SO WHAT if it was President Arroyo talking in those recordings? Strict rules of evidence say that is not enough to prove that there was fraud actually committed at the polls.

It doesn’t take much, however, to impeach a president, impeachment not being a legal process, but political. Probable cause that the President actually cheated in the elections, for example, is not needed; it is enough that the alleged offense is impeachable, that it is contained in a verified complaint, and the complaint has the proper number of votes from Congress. And as they say, smearing democracy’s most sacred manifestation—the election process—is undoubtedly an impeachable offense.

But why go through all that stuff when this is the Philippines, and you can just ask the president to resign? This is Philippine politics, where opposition is a high-class trend, especially against whoever sits in Malacañang. It gives opportunists and disgruntled politicians—both those who deserve better and those who think they do—the chance to be high-profile and highfalutin’.

Senator Aquilino Pimentel, for one, is at his opposing best, going so far as to suggest that the President consider writing her letter of resignation during her “break” in Hong Kong. You don’t get more high-profile than that. Pimentel did it without resorting to better expressed if more gentle terms like Congressman Francis Escudero’s take on President Arroyo “putting the country on the verge of confrontation and division” by her silence.

Truly, in a society where an accused in a case is as good as convicted in the eyes of his neighbors, what more when the one on the stand is the President of the Republic, who is entrusted with the governance of the entire country?

Film org recognized

But while the opposition as well as all who are concerned is sure of their lines and making their entrances with flair, we would do well to take a look at the comedic spectacle we are making.

Even granting GMA’s guilt, the treatment she has been getting from her political enemies IS abusive. Pimentel’s harping for her resignation, in particular, is quite appalling, as if the President were no more than a mere disgraced tanod. His conduct and speech are hardly becoming of a senator.

Add to that the evident grandstanding of political rivals, like Senator Panfilo Lacson, who has apparently initiated his own investigation of things by sending a copy of the recordings to a foreign company to be analyzed, and paying the cost, too.

But rather than doing the country a favor, these groups, from the Senate opposition to the students selling CD copies on the streets in an effort to “disseminate the truth”, are merely stirring more confusion. Others are merely riding on the issue to harp on allegedly important matters looked over by Malacañang.

There are talks of mounting another “massive rally” to oust the president. But the EDSA Revolution, whose name everyone who has a beef against whichever administration orates as if it were a battle cry, was not a crazed caucus on the streets. It was a screaming appeal for peace and nation-healing, but the appeal was marked by an awesome if dark solemnity and sobriety. EDSA II was a more popular revolt in the sense of liveliness but no less educated or sober. That’s why May 1, 2001 was a debacle and not a success.

The Making of a Superstar

Now, it is indubitable that more and more Filipinos want the truth out. More and more Filipinos want the clouds to clear. If this issue that’s bothering the national pulse is not addressed, the chaos foretold by political doomsayers and warlocks alike may just become a reality.

But while Malacañang should soon work on calming this storm, everyone, especially self-proclaimed political saints who swear to heaven they are working for the betterment of this country, should quit stirring it up. Let’s work, rather, toward a peaceful resolution.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.