“We, your Bishops, are deeply concerned due to the many deaths and killings in the campaign against drugs. This traffic in illegal drugs needs to be stopped and overcome. But the solution does not lie in the killing of suspected drug users and pushers.” (CBCP Statement, 30 January 2017, p.1)
Even but elementary knowledge and conviction will readily affirm that the CBCP would not in any way approve much less promote illegal drug manufacture, trade and/or use. It does not require much study nor reflection to come up with such elementary conclusion. The said Conference thus deliberately and decidedly censures not only the inhuman but also the dehumanizing national killing agenda such as precisely that brought about by t illegal drug phenomena in the Country. In other words, the CBCP would not hesitate to speak – definitely not keep quiet – about illegal drug business in the Philippines that ruins lives, that causes criminality, that shames the poor and suffering Republic as a whole.
However, let it be likewise categorically pointed out that the CBCP would definitely not play blind, deaf and dumb when human beings are treated with inhumanity, when killings become a matter of course, when human lives are ended without end – so to speak. There is a whale of a difference between getting rid of drugs and getting rid of lives. The former is well-separable from the latter, i.e., getting rid of prohibited drugs and getting rid of human lives though these be involved in the latter. Again: Do away with unlawful drugs but save human lives. This is neither that profound to understand nor that difficult to observe.
Illegal drug-making, trading and using are definitely gross and profound social maladies whereas they ruin human lives now and the days yet to come, it foments criminality day and night, it destroys families, it debases the young victims thereof. But to simply kill those therein involved one way or another is neither a downright triumph much less a truly praiseworthy venture. Even the Almighty looks at human life as something precious and irreplaceable such that the universal Commandment “You shall not kill,” is a definite and defined worldwide Mandate already promulgated even before the Church came to fore.
“The deep root of the drug problem and criminality is the poverty of the majority, the destruction of the family, and corruption in society.” (Id. P. 2, n.7)
And the Philippines is sadly besieged with a poor if not also miserable majority, with decimated families, with certain corrupt leadership in government, business and industry.
“To consent and to keep silence in front of evil is to be an accomplice to it. (Id. P. 2, n.7)
When bishops see nothing, say nothing and do nothing – these are definitely not Men of God who are enjoined to love others, to serve people, to teach what is right or wrong, what is virtuous or vicious.