Before I formally begin this rant, I would like to ask for a moment of silence for those who fell in the Kidapawan Tragedy and spare a prayer for those they left behind…
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Ladies and gentlemen, it is a different kind of tragedy when the very authority figures meant to protect the common people turn against the civilian population. People say that only three farmers were killed in the protest so it can’t rightfully be called a “massacre”. However, that doesn’t change the fact that people were killed and it doesn’t really matter how many died because a loss of life is always a loss no matter how small or insignificant they may seem in the grand scheme of things. Each and every one of those farmers who were hurt or killed was somebody’s son, brother, husband or father and that alone is tragic enough in its own right.
Look, I’m no expert and I wasn’t even there. However, I think that there were options that North Cotabato Governor Emmylou Mendoza, could’ve explored to improve both her image and the image of her allies in the LP. Of course, as already mentioned, I don’t know much about what happened but I’d like to say that there were other decisions and actions that she could’ve made to prevent the situation from devolving into its current tragic state.
It’s sad to note that the victims of this tragedy are farmers who are already victims of the Philippines’ unfair system and poor treatment of our less fortunate countrymen and non-countrymen apparently. From the Mendiola Massacre, the Hacienda Luisita Massacre, the Vizconde Massacre (which Kris Aquino starred in), the Luneta Massacre to the Mamasapano Massacre, you can tell that our current administration and their allies have little regard for the common people. Would it be too much to ask that they show even just a tidbit of kindness for our people?
Of course, indeed, it may indeed be asking too much from a pompous and incompetent political party who are delusional enough to believe they belong to some kind of royal bloodline…
Anyway, here are the three things that the Teletubby Governess should’ve considered:
Giving A Show Of Goodwill
Apparently, Governess Mendoza refused to give out any kind of relief to the Kidapawan farmers because all the other donations and relief workers hail from parties not under the LP. If word on the street and on the internet is to be believed, she wanted none other than Presidential Candidate Mar Roxas to distribute the goods personally so as to increase PR ratings for the LP. Unfortunately, it was due to this long delay that resulted in the protest and subsequently led to the tragedy.
First of all, I’d like to point out that her decision to choose politics over the welfare of the people has only resulted in the LP’s ratings to go down if it can go down any further considering its already abyssal situation. Her choice to starve the farmers just so her party can gain a better reputation among the masses has only backfired and it’s more than obvious now that the LP does not care and has never cared about the farmers of the Philippines.
Secondly, even if the donations came from other parties, was Governess Mendoza not competent enough to do the distributing herself so as not to lose “pogi points” for the LP? Couldn’t she just repackaged the goods (like certain political parties and entities did during the Yolanda Crisis) and organized some locals (heck, competent high-school students would do) to distribute it to the farmers?
Thirdly, it was only rice they were asking for after all. They weren’t asking for undeserved money as the city’s product was their produce anyway. They weren’t asking for an autonomous region, unlike certain murderers the current administration likes to cuddle. All they wanted was food to feed their families with. Couldn’t Governess Mendoza at least have given them ready-to-eat bread or canned goods?
Using Non-Lethal Force
Another sore point for me is the Kidapawan police using lethal force on the protesters. Now yes, there are viewpoints that state the farmers started the violence. There are also rumors that other organizations, namely communist insurgents, were involved and made the situation worse by shooting at the police. However, why the police had to resort to lethal measures almost immediately is something that remains to be answered.
Again, let me state that I am no expert on the matter but I’ve once done research about non-lethal weapons and tactics that can be used during riots. Some of the most basic ones include the use of water cannons and tear gas which are often used in riots and other violent protests in Manila. Other options include, but are not limited to, riot shield tactics, riot guns that fire non-lethal rubber bullets and anti-riot grenades which fire a volley of rubber projectiles that can incapacitate but not kill protesters.
Indeed, the fact that Kidapawan police were even allowed to bring firearms with them during the protest greatly clashes with the idea of “maximum tolerance” which our police forces supposedly adhere to.
This is probably the worst and is why I’m saving it for last.
There are reports that the LP is actually giving awards to the police officers who were involved in the killing. Yes, you heard that right. They were giving medals to the cops who slaughtered starving farmers.
In a more developed country, said cops would’ve been given a stern reprimand, a possible suspension and, for those directly involved, a full-blown murder case and everything it entails including a life-sentence. However, none of that happened. Indeed, the LP is making the said cops look like heroes in the whole incident even when they have much to answer for in the way the situation devolved quickly.
It pains me to see just how callous the LP is when it comes to handling the situation. Of course, why am I even surprised? They did the same thing in Mamasapano by honoring the terrorists instead of the dead cops!
I HAVE RETURNED TO LAY WASTE TO OUR ENEMIES!