Clickbait: Duterte Admin…a good time to kill

ejk_philippines

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way…” —Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities(1859)

The way media reports it, the Philippines is now a massive kill zone.

Ever since President Duterte started delivering on his campaign promise to wage a war against drugs, reported drug-related deaths have increased. Hugely. Reports of unsolved alleged extrajudicial killings or EJK has become a daily staple of the news, triggering hysterics and indignation among the “so-called” guardians of human rights—best known by the acronyms US, EU and UN.

Place yourself in the shoes of a killer, or anyone with deep-seated grudges against another, whether in business, inheritance issues, or passionate affairs of the heart. Now is the best time to eliminate the enemy and get away scot-free.

Hire Killer. Eliminate enemy. Attach a sign “I’m a drug pusher…Don’t imitate me…”. Repeat.

Problem solved. This crime is automatically labelled as an EJK. The yellow media jump gleefully and hysterically, like rabid dogs, and blame the ongoing war on drugs.

Murderers are finally (and literally) getting away with murder. As a scholarly article argued: collective quarrel, honor killing, emotional dissatisfaction, lack of control of anger, and burglaries are the main reasons to commit murder. Therefore, it is essential to consider these factors while designing preventive interventions at social levels to improve security levels.1

Blame it on Duterte

Opportunists are having a ball. Businessmen, lenders and borrowers, lovers… They know most EJK are left unsolved, so it’s easier to mix and muddle “normal” criminal motives into state-sanctioned EJK, in one of the greatest misnomers of crime reporting. Every crime victim the media unquestioningly (and contrary to their nature) add to the heap of carcasses laid at Duterte’s feet.

As The Guardian reporter Kate Lamb wrote on October 4, 2016:

“In the Philippines, they have a term for it: “salvage” victim. Someone killed and dumped in the street or thrown in the river. A corpse that is later salvaged. There have been many killings lately, the officer jokes, that these days you can easily get away with any kind of murder: “You can kill him, put masking tape on him and everybody is going to think that guy is a drug pusher.”

Although she finds the allegations shocking, coming from a police officer, she asserts that “The Guardian can verify the policeman’s rank and his service history…there is no independent, official confirmation for the allegations of state complicity and police coordination in mass murder.”2

The real culprits are silently laughing as Duterte’s detractors bite and swallow the hook, line and sinker of fabricated EJK. Labelling each death as an EJK is the best thing that ever happened to them.

Extrajudicial Killing Defined

Atty. Al Perraño, a lawyer who has represented human rights legal cases, clarified the contextual framework of EJK:

“Extrajudicial killings is defined by law as killings due to the political affiliation of the victims; having a specific method of attack; and where there are reports of involvement or acquiescence of state agents in the commission of the killings. As the term is used in international instruments, extrajudicial killings are killings committed without due process of law, i.e. without legal safeguards or judicial proceedings. Enforced disappearance on the other hand is defined as deprivation of liberty for political reasons committed by or with the authorization, support or acquiescence of the State. These are disappearances or abductions attended by an arrest, abduction, or detention of a person by a government official or organized groups or private individuals acting with the direct or indirect acquiescence of the government. It involves the refusal of the State to disclose the fate or whereabouts of the person concerned or a refusal to acknowledge the deprivation of liberty which places such persons outside of the protection of law.

In this jurisdiction, extrajudicial killings are almost synonymous to political killings. It would appear that all extrajudicial killings are impelled by some form of political motive or agenda. Further, the usual victims of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances are political activists, journalists, or media persons.”3

Labelling each unsolved murder, riding-in-tandem killing or death under investigation as extrajudicial killings or EJK does not seem to be included in the above definition, where the usual victims are political activists, journalists or media persons. This is why classifying the killing of drug lords and pushers as EJK is a really serious Freudian slip of the media, the modern age’s purveyors of “intellectual” opium for the information-hungry (and “uneducated”) masses.

Clickbaits and social media

Social media thrives on clickbaits. Sensational and provocative headlines and photos are published to attract more attention than worthy news stories. Magnified way out of proportion with the cunning use of words and images, hoping to cause maximum damage against their targets, clickbait articles can reach the heights of cyberbullying frenzy and excitement (especially from cowardly trolls hiding behind legitimate-sounding, but non-existent, human rights groups…)

The excessive distortion of news items leaves readers in doubt, especially when clickbait headlines don’t jive with the article’s contents. What these paid hacks and trolls don’t realize is that clickbait affects the quality and credibility of the news source, them included. The use of EJK (an acronym with a powerful ring to it, don’t you agree?) has become an example of clickbait to generate interest in stories against President Duterte’s war on drugs. People are getting tired of media sensationalism, which is why, as a Manila Times article recently reported, the House committee on Public Order and Safety proposed to drop the use of “extrajudicial killings” for the spate in deaths and, instead, refer to them as “deaths under investigation”.4

While most media and websites have not dropped the use of “extrajudicial killings” or its acronym “EJK”, real murderers will continue to pounce on their targets with impunity and have Duterte blamed for it. It is not the President and his administration at fault here.

Who is to blame? Duterte’s detractors. Their irrational hysteria, twisted emotions, political naiveté and lack of common sense, and their deep-seated indifference to the fates of those who suffer the consequences of the drug scourge merely created the perfect climate for true criminals to satisfy their twisted motives, animalistic survival instincts, and their astute sophistication in the affairs of the world.

As a consequence, we can only predict that non-drug-related killings of innocent victims would also (if not yet) be on the rise.

Citations:

1. Alavijeh, et al. (2015). Murder and Motivation: A Qualitative Study. Avicenna Journal of Neuro Psych Physiology.
2. Lamb, K.. (2016, October 4). Philippines secret death squads: officer claims police teams behind wave of killings. The Guardian.
3. Parreño, A.A..(2011). Report on Philippine Extrajudicial Killings from 2001-August 2010. The Asia Foundation. p.33.
4. Why drop the term ‘Extrajudicial Killings’?. (2016, September 19). The Manila Times.

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About Carlo de Leon

I am a marketing consultant, entrepreneur and executive director of an NGO. I have extensive experience in advertising, product management, media, and general management. I love art, graphic design, philosophy, theology, and history. I continue to study these subjects to enjoy my intellectual and artistic pursuits.

20 Comments on “Clickbait: Duterte Admin…a good time to kill”

  1. What a crock. Plain old murder is more than likely occurring under the guise of EJK. But here you are blaming those against EJK instead of the real culprit who set the environment for that to happen by public statements calling for the killing of drug pushers/users. Maybe you need a reminder of all the related statements to come from the gob of your hero.

    1. Under Aquino admin there was the Mamasapano massacre. Why are these detractors now blaming on Duterte for every murder done? There were many more killed for years before but only now these fucking media suddenly reported on them. Maybe you need to verify through investigation before you fucking make scapegoats.

    2. What the author is trying to say here, in plain words, is that because the media portrays every killing as an EJK regardless of the motive, they can conveniently find a scapegoat for every death. The people get “all riled up” and regard “justice” as equal to getting rid of the President, that “killings” of the non-EJK kind don’t get the attention they deserve from the police, the courts and the media.

      You remember when Cynthia Patag posted on her wall that someone who died of cancer was a victim of EJK, or when an Ateneo school teacher was killed by a thug as EJK? If you can get rid of your partisan thinking for a while, that would be great. If you do, maybe, just maybe, the pro-Duterte crowd may just stop blaming Delima for Espinosa’s death.

    1. If you are too stupid to: “Treat the friends you have today as though they will be your enemies tomorrow..”, it is just your own fault.

  2. One person’s definition of what an EJK is doesn’t mean it is correct. Duterte has told his sitizens that it is OK to go out and KIL anyone that is thought to be a drug-dealer. That is supporting EJK’s, IT JUST IS. Call it what you want but it really is nothing more than Filipino’s killing Filipino’s without ‘DUE PROCESS’. Why not just arrest them and prosecute them? It is written in the countries own constitution that each citizen is entitled to due process before the state.

    Duterte has ripped up the constitution, is all there is to it.Having some slick-witted lawyer BS people with covoluted reasoning is Bull-Shit. Killing people on the suggestion of the President of the country doesn’t make OK, ITS FRIKKIN MURDER.Anyone who thinks it is not is fooling themselves.

    1. And you are the fucking idiot here. He even explained what he meant in the Al Jazeera exclusive interview of “kill”.

      It was really more of using psychological operations like when he told reporter: “I would rather strike fear on my enemies…”.

      Filipinos are real fucking morons like you because you never have read Sun Tzu’s “Art of War” like Duterte did, and he cleverly applied it so that even before he became president, already those involved in the drug business got agitated that they even voluntarily surrendered to authority – in great numbers.

      If Filipinos are as clever as Duterte in this situation,we wouldn’t have remained a fucking third world country and a shit hole.As simple as being told simple basic rules as crossing streets on a pedestrian lane and when the fucking walking sign says “go” or “stop” is really lost on the pinoy.

      Go fucking learn more the ill mentality and moronism pervading in our society before you try to make scapegoats.

    2. The definition of that one person was not invented, he cited sources as the basis of his definition.

      1 Supreme Court Administrative Order No. 25-2007.


      2 Lucas P. Bersamin, Available Judicial Remedies in Cases of Extrajudicial Killings and Enforced Disappearances, 1, July 16-17, 2007, avail- able at: http://sc.judiciary.gov.ph/publications/summit/Summit%20Papers/Bersamin%20-%20Extrajudicial%20 Killings%20Summit.pdf.


      3 United Nations, Declaration on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances.


      4 In his paper presented before the National Consultative Summit on Extrajudicial Killings and Enforced Disappearances – Searching For Solutions, Justice Lucas P. Bersamin equates extrajudicial killings and political killings.

      5 See generally Cases NCR-2, NCR-10, NCR-13, NCR-14, R-III-16, R-III-18, R-III-26, R-V-17, R-V-33, R-V-40, Annex J.

    1. Perhaps this is the most relevant question/comment here so far written that the author and other rah! rah! commenters (sorry!) here have universally ignored!

      My heart goes to Duterte the Progressive and I support his War Against Drugs, but, I can’t say the same, at least, all the way, to his ways, which he describes, in his own words during his address in the SONA, as “bordering on the illegal”.

      In the author’s point of view, “…most EJK are left unsolved, so it’s easier to mix and muddle “normal” criminal motives into state-sanctioned EJK, in one of the greatest misnomers of crime reporting.”

      However, isn’t it the duty of the state to protect and serve it’s citizenry? EJK, eventhough not sanctioned(?) by the state are REAL AND HAPPENING(!) and the government’s credibilty and INABILITY TO PREVENT(!) them is in question. And that is where we draw the line!

      Sometimes it’s easier to just ignore and dwell in silence but things then lead most of us in confusion! Take the EJK case of ex-Mayor Espinoza and inmate Raul Yap who were both killed in the care of this administration and by its own operatives. (Most unknown victims of EJK will not be as lucky to warrant even an iota of attention!)

      It seems Mr. Duterte is not talking about the issue (and so will GRP?) which prompted some people to take notice!

      Why is Duterte so quiet about the rubout of the century?
      http://www.manilatimes.net/duterte-quiet-rubout-century/295546/

      Lawmakers: Espinosa’s death smells of extrajudicial killing, reeks of irregularities
      http://cnnphilippines.com/news/2016/11/05/Albuera-Mayor-Espinosa-death-EJK-Senate-House-investigation.html

  3. So, I can go to the house of my vicious enemy; put a bullet in his head . Then, they call that EKJ (Extra Judicial Killing)…

    The Drug War is really nasty. It is happening in the U.S. In the streets of: New York, Los Angeles, Detroit, Washington D.C, etc…all major cities in the U.S., have these drug killing problems…these illegal drugs are :cocaine, marijuana, ecstasy, crack cocaine, etc…

    Here in the Philippines; some of the Police , high government officials, politicians and other opportunists are involved in the drug trade.

    The Chinese Triad Mafia Drug Syndicate is very much involved in it.

    Former Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, used the Drug Trade, to get filthy rich and to finance her senatorial election. And, to satisfy her sexual lust !

    The Aquino administration was out of view , in their involvement in this Shabu Drug Trade…

    I do not believe that Aquino and Mar Roxas are innocent and do no know , about the proliferation of the illegal Drug Shabu.

    Drug Traffickers went into the Barangay level. Governors, Mayors, etc… became Drug Lords. Barangay Captains became Drug Traffickers ! Some has the whole Barangay population hooked on the illegal Drug Shabu !

    The inmates in the National Bilibid Prison, became Drug Lords. The Prison , itself became the “command center” of the illegal Shabu Trade…

    Former Sec. De Lima and her lovers, became the foremost Shabu Drug Traders…

    Drug and Sex were involved…nice for De Lima, that Horny Old Bitch !

    The murders and the killings will continue…many will be victims. This is happening in the U.S., Mexico, and other countries with problems of illegal drugs !

  4. Alright. Let’s focus on this statement to policemen:
    “If you feel that your life is in danger, shoot first and shoot him dead.”
    (This is within bounds of police op protocol)

    If the order was for policemen to merely do their job, and follow protocol- for after all, as PRRD said they are only to apply what they were taught in the police academy. Then what exactly are they breaching? killings by “ninja cops” involved are not discounted. Should that prevent the cops from doing their job as ordered?

    If Duterte didn’t say the “KILL” word (but follow protocol), would that stop the drug criminals from killing their own before cops get to them?

    1. That’s a really good way of putting it. My dad was lawyer for years before and even he’s known too much what he would get if he took drug cases. His life would definitely be at stake, as during the time as a teacher in late 90s, two of his students went missing and found out were murdered in linked with Peter Lim, a very known drug lord, over at Cebu.

      There have been a lot underreported of police involved in the business who have done their dirty deeds.

      Hell, there was even a time vigilantism was a thing in Cebu back in the early years of the Arroyo administration because it was that bad for us when many robbers could simply pull out a gun and kill that many people in ambush to get whatever they wanted.And police simply didn’t do as much to protect and defend us from letting these goons get their way.

      This is why I find the opposition and their media simply outright disingenuous about the entire problem surrounding the murders, because there is a bulk of them who have had their vested interests involved in these cases that they don’t wish to get exposed of (this is how many of the influential and powerful are involved in this lucrative business of shabu).

      1. Sometimes, it may not even be about their vested interests being compromised. Some of them are just too idealistic, are just “politically correct”, “offended” by the violent reality, and simply don’t like others doing things that they believe they should get credit for.

  5. mayor espinosas’ affidavit is still valid, who said NO? it was done when he’s still alive. thanks god duterte is the president and if not who’s going to tear down drug proliferations.

  6. What did they think would happen when the president is encouraging citizens to murder fellow citizens. Not just the red eyes are going to be killed. Irresponsible. The admin approached this whole thing backwards. They’re going ground up instead of top down. Clear out the corrupt politicians, clean up the police force and then go after the drug dealers. They’re just attacking the symptoms while the cancer still grows.

  7. Duterte encourages killing when his goal is to eradicate crime/criminals is really ironic. Honestly, present admin gives a sense of security to regular Filipinos. Previously you will only hear of news about innocent people being victimized and unsolved criminal cases. Previously, you’ll let a crime pass or shrugged it off after awhile because you know nothing can be done about it because, well, what authority will deal with or solve the problem? Nowadays we don’t worry about being a victim of a crime (unless we’re the offender). We worry more about criminals evading prison or outrunning the authorities. That’s why there’s a big panic for the people involved in this war on crime.

    No, I’m not encouraging killings in anyway. It’s important for people to realize that the admin is into filtering the real enemies. The Constitution or the law is being tampered more by not seeking the truth and blaming everything on Duterte.

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