I am overwhelmed by the outpouring of public support for me on that one-way brawl at the NAIA 3 involving me and show-biz couple Raymart Santiago and Claudine Barretto and their friends.
I got goose bumps on Monday as I reviewed the text messages in my cellular phones and e-mails more than two weeks after the incident.
The sympathy and support I got—and still getting—from friends and strangers show that Filipinos root for the underdog.
Some of the messages call for revenge which—I have decided since after the incident—I will never resort to.
The messages below are typical:
“Kuya, andito lang po ako. sabihin n’yo lang at ako na ang bahala (I am here. Just tell me and I’ll take care of everything),” said a message from a person I helped through my radio program, “Isumbong Mo kay Tulfo,” many years ago.
“Kung gusto mong bumawi, sabihin mo lang (If you want revenge, just say so),” wrote my contact from the underworld when I was still covering the police beat decades ago.
But the most touching message comes from a retired general who was once my father’s subordinate officer and whom I covered as a police reporter.
“Touching” because after all these years this retired general has not forgotten his bond with my Old Man and my friendship with him.
The old soldier’s message reads:
“Carry on the good fight vs the abuses of the rich and powerful. Just like your dad we old constables still around praying that all Filipinos must work hard to make criminals feel that they cannot get away with their crimes. I saw the video Mon and the anger, the rage in me against abusive people surged when those cowardly punks rained blows on one already down. Show no mercy Mon and let them pay for their arrogant abuse of power. Txt me their names and our friends will make them regret they
The retired general, who fought coup plotters during the time of President Cory Aquino, still has many people in the police and military at his beck and call, as well as members of the underworld.
Sir, thank you for the sympathy and support, but I’d rather leave it to the courts to exact revenge for me.
* * *
I had a chance to get back at my attackers right there and then.
I could have run to the counter, where guns deposited at the airport of origin can be retrieved by gun-carrying plane passengers, taken my gun and started shooting.
But I didn’t do that. It didn’t even occur to me to do that.
Firstly, I am a responsible gun owner. My life was no longer in danger after I was beaten up and resorting to my gun would be cowardice.
Secondly, and which is more important, I am already a spiritual person.
* * *
Roque Estacio won a labor case against his former employer, TAC Furniture and Interior Inc., and was awarded P779,000.
Arbiter Michaela Lontoc of the National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC) decided in favor of Estacio.
On May 27, 2011, the NLRC sheriff, took hold of Estacio’s former employer’s car so the monetary award could be paid.
Lontoc allegedly asked Estacio to agree to his former employer’s request that the monetary reward be reduced to P300,000.
Estacio said he turned down the request as he would have to pay his lawyer and get back expenses incurred in the years of litigation.
Lontoc allegedly returned the car to Estacio’s former employer when he didn’t agree.
Why was Lontoc lawyering for Estacio’s former employer?