Philippines President, Rodrigo Duterte, Puts His Foot In His Mouth Again, Says Women Are Responsible For Men Ageing Quickly. Or Maybe Men Age Because Of All That Sexism
I’ve always believed that the kind of people leading us, hold the most power in not just shaping the future of our country, but also the minds of the people living in it. But the more I listen the politicians in our country and around the world, the less I think of his belief. While our male politicians are barely able to take their feet out of their mouth, turns out they are not alone. For example, giving them tough competition is the President of Philippines,Rodrigo Duterte who has time and again come under fire for passing the most sexist and cringeworthy remarks on national forums and in media. This time, he said men age because of women.
Having attained mastery in speaking out of his ass, Rodrigo Duterte has gained quite a reputation with the kind of misogynistic comments he passes. It’s so bad, it overshadows any sort of work he does in the role of and in his duty as a President of a country. And keeping up the tradition this time too, Rodrigo’s latest distasteful comment was during his visit to Camarines Sur province on Sunday for a briefing on relief operations following Typhoon Vamco.
Coming across an old friend, who is now an official, the very first statement with which Rodrigo introduced him went like, “We’re classmates but his time was wasted on, you know… He’s aged because, you know, sobrang babae (too many women) – that can really age you.” That was strike one.
Filipinos should just accept President Rodrigo Duterte's sexist jokes during a situation briefing on typhoon devastation in Luzon because it's his way of coping with adversity, said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Monday, November 16.
— Rappler (@rapplerdotcom) November 16, 2020
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And if you’re acquainted with the words of President Rodrigo, you’d know that this couldn’t have been all. Replying with equal distaste and double meaning, Duterte’s friend replied by implying that he was far from having too many women, for he was ‘undersexed’ and needed to be promoted from an ‘under-sec’ to a secretary. Because apparently bedroom woes were important to the discussion of relief operations.
As the meeting went on, a classmate of Rodrigo told him about a friend who passed away due to coronavirus. Missing the point, and completely bereft of empathy, Rodrigo went ahead to remark, “If that’s so it was because he didn’t get enough women”. Safe to say, social media was up in flames for they referred to his comments as crass, sexist, demeaning and highly inappropriate.
However, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said on Monday the president was just having a “break from calamity”. But what we fail to understand here is since when did people start believing it was okay to take a break from calamity at the expense of women and their dignity?
LOOK: Students from various universities gather at Ateneo to protest against "President Rodrigo Duterte's negligence in past disasters." | 📷Philippine Collegian pic.twitter.com/orJ3tl7pvO
— Inquirer (@inquirerdotnet) November 17, 2020
Harry Roque said, “You know, it’s really a habit of Filipinos that, when we go through extreme stress, we really try to make light of our problems. We shouldn’t begrudge him that. He’s seen one tragedy after another. It’s not really anything beyond the fact that the president wants to more or less lighten the mood. Let’s give our president the chance to have a light moment.”
At this point, we couldn’t help fight the urge to slam either our heads on a wall, or their faces through one. It is after all men like Rodrigo and Harry Roque, that find a way to justify unlikely and inappropriate objectification of women, treating them as a way to relieve stress and making crass comments at their expense to lighten their day. If this is not beyond just harmless banter, it is time men realise that talking about women as objects or in derogatory terms is never going to be okay, and it’s best they find other ways to relieve stress. Ones that preferably don’t involve putting another gender down.
As far as Rodrigo Duterte is concerned, it isn’t the first time that he has uttered nonsense out of his mouth in terms of women, whether it is by glorifying how he molested his house help, or making horrible rape jokes. And something tells us, it won’t be the last, not until people keep putting men like him in power and letting them believe it is okay to have a laugh at the cost of women.