The 16th President of the Philippines

Our country stands at the cusp of a new day.

On the eve of this man’s inauguration as the 16th President of the Republic of the Philippines, my heart goes out to him.

I can foresee the obstacles he will need to hurdle — apart from the bigger, more daunting challenge of widespread severe poverty and the cancer of systemic corruption that he has to get us out of, he has a minefield to maneuver.

I speak of the burden of fixing the monumental mess called the Philippines and to bear, at the same time, the burden of those who want him to fail as he attempts to do what is right for us.

And not just fail but fail monumentally, face flat on the ground, the utter and complete failure of someone who bit more than he could chew…nothing, as it turns out, but a small time mayor who was so in over his head that he had no idea, no idea at all what it was he was getting himself into.

They can’t wait to shake their heads and spit on him and say, “Pa-the-tic!”

Those who want so badly for him to be the monster they say he is who will usher in another dark chapter in our country’s history, with the blood of innocent martyrs on his hands. Berdugo, didn’t we tell you? Mafia boss. Nothing but a vigilante with a small mind and small plans for our country.

Not at all presidential material. (*Just look at his clothes. Yuck. Baduy.*)

There are bigger concerns buzzing in my head right now, however. Bigger shadows loom over a Duterte Presidency.

I speak of the Catholic hierarchy who he has done the unprecedented thing on — which is to tell the truth about who they are and then put them in their rightful place.

No Philippine President—dead or alive– has ever done this to the Catholic hierarchy.

What we’ve had before Rodrigo Duterte were a bunch of ass lickers. Those who knelt before the Majestic and Pontifical Roman Catholic Church and kissed the ring of those that ruled us to their desired point of bigotry and hateful ignorance.

And I know they will not forget the day Rodrigo Duterte called them what they are: hypocrites.

And if history were to be heeded (as it should) there will be hell to pay for this unprecedented act of Enlightenment.

They are merely biding their time, these men in robes and funny hats. Never, for one moment, mistake the silence of the Catholic hierarchy for the peace and humility they claim is theirs. The Catholic hierarchy does not have peace—nor humility at its innermost.

I imagine them seething at the man who will lead us all and that backroom whispers of this men of god (uh uh) have begun and center on how best to bring this man down.

And I am afraid they will once again, as they are wont to do, crucify a good man whose heart for the poor is as big as the ocean.

And the oligarch? Their veins are popping all over the place, can’t you see this? Harrumph harrumph harrumph. Clearly, they think Rodrigo Duterte a threat to the prevailing order.

They’d be right too.

The prevailing order that favors the rich so bad that it has money coming out of their orifices and spits on the poor so they have nothing but woes coming out of THEIR orifices.

Then add into the lovely fray, the kurakots of the land—generals, senators, congressmen, mayors, justices…who see Rodrigo Duterte for what he is: a threat to their livelihood.

The livelihood of blood-sucking parasites and vampires who suck the life out of our beloved country and most of all, the marginalized.

These disgusting monsters with bottomless pits for bellies who feed on the hopes and dreams of the poor—they who must make do with no health centers, no food, no shelter, no education so General So and So or Senator Blahblah can have that nth vacation house or drive a Jaguar or so their ugly progeny can shop to their heart’s delight at Rodeo Drive.

Well, I do know their days are numbered.

That’s the kind of faith I have in Rodrigo Duterte. And it’s not some blind faith—for which I have neither the capacity nor interest in. His track record tells me Digong Duterte will deliver.

I continue to hold out hope that we, who love freedom and democracy as much as he does, can still change his mind about the Most High Kurakots of them all, the Marcoses and instead of honoring the Great Kurakot FM with a burial at LNMB, entombs the entire Marcos family behind bars where they rightfully belong.

I also know that on the eve of this Inaugural, drug lords are quaking in their boots. They who have visited so much grief and tragedy over this land of simple, hard working people –well, their comeuppance is just about ready now.

Add to all these, mainstream media, that anyone with half a mind can see, is fiercely resolute in taking him down as well.

Oh this man has made such powerful, powerful enemies.

So all that buzz around me.

And I fear that this mass of low lives could turn critical so they, once again—as they always have—get in the way of all that we can be—specially under the leadership of what I think is an exceptional leader.

This, pretty much, leaves those of us who believe in him and those who didn’t vote for him nor even like him but who sincerely want him to be wildly successful because it doesn’t take much to deduce that wild Duterte success means wild Philippine success (You’d think this was simple enough but no, it IS rocket science for some).

And I worry for this man because he is the vessel of so much of our hopes and dreams. Not exactly the best thing to be because we set him up for failure and hatred if, in our minds, he alone is our hope.

A total falsehood.

There is nothing this man can do for us that we cannot do for ourselves.

Sure, he has the width and height and breadth of the Office of the Presidency. Not exactly a small thing, yes.

But we have the width, the height, the breadth of Democracy. Not exactly a small thing too.

Together, we’d be Formidable.

So on the eve of your inauguration, Mr. 16th President of the Free and Beloved Mess called the Republic of the Philippines, know that there are scores of us who have your back so you can do all that you can for our beloved country.

And I wish you wild success, Mr President. MY president.

And while I don’t usually allow myself the luxury of blissful optimism, I’d like to bask in this vision of my country where age-old deep divisions are finally closed and where social justice prevails.

And as we support you, Mr. President we look at our own hands and know that they are there for good reasons: to do all that we can so our country can be all that it can be.

All that we can be await us. We’ve labored long enough under the lie that the Philippines is a banana republic and Filipinos, 2nd class.

Nothing could be further from the truth. The new President knows this. I know this.

Those of us who’ve staked our lives on this country accept nothing than the truth that we are deserving.

So we close that chapter—and all other chapters in our country’s history—that made us believe we were far less than what we are.

Worlds must be destroyed so new ones can be born.

Let the old one die now.

My country, your new birth is at hand.

I welcome it with great Faith and Courage.

Mabuhay ang Pilipinas!

Mabuhay ang Bagong Pangulo ng Pilipinas!

Mabuhay ang Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte!


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