Using “Creative Imagination” to Interpret 8 Things The President Has (Probably) Said
By Kel Fabie
Nation, we get it, really. By now, it should be common sense that whenever the President speaks and people get outraged, there are always a few factors at work: he was either joking, exaggerating, or he was taken terribly out of context. And those are the usual interpretations that don’t involve assuming the worst out of media, just their apparent inability to correctly understand what the President is trying to say. President Duterte is indeed more misunderstood than a teenager who likes to listen to Simple Plan and wear black (In freaking 2016!), is what we’re trying to say.
The problem has gotten so out of hand that even Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella has suggested that we need to use our “creative imagination” to interpret the President’s remarks, instead of being “masyadong literal.” This gives us the utmost confidence that multiple people doing it at the same time would never result in any sort of confusion as to what the President means, ever again.
Here are 8 statements, and what they could very well mean, when subjected to our “creative imagination.”
What It Seems To Mean: Because the rebels and insurgents are still rebelling against the government, while we cannot expect peace, maybe we can try to tone down the fighting.
Likely Context: This statement was uttered during his SONA earlier this year, and is a casual statement in aid of his desire for the peace process in Mindanao,
Creative Interpretation: This could also be a statement towards the people who voted against the president. Maybe those of us who aren’t pro-Duterte cannot love our president, but let’s not hate him too much to the point where we would spite our own country’s welfare just for the satisfaction of seeing him go down.
What It Seems To Mean: The EU has no room to talk about human rights when they’ve been historically among the worst violators of it since time immemorial. The Crusades, anyone?
Likely Context: The President is reminding the EU that they are living in glass houses while throwing stones, and pointing out that while these countries are quick to condemn, they hardly ever directly aid with any alternative means to solve the drug problem, in the first place. The EU got this message loud and clear, and thus directly contributed to a solution by sending aid specifically for rehabilitation. That’s putting their money where their mouth is, and that’s a good thing.
Creative Interpretation: “FU, EU! Whatcha gonna do? Hypocrites, all of you. I’m not your average MC, and you can’t see me! I’m like toilet paper, ‘cause I’m on a roll. You’re like toilet paper too, ‘cause you’re SAWFT, y’all!”
What It Seems To Mean: The mayor should have been first to rape an Australian missionary. On the surface, it seems like a disgusting rape joke.
Likely Context: He has repeated this story multiple times, and while indeed, he was joking about being first, he was definitely furious at the people who raped the Australian missionary, which is why he slaughtered them when he led the assault on them afterwards. Or not.
Creative Interpretation: The then-mayor was merely invoking the doctrine of Prima Nocta. As a leader, it is his right and privilege to be first. Or maybe he wanted to be first, as in, he should have been there instead of the missionary. That maybe he should have been well, maybe not raped, but killed, in place of her. Who knows? Digong works in mysterious ways.
What It Seems To Mean: Digong is the Hitler of drug addicts. Of course, he got his numbers a bit wrong, since close to 6 million Jews perished during the Holocaust, while his own numbers claim there are close to 4 million Filipino drug dependents right now. Which makes you wonder if the drug campaign is working if more people instead of less are becoming addicts, but whatever.
Likely Context: Not only was he saying this to differentiate himself from Hitler, by pointing out that his targets are not innocent people but perceived scourges of society, he also most likely misspoke and simply meant pushers, which, apparently, is a far more acceptable lethal target than users, seeing how many of us all fall under that category some way or some other. Ultimately, and in utter fairness, the Hitler comparison not only didn’t originate from him, but was something hurled at him ad nauseam, and he just got tired of it and rolled with it. When he apologized for his statements directly to a Jewish synagogue afterwards, he got a standing ovation for it, so it should at least be apparent that his worst sin was to misuse the Jews in his analogy against his war on drugs, but at no point was he likening Jews to drug addicts in any way beyond what hypothetically could happen to the both of them.
Creative Interpretation: “Ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what you can do for your country. There is nothing to fear but fear itself.”
Picture: two completely unrelated photos.