Sadly, she was appointed to the BTC to change the lives of Muslims in the Philippinea but she chose her own personal anger because she did not have the stomach about a bad joke. Yes, we admit it was a really bad joke and Duterte is a sloppy comedian. But is that enough to resign from a job that was supposed to be the basis for real autonomy?
Reality is, she chose to abandon a man whose action was to give the Bangsa Moro the automomy it craved for so many decades but she could not take his careless words. She valued more the words rather than the action. And that is the politician she will be. Words more than actions.
Duterte does not represent the ignorant because he was willing to give women all the legislative backing for them to be empowered despite his bias. PRD was a product of a bygone society where men were the better sex. But he is willing to implement something he may not fully grasp because he knows it is a good thing for everyone. When the Revised Penal Code was drafted in 1930, the all male committee decided to punish women more for infidelity and made it difficult for men to be jailed for the same act. Human nature favors self-perpetuation. It takes a lot of humility to be a champion for womens' rights despite his own personal tendencies. Gutoc failed to see that because she was the ignorant one. Because for her, it was ONLY about her personal hurt as a woman by the words and forgot what Duterte did for women and for the Muslims. She could not even factor in the basic fact that in her own culture, the disparity of rights between men and women made her subservient to men. PRD gave her the impetus to be in equal footing with the men to give birth to the Bangsa Moro. Instead of showing to everyone that women are equal to men in many aspects, she simply showed the weakness of her character. Strong women equal to men are not broken by words. They stay to finish the job. The weak ones like Gutoc just quit and mope.
And she is running for the Senate, a post where she is a superminority as a woman and as a Muslim. We are expecting her to be treated kindly in the eyes of the public but away from the watchful public scrutiny, she will experience what all woman Senators experience and what Muslim legislators get to feel. And if she cannot take a bad joke and walk away, the Senate is more than a bad joke.
Gutoc is doing a great disservice to all women by being an example of someone who expects an accommodation because she is a woman. That is as sexist as it can get. Treat me with care because I am delicate. Do not joke about rape and stuff because it hurts my feelings. Are you not playing the stereotype then? Are you not perpetuating the very same idea of weakness that is the reason why some men rape women because they think they are weak. Honestly, the rape culture is not just an effect of male chauvenism but it is also a result of female sensitivity which others perceive as weakness.
And who is unsympathetic? A self-proclaimed womanizer who tries to promote womens rights with legislation like the Extended Maternity Benefits Law or a feminist who decides to call someone a sexist because she could only hear the words despite all his actions.
The truth is, like all the Yellows that came before her, she is also a hypocrite. The one who preaches acceptance in diversity for everyone but does not accept other differences. She expects Duterte to understand her but cannot give the same level of understanding to a man who is also shaped by his circumstances.
Let me tell you this, I believe that Duterte is someone who reflects the Filipino mind. We have biases and flaws but like most, we laugh about it, decide we are human and do something to change our ways. I have heard so many distasteful gay jokes in my life and yes, it has an impact on how we are treated but we don't cry foul over the words. We cry foul over the hate crimes. Why?
Because words will never have meaning to someone who has no predisposition to bigotry. It cannot make someone decide to rape a woman because someone said a joke about it. There is a distasteful joke on gays, "Pasiriti ko, dong!! " (shower me, boy). To a normal gay, it has no implication. To a pedophile, it can be a suggestion because "dong" is a term given to young boys.
Words will only justify an act to a person who is already a bigot because society and our personal circumstances create our biases not words.
And you know why I wrote this post? Because you are the bigot here. You just called those who support him ignorant.
And that is the condascention that is more hurtful. Yes, those are just words. Problem is, you meant it.
I hope you lose bigtime. Because the ignorant will make sure you will.
Bruce Villafuerte Rivera
Sara Zimmerman Duterte
Lorraine Marie T. Badoy