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Name: Johanna Caryl C.

Catay Strand: ABM-Maxwell

Word Critique
“Wonders of a Wonder Drug”
‘Dope’, ‘Pot’, ‘Green’, ‘Weed’, ‘Mary Jane’ or simply known as Marijuana refers to the
dried leaves, flowers, stems, and seeds from the Cannabis sativa or Cannabis Indica plant. Its
history roots back in 2727 B.C wherein Marijuana was reportedly used as a medicine in Chinese
pharmacopoeia that treats rheumatism, gout, and malaria. Globally, it is the most commonly used
illicit drug with a total number of 238 million people using, according to 2017 statistics by
United Nations' World Drug Report.

However, here in the Philippines, legalization of marijuana is one of the pending cases
and the current issue being debated on senate courts, especially when President Rodrigo Duterte
strongly opposes to the use of illegal drugs. Yet amidst all the chaos and killings from the war on
drug, his recent statement about him using marijuana, whether it is true or not opens the
possibility of legalization of marijuana here in the country. Thus, this uncertain stance by our
president established his name, as by the author, the “Stoned Philippine Head of a State”.

Sylvia L. Mayuga the author of “A Stoned head of state” implied an inkling about the
hypocrisy and mockery of Duterte when he states, “I use marijuana to stay awake”, that refers to
his hectic schedule during the recent ASEAN Summit in Singapore and just like his previous
excuse and alibi, he clarified that it was a joke to lighten the atmosphere. Wherein fact it is
evident that he does not appear to be playful when he made that statement. Mayuga claims that
the President makes the issue clear the day after while CNN Philippines and Human Rights
Watch news insisted that it was explained and clarified an hour after.

Duterte, with his famous tagline, “I hate drugs”, won the presidential election during
May 2016 that garnered a total percent of 39% whom citizens are in favor on his firm proposals
on eliminating drug users and abusers. True to his words and advocacies in his campaigns, he
immediately implemented the war on drugs, that aims to allegedly reduce crimes by brutally
killing those who are found guilty by means of using illegal paraphernalia and correspondingly
those who fights back in a drug bust operation. As of September 2018, the numbers of death toll
rise as high as 20,000 and is currently increasing, according to Rachel Reyes, a columnist of
Manila Bulletin.

“There is a disconnect between what the president admitted to do and what the president
said he will do to those who use drugs.” commented Carlos Conde of Human Rights Watch.
Also, Gary Alejano, a member of the Philippines’ House of Representatives firmly disagrees to
the statement of the president affirming that he also treats peoples’ lives as a joke. Up until now
the battle of drugs is actively present and with regards to the controversy of Duterte’s admission
of using Marijuana weakens the rationale of war on drugs that exposes its lethal dishonesty.

Mayuga provides evidences that are unsteady as to answer why the Philippine
government defines marijuana as a “dangerous drug leading to addiction” in which she
explained primarily that it was “Prevalent since 70’s and was implemented by the Marcos
military where getting stoned on “weed” and refusing the draft rites of passage for hippies and
antiwar activists confronting a government at war”, may be regarded as a fallacy of anonymous
authority since the sources were not credible and its reasons were not convincing enough and
plausible. Secondly, another evidence affirmed was the trending legalization of Marijuana in
America that mentions the numbers of states legalizing, decriminalizing and approving the use as
to medical reasons that proposes inconsistency as to respond why Marijuana is deemed
dangerous and illegal wherein fact according to the medicalnews.com that Marijuana may be
both harmful and beneficial in a way that it can treat cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and
other untreated ailments. Lastly as Cannabis is deeply understood as an organic wonder drug
today, she concluded that since Philippines is rich with volcanic soil, it holds the possibilities of
being the source of global marijuana that presents false dilemma. The disorganization and the
inefficiency of the ideas being fused altogether made the evidences seems to be unreasonable,
incomprehensible and unnecessary.

The language used and word choice also affects the way on how the readers understands
the article. Using highfalutin words such as ‘mercurial’, ‘sui generis’ and ‘inadvertently’ defeats
the purpose of creating a valid, coherent and clear argument that can be understandable by
everyone.

According to Marichu Villanueva in Philstar Global 2018 that Duterte cites after his
accident on the motorcycle 10 years ago, that he experiences frequent pains that requires him to
take fentanyl as a pain reliever such that is approved by his personal doctor. The statement
“More interestingly, he himself can be classified an addict to the dangerous chemical drug
fentanyl” supports as to why Duterte is called a Stone head of state yet, it is an ineffective way of
supporting his claim because of the lack of citation and resources that proves that he himself is
addicted to the drug in a way that it invalidates the whole argument as if instantly concluding
something to be true just because it is not proven to be false is believed to be a fallacy under
appeal to ignorance. Manipulating conclusions without concrete citations and references may be
biased for one’s viewpoint, as to this article, it makes it null and illogical.

In simple terms the author asserts that the President turns himself recklessly into his own
trap, thus naming him as a “Stone head of state. Mayuga has a unique way of writing the article
in a way that is intriguing and thought-provoking. However, her article may not be that
impressive in a manner that it fails to provide concrete evidences in her claim. Other than that
there are aspects needed to be refined and developed in the article as to make it more compelling
such as searching for stable and accurate resources that supports her claim, organizing her
thoughts and ideas in a way that is understandable and clear, the language and word choice used
must be in layman’s term or if not, must be expound and defined and mostly is to avoid faulty
reasonings and try to grab recent and factual references for own justifications and stand.

Thus overall, whether it was a slip of the tongue or just his humorous side, the President
evidently opens the possibility of legalization of Marijuana in our country. Marijuana imposes
both of the dangers and its advantages to those who badly needs assistance and an aid in their
uncurable disease. Through the proposed House bill 180, if acknowledged, Marijuana may be
accessible and be used legally for medical purposes only in a way that the hospital must be in full
control of the dissemination of the “wonder drug”.