Why the Iglesia Ni Cristo rally on EDSA was another case of Filipinos’ SQUATTER mentality prevailing

Much has been said about the sad way Filipino politicians — particularly the top presidentiables of the moment: Mar Roxas, Grace Poe, and Jejomar Binay — clambered all over one another to suck up to the Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC). The INC staged a rally last week that fouled up Metro Manila’s main road artery causing massive traffic jams that paralysed vast swaths of the Philippines’ largest metropolis and premiere centre of commerce causing untold loss of productivity possibly running in the billions of pesos in one fell swoop.

Despite that immense damage to people’s livelihoods and sanity wrought by this stunt, keeping one of the country’s biggest block voters on their side remained the primary goal of these politicians. But the law itself remains quite clear about the position these supposed “leaders” should have taken — that there was an alleged crime and that this alleged crime must be investigated.

It was all that simple, really.

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What made it complicated? There’s a straightforward answer to that as well: The need to be popular and the squatter mentality this attitude of Filipino leaders induces.

It’s a recurring issue with the Philippines’ brand of “democratic” governance that plagues its society across the board. The law, for example, is quite clear on property rights and how trespassers should be dealt with. Yet squatters infest hundreds of thousands of square kilometres of prime Metro Manila real estate. They foul up not just Manila’s streets but Manila’s sewerage and storm drain systems and, more importantly, put off both domestic and foreign entities from investing in the Philippines.

The law is also quite clear on what constitutes a traffic offense. Yet, for drivers of the Philippines’ immense fleet of decrepit public utility vehicles (PUVs), offending traffic rules are an entire mode of operations. Like the literal squatters described earlier, PUVs also hopelessly foul up not just Metro Manila’s streets but also its air.

The squatter mentality that underpins just about every way Filipinos go about their business is what makes the Philippines such a foul up. Its streets are foul, its water is foul, and its air is foul — because Filipinos foul it all up. It’s an entire sad sad way of life.

The recent INC debacle and the way Filipino politicians responded to it highlights why the Philippines has come to such a fouled up state — because like squatters and homicidal PUV drivers, the INC is a vast vote farm. Squatters, PUV drivers and operators and the INC flock constitute the electoral farmland where the tens of millions of the sorts of non-thinking voters politicians salivate over are bred, fed, and watered.

And that is why The Squatter Mentality stands out as Philippine society’s primary character trait. People with Squatter brains feed off politicians who, in turn, cultivate and propagate that mentality in them. It’s a vicious cycle from which the only escape is a wholesale society-wide embrace of an ethic of thinking.

Will the Philippines ever be known as a society that exhibits a modern ability to think?

It’s a journey that begs a first step. Roxas, Poe, and Binay completely missed an opportunity to take one of those first steps — to take the INC to task for the vast disruption they caused last weekend and to categorically shut down their veiled idiotic appeal that they be given a get-out-of-jail pass on the charges of kidnapping their leadership is accused of. Those who come to their defense have done so on the back of really lame positions — kesyo it was the INC’s freedom to express, freedom to assemble, and freedom to worship that was at stake here. Puh-leeze. All of those lofty principles ultimately owe their legitimacy as national ideologies to, you guessed it, The Law.

As such, it’s simple, really

Rule of law trumps everything else.

Whenever some bozo Filipino politician makes an assertion or an emo appeal on the latest fad issue, look up The Law as the first port of call when evaluating if their ululations make sense. Turning that into a habit is a big step in the direction of transforming Philippine society from what it is today — a superstitious medieval nation — into a modern thinking society that has earned the right to take its place amongst modern 21st Century societies.


If Filipinos continue to embrace their Squatter culture, guess what: the Philippines will continue to be a Squatter Country run by Squatter Leaders.

[Thumbnail photo courtesy Philippine Star.]

82 Replies to “Why the Iglesia Ni Cristo rally on EDSA was another case of Filipinos’ SQUATTER mentality prevailing”

    1. Uh… Yes, traffic problems have been around for at least 10 years. The INC “rally” made it much worse when they were there.

      1. Will the Philippines ever be known as a society that exhibits a modern ability to think?


    2. Hi Tom! I’m not sure if you read the article properly but this statement was pretty clear “The INC staged a rally last week that fouled up Metro Manila’s main road artery causing massive traffic jams that paralysed vast swaths of the Philippines’ largest metropolis and premiere centre of commerce causing untold loss of productivity possibly running in the billions of pesos in one fell swoop.” In short, they’re not being blamed for anything but the congestion they caused last week.

    3. YOU stop. The traffic we have to live with everyday is vastly different from the traffic that INC caused last weekend. Plus the element of surprise made it much much worse.

    4. Did you read the article? INC was never blamed here. Yes, it was called a vote farm, but the main target of the article is our squatter mentality.

    5. this is not blaming INC. the article targets the bad attitude of the filipinos and sadly it’s the people who protested last week. i’m catholic and we also have the squatter division.

    6. Are you serious? The traffic at least moves on a typical day.

      INC members blocking up EDSA (for no good reason), and forcing everyone out of the entire countries’ largest highway is not a day to day issue.

      Whats worse is the REASON for the protest, and also what else happened besides direct action for the original purpose of the protest. INC members protesting at EDSA shrine, at a Catholic church during mass on Sunday evening.

      Is that also common? Is that also a day to day thing? INC members ruining a different religions’ mass, disrespecting a much more well founded and established religion?

    1. Well, the event has to be dissected in various ways that is possible to extract lessons that could be derived from it, or point problems of the society in general, not specifically INC, but more importantly, other things.

    1. The right to suffrage is a universal privilege given to everyone including the poor and uneducated. Our lives are equally valuable in the eyes of God and as governed by the laws of democracy.

      Freedom of expression is also everyone’s right regardless of religious belief or socio-economic status.

      We should respect the rights of everyone measured against the same balance we want to exercise ours.

    1. Your faith wasn’t even under attack! Your elders are the ones suspected for illegally detaining your former member. Is detaining someone your church practice? Does your elders equal to your faith?

      Besides, the case filed against your suspected elders (not your faith, in case you have short-term memory) are under review to check if there’s probable cause. So why gather in EDSA shrine and trouble the commuters? Did your group plan to “detain” the whole Metro Manila?

      Why can’t your elders face the charges? Even Jesus Christ face the false accusations against him. Are they scared?

      BTW, the next time your group shouts “Separation of Church and State”, get a copy of the 1987 Philippine Constitution (which you can google online BTW) to know what exactly how the State and Church separated.

      Well, in case you’re lazy, here is the list. Tell this to your fellow believer so that they won’t look funny in a TV interview.

      The Separation of Church and State shall be inviolable.
      -Art II. Section 6, 1987 Constitution

      No law shall be made respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. No religious test shall be required for the exercise of political rights.
      -Art. III, Section 5, 1987 Constitution

      Religious denominations and sects shall not be registered (as a political party,
      organization or coalition, by the Comelec)
      -Art. IX, C, Section 2(5)

      One-half of the seats allocated to the party-list representatives shall be filled, as provided by law, by selection or election from labor, peasant, urban poor,
      indigenous cultural communities, women, youth, and such other sectors as may be
      provided by law, except the religious sector.
      -Art. VI, sec. 5(2).

      1. “Your faith wasn’t even under attack! Your elders are the ones suspected for illegally detaining your former member. Is detaining someone your church practice? Does your elders equal to your faith?”

        BULL’S EYE!

      2. you got that right. 😀
        they thought that Secularism is an immunization from the law. a crime is a crime and subject for investigation no matter what and who we are. no one will be above the law even the INC ministers. they are part of the population like us.

        1. It seems that the INC has forgotten that even Christ allowed himself to be arrested and be tried, even when there was really no evidence against him.

          I’m not sure anymore who’s that Christ they say founded their church. Who is that “Cristo” in the “Iglesia ni Cristo”?

      3. No amount of explaining would do. even if its blatant obvious that the ministers are really at fault, they will turn a blind eye of idiocy. The mere fact that Felix Manalo himself was charged with sexual crimes before and they still consider him as Lord…what else to be surprised of from this cult

      4. we have explained to these INC zombies the pointlessness of their rally (which was against their original teaching/doctrine btw) time and again, but still, they cannot seem to COMPREHEND the idiocy behind their mass action.

        and worst still, they have the GALL to DEFEND their failed “SHOW OF FORCE.”

        so, what i’m trying to say is, it is useless to explain to these people. they are robots.

        nice comment, though.

    2. Please read again the essay of Tiglao, as you are linking. Correct, it is explaining the side of INC by using his “source” within INC, but it is just one part of the total equation. It does clearly point out INC’s understanding (or misunderstanding) of the motives of the PNoy admin, who are of course always misunderstood because they always operate without logic. But, I think INC eventually called off your mass action because as your Kapatid Bien Santiago said “…nagkalinawan na kami.” So, what Tiglao wrote was most likely what INC was not understanding with Mar, or PNoy.

    3. we can compare you to ISIS. No one is attacking your Faith! you have the Philippine ARENA? why make clueless people suffer?

      Porket nasaktan ang mga lider nyo mananakit kayo ng ibang tao? SERYOSO?

    4. Nobody is stopping you from practicing your religion. No one is closing down your cathedrals. You should be happy to see alleged crimes being put to trial. You INC have disowned other christian denominations claiming apostasy, thus you do not recognize nor do you draw strength from the tradition of martyrdom since St. Stephen, so you don’t know what dying or suffering because of your beliefs means. You have never tasted oppression and persecution, so you INC have no idea why so many people got angry because they thought you were only demonstrating there for your own selfish ends.

    5. and we, the more or less 95 million Filipinos of various faiths, are supposed to be INTIMIDATED by your FAILED SHOW OF FORCE?

      come on! who are you shitting?

      you are CULT! plain and simple.

  1. Where are the terrorists when you need them. All it takes are 10 suicide bombers to clear edsa from these INC-magnons last friday.

    Obliterate. Leave no one behind. No Mercy.

    1. I tried saying something in the combox of rappler about the INC being an easy target for a terrorist attack and I went ahead and suggested it. But it got censored. Hehehe. Naughty me.

  2. This article does not really talk about the INC. it is more about society and the type of politics we have. In my opinion there is nothing offensive about this. very well written. Sad and painful, but it’s true.

  3. Hello. I think your articles have a point and do illustrate the sad state of Philippine society today. It would be great if you can also write about these issues in easy to understand Filipino language so that more people can actually read and understand it. Just a thought. Thanks.

  4. The arrogant INC is forgetting that they are in a nation of Catholics. Why? Because we forgive and we are sometimes afraid to put our foot down. But there comes a point when all their blasphemy has to STOP. Freedom has its limits. As Catholics we can either just pray for their souls (which are definitely going to hell as their cult is based on Jesus not being the Son of God,) or put a stop to all their BS, or we can be better Christians by trying to evangelize them and let them see the light and their useless folly. In short, we have to help the ppl mesmerized by the INC cult to realize that they are all being played for fools by one family that claims to be the sole inheritor and “master” of God’s church.

    1. as L Ron Hubbard said, one singular (and I think successful) way to make money is to create your own religion. I respect these people’s right to believe what they want to believe and worship whomever they choose, but it does not necessarily extend to the particular beliefs they adhere to. Kanya kanyang paniniwala.

    2. Very very wrong Dick Get yr facts straight INC is strongly of the belief that Jesus is the son of God WHERE THE HELL YOU GET YOUR STUPID SUPPOSITIONS THEN POST HERE Get an education Pls

  5. Oh, this one is just again one of those benign0 classics. Just beautifully worded. Very descriptive, almost picturesque; you could almost paint a comprehensive image complete with fine details of the society and culture. Just love it.

    10 million likes.

    Those who missed the point, please read again. It is just using the recent incident to lead you to a bigger picture.

    1. I think this is what all of us GRP writers aspire to — to always try to see the bigger picture that serves as the important context to the lessons we learn from the little incidents. 🙂

    2. Because things like this occur over and over again in the Philippines, we need to dig deeper than just the politics and the social climate. We need to dig deep into the culture. At its core Filipino culture is dysfunctional.

      It is the good fight, I believe, to keep exposing such dysfunction until the people finally get it.

  6. What bunch of morons would hand over 10 percent of their salary to thieves? Hang on, this is cheaper than the politicians…. A fool and his money eh?

  7. What quantities evil – the amount of blood spilled the body count, the intentional destruction of innocent masses? Regardless of how evil is defined, there will always be those in power to discriminately judge it and their corrupt policing forces that enforce it.

  8. ‎The greatest danger of a terrorist’s bomb is in the explosion of stupidity that it provokes.

    The surest way to prevent seditions…is to take away the matter of them.

  9. Squatter Mentality prevails, because all of us tolerate it. Our mentality has not improved; even in this 21st century civilization, we are living in…

    “The End justifies the Means”…is the mantra of our politicians. They are afraid of Enforcing the law. They are afraid of Offending the INC. They are afraid to Lose the Block Votes of the INC.

    No one should be above the law. No one should be treated in special way; when there is a violation of the law.

    This is our problem: The Enforcement of the Law. Equal justice for all.

    Our culture has tied up the enforcement of the law. Political Patronage has tied up the enforcement of the law. The Culture of Corruption has tied up the enforcement of the law. Political Opportunism and Political Expediency have tied up the enforcement of the Law.

    So, where do we go from here? We wallow on our own stupidities. And, that Mentally Retarded Aquino, who happens to be the President, is doing nothing…

    1. Hayden ,,, you just hit the bulls eye ,,, We tolerate it ,,, Our elected president and his cabinet just like us seems to have no idea how we are going to correct this… Filipinos are clueless how to change the direction of this mentality of individual self interest or hopelessness to overcome the majority mind set ….. Education my friends with Blogs like this site BRP..Inform the people what’s going on and give them hope that there’s a way to fight this , through unity …, Pray to the almighty that people get educated and see better ways . In time it will eventually happened. Philippines hit bottom right now , there’s no more direction but up ..

      1. This is the reason why we Blog; an exchange of ideas; and an exchange of information. Bloggers educate each other. Unless, you are a Paid Troll or a Paid Hack; of which you are just wasting your time. Because people have brains…

        There are ways for peaceful change. It is up to us to change; if we are willing or not…

    2. Well said
      The law should prevail but in this country it does not! YOU ARE A LAWLESS COUNTRY!! Not worthy of 3rd world status but something much less

  10. I have INC friends, thus, I am hesitant to post my opinion on this issue as it might affect our relationship. However, I cannot just let my opinion in oblivion as this massive traffic jams affected me and my husband. I read opinions and comments regarding this issue and what I did not like is the politicians who instead of helping to resolve the issue took the opportunity for their own benefit. I hate them because of it. Tolerating is really not good.

    1. That is called:Political Opportunism. Most of our Politicians are Political Opportunists.

      I have yet to find a Filipino Politician whose purpose is to really serve the people. It is like searching a needle in the Hay Stack…

  11. Bakit pagka ang ibang relihiyon na nagsasagawa ng religious activities sa mga lansangan tulad ng sa black nazarene(na tv close up si ABS Noli de Castro), iba’t ibang sagala, processions ng mga rebulto at mga sari-saring imahen na ginaganap kada taon(…ang EDSA rebolution na pinawagan pa ng cardinal Sin sa nga katoliko na pumunta sa Crame na walang permit to rally),etc…na nagdudulot ng matinding trapiko ay ok lang sa inyo pero pagka ang INC na may permit ay di puede ? Di ka rin pala naiiba kay De Lima ng Department of SELECTIVE Justice….malabo pa din ang mga mata kahit may suot na salamin . Hindi nakikita ang karampatanag hustisyang pantay para sa lahat.

    1. At least iyon, planado at organisado pero ung INC? Basta man lang sila nagsulpot at nakaperwisyo pa sa mga commuter.

      Either you are missing the point or you’re just TROLLING. Son. I think it’s the latter and it was evident.

    2. “Di ka rin pala naiiba kay De Lima ng Department of SELECTIVE Justice….malabo pa din ang mga mata kahit may suot na salamin . Hindi nakikita ang karampatanag hustisyang pantay para sa lahat.”

      And do you think inflicting damage and defiance of due process and not following the rule of law is ‘justice’ to you? Please you need to seek help if that is your logic.

    3. unang una, yun mga nabanggit mong kabulastugan sa taas na gaawain ng katoliko at kung ano pa mang organized religion na tulad ninyo e agree akong kabulastugan talaga. hanggang dun lang.

      pero yun mga yun kahit papano, me abiso sa mga tao BUWAN o ilang LINGGO bago maganap ang event para di na sila lumabas at hayaan yang mga deboto o mga panatiko na sila sila ang magpatayan sa lansangan o mamatay sa heat stroke. kahit papano naman me respetong katiting sa mga ayaw sumali sa kanila dahil nag ABISO ng maaga.

      e yung ginawa ninyo halata namang napakalaking KAGAGUHAN. wag na kayo magmalinis. kung di mo alam kung bakit kagaguhan at kawalang respeto sa kapwa yun e problema mo na yun.

    4. Well think again! hindi yun Selective Justice tawag dun CULTURE and tradition at hindi nila GINAWA SA EDSA!


      Dadadaan naman sa Due process once na file na ung case, hindi naman selective yun. Mas lalo nyo lang Pinasikat si Delima. Naisip nyo ba yun? binigyan nyo sya ng FREE ADVERTISMENT.

      WAG nyo ikumpara ang EDSA REVOLUTION sa ginawa nyo. PLEASE magbasa ka ng HISTORY! please intindihin mo kung bakit nangyari yun!

      ISA PA diba bawal sa Doctrina nyo yan? una VIGIL tapos naging Rally! hindi ko ata ma gets yun? WALA KAYO SA GERA! meron kayo TV station at PH arena bakit hindi nyo doon ginawa?

      BAKIT HINDI FUNCTIONAL ang ginawa nyo? KAILANGAN ba mag pasakit sa ibang tao? hindi ba kayo marunong MAHIYA? ASAN ANG RESPETO?

      ETO PA, alam nyo naman siguro yung BUHAY NI KRISTO? ewan ko pero iba ata yung kristo na kilala nyo. NEVER NYA ginawa ang ginawa nyo, NAKAKAHIYA naman sa pangalan ng IGlesya nyo.

      SANA naman kahit hindi nyo sya kinikilala Diyos, gawin nyo naman ROLE model ung ginawa nya. NAgpasakop sya sa hanggang sa Huling buhay nya. GUMAWA SYA NG MABUTI SA KAPWA! naging functional sya na tao, hindi sya gumawa ng paraan para maging Political entity. Hayyy sana isipin mo yun at mag basa ka …. at pagaralan mo ung mga nangyari.

      Nakakahiya ang ginawa nyo.

    5. may maipapakita po ba kayo na permiso talaga kayung mangharang nalang??ibang usapan po kasi yang prosesyon kasi ilang buwan palang pinaghahandaan na yan tsaka nagddetour yun para mayamadaanan parin yung mga sasakyan WELL YOU HAVE TO OPEN YOUR MIND not YOUR EYES .sorry po pero sana naman MAKAPAG ISIP ISIP NAMAN PO KAYO.

  12. Totally agree Filipinos have a FUBR mentality. The question is – can it be fixed ? Just came back from my first visit to Singapore – I am almost speechless. My humble reaction to my fellow Pinoys is tsk tsk tsk!

  13. I agree with everything you said except that you included Mar in your list of presidential wannabes who licked ass, when in fact he was the only one who didn’t. You also forgot to include Bongbong who said the same things that Poe & Binay did to tickle INC ears. And you forgot to mention that Duterte gave INC permit to rally in Davao.

  14. Sa lahat naman ng lugar na pwedeng pagtipunan bakit sa EDSA crossing pa? Wala namang political, o social significance yung lugar. Hindi naman dopon naganap yung dating mga EDSA. Pinili lang yung lugar na iyon dahil pinili nila ang lugar na kung saan sila ay pinaka lubos na makakaabala, period. Mga walang kwentang, akala mo kung sinong miyembro lang naman ng Kulto.

  15. Let me ask benign0 one thing. Do you agree with Bongbong Marcos’ statement that if his father was still President, the Philippines would’ve become a Singapore by now?

  16. Zaxxuns live by the COD code of conduct.

    If you want your country to become a Singapore, everyone needs to be converted into a Zaxxun.

    A Zaxxun practices the COD life by applying a very simple secret – the most basic COD rule:

    Put everything in the right place at once.

    So if were president, I would have ordered the military/police to put these squatters and Road blocking INC’s in ther right place at once.

  17. The revised modern day “Noli me Tangere” is out: I further beefed up the already looooong list of Phl problems and broken pinoy traits….


    Hope you enjoy. This is the handbook on how to fix the Filipino dysfunctional mentality.

    Please send it to all your favorite politicians and leaders if you want this country to become a Singapore. Well that’s a big IF.

    My next project is to carve out what is called the Zaxxun Zones of Luzon (ZaZoZon) – it will include Subic, Clark, Part of Baguio, Bonifacio global city, etc. – a Singapore in the Phil. A squatter-free zone with no eyesores. If you have areas you want to include- just let me know. It will be a guide for squatter-free tours in the Luzon area which tourists badly need.

  18. Most of the protester did not even know what are the protesting for. Its just UTOT or UTOS NG MINiSTRO. magpunta at mag rally these are the same people that will be voting base on what their ministro tell them.

    And this what is called UTU UTU. SQUATER MENTALLITY.

    What a waste.

  19. Why blame filipinos as a whole? When infact its the INC iglesia ni manalo should be blamed.
    Their squatter mentality affect the whole nation and brought shame to the country!

    1. @Guarte, adela. Regardless of our respective religions, we Filipinos are still products of a corrupt culture that is self-serving (kanya-kanya) and aristocratic (hambog).

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