Dear President-elect Duterte,

10

Congratulations po! I don’t think anyone saw it coming, this huge win of yours, and going by the tears you shed at your mother’s grave today, parang maging kayo ay nagulat, na-overwhelm, sa tindi ng inyong panalo.

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Ako naman po ay excited. Unlike my middle-class network on social media, I do not fear you nor dread your presidency. Unlike many who declared they were now shopping for another country because you won, leaving has not crossed my mind at all.

Malinaw naman po sa akin na ang isang bagay na maaasahan sa inyo ay ito: hindi ninyo ipagpapatuloy ang mga programa at polisiya ng Daang Matuwid na tunay na nagpalala ng kahirapan sa bansa.

Para sa bayan
Pero nalungkot pa rin ako, Ser. Hindi kasi nanalo si Neri Colmenares, na sa tingin ko ay pinaka-kwalipikadong kandidato para senador. Nalungkot din ako dahil napakalinaw ng plataporma para sa mahihirap ni VP Binay, at nanghinayang ako sa programa niyang magtatatag ng serbisyong pangkulusugan at maayos na edukasyon para sa lahat, at ang pangako niyang tax cut at mas mataas na suweldo para sa mga guro.

But these were short-lived sadnesses. This morning I woke up excited about having a new president.

Na-excite po ako sa pagbuo ninyo ng gabinete, kung sino ang inyong i-a-appoint at sa aling mga posisyon. Na-excite po ako para sa mga taga-Mindanao, na magkakaroon ng kanilang unang Presidente. Na-excite po ako para sa tagabantay ng gate namin sa compound, sa mga security guard, tricycle driver, diyaryo boy, at GRO na kakilala ko at alam kong kayo ang ibinoto.

I feel there is no reason to be sad when finally, and for once, the presidential candidate that the working class voted for has won the highest position in the land. There is no reason to be sad when ultimately this is a statement from a great number of Filipinos that they were distressed, dismayed, disgusted by matuwid na daan. They have spoken through this vote against the lack of compassion and kindness, the elitism and the arrogance.

Kayo po ang naging kontrabida sa pangarap ng Liberal Party na manatili sa poder ng six-more-years, at nanalo po kayo, Ser. At naniniwala akong higit sa gawing bida ang inyong sarili, ay magagawa ninyong gawing bida ang bayan.

Kahit ito lang ang basehan, excited po akong tawagin kayong presidente ko, Presidente ng Pilipinas.

Para sa kababaihan
This morning, Sir, I reviewed all the instances in which I was offended by what you said, pained by what you did, hurt by your attitude toward issues that are of utmost importance to me.

Una na po ang pagiging babae. Naiinggit po ako sa aking mga kaibigang nakatira sa Davao, na kahit ano pang suot nila, at kahit pa lumakad silang mag-isa anumang oras ng araw at gabi ay hindi sila nakakaranas ng pambabastos ng sinuman sa kalye. Sana’y kaya ninyo itong gawin sa Maynila at sa buong Pilipinas.

Hindi naman po kailangang ipakulong ang mga manong sa kalye na mahilig mag-miss!miss!miss! Pero sana’y mabigyan sila ng maayos na paliwanag kung bakit hindi dapat binabastos ng kahit na sinong lalake ang kahit na sinong babae, sa kalye man o sa loob ng tahanan. Sana’y maging dahilan rin ito upang hindi na mambugbog ang mga mister ng kanilang mga misis; sana’y mangahulugan ito ng mas ligtas na buhay para sa kababaihan ng bansa.

Sana’y mapalawak pa ninyo ang inyong programa para maisama ang ating LGBT community, dahil sila man ay nakararanas ng diskriminasyon sa loob ng kanilang mga komunidad at sa kalye araw-araw.

Sana rin po ay maipaliwanag nang maayos na may mga biro na nakakabastos o mapang-api sa kababaihan at LGBT. You’ve promised no more rape jokes, and I’m taking you up on that promise, Sir, if you don’t mind.

I also hope that as you go forward as our new President, you will find people who can advise you on women’s rights and gender issues, people who don’t just speak of women and LGBTs from one social class, people who realize that while some issues of oppression are universal, many forms of oppression are so specific to class, to education, to generation—and all those issues matter.

I also hope for the realization that saving women from oppression should not mean curtailing their right to dress, speak, think the way they do. Respecting women’s and gender rights does not mean changing women and LGBTs; it means changing the men.

Para sa kultura
It pains me that there is no cultural platform on the PDP-Laban website. I am a cultural worker. I hope you (or your advisers) would spend time looking at both Grace Poe’s and VP Binay’s cultural platforms; these work with the current landscape of culture and its crises at this point.

Ang totoo, Ser, mula noong EDSA1986 ay nabuhay naman po ang kultura at sining sa bansa nang walang programang maayos mula sa gobyerno—madalas nga po ay nagkakaroon lang ng pakialam ang gobyerno sa sining kapag may malaking issue na.

Pero sana, Ser, kayo po ay magkaroon ng pakialam. Napakarami pong kultural na manggagawa sa bansa—may ilan po akong kakilalang nagtrabaho sa inyong kampanya. Sa nakaraang limang administrasyon, lagi po kaming naisasantabi. Sa gobyernong Aquino, ang trato sa amin ay kasing yaman ng duktor, accountant, engineer na “self-employed professionals.” Pareho rin ang taxes na pinababayaran sa amin, kahit gakuko lang ang kita namin kumpara sa kanila.

Hindi po kami madaling kausap, Ser. Marami po sa amin, katulad ko, ay igigiit ang aming karapatang punahin ang inyong pamamahala at ang estado ng lipunan. Pero naniniwala po ako na kaya ninyo kaming tratuhin ng patas, at kaya ninyong makita na trabaho namin ito, katulad ng trabaho ninyo ang siguruhin na ang pondo para sa kultura ay napupunta sa mas maraming kultural na manggagawa, at hindi sa iilan lang.

I believe Sen. Pia Cayetano is on your team, Sir. She is one of the reasons why I have hope in your government. I honestly think that she is the best bet for both a concrete program for women and gender rights and a cultural department. She’s got her heart in the right place, and she’s done the work for culture in the past six years as head of the Senate Committee on Arts and Culture. I cannot wait for her to wield some power so that changes can finally be made in these sectors that have been neglected.

At sa inyo, Ser, congratulations po ulit, at good luck.

Pupurihin at pupunahin ko po kayo sa darating na anim na taon. Kita-kita po tayo sa dulo.

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10 Comments

  1. Sorry, you will proudly utter you are from the Philippines… And they will think: “ah, yes. That barbaric country ruled by a man that wants to gang rape the dead body of a nun, and kill almost everibody up to 100,000 people”. Don’t mind if they keep themselves away from you.

  2. arnel rollan on

    well, i can only say, i love the philippines. it is the land of my birth. i am a filipino and my president is rodrigo r. duterte. change is coming. mabuhay ang pilipinas.

  3. I believe everyone deserves a chance to prove themselves. I speak as someone who has himself been a victim of rejection and prejudice due to preconceived notions. Likewise, those who have already been given a chance and have failed miserably should leave quietly.

  4. Dear Mr President-elect.

    Since you are now secure in your victory, perhaps you can find it in your heart to give a sincere and unequivocal apology to the family of the late Ms Hamill.

    Perhaps you can use all the powers of the Presidency to investigate and re-open the cases of unsolved murders in Davao and in the other adjacent towns.

    Perhaps you can put the country at ease by telling your supporters to stop the hate.

    Perhaps you can raise confidence of the entire country not just by pushing through the FOI, but by being forthcoming with your own accounts both financial and personal. And please, no jokes this time.

    Perhaps you can stop flip-flopping and finally reveal your policies both local and international. Progress is best achieved through a clear direction and under a reasonable amount of predictability.

    Perhaps you can give true justice to the PNP and AFP personnel slain or maimed in traitorous ambushes and assassinations by the NPA.

    Lastly, for the moment, you can allow the voices of the really small people – those whose lives were snatched away on mere suspicion or whim, to be heard; through their loved ones, through evidence, and by those who perpetrated these heinous crimes.

    We won’t hold you, Mr President, to your more outlandish promises. These basic requests would do.

    With best wishes.

  5. tony de leon on

    congrats to President elect Duterte. My advice to him is not to travel overseas right now and meet with Jo Ma Sison for safety concerns. Let Jo Ma come to Davao instead if he wants to talk peace. At this early stage of his presidency he should not go on long travel abroad right away. Just for safety.

  6. The people reelected the same yellow senators and apparently might even take the vice president position as well.

    The only thing then in the Liberal party’s way now of having the exact same government that has looted and trashed the country the past 6 years is one guy Duterte.

    Might as well paint a target on his back.

    • i agree with you fyi that those DAPped senators are in the verge of winning again. i just could not understand the way people generally think. they only changed the president hoping that everything will change for the better. they did not think that re-electing the DAPped senators and congressmen plus robredo would distract du30 in doing his job. he would be always on the look out for machinations against him by the LAPIANG PORK and the yellow oligarchs in makati. people forgot to take into consideration what voting for these yellow DAPped senators and congressmen and vp would affect du30’s performance. sayang ang oportunidad that was given to us after 6 years and it seems we wasted again this rare opportunity to kick out these LAPIANG PORK yellows.

  7. Nicely written…as someone born in the Philippines, I still love my country even if I left it to reside abroad some 40 years ago…I have prayed for someone like Mayor Duterte and now he has arrived hopefully to restore peace and order to this nation of ours, to instill the values of a disciplined society so that when people ask me where I’m from, I would proudly utter The Philippines … Those that remain in government whom we suspect of treachery and corruption had better think twice now…this road that they travel has come to a dead end…no pun intended. Mabuhay ang Pulipinas! Mabuhay tayong lahat!