OPINION: People problem, people solution

Teddy Locsin Jr.

Posted at Aug 17 2016 10:13 PM

BEFORE we dive into the propriety, not to say morality, even more the legality of extrajudicial killing let us put it in context.

The drug problem reaches every corner of the country. It runs really wide and goes very deep. There was a time when drugs were the pleasure of rich kids. But the ruin of rich kids posed no existential threat to our country. If they turned into vegetables they could be soup. But now the drug problem has grown into a demographic threat.

Drugs now go for P50 or even P20 pesos per sachet or by tingi. This means 2 things:

(1) The drug habits of the rich together with investments from the Sino-Sinaloa Cartel financed the organization of nationwide drug distribution networks reaching the most vulnerable Filipinos. The ones who, if addicted, cannot afford rehab which is the seasonal recreation of the addicted rich. And

(2) The drug problem is an existential threat to our democracy and the state. Remember that Great Britain systematically addicted over a hundred million Chinese to put China under British tutelage. The Japanese did that to China when it was their turn.

Chinese have not forgotten. Chinese are now teamed up with the Sinaloa Cartel. If the drug problem (of the present scale and growing) continues, the drug people can buy our Congress, our police, and elect our president. That is the drug menace.

And this is what that drug problem is made up of:

(1) People with the money to source and supply drugs.
(2) People who sell it, who are said to number 100,000 to 300,000. And      
(3) Their customers numbering 1.8 to 3 million people, all in: sellers, takers, and both to pay for their addiction.

This problem has no roots in social inequality. It is in fact a leveling social factor. Rich and poor in BGC nightclub or alley elsewhere feel the same: good. Good enough to rape a young woman I am told.
The problem cannot be blamed on economic underdevelopment. It might even be a sign of economic progress. The poor can now fork out P50 pesos.
This then is a personal problem multiplied by the number of people in it—a personnel problem, so to speak.
And for that we turn to human resources: people willing and able to take out the garbage, again so to speak.
Look I am not endorsing this. I am just attempt one explanation of the problem and the solution it seems to cry out for because the court system is too slow to handle it. All that being so, what is the solution?
Remember, it is not a solution if it is not permanent. You gotta make the problem go away forever.
Since it is a people problem it is people who must be made to go away.
How do you do that?
Try decapitating the problem. But most heads cannot be reached for severance in Macau or Mexico. But some are right here in prison from where they continue to do business.
It is baffling that they do not meet fatal accidents in there. Are the walls cushioned? Cannot faulty wiring jazz up jacuzzis in there? I guess money talks even now. Then there is the vast network composed entirely of many poor people who are selling to even more poor people.
As with the heads the only solution is to cut off, the limbs in this case. There are more limbs than heads. So expect more poor people than rich drug lords killed. But so far Bato’s people have only talked to, rather than shot at club owners, and got them merely to promise to behave.
So the drug problem is a people problem. And since a real solution must be permanent you must address the people who are the problem.
And that is what has been happening.
Can anyone suggest another way to address a people problem than make people go away?
And that is the case for what is happening today.