Briones: Committing a crime

·2 min read

A crime “is an action or omission that constitutes an offense that may be prosecuted by the state and is punishable by law.”

It can also be described as an unlawful act, a violation, a felony, a transgression — and oh, I like this one — a malefaction.

There are many reasons people commit a crime. Poverty is among them.

Here in the Philippines, particularly in Metro Cebu, the crime rate should be way up high, considering the number of people who are considered “poor.” But, surprisingly or not, that is not the case.

According to, a crowd-sourced global database of perceived crime rates, incidents of robbery, burglary, kidnapping, assault and vandalism and theft are “moderate.” In fact, only two problems rank “high” on the list, and these are corruption and bribery and dealing and using illegal drugs.

Don’t get me wrong. There is still crime out there.

Many lives have been upended since the novel coronavirus pandemic arrived on our shores more than 17 months ago. Many continue to struggle to eke a living, especially those who lost their jobs when their places of work were forced to shut down because of earlier lockdowns. Some have resorted to crime to feed their families.

That may have been the case of the man who was recently arrested for selling fake Covid-19 vaccination cards.

Or not.

For all I know, the suspect was doing it to support some illegal habit or he had a second family to support or he was bored and plagued with pandemic fatigue. Again, these are all conjectures and unfair to him.

Then again, I don’t care about that. I’m more interested in why he decided to sell fake vaccination cards. He could have sold shabu, which has been the rage in the last two decades or so. But he didn’t.

So there must be money in the scheme, which means there is an untapped market for it.

Apparently, there are unvaccinated people who are willing to buck the system so they can enjoy the perks the government is offering to the inoculated public.

Mind you, not all of them are vaccine hesitant. There are many who are more than willing to get the jab but can’t because there are not enough doses to go around or the vaccine brand is not of their choice.

Still, it boggles the mind that these people think being able to eat in restaurants or getting a haircut in beauty parlors is more important than their health.

With this kind of attitude, the country is a long way from overcoming this crisis.

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