The use of unaccountable State violence has always been at issue in these isles of fear. But never has it been as widespread and as openly sanctioned than today. During past administrations except that of Ferdinand Marcos’, there was at least enough lip service paid to respect for human rights and the rule of law for the police and military to think twice before killing a crime suspect — or a political activist, a human rights defender, or regime critic. Although abuses did happen even then, they were often condemned even by government spokespersons. No President ever disparaged human rights and its defenders either.