Newsbrief: Filipino Senator Calls for Firing Squads in Continuing Escalation of Drug War Rhetoric 11/21/03

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Apparently, those informal Philippine anti-drug death squads aren't doing the trick ( With the Southeast Asian archipelago in the full grip of drug war madness, Filipino politicians are in a competition to see who can be the "toughest" on drugs. Senator Robert Barbers climbed into the lead with comments last week calling for firing squads for drug offenders.

"With a substantial number of drug lords and pushers falling into the hands of our law enforcement authorities, the government should be more aggressive to weed out the illegal drug problem. It's not just enough to file proper charges against collared drug suspects in court. We have to line them up against the wall and shoot them. It's been since martial law years that a convicted high-profile Chinese drug lord was put to a firing squad, and now we have 38 convicts awaiting restitution [Editor's Note: By restitution he means execution] for their drug crimes," he said on November 12.

"How many more of our youth would be lured to intense drug addiction before the government could finally put a lid to the dangerous drug trade," Barbers said, adding that "in no way can the state protect their welfare if the government does not implement drastic measures."

With many, if not most, Philippine drug users also involved in the drug trade, Barbers would be protecting their welfare by having them shot. The Philippines' draconian anti-drug law (RA 9165) already imposes the death penalty for high-profile drug sellers, but just any old form of execution isn't enough for the bloody-minded Barbers: Bring on the firing squads! Of course, given the inexorable logic of relentless prohibitionism at work in the Philippines, Barbers will no doubt soon be derided as "soft on drugs" by other political figures willing to go even further.

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Issue #312, 11/21/03 Editorial: One Step Too Far | Harsh New Drug Bill About to Be Introduced in House | Jamaica: Ganja Decrim is Moving Again | Incident at Goose Creek: Fallout Continues in Aftermath of High School Drug Raid | DRCNet Interview: Youth Sociologist Mike Males | Call Campaign Targets Congressmen Voting Against Medical Marijuana | Newsbrief: Methamphetamine Labs Are Not Weapons of Mass Destruction, North Carolina Judge Rules | Newsbrief: California Judge to Run for Senate on Legalization Platform, Libertarian Ticket | Newsbrief: Mexico City's Top Prosecutor Goes Off the Reservation -- Talks Legalization While Fox Government Vows Loyalty to Drug War | Newsbrief: California to Quit Sending Parolees Back to Prison Over Drug Tests | Newsbrief: Arkansas Attorney General Rejects Medical Marijuana Initiative -- Again | Newsbrief: Filipino Senator Calls for Firing Squads in Continuing Escalation of Drug War Rhetoric | Newsbrief: Reform Judaism National Body Endorses Medical Marijuana | Media Scan: Jack Cole of LEAP on Cultural Baggage Radio Show Next Week | DRCNet Temporarily Suspending Our Web-Based Write-to-Congress Service Due to Funding Shortfalls -- Your Help Can Bring It Back -- Keep Contacting Congress in the Meantime | Perry Fund Accepting Applications for 2003-2004 and 2004-2005 School Years, Providing Scholarships for Students Losing Aid Because of Drug Convictions | The Reformer's Calendar

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