“If you have to look along the shaft of an arrow from the wrong end, if a man has you entirely at his mercy, then hope like hell that man is an evil man. Because the evil like power, power over people, and they want to see you in fear. They want you to know you’re going to die. So they’ll talk. They’ll gloat. They’ll watch you squirm. They’ll put off the moment of murder like another man will put off a good cigar. So hope like hell your captor is an evil man. A good man will kill you with hardly a word.”
~Men at Arms, on Carrot Ironfoundersson
When I was a kid, one of the things I noticed wrong with common Pinoy action flicks was that their plots and dialogue weren’t at all that different from the kind of thing you’d find in a Saturday-morning cartoon aimed at younger audiences. One of the things you’d see in just about all of them was that somewhere during a heated firefight with fully automatic weapons blazing away, the hero and villain would actually stop to talk to one another. As in stop, both at the same time like lovers speaking sweetly to each other. They would then deliver a series of cheesy and cliched lines to one another with the formula usually following the sequence of the hero asking for the villain’s motives, the villain gloating to the hero and, finally, the hero swearing at the villain on how evil the latter is.
Philippine politics, as it turns out, isn’t at all that different from Pinoy action flicks, cheesy lines and all. Heck, Lito Lapid and Bong Revilla Jr., two of the Philippines’ most renowned action stars, have even made into politics despite not being too big on competence when off-camera. The latest fiasco regarding Jejomar Binay and his army of rowdy goons as well as his brief but appalling dialogue with a distraught but at least professional police officer shows just how utterly low our politicians can get just so they can garner attention and sympathy for themselves.
One can note how Binay’s sudden abandonment of the Aquino administration is similar to how Chavit Singson betrayed Erap when the latter’s impeachment was inevitable. Trust me people, these two did not turn against their masters because their consciences finally won them over. They turned because it was convenient for them at the time and because it would grant them more benefits in the long run. See, even if Binay did step down from being vice president and call out the Aquino administration on its corruption, it’s still apparent that he and the rest of his clan (especially Junjun and Nancy) will continue to live their glamorous lives while everyone else lives in abject poverty and misery just as the deeply corrupt nobles of Medieval Europe or Japan did. Binay’s unprofessional and confrontational attitude towards the police officer who stepped forward to negotiate with him is evidence enough of his grandiose sense of self-entitlement.
Of course, as is often the case with the Pinoy politics, Binay and his lackeys are trying to paint a different picture of what was actually going on. Look, I’m not siding with the PNP either. To be honest, I’m not too impressed with the actions of most police officers in the Philippines with the exception of the Fallen 44’s brave sacrifice. However, I must still commend the officers for their professional attitude during the whole debacle. Jejomar Binay was clearly attempting to impress the media and the countless dumb masses watching the whole fiasco by acting like the typical defiant hero in a cliche-ridden Pinoy action movie, complete with crummy dialogue and a tasteless plot that involved making his goons look like oppressed victims fighting back against a corrupt police force.
Before you side with Binay regarding the whole issue, here are three points in the article that I can elaborate on on why you should rethink that idea very carefully:
Binay Didn’t Abandon Aquino Because Of His Conscience
Of course not. He was already quite happy siphoning his share of public funds while vice president. The only real reason he’s choosing to jump ship is because the Aquino administration is losing favor with the more astute population of the Philippines and that President Aquino is reaching the end of his term. Like a rat abandoning a ship, Jejomar Binay is simply choosing to go to the winning side now that it seems the yellow ship is headed for Davy Jones’ Locker.
Binay Is Merely Playing With People’s Sympathies
From his lines to the almost comical way he spoke to the police is just his attempt in making himself look like some kind of hero in the eyes of the people. If he was really serious about standing up for what was right, where was he when the fighting finally did break out? Why needlessly risk the lives of others when he could’ve ended the whole issue fairly quickly by turning himself in quietly and with a sense of dignity? I mean after all, aren’t the Binays one of the wealthier families in Philippine society? He can easily afford a good lawyer even if he does get incarcerated, allowing him to prevent any violent confrontations with the police and getting his people hurt.
The Binay Clan Will Be The Same Self-Entitled Scoundrels
While Jejomar Binay is busy trying to paint himself as the hero in opposition of the corrupt Aquino government, it’s quite obvious that people like Junjun and Nancy will continue to live their arrogant and self-important lives. Junjun will continue to rule Makati and treat employees who’re just trying to do their jobs like dirt all the while shouting stuff like: “Don’t you know me?” As for Nancy, we all know how much she supports political dynasties in the Philippines even though this kind of system, time and time again, has proven to be one of the root causes of the country’s continued deterioration.
As in the quote above, one reason why I think that Western action films will always be more superior to Filipino ones is that the heroes in the former are often much more realistic and efficient. As any soldier or police officer will tell you, real combat has little time for idle banter. If you waste time to talk, you’ll just get a bullet for your troubles. If you stand for what you believe in, then don’t waste time whining or make speeches on how righteous you are. Actions, my friends, will always speak louder than words. And while Binay might claim to be a hero, his actions so far has only proven that he is anything but.
So please, let’s not fall for Jejomar Binay’s drama. It’s obvious who the bad guy was in the whole incident and they’re most certainly NOT the cops who were just trying to do their jobs. Remember, this isn’t an action film or a teleserye, this is real life.
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