Not the Digong I know
Watching the late night press conference on Thursday, I was appalled at the behavior of President-elect Rodrigo “Digong” Duterte toward the media.
He was not in his element—far from the Digong I knew before the May 9 election.
He was an entirely different person.
The Duterte I know is friendly to the press and amiable to everyone; except of course, to criminals and drug dealers.
My heart bled while he practically declared war on the media on Thursday night.
READ: ‘Don’t fuck with me,’ he tells media
He probably forgot that I, his very close friend and confidant, was also a member of the press.
As I watched my friend, incredulous at his behavior, I understood why he was like that: He forgot that he was on national television.
As Davao City mayor, his conferences with local media people are filled with raunchy jokes and cuss words.
The mayor is buddy-buddy with local reporters.
Those who laughed at Digong when he wolf-whistled and made snide remarks at GMA reporter Mariz Umali’s expense were Davao City reporters used to his antics.
READ: GMA reporter scores Duterte for catcalling wife Mariz Umali
Apparently, Digong thought that he was still talking to local reporters whom he repeatedly told to shut up during the news conference.
Digong hit the bullseye when he said there were corrupt journalists.
READ: Duterte warns media; no apologies
Of course, there are; as in other sectors of society, the media has its share of rotten eggs.
Although the President-elect probably didn’t mean it, his statement practically justifying the murder of corrupt journalists was an open invitation to people who had been aggrieved by columnists, reporters or broadcasters.
Apart from speaking out against corrupt media people, Digong should also take action against bad eggs in his administration, particularly policemen and other law enforcers who use their badge to commit abuses.
READ: Police cadets learn to be corrupt early
A law enforcer should be a model of obedience to the law, serving and protecting the citizenry instead of abusing them.
Harsh punishment should await cops who protect drug dealers and commit crimes such as kidnapping, robbery, murder and rape.
They deserve no mercy.
And to my colleagues in media, let’s not be onion-skinned.
Perhaps some of us felt alluded to by Digong’s accusation of corruption because he was brutally frank.
We are not a special breed of Filipinos.
If we can dish out criticism, we should be able to take it as well.
Duterte endorses killing corrupt journalists
Ombudsman: So many in gov’t are corrupt
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