The Breakdown in Peace and Order-A A +A
By Max Sangil
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
THE decks are stacked against the Philippine National Police. With all these crimes happening almost on a daily basis, they should be on their toes. The newly installed PNP Chief Alan Purisima must be having sleepless nights, with his phone ringing, getting orders from both President Noynoy Aquino and the Department of the Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas. The public is very much disturbed because of the resurgence of crimes perpetuated in such a brazen manner.
Let me tackle first the case of seven-year-old Stephanie Nicole Ella of Caloocan City. The girl's life was snuffed out senselessly by a careless gun owner. By this time the whole population knows how this young girl, so pretty and smart who hauled medals in school, died as she watched a fireworks display in their neighborhood because someone fired a gun in the air and landed on her head.
I don't think the police can ever find who the culprit is. They can only speculate. The lack of a modern crime laboratory, similar to those being used in countries like the United States and Great Britain, hampers crime solution.
My friend, retired police General Orly Macaspac, said a total gun ban is no solution in crime prevention; it might even increase the incidence of crime. It will be a situation, according to him, where peace-loving and responsible citizens issued legally with firearms due to the nature of their works will be easy prey to criminals who can't be covered by a gun ban.
In short, what Gen. Macaspac is saying is that people like mediamen, bank tellers, judges, businessmen and the peace-loving citizenry are just sitting ducks to criminals.
'It is people who kill, not the guns. A strict psycho neurological test and rigid background check on gun applicants should be in place,' Macaspac said.
The best deterrent really is installing mobile checkpoints and automatically arresting possessors of guns, and charging those without licenses and permits of illegal possession of firearms. And those caught without permits to carry their firearms should immediately mean the revocation of their licenses, Macaspac suggested.
There are millions of loose firearms out there, and I can bet some of these are in possession of law enforcers. Many others are in the hands of criminal elements.
What is more alarming is when we hear reports that certain law enforcers sell confiscated firearms to lawless elements.
President Pnoy should now roll his sleeves and tackle by the horns the peace and order problem, so that the populace can sleep well at night and parents won't have to worry about their kids when they are late going home. Can you do that, Mr. President?
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on January 10, 2013.