MAYOR Rodrigo Duterte at his proclamation as the candidate for President of the PDP-Laban political party presented a bad portrait of a person who must not be elected president of the Philippines.
We have been giving space to news about him, both about his public service and to his atrocious statements about personally killing lawbreakers. He said that he has personally killed criminals in Davao City and he would probably kill as many as 100,000 when he becomes our national leader.
We have attacked him for being an enemy of the rule of law. Once, after he said in a Senate hearing that he would gladly kill a rice smuggler if the man would go to Davao, we condemned his “mentality of lawlessness and vigilantism.” We said that it was his mentality and exaltation of the culture of impunity that enabled those in power, including officials, “private warlords and businessmen vigilantes” to eliminate those they saw as enemies of their vested interests.
We wrote that “They kill journalists exposing corruption and human rights activists exposing abusive police and military men.”
It did not surprise us to hear the awful things he said in his PDP-Laban inaugural speech—including his cruel and uncivilized words against Pope Francis and his mother.
We deplore former Senate President Enrile’s sympathetic words about Duterte’s outbursts.
We share instead the views expressed by Archbishop Socrates Villegas, head of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, and many other sensible and morally well-built Filipinos who have written letters and comments to us.
Indeed, as Archbishop Villegas said, “vulgarity is corruption” and Duterte’s foul-mouthed and irrational attack on Pope Francis and his mother because he (Duterte) was inconvenienced by heavy traffic during the Holy Father’s visit last January, is a sign of the Davao Mayor’s corrupt heart and mind. Archbishop Villegas also correctly observed lamentingly that people have become “beastly and barbaric” when they found Duterte’s unjust cursing of Pope Francis and his mother something to laugh about.
The truth is Duterte has long been an example of beastliness and barbarism in public. He is proud of having been the killer of bad people and the proud macho cohabiting with women not his wife.
“When a revered and loved and admired man like Pope Francis is cursed by a political candidate and the audience laughs, I can only bow my head and grieve in great shame,” Archbishop Soc said, expressing the sentiment of millions of Filipinos who we hope now realize that it is wrong to consider the mayor of Davao for President of our country.
We agree with the CBCP President that corruption is a “monster and devil with many faces,” and Duterte’s pride in being an adulterer and in having murdered baddies in Davao are parts of the “great scourge of Philippine politics.”
“Killing people is corruption. Killing is a crime and a sin whether it is done by criminals or public officials no matter what the intention,” Archbishop Villegas said.
“Adultery is corruption. It makes married love cheap and uses people for pleasure. Adultery corrupts the family; it destroys children and victimizes the weak,” he added.
Archbishop Villegas said that the world today “desperately” needs a leadership by example, and that candidates must be high-minded persons whose vision of the Philippines is of a great land and of Filipinos as a noble people.
Mayor Duterte is not a high-minded person. His vision of the Philippines is one freed of “bad elements” because the officials themselves are the worst!