The announcement generated rapid-fire comments on social media, both negative and positive. This comes as no surprise, as martial law in the Philippines remains a hot-button topic after former dictator Ferdinand Marcos imposed it nationwide from 1972 to 1981.
Some netizens reacted to Duterte's declaration with fear and indignation.
Mindanao is a huge place. Declaring martial law for the entire island group places countless civilians and innocents at risk of state abuse. — Joshua Chen Young (@josh4everyoung) May 23, 2017 #Duterte 's brand of justice: Vigilante Justice; his Rule of Law: Martial Law. He's a signature away from becoming a full-fledged dictator! — Francis B. Baraan (@MrFrankBaraan) May 14, 2017 Martial law was very traumatic to my Mom and her entire clan the last time it happened. This will bring back bad memories. — metta alih anorsanas (@MettaAlih) May 23, 2017 Martial Law, revised or not, has NEVER been for the people. — fr e sh a voca do (@caylfranco) May 23, 2017 A sudden announcement of Martial Law is triggering me. I'm scared to death. I don't k ow how this thing happens please #PrayForTheWholeWorld — infires.men (@unnieDarlene) May 23, 2017
Others, however, are cautiously in favor of the declaration.
Martial law would scare anyone in the Philippines. But I have put my trust in our President. I trust that he will not harm his homeland — Juubin (@groweconomy_pls) May 23, 2017 Martial law was made for situations like these. Let's just hope that this declaration will help diminish the situation in Marawi. — Patricia (@_patriciaparas_) May 23, 2017 Pls lang. Martial Law is not a bad thing. This is a time of crisis. — Julyanne Lomocso (@yanneeee) May 23, 2017 For the people who are deadass mad at Duterte about the Martial Law, PLEASE DO SHARE YOUR OWN WONDERFUL, MORE EFFECTIVE PLAN — Brée (@rubiabrianna) May 23, 2017 Not today, yellowtards. Martial law in Marawi is necessary and let's give the old man credit for being proactive and agile. #PrayForMarawi — Poulla Dulay (@Poullala) May 23, 2017 Guys. Martial Law is only problematic IF ABUSED. There is a crisis happening and we need to trust our government to do their job. — Mel (@mamamelf) May 23, 2017