There's no reason why "due process" can't work in the Philippines, but we all know why it can't and won't work today: the police are idle, unfunded, and burdened by reams of meaningless paperwork (as is most of the country), the lawyers are incompetent, and the judiciary are venal. The law itself is a mess. In other words, the country has no judicial system. It literally does not exist except in name only.
As for the drug problem, I don't like what's happening, but in the absence of any feasible alternative – say, importing a million honest and competent policemen and judges from Switzerland, and rewriting the constitution and the Law – what is Duterte supposed to do?
Criminals run the country. These are not just people who have taken a wrong turn in life and need a bit of time to reflect in prison. They are monstrous people who would happily blow Duterte's brains out if they thought it would keep their evil businesses running. They can't be reasoned with, they can't be rehabilitated, and given any chance they will not only go right back to what they're doing now, they'll leave a trail of revenge killings while they do it.
Oh, but what about the poor drug addicts? Aren't they just victims? Yes, they are. They're also dead men walking. They will never recover. I've had some tangential experience with people like this, and once they reach a certain point, their life is basically over. They will do absolutely anything, including murder, to get their next fix. A lot of them have probably already killed, and 99.9% of them are a one-man crime wave. A swift bullet in the head is probably the kindest way out. The only realistic alternative is locking them up in prison for 20 years in isolation from others who would supply them drugs.
Killing innocent people is possible, but not because drug addicts are hard to pick out. An experienced policeman can spot a druggie in a crowd of 1000 others in 0.1 seconds. The eyes, the teeth, the sagging skin – it's not difficult. The problem here is the policemen, who are mostly stupid, lazy, and have as much interest in honing their craft as the average Filipino, ie., none at all. Shoot first and think later, I suspect.
This is a GRP Featured Comment. Join the discussion!