April 18, 2016


By Arturo P.Garcia

I saw first hand the effects of political fanaticism of Filipinos at an early age.

I saw thousands of angry Filipinos in my neighborhood came out one night in the 1960’s , marched and burned the political ads of Senator Rogelio Dela Rosa when he withdraw in favor of Vice President Diosdado Macapagal,

They shouted invectives at their idol and marched with caretelas (horse drawn carriages ) .

My father just laughed and said to me , “ See how crazy are the Filipinos about candidates? That;s Filipino politics!”

Growing up, I got used to the fanaticism of Filipinos towards their candidates. And our family is not an exception. For during the campaign, my grandfather who is at odds with my aunt and my uncles, won’t talk to them or let them set foot on his house until the election time is over. They both have different candidates to support. And they just get together after elections on Christmas time..

I saw that again in 1986, when the Marcos loyalist acted up and mounted at least nine military coup against then President Aquino. And the last time was in 2002, when the Erap loyalist tried to mount EDSA 3 attacking Malacanang only to be crushed by the military.

But today, another type of political fanaticism is at hand. This time a the age of social media. The loyal followers of Digong Duterte has infected the social media with this kind of political fanaticism.

They will defend their candidates by any means necessary. They even fill the walls of their political adversaries and threaten them , cajoled and send memes to silence them into submission.This is what we call cyber-bullying.

Dr.Sylvia Claudio got a taste od Duterte fanatic’s tirades on FB and she responsed: “Just got the classic ‪#‎Duterturd‬ response. A picture of someone’s dick. I haven’t even started. I say that is one premature dick.‪#‎NO2DU30‬

Another friend of mine wrote: “ReplytoQuery: Yes, he apologized — after letting his followers go berserk with trying to rationalize and/or justify his rape joke, one of them so carried away he tweeted it would be an honor if his daughter were raped by the candidate.

Day after day of letting his followers run amok on his behalf. Then, apropos of nothing but a few reports in the international/Western media, he tacks into the wind and without a thought for all the labor of his fans, goes back on his word. His spokesperson tries to pass him off as the victim, saying it was because he did not belong to the elite, though of course, he’s been in power for more than two decades. What you see is what you will get. ‪#‎narcissist‬ ‪#‎powerlust‬‪#‎fakemacho‬“-Ninotchka Rosca.

I am just happy on how my friends( my real friends in the social media are holding out in the face of the political fanaticism of some of the candidates especially the die-hard Duterte fans or followers.

I am also happy in the GPPM North America/USA, we maintain our decency and sense of fairness and not be drown out by these political trolls. For these political trolls, social media is a place of discourse and not a bully pulpit to harass, intimidate or vent anger to people who does not share your ideals.

These fanaticism is fleeting and last only during elections especially the Presidential elections in the Philippines. If you do not like them, just press the unfriend button or unfollow button and even if they are our friends but hey have crossed the line of indecent comments, just unfriend them then waste time in unworthy discussions.

Let’s maintain our demeanor and these things will pass!


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