Politics

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Assassination Nation - HBO's Vice story on Corrupted Philippines Politics

HBO's Vice news magazine show featured a story on firearms and political corruption in the Philippines. While this piece clearly offers an anti-gun perspective, it does draw attention to warlords and corrupt politicians as drivers of gun violence in the country.

The plain fact is that the Philippine 'gun problem' is inextricably linked to our nation's struggles with political corruption. No amount of crackdowns on legal civilian firearms ownership will have any effect because we are not the cause. This focus on restrictions for civilians is merely a sleight-of-hand, a tactic to draw attention away from those who are truly responsible. As our crime statistics show, the violence continues despite the gun ban. Ordinary civilians who follow the law suffer from greatly diminished security yet it's business as usual for the criminals and warlords.

We have now entered the election period when politicians make promises to tackle society's ills and turn things around for the better. Regardless of their claims, one thing is for sure: they won't solve problems by looking in the wrong direction.

The Armed and the Dangerous: who are they really? (Part 2)

As a follow-up to my article, 'The Armed and the Dangerous: who are they really?', I would simply like to show two interesting figures from the Committee to Protect Journalists.

In all recorded journalist murder cases since 1992:

  • Government officials were the suspected source of fire 71% of the time
  • The overwhelming majority of victims covered politics (61%) and corruption (41%)

So, whenever we hear from politicians and journalists who support anti-gun legislation, we should ask them, who are the real armed and dangerous groups in our society?

Cracking down on civilian firearms ownership will not solve the problem of violent crime in the Philippines. If politicians are serious about tackling this issue, they should be looking elsewhere.

Two pie charts showing breakdown of suspected source of fire and beats in journalist murder cases

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