Nagbunyi ang Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) sa naging hakbang ng National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) na utusan ang Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) na itigil na ang pagsasahimpapawid ng kantang "Amatz" ng rapper na si Shanti Dope.
Sa ipinadalang pahayag ng PDEA sa PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), nagpasalamat ang ahensiya na pinamumunuan ni PDEA Director General Aaron N. Aquino sa NTC at KBP sa agaran nilang aksiyon laban sa kantang "Amatz."
Pahayag pa ni General Aquino, “PDEA cannot turn a blind eye to songs whose lyrics advocate drug use because it is part of the agency’s mandate to implement drug control strategies and harm reduction.”
Nakasaad naman sa kautusan ng KBP sa lahat ng kanilang miyembro, base sa KBP Circular No. 019-030:
“Songs with lyrics or messages that are vulgar, indecent, promote substance abuse, gender discrimination, racism, Satanism, violence or sexual perversion or demeans a member of any sector of society shall not be played.”
Noong May 23, inihayag ni General Aquino na nais nilang ipa-ban ang "Amatz" dahil ipinu-promote diumano nito ang paggamit ng illegal drugs.
Pahayag ni Aquino noon, “It appears that the singer was referring to the high effect of marijuana, being in its natural/organic state and not altered by any chemical compound.
“We strongly oppose the promotion of musical pieces or songs that encourage the recreational use of drugs like marijuana and shabu. It is contrary to our fight against illegal drugs.”
Ayon naman sa management ni Shanti, dapat pakinggan ni General Aquino ang buong kanta hindi lang ang ilang bahagi nito.
Bahagi pa ng pahayag ng kampo ng rapper, “The song begins with the persona talking about the ill effects, the violence, and dangers of drugs: ‘Kamatayan o parak / Na umaga o gabi, may kahabulan / Dami ng nasa ataol pa / Hangang katapusan laki ng kita sa kahuyan.’
“It then continues to talk about the lessons from the persona’s father, and how this persona was challenged to go beyond the expected.”
“This is all in the first part of the song. And NONE of it promotes marijuana use.
"In fact it clearly shows the persona taking a stand against illegal drugs, while at the same time pointing out that what has made him 'fly' (so to speak) is not drugs, but music.
“By the time we reach the song’s chorus, “amatz” already refers to precisely the music through which the persona found his identity — not any form of drugs, but the natural high of creativity and knowing he is the only one who knows to do what he does.
“This is what the next verse then focuses on, complete with the ideological anchor of Shanti’s upbringing in Buddhism, with references to concepts such as mahamantra and chakra, as a response in the end to those who think they know the persona, but in fact know little about him.”
“To take apart a song and judge it based on certain lyrics that offend us is unfair to the songwriter; to presume that our reading of a song is the only valid one is offensive to an audience that might be more mature than we think.”
Kinondena naman ng Concerned Artists of the Philippines ang naging hakbang na ito ng PDEA.
Sa pamamagitan ng Facebook ngayong araw, June 18, ibinahagi ni Shanti ang kanyang saloobin tungkol sa naging desisyon ng NTC.
Makahulugan niyang pahayag, “Ayy nasa Pilipinas nga pala tayo haha [happy cry emoji].”