“Why are Duterte and their minions so afraid to allow Congress’ franchise hearings on ABS-CBN? Because that’s where all facts are laid bare and made public: documents, expert testimonies, official records, witnesses. No fake news, no trolling. Just the facts. #holdABSCBNhearingsnow #thinkaboutit”
That was the message I received early this morning days after the Quo Warranto reportedly filed or to be filed by the Office of the Solicitor General which would prevent Congress from having to decide on the renewal of ABS-CBN’s franchise.
As I was thinking about the employees of ABS-CBN who are bound to lose their jobs and small businesses that will go belly up if the network’s franchise is not renewed, I couldn’t help but agree with the statement wholeheartedly.
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With people’s livelihoods at stake and with most of them staring at the prospect of financial hardship in the near term, I believe this administration owes it to the people to have everything laid down out in the open and have the elected representatives of the people decide with their conscience on the right thing to do.
I think the people whose lives will be thrown in shambles will mind the suffering a little less if they can be convinced of the JUSTNESS of what President Duterte wants done to ABS-CBN.
ABS-CBN isn’t just the Lopezes, it is ALL THE STAKEHOLDERS that rely on it.
I don’t want to sound melodramatic, but depriving thousands of people of their income at a time like this could be like a death sentence.
There really aren’t that many immediate job openings for broadcast professionals. That’s not just the few hundred of people who appear in front of the camera.
That includes engineers in various fields, directors, production staff, producers, writers, make up artists, video editors, graphics artists, computer programmers, technicians, utility people, drivers, mechanics, carpenters, and thousands of other workers.
A lot of these people may have even voted for Duterte in 2016 and his allies in Congress in 2019.
So it behooves President Duterte and his administration as well as his political allies to makes certain that the concerted effort to shutdown ABS-CBN truly comes from an intent to address a misdeed and ISN’T AN ATTEMPT TO DEAL OUT PUNISHMENT OUT OF PIQUE or PERSONAL VENDETTA.
Worse, I hope that this isn’t some immoral ploy by people in the halls of power to use Malacanang’s might to gain considerable stakes and perhaps control over one of the largest corporations in the Philippines.
Observing what was happening to ABS-CBN, a friend said, “Ungas naman kasi tong gusto mo magpasara. Masyado dinadaan sa bully tactics. Kung may atraso sa kanya o sa pamahalaan eh di habulin pero kelangan ba talaga ipasara? Mas abnoy pa to sa abnoy” (English translation: Those who want ABS-CBN shut down are real assholes. They’re using bullying tactics too much. If ABS-CBN has done something wrong to Duterte or committed an illegal act, they should be brought to court. Why does it have to be Duterte or his allies to shut it down? This is more abnormal than abnormal.”)
My friend’s statement is similar to the hundreds I’ve come across on social media. Infact, it may represent the sentiment of a majority of people who do not support calls to shutdown ABS-CBN.
Actually, a swift death would seem much more merciful than having to live through months and perhaps years of misery as one tries to adjust to life in another company or a completely new job — maybe overseas.
In fact, numerous studies equate the psychological impact of job loss to the death of a family member.
Research studies have shown that job loss can take a psychological and biological toll as well, leading to depression, anxiety disorders, increased somatic symptoms, such as fatigue or headaches, and higher rates of medical illness. This toll may be worse for men, who are socialized to evaluate their self-worth in terms of their financial and career success. Suicide attempts also rise with unemployment.
What gets me is that some people are so indifferent and apathetic towards the suffering of thousands that will lose their jobs if ABS-CBN is shutdown.
Is the Duterte administration willing to punish thousands along with the Lopezes over STILL TO BE PROVEN ALLEGATIONS? Do we still have a judicial system in place or is it now just playing second fiddle to the political dictates of those in power?
Nasaan ang malasakit? Where is the compassion that this administration says it has?
In anycase, I hope the Duterte administration provides some kind of safety net for all the workers that will be jobless should ABS-CBN shutdown.
But I doubt it can provide for the continuation of salaries and benefits that ABS-CBN employees are receiving right now.
Most likely, they’ll have to suffer the UNDESERVED HUMILIATION of having to BEG for subsistence from various government offices like the rest of the country’s indigent population.
GOD HELP US ALL!