Unchain the Chainless

The shackles are here to chain.

A chain of pictures of small children – crowding inside a tiny-smudged cell, intently seeking for proper care, and silently reminiscing out of those ragged shirts their lives within… is indeed tempting.

Another chain of photos – a modest colossal room filled with descent collared elite people, deliberating in a deep manner, and arguing for the delinquency of juvenile national issue .. is indeed alarming.

Firebrand President Rodrigo Duterte is determined for the restitution of death penalty synchronized with the Republic Act 9344 or Pangilinan law to lower the minimum age of criminal responsibility from 15 years to 9 years old.

“Children above 9 years old but less than 18 years old shall be exempt from criminal liability and subjected to an intervention program,” stated by the said Law.

The president and his cabinet wanted the age threshold dropped to 9. For many have reported that adult criminals used those children for drug trafficking. Knowing that children are abide by the law. Knowing that they may evade the involvement of the drug trade.

This reform, maybe a form for reformation. But it’s not really a “reformative” at all.

The Juvenile Justice and Welfare System is still juvenile, an analyst figuratively credited. It is important to focus on the better implementation of such intervention programs under this system before proceeding on the next step behind.

Our city – Manila is one of the state parties to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Kids don’t deserve imprisonment or what-so-called jails.

House Deputy Speaker Sharon Garin once suggested that the parents must be the ones whom the government should go after. They are responsible to give the proper guidance for their children. On a tree of evilness, killing a fruit is nonsense if the root is alive.

Children are children. Developing youth of nation that must be envisioned with genuine care.

We must look forward – the time for a chain of pictures, where children undergo no inhumane services and appropriate integrations for their age.

Let us not wait for chaining the real chain less ones.


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