Rappler dangerously promotes use of illegal drugs

Every so often, Rappler publishes an article that demands a rebuttal. Nothing less than a trashing would do lest people start believing that what the writer is saying is true. We all know Rappler promotes a lot of “liberal” ideas, which they think are “hip” and “cool” and they also think that everyone else should “get with the times”.  The latest one they are trying to endorse is accepting the notion that the use of recreational or illegal drugs is okay as long as you are not harming anyone. Well, that is a lot of bullshit.

Activist and admitted drug user Cecilia Leroy defends her vice in a Rappler article.
The writer Cecilia Lero started off by proudly saying she is a “responsible person who makes positive contributions to my family, community, and country”. She followed up with “drug use in no way adversely affects my personal or professional lives.”

Unfortunately, Lero already contradicted herself in her introduction. If she was a responsible person, she would not have bragged about being an illegal drug user at all. I say irresponsible because a lot of impressionable young kids and likewise gullible adults could emulate her. They might see her and think, “oh she looks normal” and then assume that use of illegal drugs may not be as harmful as some people say it is. While she implied that she only uses marijuana and not synthetic drugs, she however, did not condemn harder illicit substances out there.

If her friends are not going to say it, I will. Lero’s use of recreational or illegal drugs says a lot about her character. One can be forgiven for saying it is weak. If she has a healthy outlook in life, why would she need to use drugs to feel good? She may look healthy and some would even say she’s kinda “cute”, but it seems her mind is struggling to cope with the realities of life. Otherwise, she wouldn’t feel the need to “space out” to forget her “problems”.  Presumably that is why she uses marijuana. She did not specifically say she uses it for medicinal purposes anyway. She didn’t say she is using it because she is undergoing chemotherapy either. That would have been a different story. No, she uses it because it made her feel good, it seems.

In other words, Lero could be using drugs to address underlying mental health issues. She could be suffering from some form of depression and sees drugs as the answer to alleviate feelings of emptiness. If that is the case, she is not addressing the root causes of her problems. She’s actually adding more to it. Despite her degrees and accomplishments, which she also proudly displayed at the bottom of her article, it seems she still needs drugs to cope. Her training in prestigious institutions did not give her the right character to say no to drugs. Frankly, she’ll benefit more from psychiatric therapy than using drugs to chase her blues away. Or instead of using drugs, she could try taking up other hobbies like painting or learning to play a new instrument. After all, art is good for the soul.

Lero’s first claim to infamy was when she wore a sign on her chest that said “I am drug user. Papatayin mo ba ako? (Will you kill me?)” during a protest rally against President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war on the 21st of September 2017. Some people thought she was just being hypothetical. Apparently, her article confirmed she is indeed, a drug user. She wants to be the poster girl for drug users. By coming out, she hoped to break the stereotype and bust the popular thinking that drug addicts are all zombie-like creatures. She wants to include her own image – light skinned and with chubby cheeks – in people’s imagination when they think of drug addicts.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not here to judge Lero’s choice of poison. I’m actually here to remind her that marijuana and other recreational drugs are still illegal in the Philippines. Someone from law enforcement should pay her a visit and ask her to point to her drug dealer so they can arrest him or her. Until the lawmakers legalise the use of marijuana, Lero is still violating the law.

The problem with Lero’s justification in being a casual drug user is she assumes that everyone is constituted the same. She failed to realise that people’s physiological properties are not all the same. Different people react differently to the stuff we put in our system. Take coffee for instance. Some people can handle drinking coffee without suffering from insomnia, but some will have a hard time getting a wink after a cup in the afternoon. It’s the same with recreational drug use. There are people who start out as a casual drug user, but eventually become full blown addicts because their bodies are susceptible to addiction. Some start out with just marijuana and then when they get bored with the hit, they move up to harder drugs. I’ve always wondered why members of the Rolling Stones who are in their 70s are still alive despite their drug use while other rock stars overdose in their 20s. It’s the luck of the draw. DNA plays a role in it, which is why I think Lero was wrong in publishing a statement saying being a drug user is okay as long as you’re not harming anyone. Marijuana can actually affect the brain. Prolonged use can increase the risk of psychosis, which is harmful to the user and the people she comes in contact with.

Drug problems in many parts of the world have become an epidemic. Lero did not mention this because her agenda is different. She wanted to paint a very different picture of drug use. She wanted to remove the stigma. But what she did was very dangerous. A recent article from The Guardian described it as a devastating social problem:

 Heroin and other opioid drug use is a devastating social problem, and in many places it’s getting worse. The number of heroin users in the US tripled to one million between 2003 and 2014, and heroin abuse is estimated to cost the US around $50bn a year. Deaths from overdose have tripled in the past 15 years, and injection of the drug has spread HIV and other diseases transmissible through blood. About eight in every 1,000 Britons are high-risk opioid users – the highest ratio in Europe.

Describing drug abuse as an epidemic is already to imply that it is a kind of disease. And indeed that is how it is regarded by medical organisations such as the American Medical Association; the US National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse in New York calls it “a complex disease of the brain and body”. After all, like many other diseases it can be inherited: genetic factors seem to account for as much as half of the risk that an individual will develop drug addiction.

Lero did not mention how devastating drug addiction has become even in the Philippines because she wants to paint Duterte’s war on drugs as worse. As far as I know, it is not a state policy to include killing innocent children in the war on drugs. Over one million drug users and dealers have surrendered to police without getting harmed as a result of the campaign. If Duterte really has a state policy of killing them, why are they still alive? Why is Lero still alive if casual users like her are also targeted by the government’s war on drugs? She’s just not making any sense.

Duterte’s drug war is not perfect. In fact, there is a lot of room for improvement. I get the impression the Philippine National Police has already started overhauling some precincts. The Department of Justice also announced that it will prosecute the policemen involved in the killing of 17-year-old Kian delos Reyes. Likewise, the entire Caloocan police force was already sacked and replaced following a string of crimes involving said cops. The image that people like Lero are trying to project – that the drug war is targeting the poor is false and misleading. Of course there are more poor people who are into drug dealing due to the allure of easy money for those who lack better opportunities. That is the simplest explanation why there are more people from the poor who are getting caught in the crossfire.

Lero herself admits that she is privileged, which is why she has other options in life unlike her poor counterparts. Which also begs the question, why does she even have to take drugs in the first place? The answer is all in her head.

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Post Author: Ilda

In life, things are not always what they seem.

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56 Comments on "Rappler dangerously promotes use of illegal drugs"

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Philippines
Guest

Let’s not forget that Duterte admits to using an opioid known as fentanyl…

Raitoningu
Guest
The touchy subject of drugs and marijuana. First, people should be informed how the War on Drugs came to the world. A simple wikipedia search would inform you that it was the US President Nixon who campaigned for it. If you have an open mind, you will further investigate the intentions of it, of why weed is being used in recreational purpose long before it became illegal and why beer is illegal before but now is available everywhere though it causes damage to the body and the society far more than marijuana. It all boils down that weed is still… Read more »
Ian
Guest
To the author, have you ever been to Amsterdam? Fine, lets not use Amsterdam because it is still illegal under their law to have more than 5grms of marijuana. Lets use Norway, look at their economy, their people, their way of life, their social responsibility. All of this was achieved even with soft drug use is legal, LEGAL. I was in Amstersdam a few weeks ago and by the power of holy fucking Odin or whatever religion you follow, it is by far a better city than Manila – and its not even their capital. The people are nice, responsible,… Read more »
Scryptologist
Guest

I can’t finish reading this article. The author is confused with identity crisis. She’s trying to be a psycho analyst. Seems like she’s stuck in the Philippines for so long. She needs to get a vacation to other countries and observe how they deal with drug issues there and how is drug and economy are related.

Dick O\'Rosary
Guest

The Dangerous Drugs Act should be amended criminalizing the enticement to illegal drug use. Programming that somehow glamorizes drug use should be banned or censored.

ChinoF
Member

So she admitted that she uses illegal drugs? Well, that’s it. She joins the many who just want to twist right and wrong, just to defend her vice. And that’s even corrupting public morals by defending and promoting consumption of an illegal substance.

And like I said is my article about highs, if you feel you need a narcotic to satisfy your dopamine receptors, you are likely to have weak character.

It seems Rappler encourages breaking the law when you feel like it. That’s just wrong.

Kuroto Dan
Guest

Wow, just wow. Is this woman for real?

I dunno why, but her biggest accomplishment would be a future drug kingpin if she thinks like that.

Sorry guys, I’ve watched too much Narcos.

Robert Haighton
Member

I dont know how many things in the Philippines are “illegal” but abortion is one of them. Now, I am sure there are Philippine women in the Philippines who will have an “illegal” abortion. My question now is: are these women also being killed by EJK or by the Philipinne police? If not, why the difference in approach? Illegal is illegal, I would think.
Divorce is also illegal but we have an escape route called annulment.

67Hyden007Toro7978.090
Guest
67Hyden007Toro7978.090
Leila de Lima, should hang a placard on her neck , also like Lero, saying: ” Ako ay Drug Dealer at Nymphomaniac. Papatayin mo ba ako ? Break the Stigma !” Lero is just trying to attract attention. Illegsl drugs, like Marijuana, enables you to “Get HigH”. Once the feeling of “getting high” is gone. The Drug Addict needs another Fix, to “get high” again. Instead of doing something good for yourself, and your fellowmen. All the Drug Addict thought, is “getting High” ! In the U.S., where illegal drug addictions are rampant in inner cities. These Drug addicts,: steal,… Read more »
Tenor
Guest
Useless armchair legislative work and social engineering from the Gawker-lite wannabe, why is it Liberals all over the world want to legalize even more vices (Look up the Liberal Utopia of Sweden) and a bigger government that can’t sustain itself? instead of focusing on bigger issues like a total Government and Constitutional reform, but hey, let’s focus on the hip and great issues of legalizing a drug on a population that’s already dying from alcohol and cigarette smoking addiction along with opioids and hardware chemicals. Maybe because Marijuana is a downer then it’s alright, it can make a population even… Read more »
Frine Cristina Sanchez
Guest
Frine Cristina Sanchez

Go tell poon Duterte about opioid drug abuse and psychiatric counselling.

d_forsaken
Guest

Funny how someone can be so beautiful and totally fucked up at the same time.

Inchy
Guest
A police officer came upon a terrible wreck where the driver and passengers had been killed. As he looked upon the wreckage a little monkey came out of the brush and hopped around the crashed car. The officer looked down at the monkey and said, “I wish you could talk.” The monkey looked up at the officer and shook his head up and down. “You can understand what I’m saying?” asked the officer. Again, the monkey shook his head up and down. “Well, did you see this?” “Yes,” motioned the monkey. “What happened?” The monkey pretended to have a can… Read more »
Inchy
Guest
Your article caused me to go read her article, and she is decidedly a better writer. Did you respond to these points? There were three reasons why this was the message I chose: First, to challenge the stereotypical image of a drug user. Second, to humanize drug users. Third, to inspire others to stand in solidarity with the overwhelming majority of drug users who are not violent threats to society. Nope. Or this point? It turns out, however, that most drug war supporters and opponents hold the same values ( not killing drug users). Both believe that drug addicts should… Read more »
IP Daily
Guest

Elitists promoting drugs. Not surprising, considering that the elitists I know all are decadent, degenerate bourgeois wastrels who fritter their lives away on drink, the occasional drug use, and a lot of sex that their gonads must be numb. Not the ideal group of people I would have as the leaders of my country. Mga inuuna ang mga base desires tapos may gana pang isangkalan ang bansa sa mga kapritso nila.

Aryianna
Member
“…and they also think that everyone else should ‘get with the times’”. That shows you that Rappler is behind times. It is a known fact in the U.S. that drugs are addicting, and that includes “natural” mind-altering drugs such as marijuana. There’s a a reason why self-help groups such as Narcotics Anonymous has been successful and continues to grow world-wide. It’s because there are drug addicts who have become addicted to drugs and could not control their usage. This glamorized pro-illicit-drug-poster girl is still in her naive stage of drug usage. Give her a few more years, and hopefully not,… Read more »
Mein Kampf
Guest

Langya, nagsilabasan ang mga junkie!

Khayri R.R. Woulfe
Member

Rappler promotes illegal drugs, terrorism, cyberbullying and rebellion. One would be asking why they still aren’t in jail yet.

papsi
Guest

Ilda can you clarify for us what you think of Duterte’s pronouncement that he wanted to kill all addicts/drug users? around 3 million according to him. are you in favor of that? “Hitler massacred three million Jews. Now, there are 3 million drug addicts. … I’d be happy to slaughter them,” 9/30/2016

I think the point of the Rappler article was that society would be better served if we treat addicts as sick people needing treatment instead of wanting to kill them all. Thanks.