“There are no tyrants where there are no slaves.”
“I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.”
This is it ladies and gentlemen, you have forced my hand once again. Honestly, I was really hoping that the 2016 presidential election would be different from many of our previous elections considering all that has happened from 2010 to 2015. Unfortunately, with what I have seen so far, that seems to be quite far from the case. As a matter of fact, more likely than not, my worst fears are only going to be exceeded thanks to the fractured mindset and faulty logic inherent in the thinking of just about every typical Filipino.
Good Lord I am so tired of this but it seems no one seems to be paying attention anyway. Here, I wrote this not long ago but it seems no one really bothered to read all of it. In fact, if you look through the comments, one commenter seems to have missed the point entirely.
Look, let’s make this as clear as possible. I’m not bashing Rodrigo Duterte here, okay? To be perfectly honest, he is probably a better choice than that Mar Roxas clown, Jejomar “Asmodeus Incarnate” Binay or Grace Poe who wants to become a legendary blacksmith/demon slayer like her father. Unfortunately, much like our misguided interest in the Canadian prime minister, many of us are once again doing it for all the wrong reasons.
See, here’s what I’m seeing in some (but not all) of his supporters: They are all looking for someone who will solve all their problems for them instead of someone who will teach or guide them to solve their problems on their own. And, in the case of Duterte, with violence or at least the threat thereof. I mean really people?
I’m not saying the Philippines doesn’t need a leader like Duterte to bring about discipline. I am also not saying that he is a bad candidate as he seems to have a sense of humility unlike some of his political opponents in the up and coming elections. What I am saying is that if we’re going to choose him to be our president, let’s choose him because he will lead the country to progress and prosperity and not because he’s going to get rid of all our dirty laundry for us.
Unfortunately, again, so many of us miss the point entirely, especially Mr. Duterte’s more rabid supporters. Remember, it’s not really him I’m worried about but his often callous supporters, as pointed out here by Benign0. Indeed, while I also think that the Philippine justice system needs to be overhauled, let’s not forget the true meaning of justice.
Anyway, here are three of my big points on the matter:
Justice Is About “Balance” And Not Petty Vengeance
“Only criminals need fear Duterte!” so clamor the typical Duterte supporter as shown here by Paul Farol.
I can’t expound enough on how wrong the statement sounds to me. Here are some familiar and similar lines: “Only deviants need fear the Fuhrer’s men.” And: “Those loyal to the Republic need not fear Stalin’s wrath.”
Okay, here’s an idea: What if someone were to frame you of a crime? What if you were somehow implicated in a crime you have nothing to do with? Would you still say the same thing?
Yes, we like to talk tough about drug dealers and corrupt officials, but what if we were somehow implicated in their activities? Can you imagine yourself being taken away and never seeing your loved ones again just because someone got their information wrong?
That is the importance of “due process”. It’s so that authorities can be sure that they got the right person and not because they just think someone is guilty of a said crime.
Look, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t change our justice system. Indeed, it’s probably one of the things we really need to rewrite along with our constitution if we want our country to be a better place. However, I hope Mr. Duterte will improve our justice system by streamlining “due process” and not discarding it.
We Should Be Equally Responsible For What Happens
The thing is, it’s very likely that some people will vote for Duterte because they want him to take responsibility for their problems…
More likely than not, we will still be the same apathetic people who couldn’t care less about one another. Did your classmate get raped? Duterte and his men will take care of it, you don’t need to report it to anyone! Did your neighbor just get murdered? You don’t need to do anything as Duterte and his men will find the killers and execute them!
Again, similar to how some people saw President Aquino before his inauguration in 2010, people think that Mr. Duterte will be an instant solution for the problems of the Philippines instead of the man who’s supposed to guide us into becoming better people.
We Should Change Ourselves As Well
Suppose Mr. Duterte does become president, what then? Now I’d like to think that some of us will indeed change for the better. Unfortunately, it’s quite likely that a lot of us will still be the same apathetic citizens they’ve always been.
If Mr. Duterte becomes president and proves to be a good leader, I hope we take to our hearts what he was actually trying to achieve instead of simply relying on him to solve all our issues. If he does indeed bring about discipline, let us value that discipline and make it part of our lives so that we can at least share it with the next generation.
Indeed, as I stated in one of my previous articles, if we want real change for our country, let us start with ourselves!
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