The Anti-terrorism bill was passed by the Senate to “prevent and stop” terrorist attacks in the country by directly targetting individuals who are profiled to be most likely to join considered terrorist groups or do such acts.
What is wrong with it?
If this is granted to be an act, the state and its forces will have the absolute power in defining terrorism, who are to be considered to be terrorists, and what to do with them. This assumes that the state is the most rational in the society, therefore, any suspicions by state institutions such as the PNP is enough basis for being considered as terrorists.
Why is it so crucial?
The Anti-terrorism bill allows the police, law enforcement, and the military to carry out warrantless arrests without incurring liability under Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code.
This means that anyone could be a target. With this bill, the government is in full position to kill dissent and opposition.
You are considered a terrorist if you:
Cause damage or attempt to cause damage to government properties/facilities
Assault or attempted assault
Buy or carry a knife or anything that can be used to kill
Meet up with your friends (because of the possibility that you might be secretly plotting an attack with them)
Donate or help relief drives that are not government/state recognized
Participate in a rally or any movement that can cause a “serious risk to public safety”
Posting, writing, sharing and/or retweeting posts (even memes) related to “terrorist activities”
Punishment for violation will be spending 12 years in jail to life imprisonment
You can be jailed for 24 days without a case if you’re accused of being a terrorist
No one is exempt from state surveillance. Your text calls. emails, social activities, etc. will be easily tracked.