ARE WE ESSENTIALLY A PAGAN, TRIBAL SOCIETY?

How could a Christian nation even make Duterte the leading presidential contender?

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 (Second of Two Parts)

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On Monday I explained that one answer to that question is that Christians like Protestant Perfecto Yasay and columnist Carmen Pedrosa simply refuse to believe that Rodrigo Duterte will really kill criminals without due process as he has been saying in his speeches.

He says something. They hear only what they want to hear. He says he will kill criminals where they stand, and not arrest them and subject them to the legal sysem. They insist that he will comply with the rule of law, which Duterte really hasn’t said. And if that is what he really means, he wouldn’t get a fraction of the angry masses with his I-will-kill-them-all screams.

A Davao Death Squad victim. “It will be bloody,” Duterte told a shocked Makati Business Club the other day.

A Davao Death Squad victim. “It will be bloody,” Duterte told a shocked Makati Business Club the other day.

But then that doesn’t answer what is probably the more important question: Why do the masses, who profess to be Christians, still support Duterte (at least going by the surveys) despite his statements that he will kill without due process (suspected) criminals, even if the most important tenet of their religion is reverence for human life?

Catholicism, in fact, has been the most militant religion in today’s world in championing such reverence, even objecting to the taking of human life by a state-nation purportedly duty-bound to defend its members (as in the case of capital punishment) or by a woman who asserts her freedom over her body (in the case of contraception and abortion).

The answer is unpleasant, which many social scientists, however, have pointed out before, even before this Duterte phenomenon prodded us to ask the question.

The Philippines isn’t really a Christian nation, but a pagan community divided into clans and tribes, professing Christianity by force of tradition shaped by four centuries of Spanish colonial rule. After all, it has also has made the exploited classes docile, as they are told they should bear patiently with class rule, and just wait for the classless Kingdom of Heaven after they die.

Study our purportedly revered practices like going to Mass, veneration of the Santo Niño, the sea of people risking life and limb following the Black Nazarene on a hot day, immolating one’s self on Black Friday. Most Filipinos are really worshipping tribal gods to ask for a boon – for the recovery of a cancer-stricken loved one, to win the lotto, to get a visa for work abroad.

Filipinos live basically as tribal groupings, with family, then clans, being the basic unit. This nation’s dominant religion isn’t really this treasure of mankind we call Christianity, and its people are formed not really as a result of a mass experience of some supernatural revelation but as a product of cultural evolution and rationality.

‘Fear of God’

Ask a Filipino what Christianity is, and he is most likely not going to reply, it’s reverence for human life. He is more likely to say, “fear of God,” by which he means trembling before Moses’ jealous god demanding worship for people to get his gifts.

This is the reason why a candidate who boasts of killing people and throwing their corpses away like garbage has become a leading contender, supported even by some of our educated, religious elite. (“Ibaon sila sa isang butas lang, [Just bury them all in one big hole in the ground,]” Duterte himself said as he narrated how he ordered his men to dispose of the corpses of the 16 convicts killed in the 1989 Davao hostage crisis.)

In their frustration over rampant criminality in the country and the little progress they see in the course of their lives, many Filipinos opt to simply revert to their tribal consciousness, tossing into the dustbin their Christian beliefs.

The elections give them a chance to clamor for a strong leader of the tribe who, as in ancient times – before Christianity, before the advent of the rule of law – can be ruthless enough to kill their enemies. (I was a bit shocked at how Duterte could even rouse the tribe into a violent frenzy: Imagine Ramon Jacinto, a big Duterte fan, calling for a “Rock D’Avance” for his candidate, the big attraction being such rock and folk stars as Pepe Smith and Freddie Aguilar. At the end of his announcement, RJ says, “Upakan na natin! [Let’s go hit them!” What happened to the make-love-not-war ethos of our usual rock concerts?)

The tribal ethos is obvious in that the surge of support for Duterte occurred in his tribe’s territory, Davao City, and spread of course in Mindanao where residents regard him as a tribal brother.

Such tribalism is also obvious in the case even of Perfecto Yasay, a very educated lawyer, whose father was even a Protestant pastor. But he is from Mindanao, born in Kidapawan, with his formative years spent in Davao. He says he has known Duterte for decades. For that, his decades of education on Western civilizations’ principle of the rule of law, his religious upbringing, were quickly shed to support as President an admitted killer. RJ, of course, had been a habitué of Davao City, the nearest urban (entertainment) center from his family’s Iligan Steel Mills.

There have been surges of tribalism in modern history, with disastrous consequences. In Germany, one of the most civilized nations on earth that had produced geniuses in philosophy and art, the tribalism Hitler roused – the belief in a superior Aryan race, the bigger set of tribes – resulted in history’s most horrific war, and the extermination of 8 million Jews, Gypsies, Slavs and other tribes that the Nazis believed blocked the Aryan tribe’s domination of the world.

Closer to home, strongman Suharto of the “Bumiputra” (Malay race) in the late 1960s led a pogrom against Indonesians of Chinese descent, on the flimsy excuse that they were communists and communist sympathizers, resulting in a near genocide of 500,000.

Inhuman creatures

One distinctive invariable characteristic of tribalism, or the racism that Christianity and modern civilization have struggled to overcome for two centuries, is the deep belief that certain classes of humans aren’t really human beings, such as the Jews Hitler killed en masse or the Chinese Indonesians in Suharto’s pogroms. This gives them a perverted justification to exterminate such “creatures.” Christianity and modern civilization though, really only in the last century, have been victorious in having the world embrace the notion that all human beings, without exception, have the same spark of divine life in them.
But this isn’t how how Duterte sees criminals.

For him, criminals aren’t human beings.

Duterte sees criminals as some kind of non-human creatures that must be ruthlessly eradicated. This is probably because of his experience in Davao, which also happens in our biggest cities, where criminals often are those from the hinterlands, taga-labas (outsiders), mostly poor farmers or farmers’ children thinking they could escape rural poverty in the cities but finding little work and becoming desperate, are sucked into urban criminal subcultures.

Note how Duterte has argued in one speech, sounding as if there were creatures (like the Orcs of the Lord of the Rings) who once and for all must be exterminated: “Ano ang mawawala sa Pilipinas kung patayin ko lahat ng mga kriminal dito?” It escapes this idiot totally that if he exterminates this generation of criminals, a new one would just emerge in the absence of an efficient police force and legal system in an egalitarian, prosperous society. He assumes — or perhaps relishes — that when he becomes President, he will kill all criminals. “It will be bloody,” he declared the other day before a shocked group of Makati businessmen.

It is totally beyond Duterte’s thinking that probably at least half of criminals in this country were pushed to live that way because of abject poverty or because they were sucked into sub-cultures where criminality prevailed as a way of life.

It is beyond Duterte’s small mind that other than an efficient police force and legal system and egalitarian economic development are the ingredients to minimize crime, as other cities in the country, among them Cavite towns, Cagayan de Oro and General Santos have proven. It is certainly not coincidental that countries with the highest crime incidences have been countries in abject poverty, such as Nigeria and South Sudan.

Demagogues rousing base tribal instincts invariably promise a desperate people a single, simplistic vision – that they have found the key to lead the tribe into prosperity, and they pretend to be messiahs willing to sacrifice themselves for the good of the tribe. Thus, Hitler promised his Thousand-Year Reich that would mark the total domination of the Aryan race over the planet. Suharto promised his New Order that would make all pure-blooded Malays as prosperous as the ethnic Chinese.

Megalomaniac

This megalomaniac mayor promises a crime-free Philippines, even as incontrovertible data shows that Davao is as infested with crime as most of the urban centers are, despite his 23 years of leading it as mayor, and desperate Filipinos believe him.

Of course, he promises to usher in a Federal Republic, a dream of Mindanao and Visayan politicians ranting for decades against “imperial Manila.” And columnist Carmen Pedrosa, whose life-long passion has been for a Federal Philippines, totally, unconditionally believes him, and shoves aside the most cherished tenets not just of Christianity but of modern civilization – reverence for human life.

Pope John Paul II had pointed reverence for life isn’t just some goody-goody notion but the basic foundation of modern civilization as we know it: “Only respect for life can be the foundation and guarantee of the most precious and essential goods of society, such as democracy and peace. (Evangelium vitae, 1995, no. 101).

There has been one episode in our history in which such Christian tenet for cherishing life proved Pope John Paul II’s words right — in February 1986.

As the political crisis unfolded at that time, the revered Jaime Cardinal Sin didn’t really ask Filipinos to overthrow Marcos. Sin just had such a grasp of Catholicism’s deep reverence for life. He, therefore, called on the faithful to mass around Camp Crame, where the rebels had declared they would make their last stand, in order to prevent the loss even of a single life.

Will the Church leaders of today have such an unwavering moral compass, and speak out loudly against a candidate who openly boasts of his irreverence for life?

tiglao.manilatimes@gmail.com

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64 Comments

  1. Virgilio Reyes on

    Without batting for any candidate and concentrating only on what Mr. Tiglao has stated here, may I comment that according to our Constitution, we are a secular nation although there is mention of God in our preamble. We are not defined according to any creed. Christianity just happens to be the majority religion, making room for Moslems, animists and even non-believers. We cannot claim to be a “Christian nation” in the same way other countries call themselves “Islamic Republics.” We may wish Christian principles to govern our country but we cannot demand that they be the basis for our actions as a nation, including the way we choose our leaders through elections.

    • Loren C. Binay~an on

      If only Christians would really act as the “Salt and Light” of the society, there should be no need for Digong.

  2. Mr. Tiglao you have a very wonderful write ups. However, Pilipino no longer prefer on any logical and moral reasoning. What we are looking is the leader who shares the same feeling with us genuinely and not just a fabricated feeling like BINAYaran, MARumi, POElitiko. We have been having so many decent leaders in our history but the story is just repeating itself. they are like wolfs wearing a sheepskin. Only Duterte is showing his true color. He challenge the public that is what he is. He never pretends of his personality. Lets try his government. Sino paba ang mapipili natin? Securo alam mo naman kung ano ang mga kaso nang kanyang mga kalaban……hindi ka naman ceguro bulag….at alam ko naman mataas ang pinag aralan mo……..pero kung gusto……sabihin mo nalang sa amin kung sino talaga ang pangulo na sinusuportahan mo. at paki explain kung bakit…..baka mag shift kami ng presidente…….wag ka namang mag playing safe……kahit ikaw ay mayroon din mental disorder if we based on phycology……lahat naman nanag tao misan ay nagkakroon tayo nang mental disorder the bad memories we have.

  3. He has 6 years to prove..Duterte will be the next President, we can scream and holler and we can’t stop destiny.

  4. Chemical brothers on

    Si Duterte within 3 to 6 months uubusin ang kriminal kahit papaano may effort. Si Binay within 3 to 6 moths uubusin ang pera ng taong bayan. Si
    duterte ay nagmumura pero hindi naman nag bubulsa ng pera, si Binay hindi nga nagmumura pera magaling naman magbulsa na pera……..

  5. We need a leader who can take hands on action and that is duterte and not a leader who is all talk, burgis, elitist, and is more concerned on what is politically correct. People are desperate for change and a leader that will take them there. Mabuhay so duterteeeeee

  6. Mr Tiglao, it is simple for me. Duterte comes across to me as the only one among the candidates who is sincere, capable and determined do his best for the welfare of the Filipino people. He also has the track record (if you can not see this then you probably haven’t been to Davao). This is the reason why I support him

  7. Rudi Miranda on

    “Since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved.” —Niccolò Machiavelli

    There never was a nation with Xn virtues, and it can never have it today, for history has shown that nations through the leaders were always in conflict with each other. Or history is replete, ever since, with wars between nations to establish and preserve total authority. So, it is off track to ask, why a Xn nation can afford to have a leading presidential contender like Duterte, when the Filipino nation don’t have what it takes to nurture so called Xn virtues.

    Leadership is not a matter of what religious virtues the person has, but the human rule and survival to determine the nation’s destiny in opposition to the power of fate, thus, the leader-president has all the necessary virtues to get the objective end done, be it popular or unpopular or where angels fear to tread.

  8. pedro somoroy on

    mr rigobert: intreguero ka talaga. hahahaha ngiting aso ka pa, ang dami tuloy nabuking na followers mo. favorit ka pala ng silent majority. magaling ka talaga!

    kanino ka ba talaga kakampi?

  9. Just wait when you become a victim of a crime and tell me about it in your next article.
    Your opinion is way too overblown and bordering on paranoia. Wake up!!

  10. Misleading picture. Actually our country has so much murders on innocent people that we are hardly Christian at all. Remember this journalist supporting Iglesia using flawed logic just to curry favor?

  11. PRECISELY WHY A CHRISTIAN CORRUPTION BECAME THE MOST CORRUPT, VIOLENT, UNSAFE, HYPOCRITE, POOR NATION WITH MILLIONS OF SUFFERING PEOPLE enduring harsh commutes and red tape and among a few nations in Asia unable to meet Millennium Development Goal targets and among the most dangerous places for journalists, prevalent drug use, and yet focused on being polite and forgiving. Just compare Myanmar, they have honest workers due to their belief in Karma and Japan with a society that respects each other and they are not even Christian. Maybe being Christian is a problem by itself?

  12. pedro somoroy on

    mr rigobert: are you implying we protect the criminals instead of the law abiding innocent citizens? you are so loud about the rights of the those who committed activities that harm and destroy the lives and future of the law abiding citizens. are you the protector of these criminals? are you not going to help duterte become a good president ? can u not enlighten us why there a radisson hotel in davao that charges 7000 pesos a night, why sm has 2 big stores, why san miguel has a 2000 hectares ecozone with a private pier and airport?

    someday, when we are able to secede , you will miss us.

  13. Christian or not, the people are desparate. I understand Yasay ans Pedrosa, a leader is an avenger of God for good or for evil…that is Biblical…but am still weighing who will be my president…definitely not one who renounced being a Filipino!

  14. It’s not a rocket science to understand the rise or shall I say the popularity of Duterte. He reflects the sentiments of the people who are desperate to change their life for good. This can happen to any country. It happened in Germany – rise of Hitler, Italy – rise of Musolini, Spain – rise of Franco, and now Donald Trump, etc. People are usually entice to candidate who speaks the same language. The two filthy word “PI” became an instant hit to many Filipinos who can’t control their mouth. The problem with the other candidates including the administration candidate is that they do not appeal to many Filipinos. There is lack of advertisement of their achievements and did not improve the lives of many Filipinos. Unfortunately this sentiment will come back to hunt the many Filipinos who supported Duterte because it will be almost impossible for Duterte to change the lives of many. Meanwhile Duterte who is almost every news is gaining support because he acts and talks like many Filipinos. I hope he does not drag the country back to the martial law days and foreign investments will disappear. My one cent of analysis.

  15. Mr. Tiglao may I ask you this very simple question, How do you describe our country as a Christian republic? Perhaps you will answer me that majority of our populace are Catholics including you and you will conclude that we are a Christian country. I don’t hate Catholics I love them but not on their dogma, beliefs and doctrines. When I was in Singapore my Singaporean friend ask me how to become a Catholic.? I wonder why he ask me this question, I just simply answered him back by attending mass, believed in Virgin Mary, make a sign of the cross,follow their doctrines and worship idols. He answered me back no, he told me to become a Catholic you allow your leaders to corrupt, you allow your people to do drug trade, you allow people to do any kinds of criminalities like murder, snatching, robbery and extortion etc. He told me farther that majority of those who are in prison are Catholics couple with a grin in his face and this is what your country claim as the only Christian Country in Asia. Duterte is a Catholic like you and have a character flaw similar with other Catholics that curses. You can’t deny that because that is the truth whether you like it or not. He thinks as a Catholic, speak as a Catholic and work as a Catholic. But in general he always think, speak and work with great concern for the welfare of the masses that elitesta like you can’t accept. Criminals that resisted arrest from policemen in Davao City were killed in protecting themselves. Drug addicts were rehabed and drug pushers are put in jail. Is there any body from Abnoy’s Boys tried to negotiate with the NPA in releasing their hostages from the military whom they captured during an encounter. After several days of the abduction of 4 hostages in a Samal Beach Resort in Samal, Davao del Norte our beloved Mayor informed Malacanang that the hostages were taken to Sulu but they never listen to Duterte. For almost 8 months there is no move to rescue the hostages until our government received an ultimatum from ASG to pay for their ransom or else otherwise one of them will be beheaded. One of the Canadian National that was hostaged was killed and beheaded and Abnoy reacted and ordered a manhunt operations for the ASG terrorists. The action of Abnoy is too late Mr. Tiglao. Can you blame the Catholics, Lumads, Evangelical Christians, Muslims and other religious groups to vote for Duterte? Majority of our fellow men want a total change in our governance except the elitestas like you. If your president will win and something happened to your relatives or nearest kin killed by criminals or become drug addicts by Catholics like you, then you will experience the pain of voting a President na walang malasakit sa sambayanan at tapang in solving and eradicating the evils and ills in our society. You portray Duterte as criminal, but you never portray Abnoy and his cabinets in Mamasapano and Kidapawan Massacres as criminals. These political events described and pictured the real image of our contry that was considered as the only Christian Country in Asia that was governed by crooked and corrup Catholic politicians.

  16. We still uphold human life, primarily our life. Duterte is not anti-life; he in fact aims to protect human life, the life of innocents. If someone attacks you with a knife, would you Tiglao not defend yor life at all cost — regardless of your religion and even at the expense of the attacker? Everyday, there are threats to our life, and criminality is one major threat. That’s why we Duterte supporters subscribe to his agenda of suppressing criminality…and we know he can do the job, far better than your presidential candidate, Tiglao…

  17. Generally, I agree with the writer. We call Christian nation but we think and act like a pagan and tribalism. Now, we even want to role model and elect an official that is a killer/murderer, womanizer, lair, a dictator and corrupt candidate. No wonder our country remains poor and degraded.

  18. PRAYER FOR 2016 ELECTION:
    Lord, You know the hearts of all men. You know our innermost thoughts and intentions and You know our strengths and the span and reach of our abilities.
    All authority comes from You and its You who guide and bless human authority. We ask You, Lord, to give us the right leaders for our time, that will govern this country, in reflection to how You govern all things. May your good purposes be fulfilled, and may we be one with Your cause. Amen.

    Now, Mr. Tiglao, do you have the right to explain and question, if in fact, Rodrigo Duterte is truly sent by God. Can you surely comprehend the mystery of man as God creation? Maybe Mr.Tiglao you are just anti-election process and you do not accept that the power granted by the Constitution and COMELEC power to proclaim, though were granted by the civil government through the sovereign power of the State but such authority was ultimately governed by God’s power. Just think about it, Mr Tiglao. Cheers!!

  19. Simply lang ang sagot, Sawang Sawa na ang mga tao sa pangako at sa krimen. Kaya supportado nila na patayin ang mga kriminal.

  20. Amnata Pundit on

    Are the people right only if they vote for Binay? If the people prefer the thief to the uncouth, how does that make them more Christian? God the Father said an eye for an eye, so if the people prefer to listen to the Father instead of the Son, why shouldn’t we listen to the people if we believe that indeed, Vox Populi, Vox Dei? The people in desperation have become results-oriented, not process-oriented. When God bombed Sodom and Gomorrah and massacred in Jericho, He was being results oriented, so why should we be holier than the Almighty?

  21. It took BS Cojuangco-Aquino III to for us to realize what we have become, this phenomenon transcends religion, because long before humans realized the meaning of life or religion, humans were used to think in its primal state, although religion had given that semblance of higher consciousness among humans that we are creatures of intellect, it did not take away our primal instinct to kill or be killed – or as often referred to in the animal kingdom as the survival of the fittest.

    And, depending on which religion a human subscribes to, it, by looking at history has always been marred by violence and death, which until the present time exist, just as an example of religious war is what is currently happening in the mid-east, between Sunni (Wahabi) and Shiite, or some years past the Northern Ireland conflict, looking into human history, we humans had never ceased in fighting and killing each other over issues that opposite sides do not come to agree, and it always has to do with politics or religion.

    So, not even the most intelligent being on earth is impervious of the idea of killing, the west although they are highly advanced in critical thinking, their leaders would not hesitate to send their armies to war to protect their ‘interest’. Yes, it is all about the ‘interest’, which brings out the primal instinct among us humans, religion of any domination has not properly adressed this issue to avoid conflict among us humans.

  22. How I wish articles like this were also available in Filipino, so that our less-educated countrymen could have easier time reading and comprehending them.

    The popularity of Duterte is in part symptomatic of the poor education in our country. Many of our people are simply not mentally equipped enough to understand, accept/reject, and make valid arguments.

    Reading and scrutinizing “long” English articles on which to base their opinion of the candidates are too much of a hassle for them. Resorting to sound bites and “funny” memes on social media is way easier. :(

    • pedro somoroy on

      hi selya, you are right. the supporters of duterte are not well educated .
      maybe the dep ed did not release funds for the education of the people in mindanao. nobody talks about the status of the educational system in mindanao.

      i can only remember some: UP-davao, ateneo de davao, Uni of mindanao, notre dame uni and the notre dame system in the whole of cotabato and jolo,
      la salle system in mindanao, mindanao state university system, and all other public schools.

      maybe something is wrong with what they teach, or the people in mindanao are just dumb.

    • Hello, Sir. Interestingly enough, a considerable chunk of Duterte’s supporters is from ABC classes, if surveys are to be believed. People you’d expect are better educated are buying his promises, turning a blind eye on all the red flags. Beats me!
      Re the education in Mindanao: I’d say, though I’m no expert, corruption is so rampant in many rural areas (even in Luzon and Visayas) that education is definitely not their top priority. It’s a cycle, really, that unscrupulous politicians know so well: POOR EDUCATION -> LESS DISCERNING VOTERS -> BETTER STRONGHOLD OF THEIR SEATS -> MORE MONEY IN THEIR POCKETS. Sad. Very sad.

    • Unfortunately, it is the same mentally-challenged masses, products of deprivation by the ruling elites and oligarchs that are being continually exploited during elections to perpetuate themselves in power. Would you blame these ‘mentally unequipped’ people, if at some point in their lives they slowly come to the realization how much they have been abused, all these years?

    • Roger, to address your rhetorical question: no, of course not. The less-educated are not to blame, at least not entirely. I, however, think – and this is the point of my earlier post, really – that due to our problematic educational system, many of our fellow Filipinos have less-than-ideal reading, comprehension and logical reasoning skills to discern valid arguments from those that are not. That’s why I believe it would be great if intelligent articles intended to inform and/or persuade were translated into Filipino too, to make it easier for the “masa” to examine them.

    • Vertical Spurt on

      Mr. Pedro Somoroy, where are you from? From what city and what class? How dare you call us dumbs?

      Have you been to Mindanao?

    • Education is what is thought from the books. Since 1986 the books that were provided by the government are purely political. It teach how bad and corrupt Marcos was. The Cojuangco-Aquino are the worst. They never taught to the people that Ysidra Cojuangco was an embezzler of the Filipino revolutionary treasury during the revolution of the Filipinos against Spanish government. That’s how the Cojuangco got their wealth from that they used to buy thousands of hectares of hacienda. They didn’t taught that Noynoy grandfather Benigno Aquino Sr. was a “makapili” or Japanese collaborator while the Nippon Imperial Army were slaughtering thousands of Filipinos, women, children and babies and American prisoners. The Cojuangcos wealth especially their Luisita Hacienda must be given to the original owner farmers and the Cojuangcos must not get a dime from the land. These Cojuangcos should be sent back to where they truly belong to “China”. They are never a Filipino in the heart. They are always Chinese.

  23. Rizalito David on

    Duterte’s rise can be attributed not much on the people’s frustration and disappointment over years of government failure to address basic welfare issues. It is more of how he was able to mirror the fundamental flaws in the Filipinos fundamental character. Duterte epitomizes what is wrong in many of us – all air and short on substance. It is not the people’s fault that they possess such character. They are mere victims of their own personal circumstances which is the least of their choosing. But as to Duterte, he is a victim of himself. His own personal choice. But wait didn’t his shrink say that he possess the Antisocial Narcissistic Personality Disorder? Well just the same many adore and praise him out of their laziness and dumbness which Duterte equally reflects. DUTERTE FANATICS SIMPLY SEE THEMSELVES IN HIM!

  24. How could a Christian nation even make a corrupt and autistic person the president of the Philippines? C’mon, imperial manila, do you have something better to throw at du30 other than these baseless accusations?

    • Corrupt? How about the bank accounts of duterte? 2.4 Billion where did he get that money? For being mayor of Davao?

    • Exactly. And why he lied about it in the first place then admit it eventually? Why he never declare it in his SALN? Sometimes we think that those moneys are drug or dirty moneys, hope not.

    • Roxas is the best they can offer? …… Why not Trillanes, he’s the best to bring this nation back to the stone age …..

  25. Amnata Pundit on

    If your thesis is that we are not a genuine Christian nation- and I agree wholeheartedly with that- what’s wrong with Duterte becoming our leader then? What can be so wrong with a leader who only reflects our true nature? What’s wrong with exterminating criminals? How different is that from joining an underground movement that is engaged in armed rebellion? If you remember the Inquisition where the Church sadistically tortured non-believers to death- not to mention their abuses here that led to the revolution during the Spanish Colonial era- how can you expect this same Church to provide a genuine moral compass for our society? When there is a total breakdown in morality such as we are witnessing today, what is needed is the rage that God demonstrated when He bombed Sodom and Gomorrah and massacred in Jericho. When people are desperate for change, they don’t need a Thomas More, they need – and want- a Duterte. We should thank God we have Duterte. I’m not exaggerating when I say he may be the country’s last chance.

  26. Mr. Tiglao, first-off, there is no such thing as a Christian nation. A Christian is a person who believes in Christ, follows His teachings, and obeys His commandments. There is no single nation on this planet who can correctly claim that all of its citizens and inhabitants do that.

    To argue that majority of Filipinos are Catholics and Protestants, hence, the Philippines is a Christian nation, will also not hold water since Jesus said that those who will find life (that is, Jesus – John 14:6) are few (Matt. 7:13-14). If God’s words is true, and it is (Prov. 30:5), Christians will never comprise the majority. So that leads us to the question of whether Catholics and Protestants are Christians or not.

    Moreover, Jesus explicitly stated that His kingdom is not of this world (John 18:36) so it is useless to insist that the Philippines is a Christian nation since it is of this world. Also, to be able to enter the kingdom of God, one must be born of water and spirit (John 3:5) so we might as well ask the Catholics and Protestants if they were born on this way and how.

    To your question on how could a Christian nation even make Duterte the leading presidential contender – a Christian nation, if there is one, will not. The Philippines, by making him the leading candidate, only proves the point that it is not a Christian nation.

  27. The problem, idol Bobby, is that there really is not much choice from among the candidates that offers hope for change -big change. I’m sure you’re not rooting for Roxas, nor Poe. Binay? if Duterte dies before election day, i might just vote for Binay.

    I feel nothing will change under Binay. He offers nothing more than the usual motherhood statements we have heard so many times before. Add to that is his weak, uniinspiring defense of himself against accusations of large scale corruption. I also suspect Binay is the 2nd manchurian candidate of BS Aquino. I have yet to see him hit Noynoy hard on anything that ails his pathetic government.

    In Duterte I see some hope for big change. Federal, parliamentary form of government he envisage. A good start. Nowwithstanding his foul mouth and misplaced bravado, he is the only choice for me.

  28. AMB. TIGLAO, THE SIMPLE ANSWER IS THAT THE PEOPLE, SPECIALLY THOSE MILLIONS WHO JOINED THE EDSA I, PHYSICALLY LIKE ME, OR BELIEVED THE CAUSE OF EDSA I WILL CHANGE THEIR LIVES AND THE GOVERNMENT FOR THE BETTER, WERE FRUSTATED.
    AFTER 30 YEARS. AS THE LATE CARDINAL SIN SAID ” WE SENT AWAY ALI BABA BUT TOOK CARE AND EVEN FATTENED HIS FORTY THIEVES AND THEIR FAMILIES “. NOW THESE FORTY THIEVES MULTIPLIED LIKE MUSHROOMS AND WERE WORSE THAN ALI BABA DURING MARTIAL LAW. ANG NAKIKITANG NAKAWAN NA AY BY THE BILLION OF PESOS IN PDAF AND DAP.
    AMB. TIGLAO, IN OUR FRUSTRATION, KAHIT KAY DUTERTE O DEMONO AY KAKAPIT NA KAMI, HINDI ITO DAHIL SA RELIGION, MUSLIM, KATOLIKO O KRISTIANO. ITO AY DAHIL SA ARAW-ARAW NA KRIMEN. DROGA AT LEAGLIZED KORAPTION NG MGA POLITIKO MATAPOS ANG EDSA I.

  29. Call it desperation. You probably heard this: “Ang taong nagigipit sa patalim kumakapit”. Among to be blamed are our leaders the past 30 years. What have they really done to improve the lives of ordinary Filipino, exacerbated the last sis years. We have Executive department where all corruption start. We have Congress that houses the criminals. We have “hoodlums in robes who withhold justice to the oppressed.
    From among the candidates now, do we really have a good choice? Blame it also those leaders who field candidates, the King makers as they say. Just hope Mayor Rodrigo Duterte should give priority to all the criminals in government if and when he becomes president. And I mean, big time criminals.

  30. How? Because the nation that you claim to be Christian is full of corrupt Christians! Drug coddlling Christians! Incompetent Christian officers! Criminal Christians. And many more. Now here comes a Christian who is not a fundamentalist Christian but believes in god, and he doesn’t care if he steps into the feet of the rich who control the politicians, the corrupt, the drug lords, the officers, the people who deliver injustice to the poor, and you are screaming hell? Hell is the current situation where there is plenty of corruption including your candidate binay. He yet has to clear his name. You must have read the response of your Christian pope to duterte. Think about it, your candidate is so tainted that only those who will benefit from him would want to vote for him. why would a normal sane person vote for a person who carries a Damocles sword over his head all the time? The sword is about to fall unless he saves himself by being president. so he is using the presidency as an escape from the wrath of the people. Good person? Maybe for people who will benefit from him, he is a good person.

  31. WJGBalderama on

    I have been mulling over this for awhile. If you think about it, there are three reasons why people would choose one candidate over another:
    (1) Situational – people are tired of the crime situation in the country. They see how drug use is becoming the scourge that is, and they just want to elect someone or anyone who could do something about it. If it’s Duterte the mealy-mouthed braggadocio, then so be it.
    (2) Ideological – people will vote along what is perceived as the party line (i.e, the party with which they are most comfortable). Thus, a loyal Liberal party person will always vote for the party’s nominee no matter what because of some unknown measurement only that person is able to explain;
    (3) Cultural – people will vote for a certain candidate who hails from the same region. The clannishness of the Filipinos are well-known. So, when an Ilocano runs for national office, you can bet that the solid North factor will be at play.
    As for other reasons such as religious or moral, well, say what you will, but these factors have never stopped some Filipinos from taking on extramarital affairs, having children out of wedlock, and teating on the national cash cow (referring to politicians on the take). Perpetrators look at these transgressions as merely tempting fate and bears little or no guilt over their commission. To the extent that the church as a group may endorse a particular candidate, I do not believe that people will automatically follow and pull the lever for that candidate come election time. In Duterte’s case, the voters see a candidate who is unorthodox, erratic, and arrogant — the very antithesis of the conventional Filipino politician who wants to be loved — and elected. This is not a defense but an explanation of the phenomenon that is Duterte. Having said all that, it is my hope that people will wake up and soundly reject his candidacy. He does not represent the good that is within us as God-fearing people.

  32. The people are simply “angry” because of all the ‘Christian’, but corrupt, unscrupulous and hypocritical leaders who have been taking advantage of the Filipino people for so many years.

  33. meilan rey amper on

    Sir i am a Catholic. Before your question i also have a question. How come a predominantly Christian Philippine government leaders become so corrupt?

    • may i say what Greg Tengson, a Filipino evangelist in the 50s and 60s. I heard this from our Pastor in our high school bible subject in a protestant school in 1978: “The Philippines is the only christian nation in asia without christ”. we profess to be christian but do we practice the teachings of christianity in our everyday life? we are very religious but not righteous. I believe that the spirit of christianity have not entered into our bones and inner consciousness because we were not thought on the teachings of the bible. The bible is there to be read but do we read them like the way we voraciously read other books? I believe that since the day christianity was introduced to us its teachings were never been taught straight from the texts of the bible. We heard the teachings of God or the Bible or Jesus through sermons; and we go to church as matter of customarily practice and not the essence of going to mass. You recite those impose by the church as ritual readings and prayers. The protestant came and christianity became more direct to the people because it is more bible based but we can not anymore turn what has been put into our consciousness about christianity and its practice. What I understand about duterte is he is a practical christian- one who believes in God and obey his laws and commandments but will do things even against these God’s laws if it is necessary. I believe that duterte will not just kill without any lawful or moral reason. He is just a practical person.

  34. After more than 400 years of being brainwashed to be “easily forgiving people by god’s will”, we will never be trampled anymore. We forgave when the Japanese came, we forgave when the Spanish left, we forgave when the corrupt plundered us, but now, no more.

    The people are tired of all this misery by people screwing with us and are deaf to our interests. You are deaf to us when Kidapawan screamed for help, when Zam oanga screamed for help, when Tacloban first was destroyed, when the Moros are screaming their plight, but now, we will be sure ypu will no longer be death when we elect our desired representative to power!

  35. ruben m dimaculangan on

    he will be for a while the solution to the filipinos’ moment of despair. But after 3-6 months of power he will cling to whomsoever will provide him with more power clout. First, in order to protect himself vs human rights violations. Second, because it’s nice to be there on top. Until he reverts to the same old problem that we used to have.

  36. In other countries, any coach/manager/leader of even the roughest sports organizations is given tantamount consequence (warning, fine or termination) for uttering a statement (even just once) even half as repulsive as Mr Duterte’s repertoire of profanities in public. The organization usually issues a statement “His/Her comments do not reflect what we stand for as an organization.”, followed by a tangible punishment.

    Why are many Filipinos suddenly willing to lose some of their humanity (and by such examples maybe the humanity of the young generations as well) to vehemently prop up Mr Duterte? Are all his promises which are supposedly guaranteed judging by his performance in Davao, worth each of his supporters’ soul?

    What happens if he fails at this level of game where it is a lot more difficult and complicated, a different and a lot wider terrain to navigate, highly energised and very fast paced? In any game or competition, a perceived success in level 3 or 4 does not guarantee success in level 10. All the stresses of running the country are more likely to make Mr Duterte’s lack of humanity even more horrendous.

    If Mr Duterte fails, would he even care? He is most likely to blame the people who voted for him and curse them to his heart’s content- in public of course- where he is in his most glorious. He is most likely to say, “You knew me through and through and/yet you happily chose me.”

    In most countries there are more poor than well off people. But most of the poor ones will not surrender their humanity to grandiose promises and ill-conceived means to an end. We might still be a poor country, (although compared to previous decades, a lot has already been achieved nationally) but must we now also be poor in manners, ethics and values- fundamental principles which are the basic foundations of every civilised society that has endured and prospered? And if we all got materially well off through Mr Duterte’s dogmatic style, can we deeply and honestly savour it with a clear conscience?

    Filipinos might soon become infamous as the first civilized, religious and well-educated society that willingly and wholeheartedly (eyes and ears wide open) embraced an openly foul-mouthed, promiscuous and what not as their top leader towards their quest for a decent, better life.

  37. How could a Christian nation even make Duterte the leading presidential contender?

    It is because the Philippines is a “Christian nation” in name only regardless of how much devotion is being displayed. “Love thy neighbor as you love thyself” has never been in play meaningfully.

  38. Finally an admission that Christianity has nothing to do with the ‘situation’. The Phil behaves as a Complex Adoptive System that has been allowed to evolve without guidance from govt, using feedback. Tribal society dynamics work at the local level as a complex adoptive system, albeit with local feedback as guidance. Cell phones allow “tribal values and feedback” to be applied across the country, at near-instantaneous speeds. Insisting that a society adhere to “Christianity” while it elects a “unchristian – like” candidate or conducts the Holocaust is not going to work. It has been said that the Holocaust produced a country of people who knew what they were doing was wrong, but that it was the “Thing to believe in, the thing to do” given the socioeconomic realities of their time. We sit at our desks (like priests in pulpits) and pontificate upon the electorate (the majority of whom live in less than ideal socioeconomic conditions outside of NCR) telling them what issues they should be worried about. They are just looking out for themselves since no one else does(It took 3 generations and modern telephony technology). And this is how a complex adoptive system works. A people who are oppressed by intent or neglect will do something about it. Eventually. Just because they are slow to do so in no way predicts that they will never act. Their delay just makes us more surprised and disconcerted when the day comes. Contributing to ‘our’ surprise is the fact that ‘we’ in our offices, are in the “can’t see the size or dangers in the forest due to the density of the trees”. (This mainly affects those who suffer from “affluenza” while growing up in gated communities, who never played patintero in the dust of the school yard).

  39. The poor have found a way to express their outrage at the way BS Aquino treated them under his presidency.

    A Duderte vote is a vote against BS Aquino.

    The other three candidates have connections with Aquino.

  40. I beg to disagree that we are a Christian country. we are just a professing Christian country but not believing Christians. true Christians do not worship idols.

    • TRUE.Also..i have lived 70+ years,and have found that most if not all christians do NOT love everyone.

  41. The Philippines is NOT a Christian nation…it is a secular democratic country. There is no role /part/involvement of religion in any government function…clear and simple. Yes Philippines has a big Christian population but we are as a nation, uphold the separation of religion and state. To use a flawed argument to attack mayor Duterte only shows your desperation and the people behind you…shame…but then again why would someone feel shame when spinning and spreading black propaganda is his bread and butter?

    • How come whenever i visit a government office i often see jesus christ and other religious propaganda staring at me..as well as unsmiling staff!!??