TURNING POINT: Filipino Man of the Year 2017

NAAWAN, Misamis Oriental (MindaNews / 01 Jan) — For the Filipino Man of the year 2017, I would cast my vote to His Excellency President Rodrigo Roa Duterte. The President is the embodiment of the Filipino hope, contradiction, frustration and disappointment. And of the Filipino as a joker or a joking nation.

Tatay Digong is the strongest hope for a clean Philippines; cleansed of drug addicts, pushers, network dealers, shippers or smugglers and drug tycoons or drug lords; and cleansed of corrupt officials in the different institutions and agencies of the government, like Congress,   the Bureau of Customs (BOC), Bureau of Interanl Revenue (BIR), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), and the courts of the land.

The contradictions start amazingly with the Cleanser’s owning a foul mouth that spews dirty words, curses and invectives while pursuing his mission and in campaigning for a clean and crime-free Philippines. In the process, the murky slums and dark alleys are littered with the bodies of poor drug addicts and pushers while the drug tycoons and their protectors behind the thriving commerce of illegal drugs all known no less, accordingly, to the President of the Republic have remained scot-free and enjoying the good life from their rapacious trade. Corruption has not ebbed because the big suspects are kept and shielded under the wings of the primary Protector while the small squeaking ones are hauled to courts. Patronage- pay-back politics has reared its ugly head contrary to campaign promises and is derailing the train against corruption. That’s why an environmentalist who was on head-on collision with big business was kicked out of the Cabinet.

And one weird contradiction is that the imperialist Chinese, the biggest source and exporter to the country of shabu (methamphetamine) are being allowed unperturbed to build their bunkers and a new Great Wall in West Philippine Sea while the pro-Chinese communist National Democratic Front and the New People’s Army were declared as a terrorist group.

But the unbeatable and disastrous of contradictions: the Americans were lambasted for their massacre of the Bangsamoro committed a century years ago at Bud Dajo yet were requested to help quell a recent Bangsamoro uprising that turned to rubble the Islamic City of Marawi in Mindanao.

When hope and reality bang at each other’s head, you hear some gnashing of teeth that comes from built-up anger and frustration . But this disappointment from failed expectations is easily drowned by the hallelujah of the President’s adoring followers and supporters projecting a no-problem-everything-is all-right Philippine situation.

For, indeed, nothing is ever wrong in the country nowadays. If there appears one every now and then, it’s dismissed simply as a joke. A joke solves any problem and cures everything. The President is a big joke. He is the long-awaited cure for the sick Filipino.

I love this President. (MindaViews is the opinion section of MindaNews. William R. Adan, Ph.D., is retired professor and former chancellor of Mindanao State University at Naawan, Misamis Oriental)