It’s happening again

One gets the feeling of déjà vu as students of the state-owned University of the Philippines prepare to hold massive protests against the country’s continued slide to dictatorship under the repressive regime of President Rodrigo Duterte.   The day after several UP students walked out of their classes to join the National Day of Walkout Against Tyranny and… Read More »

Go ahead, bully, punch us some more

  What happened to you, Harry?   University of the Philippines professor Danny Arao asked this question recently as he questioned presidential spokesperson Harry Roque’s 180-degree turn on issues pertaining to press freedom and human rights. Arao reminded Roque, his friend and colleague, that he championed press freedom and human rights before he accepted the position defending President… Read More »

Racism has no place in America

“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” This repulsive comment did not come from the mouth of a Ku Klux Klan member or a known neo-Nazist, but the leader of a nation made great by people from all races and from all over the world, including those who came from countries US President… Read More »

Do we really need cha-cha?

  Here we go again.   Every administration since the time of President Fidel V. Ramos has tried to amend the 1987 Constitution for various reasons. The people have consistently rejected the idea of amending the Philippine constitution in surveys after surveys, and yet the move to amend that sacred document, in what is commonly called “cha-cha,” surfaces… Read More »

A distant Christmas

For Filipinos who have been outside of the Philippines for years, Christmas is both a time for rejoicing and a time for remembering. Even as the Filipino in America begins to feel the holiday mood immediately after Thanksgiving when people start shopping for gifts and Christmas decors, he feels at the same time a longing for home. For… Read More »

Federalism: A lethal experiment?

Amid uncertainties raised by President Duterte’s threats to declare a revolutionary government or a nationwide martial law, now comes another debate on a hot issue that would put the country’s future just as uncertain – the proposal to replace the current unitary form of government to that of a federal system of government.   Early last month, the… Read More »

Of journalists and bloggers

It must be difficult being a journalist in the Philippines these days. Where before, Malacanang reporters only had to worry about being scooped by the few competing journalists in their beat, they now have to contend with bloggers who quarrel with them when they ask during a press conference a question that to these bloggers are not favorable… Read More »

Cambodia and PH: Headed same way?

Filipinos should watch with interest developments in Cambodia, a leading member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations that has in the last few years gravitated towards China. In a ruling on Thursday, the country’s Supreme Court dissolved the main opposition party and banned 118 of its members from politics for the next five years in what is… Read More »

Beyond bloodied streets, what?

One thing that has stood out since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed the presidency in July last year is the fact that this former mayor of Davao City cannot handle criticism. And unable to handle criticism, he easily explodes and threatens just about anybody who dares oppose him.   Just last week, Duterte exploded and berated the president of… Read More »

The Battle for Marawi has just begun

After five months of seemingly endless battles and bombings, the Philippine military finally was able to declare an end to the hostilities in Marawi, the bloodiest and costliest military operation against terrorists or secessionists ever, even dwarfing the Battle of Jolo in 1974.   The Battle of Jolo, which started when militant forces from the Moro National Liberation… Read More »