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Children in crossfire of Philippine Inquisition

The death of two small children caught in the gunfire of the vigilante assassins sent to kill suspected drug users and peddlers is an unfolding tragedy. The shoot-to-kill policy that has claimed at least 2,500 lives in the past few months is a descent into hell. 

Five-year-old Danica Mae Garcia was shot dead when two men on a motorcycle stopped at the house of Maximo Garcia while he was having lunch with his wife Gemma and their two grandchildren in the village of Mayombo, Dagupan City.

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The death penalty has already arrived

The speaker in the House of Representatives, Pantaleon Alvarez, and the member from Capiz, Fredenil Castro, want to put the death penalty back on the Philippine law books claiming that it is a deterrent to crime.

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Countering human trafficking

A few weeks ago, 69 Vietnamese victims of human trafficking were found in The Philippines. They had been brought from Vietnam two at a time on tourist visas by a syndicate and made to work for three years, on low wages or none at all, by human traffickers.

The whole group was then abandoned by the gang-masters, declared indigent and deported.

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Helping the president’s anti-crime crusade

There is a wise saying, “Be careful of what you promise. People might believe it.”

On June 30, Rodrigo Duterte was sworn in as the new president of The Philippines. A politician well-known for his somewhat exaggerated style of speaking and promises to eradicate crime and corruption, this time he promised to do it within three to six months of his inauguration.

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Making children scapegoats for criminals

OLONGAPO (SE): Two bills have been filed in the lower house of the Philippine congress by the speaker, Feliciano Belmonte, one proposing a change in the law to make children possibly as young as nine- or 12-years-old criminally responsible and the other to reintroduce the death penalty.

“This is draconian and repressive for children and not worthy of the administration of Rodrigo Duterte or the Philippine people,” social commentator, Father Shay Cullen, told the Sunday Examiner on July 15.

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No justice in a bullet in the head or a bag

The Philippines is moving away from its former ear of compassion and justice to one where the innocent are targets for assassination and imprisonment on false charges.

In recent weeks, dozens of bodies have been found, shot dead, with signs pinned on them, declaring them criminals deserving to die.

But there was no trial, no justice. The killers have contempt for the process of justice. 

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What sits behind the drug mafia?

Maria Rae was just 13-years-old when she began to have conflict with her aunt. She came from a broken home. She was abandoned when her parents split up.

This is the great injustice and hardship suffered by the children of couples who come together without lasting love. They are driven more by impulse, have an unwanted child and then part ways, abandoning the child.

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The destructive trade in dangerous drugs

Young people by the thousands are dropping dead after stuffing chemicals into their bodies to forget their problems or just to get an exciting high to overcome their inhibitions.

A few weeks ago at an open air dance concert in Manila, another five people collapsed on the dancefloor and died, either on the spot or later in hospital from a presumed drug overdose.

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Election outcome: rule of law or the gun?

The greatest upset in Philippine presidential elections this past May 9 has been the phenomenal ninety-day campaign by the then little-known mayor of Davao City in Mindanao-—Rodrigo Duterte, a one term congress member but mayor for more than two decades. He rose to national prominence three months ago by being his own true self.

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Where did your presidential vote go?

It is election time and some say nothing ever changes in The Philippines. The candidates change, but the social inequality remains. Candidates for the presidency this time range from two representing the wealthy elite, the daughter of a deceased movie star and a foul-mouthed mayor vowing to kill all suspected criminals, in addition to senator who is fronting for the family of the former dictator.