Isadora Duncan made the shawl fashionable in the 1920s.
These days, it’s the scarf of Leila de Lima making waves, less as a fashion statement but more of a trademark of an embattled senator’s daring crusade to tackle a battle royale with none other than the President of the Republic, over the so-called drug-related “extrajudicial killings.”
The chic piece of cloth must be providing her some comfort, or a sense of security, apart from constant companionship, when the pressure turns too heavy to carry all by her lonesome.
What must a woman fighter do with a scarf by her neck, and with only what she must believe is the truth and her innocence by her side? Has any little voice whispered to her, “turn the scarf into a sling with a pebble (bato, not that “Bato”) to hit her would-be assassins?” Or could the lady senator use it to slide down a zipline to bring herself to safety IF IN CASE, who knows, the President fancies her (fancy that!) and makes romantic advances, well, in a dream?
There are other, less morbid, uses for the scarf, which she was noticed to have started using when she came to public view as then human rights commission chairman.
But where, one wonders, is she getting this courage to take on the President in what appears to be a suicidal battle for her?
Why this irreverence, or belligerence, in tackling the opponent arrow for arrow in the public arena over the past two weeks or so, when the only thing needed to put an end to her suffering, is perhaps to just prove she does not have the millions of drug money she was purported to have stashed in her bank accounts?
The senator, also a former Justice secretary, has been pushed against the wall still throwing her punches in response to President Duterte’s very public attack, bringing up her “relationship” with her driver.
As she sticks to her guns denying her alleged links to top drug lords and other strangers that she says they are to her, who does she turn to for help?
Apart from the truth, which both sides claim to have as their ammunition in this battle, the answer for her remains elusive.
Given de Lima’s strong personality, we believe she will be able to weather this personal and professional crisis. And if she so wishes, she could take a moment’s pause and let the scarf (Hermes? Valentino? Dior? Divisoria?) take her on a magic carpet ride away from this madding crowd.