Instilling fear

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The presidential (and vice presidential) candidates and their cabals are picking on Mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s campaign promise to eradicate crime within six months if he wins. They insist that it is impossible, improbable, it is a bluff and it cannot be done. Well, it’s Duterte’s problem, not theirs, right? That is his campaign promise, and he rises or falls on that promise, right? So, what is their problem?

The problem is, his opponents are now realizing from the huge crowds who flock to his rallies and motorcades that people actually believe he can do it. Spouting motherhood statements just won’t hack it anymore, ladies and gentlemen. Filipinos can only be complacent, indifferent and apathetic towards their leaders, not to mention their situation in life, to a certain degree. Comes the time – belatedly or not – that they reach the proverbial point of no return.

We removed a dictator 30 years ago – which was impossible to do, but People Power did it, remember?

What the candidates and their spinners are doing is promoting the MINDSET that things cannot be done because they are difficult to do. They won’t do it because it is not doable. Have they tried doing it before saying they can’t do it? Because that is the justification of the LAZY, to put it rather bluntly.

Which is what has been wrong about this country since the so-called Edsa Revolution. Filipinos have reverted back to the culture of waiting for the guava fruit to fall from the tree, and the kind of leaders that we’ve had upheld that attitude for their own vested ends. It might come as a surprise, if not downright shock, to find out what we have accomplished as a people since we became the toast of the democratic world. Tell me about it and maybe I won’t say it was all such a waste.

And so, here comes Mayor Duterte offering change. In the real sense of the word, perhaps.

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He speaks the language of the masses, replete with the mindless curses that ordinary folk utter in the ordinary course of their ordinary lives. The ‘cultured’ and ‘polite’ elite be damned if they get offended. They represent not even 10% of the population. Their wealth won’t be diminished by the volume of expletives thrown their way every time the working classes discuss land reform, labor ‘contractualization’ or wanton exploitation of natural resources among themselves.

He speaks of specific things to do in clear terms, straight from the shoulder, no ifs or buts, and has repeatedly stated that he won’t resort to extrajudicial killings in order to keep his self-imposed deadline. Why did he impose that deadline, in the first place, when nobody asked him to? I would surmise that he has a plan and he will use the goodwill that a newly elected President is imbued with to get things done in as short a time as possible – in the same way that President Aquino used his bravado to eliminate, ta dah, wang wang.

True, ‘thou shalt not kill’. But why do policemen kill criminals? Why do soldiers kill in the name of country? Why did God order the Israelites to kill their enemies and take their lands and belongings? Why did He say, “Now, as for those enemies of mine who did not want me to be their king, bring them here and kill them in my presence” (Luke 19:27)? But of course, God also reserved punishment for those who commit murder against their own people.

The point being that instilling fear in the hearts of evildoers is the name of the game, and criminals today have absolutely no fear. The type of crimes being committed are so horrible that even the angel of death would cringe in horror. Who among the present crap, I mean crop, of candidates can implant the seed of dread among hardened crooks? None but the one who has been there, done that.

Mayor Duterte might use the goodwill and bravado of a newly elected President to tick off the first item on his agenda. How he will do it he is keeping close to his chest. Otherwise, he must honor his other word and allow whoever is elected as Vice President to take over.

(Photos taken from Mayor Duterte’s Facebook page)

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