Poison politics

ABOVE THE BELT | ALEX P. VIDAL

“In politics stupidity is not a handicap.” –Napoleon Bonaparte

NEW YORK CITY — The best season to lose friends and shatter a relationship with some relatives in the Philippines is during the election season.

During the elections, forget about kinship, fraternal affinitiy, pinagsamahan or past and present camaraderie; never mind the investment on utang na loob or debt of gratitude.

Don’t look back at memorable events and circumstances that helped shape a good relationship and expect them to grow in the garden of politics.

Don’t brag about kumare and kumpare ties shored up in the wedding and christening ceremonies as if they can be translated into a political commitment and loyalty. 

What happens there will remain and even end there and should never be invoked when politics enters the picture.  
Politics is a poison.  

Politics will altogether eviscerate all that have been built fraternally by human virtues and goodwill.

In politics, as the old saying always reminds us, there is no permanent friends, only permanent self interests.

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Haven’t we noticed that some of the protagonists in the race for governor, congressman, mayor, and other local government executive positions in the coming Philippine elections are not strangers to each other?

If they are not classmates in the elementary and high school, they are relatives in consanguity and affinity; kumpare and kumare (fellow godfathers and godmothers) in the wedding and bunyag (christening) ceremonies.

Some are neighbors and playmates since childhood; others “brothers” and “sisters” in fraternity and church; former business partners, former political allies and partymates, former “colleagues” in ideological, spiritual, and ethnic comradship, former mentors and proteges, etcetera.

All of these relationships will have no weight and bearing once politics takes the center stage. 

It has been proven in the past and it is about to be proven once again as the official campaign for the national seats kicked off; the local candidates are, as well, hell-bent to square off and unravel the cannonballs.

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We also caution the Philippine National Police (PNP) not to allow the organization to be wittingly and unwittingly used as a tool in a political partisanship and persecution especially during the election season.

All the raids and arrests involving political personalities will always be greeted with utmost suspicion and skepticism especially if the involved parties are not known violators of law, or have no previous criminal records in the community.

If a political personality has been arrested because of the crime he had ostensibly committed even before he decided to run for a public office, throw all the books on him and haul him in jail.

But if he was arrested mainly because someone had tipped off the authorities that he may be concealing something that is unlawful in his possession, it may spark a red alarm in the area of politicking and may not be good in the image of authorities, especially if the arrest turns out to be a dud.

Ditto for the police raids involving allegations of illegal possession of firearms, illegal drugs, child pornography, investment scam, etcetera.

If they are legitimate raids, go get the bonkers and dregs of society.
If they are tainted with politics, abort, abandon, and stop it.

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