supplanted their indigenous belief. They also adore the last-remaining Spanish conquistadores-turned-industrialist that even the Philippine Media has not ever disparaged and vilified their name since I knew how to read.

    The constant attack by Philippine Media are the indigenous brown skin Filipinos that comprises 98% of 110,000,000 Filipinos. And they tell me Filipinos are not racist people.

    To this day, I am still confused wether to love Filipinos or hate ’em.

    But with respect to past, present and future Spaniards THEY ARE EXTREMELY HONEST. BECAUSE I HAVE NEVER READ ANY SHENANIGANS BY THE LAST-REMAINING SPANIARDS. THEREFORE, JOSE RIZAL WAS A FAKE. Jose Rizal was just jealous of Spanish beauty that made him made up stories against the conquistadores.

    Jose Rizal did not love Filipinos. He preferred German beauty like Filipinos love German Wurtzbach. Jose Rizal married a German, Josephine Bracken. Filipinos racism is ingrained all the way back.


    A meeting between the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) and Barangay Teachers Village East residents turned into a discussion about human rights and the constitutionality of the government’s war on drugs after questions were raised on the rising number of extrajudicial killings (EJKs).

    QCPD director Chief Supt. Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar, however, was quick to assuage homeowners’ fears over the possible violation of their human rights under “Oplan Taphang.” His replies, however, failed to reassure some residents.

    The consultative meeting was called by barangay officials on Saturday, with Eleazar presenting the city’s antidrug programs. Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte and Councilor Gian Carlo Sotto were also present.

    While Eleazar’s presentation took nearly two hours, the meeting held in the barangay hall covered court stretched to over three hours due to the many questions posed by attendees during the open forum.

    Residents of Teachers Village East include academicians and students from the nearby University of the Philippines, as well as activists, lawyers and other professionals.

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