Dacera Case: Exposing our Society’s Current Flaws

There are many angles in Dacera Case which need to be examined before coming up with a logical and rational conclusion. Due to the influence of the current leadership, perhaps we have been too quick to jump on the gun.

The passing of flight attendant Christine Dacera has sparked widespread conversations on the issues of victim-blaming, rape, rule of law, justice and responsible parenting, among others. Several speculations on the cause(s) of her death have been highly publicized on both traditional and social media platforms. Moreover, the issue has once again severely impacted the credibility of the Philippine National Police (PNP) due to claimed pre-mature proclamations by some of its leaders that the case has already been solved.

This issue has exposed the current flaws of our society, particularly on the frailties of our criminal justice system particularly in forensic science, the people's misunderstanding and/or neglect of due process and the rule of law, and inability of others to discern based on facts rather than emotions.

The Dacera family is contemplating on filing charges against the PNP's medico-legal officer who immediately embalmed the remains of Ms. Dacera allegedly without the family's consent. Due to the controversies surrounding the death of Ms. Dacera, many have called for the re-examination of her body even after the initial autopsy report stated that Ms. Dacera passed away due to ruptured aortic aneurysm. Due to some claimed mishandling of the body, some forensic experts claim that it is too late to determine substantial evidence of rape because the body has already been embalmed.

Despite doubts on the cause of Ms. Dacera's death and even with lack of materially substantive evidence, the PNP Chief pre-maturely proclaimed that the victim had been raped and called for the voluntary submission of all suspects within a 72-hour period. Even after being called out for these pre-mature proclamations, the PNP Chief insisted that all elements of rape were present, hence he insisted that rape was committed.

Many social media users were also quick to jump on the bandwagon and bashed the suspects who were Ms. Dacera during the night of the incident by posting their pictures with hate and nasty posts and comments. These assumptions were merely based on photos that do not reveal the entire story and on unverified news reports. Many quickly jumped into the conclusion that Ms. Dacera had been brutally raped by several men without clear proof of evidence. 

There are many angles in this story which need to be examined before coming up with a logical and rational conclusion. Due to the influence of the current leadership, perhaps we have been too quick to jump on the gun.

Society needs to take a step back from its rash, emotional and irrational decision-making. This is the very reason why society has become what it is today.  Furthermore, it is our responsibility to ensure our leaders become accountable to their faults and misgivings. Fanaticism has no place in a democratic country supposedly governed by the rule of law.

About the Author
Mr. Aaron Benedict De Leon is currently a Business Development Practitioner in a private consulting firm. He has more than six years of professional experience in leading and managing political and non-government organizations, specializing in organizational management, policy development and program management. He has had stints with notable political/socio-civic organizations, serving in various capacities as: Secretary-General of the Centrist Democratic Party of the Philippines (CDP) [2013-2015], Founding Chairperson of the Centrist Democratic Youth Association of the Philippines (CDYAP) [2012-2014], Philippine Representative to the International Young Democrat Union (IYDU) [2011-2012], Chairperson of the Christian Democratic Youth [2011-2012], Secretary-General of YOUTH Philippines [2010-2011], and Spokesperson/Communications Director of the GT2010 Gilbert Teodoro Presidential Campaign [2009-2010].
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