Question and Answer Portion

You know how, in beauty pageants, they save the hardest part for last? I think we need to conduct our own Question And Answer portion for our government officials and various leaders of the country. Maybe that way, they’ll finally learn to be responsible for their actions. Here are the questions I would ask in light of the Quirino Grandstand hostage taking tragedy:

Why was there such detailed coverage of the news?

while we of course have freedom of speech, I would like to take into question the fact that the media had so much freedom when it came to the coverage of the entire thing. I think it was irresponsible to let that much information be freely flowing around the media, both television and radio, simply because it did not allow the police and the SWAT team much room to be able to strategize anything without it being criticized and closely looked at every step of the way. It’s not enough that our SWAT team is poorly trained, but they have to have the entire country breathing down their backs? That could not have been easy.

Not to mention this is one of the reasons that Mendoza freaked out in the first place. When it became apparent that his brother had been arrested, and one can only assume that he found out his brother had been arrested because of the play-by-play being freely circulated, that was when he really started freaking out and shooting. I really think there was an irresponsible amount of free press during this situation.

Why was the brother arrested?

I understand that they wanted to investigate him and see if he had anything to do with the situation, but why was he arrested and not just brought in for questioning? What brought them to the conclusion that the brother had something to do with it? I don’t understand why it had to lead to the violence that was the arrest. They practically had to stuff him into the police car with their entire weight.

And not only that, the arrest was so closely covered by the media, again leading me to my first question. Isn’t this what press releases are for? I’m all for free press but it was ridiculous that the whole arrest was practically a show meant for entertainment. It felt like an episode of Cops.

Why is the PNP so poorly trained?

We all have a lot to say when it comes to how our SWAT and PNP had handled the situation.

I do believe that they lacked a lot in being able to strategize and much less take into action certain measures that had to be taken to make sure that the situation was handled correctly. I personally feel that they could have acted faster, but we don’t really know what went on there. It is so easy to pass judgment and criticism but we can only really speculate.

Why are they so poorly trained? One will automatically think that it is because of the poor funding for the training in the first place. That’s what’s most probable. But as I watched the SWAT team cowering and taking approximately 7 years to do anything, I wondered if they were unable to act because they were not trained well, or if they did not realize that their job had always called for them to put their lives on the line when the situation calls for it.

Do our police men really know what it takes to be part of the force? Do they really know what it means to “serve and protect”? I saw men that look terrified, and I wonder why it was so. Yes, they were there, and they were trying. But is that enough at this point? With the escalating terrorism attacks that are being perpetrated by our own countrymen, is “being there” something that is even still commendable? Isn’t this supposed to be where the difference between civilians and uniformed men is going to become apparent? If we send in men who are too terrified to act in the face of death, then why have differences at all? Just send in whomever civilians are willing to grab a gun and run in.

I’m sure I don’t have all facts straight, and there are some things that I’ve missed. But as a third party who could only rely on the news during the whole thing, this is what I’ve come up with, and I think if I am uninformed and/or if my questions go on unanswered, that says something else entirely about our country as well.

I love you, Philippines, but why you gotta be like that?

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