Duterte and the Media PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 19 June 2016 15:44


BY Jack Edward Enriquez

Thous shalt not kill, the fifth of the Ten Commandments handed down to Moses on Mount Sinai. It reminded us of the first crime committed on earth when a man named Cain killed his own brother Abel. According to the Bible, there was an impelling reason for him to kill the younger brother. Whether the reason was valid or not, but the reason was there screwing his mind to the evil desire from his heart. He did not kill his brother for nothing.

After so long a time that passed, perhaps, thousands of years, the same criminal act continues to this day despite the Ten Commandments of God. The circumstance in the present situation is even complicated where the son is killing his father, or vice versa, husband and wife, kins killing one another, etc. And there is a reason for doing so, valid or not. Government mayors were killed, even lawyers and judges. Of course, the workers in media were not spared

The bloodiest to happen in the history of journalism was the Maguindanao Massacre where some 32 working media men were mercilessly gunned down allegedly by the henchmen of a powerful political clan in Central Mindanao.

Definitely to say that anyone’s life cannot be taken for whatever reason is a lie. The unstable peace and order condition blended with corruption in government makes society too conducive to lawlessness, such as extortion, robbery, vengeance, etc. which lead to only one consequence — violence and the shedding of blood.

The incoming President of this Republic bared that there must be certain reasons behind the media killings in our country. Duterte hinted that probably some of them may have been hitting below the belt or playing double cross tricks or feigned leeching in their media armor.

When Duterte pointed out that some corrupt mediamen have courted the ire of their kilters, it does not mean that erring mediamen should be killed. He only cautioned that media men should be discreet and prudent in their profession because there are corrupt officials and scalawags who are temperamental, trigger happy, having penchant of taking the law into their hands to get even.

If armed criminals and drug pushers, only when they fight back endangering the lives of the law enforcers that they be killed, then to condone the killing of media people for whatever line of thinking. He was a prosecutor man who upholds the rule of law. He wants dead only those who oppress the poor and the helpless. Besides, Duterte understands the vital role of media in the dissemination of news and information to keep the people abreast of what’s transpiring in all public offices. Good governance abides with the principle of transparency.

Hopefully the Duterte Administration would fast track all cases of media killings to give justice to the victims by sending the perpetrators to prison .

According to Duterte, people involved in media works are divided into: First — the fearless crusaders who are determined to fight for the truth and justice no matter who gets hurt along the way. The public welfare is at all times the top priority rather than the personal interest and guided by the ethics in journalism.

Second — the publicists who are paid to promote the career of ambitious politicians. They use their access to media in making easy money by the use of tactics in image building, media mileage, dirty politics, etc. They are the bootlickers stimulated by the so-called envelopmental journalism.

Third — the sham kind of mediamen who are clever impersonators or the so-called fly- by-night. They don’t care about dignity or reputation for as long as their pockets won’t go empty. They hit for money, then ask for more; if nothing comes they hit harder until they get what they want or a tragedy falls upon.

“Mirror, mirror on the wall, can you tell where do I belong here — the first, the second or the third?”

Ooops, no hurt feelings. It’s just a trivia. We don’t mean to offend anybody. What you are is what you wanted to be. In fact, life is what we make it.