Insufferably naive

    528

    ‘Suddenly, they are reminded of Edmund Burke’s and Sen. Miriam Santiago’s favorite quote, ‘for evil men to triumph, few good men do nothing.’’

    SEN. Ping Lacson, the principal author of the Anti-Terror Bill in the Senate, portrays himself as insufferably naive on the imposition of penalties against abusive police and military personnel in the enforcement of the upcoming law. He readily admits to what he calls the “numerous excesses” by the PNP in the drug war, and yet he expects the “remedies” stated in the bill to curb police abuses. But he should first go by the awful fact that almost all the EJKs have not been fully investigated and that the PNP Internal Affairs Service (IAS) has long endorsed a whitewash of virtually all the cases conducted by homicidal drug operatives filed before it.

    Lacson now trusts the police still on a crest of criminal impunity to go after suspected terrorists “proposing, conspiring, inciting, participating in training and preparation” to create terrorism. The good senator is again playing naive that the police has otherwise been known for fabricated accomplishment reports in the brutal drug campaign, and until now no one knows the real number of legitimate operations that has killed about 20,000 drug suspects. The modus operandi would deal with planted evidence, twisted or fraudulent testimonies and altered police records or profiles to prove that an individual or a group is active in any of the activities that now comprise a terrorist act as defined under the bill.

    While Senate President Tito Sotto seems incensed by the bill’s critics demanding that they shut up and that “naninira lang kayo” he now fuels the fires of the rapidly-growing dissent by saying there is no more need for martial law with the enforcement of the Anti-Terror Bill.

    Because that has frequently been the convoluted agenda of the abusive and corrupt in the PNP, there is reportedly more huddled bickering today among the many upright and honest officers on being enforcers anew against terrorist elements which they know will make their ranks more hated than before.

    Suddenly, they are reminded of Edmund Burke’s and the late Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago’s favorite quote, “for evil to triumph, few good men do nothing.” Those with a clean and proud history of service outnumber the reviled and the rotten, but their silence and indifference have all but nurtured the very dreadful culture that seems unjustly infectious.

    ***

    Is there an unnamed virus that has assaulted not just Malacanang but the Senate and the House of Representatives, as well, that has made officials turn their backs on the urgency of the Bayanihan Heal as One Act which has just expired?

    Certainly, it was the centerpiece of the government’s huge efforts providing economic and financial alleviation to countless families affected by COVID-19. Is this a move of reprisal led by Malacanang mainly against critics of the bungling and incompetent management of the overwhelming health crisis but now has abandoned thousands who lost their jobs and hundreds of businesses that closed down?

    Only a mind struggling against dementia or battling an incurable mental virus can explain how the Anti-Terror Bill and another for additional funding of electoral votes have stolen the extreme necessity for the very helpful Bayanihan Law.