What has God to say?

WE WONDER what God has to say about the insults against Him by Rodrigo Duterte. Or perhaps the question is: what will God do with Duterte? For us who have placed our lives in the hands of God that Duterte considers stupid, we just have to bear the insult. But we wonder, how long will Duterte enjoy his pie?

Well, if God is what Duterte says He is, then nothing will happen. Duterte described God as “stupid” as he attacked religion and the Bible, particularly the Book of Genesis. Most Filipinos are Catholics and God and the Bible are the foundations of their faith. Of course, other religions have their own bible written by their own founders, so they probably do not share our sentiments. Anyway, time is on God’s side and He promised, “I will repay.”

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People are wondering or confused. Was there an order to arrest the loiterers (“tambay”) or not? Did the PNP wage a massive arrest or rounding up of loiterers on their own initiative? If not, as Duterte claims he never ordered the arrests, who was the bright (or fall?) guy who issued it? He must be at the top rung in the PNP hierarchy that the entire police force in the National Capital Region swooped down all over metropolis rounding up thousands of them. They were, in fact, arrested, because they were handcuffed.

We are also wondering because the president was shown on television ostensibly giving the order and arrests were so massive and highly publicized and it took several days for the president to disclaim issuing the order and the PNP high command to stop the supposedly unauthorized operation.

Something is not right and the government, the PNP particularly, is in extremely, boiling hot water if the President maintained his innocence and thousands would file cases of illegal arrests against the PNP.

The PNP justified their action saying they were implementing local ordinances. Wow! That’s a real wonder! Handcuffing people is also in the ordinance? Then someone close to the President and who wants to be a senator just blabbered with diversionary excuses that should make him unfit for the Senate.

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Was it negligence, mental lapse or inefficiency? On June 18 in the evening, the city gave out the Ang Banwahanon Award. A former awardee complained that he got an invitation for the awards night at the Bacolod City Government Center. Since it was a formal affair, he went in coat and a tie. When he arrived he was told that the affair was transferred to a downtown hotel.

Well, it seems that the city wanted to impress its guest speaker who is close to President Duterte that in their enthusiasm, since the speaker accepted the invitation, the organizers forgot to inform this particular awardee of the change of venue.

But the important question is not the lapse but why would the venue be changed from the Government Center, which would cost much, much less, and transfer it at the last minute to the expensive hotel? Was that to ingratiate the Bacolod City mayor to a person who is close to the president? Does the mayor need something critically? We wonder. But to make matters worse, the speaker sent a substitute.

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How come Bacolod’s top councilor, Ricardo Tan can give away school supplies from his own fund but the other councilors can only hitch on and get bloated heads (and free publicity) from the free school supplies paid for by the city? The answer is obvious: Tan can afford it. He even pays for his own staff while other councilors have more than enough casuals. But why does Grupo Progreso have to denigrate Tan’s generosity? Envious, most probably or fearful people will be grateful to Tan and this can be converted into votes? Actually, Tan has been doing this for a long time but why was GP not envious when Tan was with them?

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People wonder why there was no public enthusiasm about the celebration of Bacolod’s Charter Day last June 18. It was just like any other day. Was it lack of publicity? Failure to get the President to declare the day as a non-working day? Lack of significant activities befitting a historic landmark? Was it the failure of the Duterte’s close ally to come and deliver a speech?

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