Why Filipinos should support Harry Roque, their new presidential spokesman

New presidential spokesman Harry Rogue.
(Photo source: Interaksyon)

The trouble with “thought leaders” of the Philippine Opposition is that they often think and behave like spurned adolescent lovers more than rational adults. The way they launched into a shrieking fit over the recent move of renowned human rights lawyer Harry Roque into the Malacanang team reeks of vindictiveness and lacks any semblance of forward thinking.

The Opposition straight out fail to take a constructive perspective to this development and fail to apply a bit of imagination to at least find curious fascination in the prospect of how a human rights lawyer might speak for a government highly-criticised for alleged “human rights abuses”. Rather, the usual shrill voices of the Opposition turned their guns on Roque’s back as he seemingly walked away from their “graces” towards the unknown challenge of working with the government of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.

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This highlights the futility in attempting a conversation with idiots. On one hand, the Opposition led by their self-appointed “leaders” in the Liberal Party (LP, a.k.a. the “Yellowtards”) would cocoon themselves within a clique of mutual back-patting like minds throwing barbs at what they perceive to be “incompetent” and even “evil” people serving the Duterte administration. Yet, on another (as we are seeing today), they decry someone they once regarded as “one of us”, opting to serve the Duterte government. Well, dude, what exactly is it that you want to see happen? The Yellowtards lament that all the wrong people work for Duterte. Now that one of the supposedly “right” ones have opted to join him, the shrill shrieks simply grow louder. Tanginang yan.

Perhaps, like any politician, part of what motivates Roque is political survival. But, really, what is wrong with that? It is too naive for anyone to think that anyone of consequence in the Philippines does anything purely for altruistic purposes. Roque, like any sane human being, balances personal interest and noble ideals. Perhaps it is because Yellowtards are into the worship of saints, martyrs, and their “amazing” gods. That mindset leads them to expect nothing less than pure intentions in the people they choose to hold in high esteem. For the Yellowtards, good people are always 100 percent motivated by pure or noble intentions and that their actions always involve self-sacrifices for zero personal gain.

Well now, that certainly is a recipe for the very culture of hypocrisy that lost them an entire country back in 2016. After all, only saints and martyrs are worthy of Yellowtard veneration and Filipinos, quite simply, have gotten sick of that insane self-righteousness.

Roque perhaps saw some opportunity for personal gain in joining Team Duterte. Duterte, after all, remains a popular leader. But only intelligent people who are able to think in the modern sense can properly fill in the less-evident gaps and formulate a more complete theory of why Roque does what he does. Indeed, Roque is obviously not stupid and is aware of the risk he is taking (which is a no-brainer seeing the predictibality with which the Yellowtards are reacting to this today) and would have weighed the pros and cons of joining Duterte.

There is, obviously, potential for a big win that makes this risk worthwhile for Roque. That’s Investing 101, by the way — seeing an opportunity and taking a risk to exploit it. The question therefore is, what opportunity could Roque have possibly seen that makes his investment in lost political capital amongst the Yellowtards worthwhile?

For one, Duterte’s alleged “human rights violations” are largely unsubstantiated. The gone-viral notions of him being a human rights “abuser” are largely products of spin spewed by a hostile butthurt news media industry and a largely unimaginative, directionless, and strategically-bankrupt Opposition. There is a popular saying: It takes one to know one. Roque is, of course, not a “human rights violator”. But Roque has battled a lot of them. He knows how they think and he knows how to formulate an attack plan to thwart them in court. He knows the enemy.

One-dimensional minds will, as is evident in the position the Yellowtards take, fixate themselves in this one-dimensional logical construct:

Duterte is a violator of human rights and is therefore an enemy of human rights defenders. Roque is a human rights defender. Therefore, Roque should regard Duterte as The Enemy.

It is on that childish logic that they now condemn Roque for joining Team Duterte. However, a real intellectual will, before dubbing one “The Enemy”, first ask: Is Duterte really the enemy? More specifically, perhaps Roque asked himself:

Is Duterte really a human rights violator?

As long as the answer to that question has not been established beyond reasonable doubt there is opportunity for Roque the Human Rights Lawyer to work with Duterte.

It is likely in the course of Roque’s stint in Malacanang, that he will crystallise his own conclusions about Duterte and his government to a point where he can answer this question conclusively then act accordingly. Until then, Filipinos should support the new presidential spokesperson and wish him well. He is, after all, serving the Philippine Government and, by logical extension, the Filipino people. Let’s stop acting like a bunch of Yellowtards, grow up, and start looking forward.

8 Replies to “Why Filipinos should support Harry Roque, their new presidential spokesman”

  1. The opposition had two choices, give Harry Roque a chance and let him have his conclusions on Duterte and maybe work harder to have a more transparent Government record on Human Rights and let his reputation and achievements in his past work speak for itself or preemptively attack him with slander, labels, insults and malign his reputation before he even officially takes the post and will continue to attack and discredit him like all the allies of the administration like they did before and during Noynoy’s administration, they chose the latter.

  2. Public service is a public trust…we don’t know yet the true intention of Cong. Roque, in his acceptance of the Presidential Spokesman position. We wait and see…

    I see no Human Rights abuses in Pres. Duterte’s War on Drugs. The Extra Judicial issue against Pres. Duterte was brought out in the Senate , by the Drug Dealer and nymphomaniac, Leila de Lima, and his sidekick, the professional rebel and “kudeta” player: “Trililing” Trillanes. It was the Plan “B” of the Aquino Cojuangco political axis. To impeach Pres. Duterte, on the issue of EJK. Then, put , the phony Vice President, Leni Robredo, as President.

    It did not work. So the YellowTards, went to ask for foreign support, to oust Pres. Duterte. It is not working. So, “Abangan ang susunod na kabanata”…

    Presidential Spokesman Roque, knows how these YellowTards think. He is very familiar with their strategies and tactics. It would be very hard to counter, an opponent, who knows your every move. This will give a very hard problem for the YellowTard opposition to counter.

    We are watching and waiting, what happen next !

  3. Harry Roque may have on his mind…Is my paranoia getting completely out of hand, or are you Yellowtard mongoloids really talking about me?

  4. It’s funny , three years ago, GRP thought that Harry Roque was a cheap laughable sleazebag!

    As a matter of fact, GRP’s position did not jive with that of Dirty Harry:

    “A US Marine stands accused of murdering Laude and, with all that, rests the future of military relations between America and the Philippines which is currently facing an external military threat from a belligerent major world power — the People’s Republic of China — that it is ill-equipped to deal with without US assistance.”

    1. That’s because I disagreed with what he was advocating in that particular instance. I comment on an issue-by-issue basis. The names or personalities involved are a distant secondary consideration. What is consistent here at GRP are our principles, not personal loyalties.

      Note that the statement you quoted above remains true regardless of the personalities involved. The Philippines remains dependent on foreign powers for defense. Whether that is the EU/Western bloc or the Russian bloc does not matter in the overall scheme of the Philippines’ military situation.

    2. That’s the sort of conclusion you get when you’re stuck with “personalities” rather than the issues and ideas involved. Perhaps you should also get used to the idea that you may agree with a person in some issues and disagree in others? It helps liberate you from this morass of personality based ideologies/politics. Besides, the author does not “agree” with Harry Roque in this article because there is nothing to agree or disagree on.

  5. Not sure if this will be seen considering how old this article is, but I’m surprised that GRP didn’t see Roque’s “kabalimbingan” coming, yet a lot of people whom you criticize were able to. Perhaps a follow-up article addressing the recent “betrayal” of Duterte by Roque would be great. 🙂

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