It takes a village to fight drugs
Vice President Leni Robredo has recently responded to the seemingly overwhelming challenge to overhaul the flagship “war on drugs” program of the Duterte administration. This bravado shown by the second highest elected leader of the country must have concrete support from all sectors of society, or else we will all fail. With the immensity of the problem, we are required to commit time, effort and resources and not to stand by the sidelines, or else we become counterweights to the solution. How much more blood will be shed, and how much more mourning will happen, especially among the poor?
As a people threatened by this social malaise, “It takes a village to raise a child” should be our guiding mantra. The task of going to war against drugs demands the sustained commitment of every Filipino in each household of the community. We must exhaust all means of communication to inform and educate people on the malevolence of drug addiction, especially with the government’s three-year drug war resulting so far in a limited achievement. Based on reports, drug-based arrests and killings have mostly targeted the poor as hapless victims.
Now is the time to act as one people in addressing the massive problem of poverty. We must awaken our love for country and not wait for a social upheaval, as in the case of Lebanon, Venezuela, Egypt, Syria, Yemen, Hong Kong, to name a few.
Our village, our beloved country, is in dire need of volunteers—wherever you are in the archipelago, there your mandate is to serve the poor, the marginalized and the needy. VP Leni cannot do it alone. She is only demonstrating for us that while she can stay comfortable and allow time to pass by without dirtying her hands, she has instead chosen to act now and provide the leadership we need very badly. Halina, tulong din tayo!
JAIME D. RANESES, chair, Kugos Bikol Inc.
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