Journ exercise

IMAGINE YOU’RE A journalist tasked to write a news report on the president’s COVID-19 updates.

You wonder why his public speeches somehow always happen when the public is sleeping, but you do your job anyway.

You write your notes as the president speaks. It’s not your job to write everything down — you’re a journalist, not a typist — so you write only the most relevant parts according to your own judgment.

Once the speech is over, you start organizing your story. You begin by drafting the lead, the first paragraph of your report. The lead is the most important part, you know that, so you review your notes and you ask yourself: which among these details is the most newsworthy?

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Reading terror

I am at a point in which I no longer get easily intimidated by texts that are generally considered to be “too difficult to read.” After decades of reading and re-reading, I think I now have the experience and the grit to power through even the most dense of documents.

Take, for instance, the “Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020.” It isn’t the most complex in terms of language, but it also isn’t the kind of text that I usually read. Maybe I was just genuinely curious, or maybe I have indeed matured as a reader that I somehow managed to distill all 60+ pages of the Anti-Terror Bill.

I consulted other sources too and I did my own research before arriving at a conclusion: the Anti-Terror Bill has very dangerous implications, especially for the country’s most vulnerable sectors. I say no too.

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How To Get Away With Plunder

After the Supreme Court dismissed the plunder case against her, former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo gamely posed for a selfie with her lawyer Raul Lambino as if to show the world that hey, now that I’m free I don’t have to pretend I need a neck brace.


Kudos to the makeup artist too! The contour was well done with just the right tinge of bronze on the apples of the cheeks. It’s even poetic, actually. Looks like three or more coats of the thickest foundation have been applied to Arroyo’s face in order to achieve that airbrush effect—truly an embodiment of the Filipino jibe ang kapal ng mukha!

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On Badjao girl, free slippers, and other superficial sympathies

Original photo by Topher Quinto Burgos | Source

We see a photograph of a scene basked in gold sunlight — and right in the foreground, a girl. She wears a faded pink shirt and slung around her left shoulder is a worn grey cloth tied tightly in a knot. Her eyes are dark and her hair has tinges of brown as golden as her skin.

The picture would be shared several thousand times in social media. A few more days and the girl would star in her own photo shoot. She would be in the news and in lifestyle programs. A politician’s wife would reportedly grant her a scholarship during a show known for handing out libreng tsinelas. And of course we, the audience, would feel elated for the pretty lass.

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Is it too much to yearn for justice?

Photo from Rappler

I don’t think I can ever understand, much less respect the people who defend former Major General Jovito Palparan Jr.

It’s one thing to hate the New People’s Army or to support all shades of effort to curb insurgency. It is, however, completely twisted to forgive and exalt the so-called “Butcher” who trampled on our human rights and spit on them simply because he could.

From what neurons of the brain or which depths of the heart do these people pull their grit and reasons to ignore the Butcher’s sins? I’d like to think those sloppily argued comments in news websites were all written by the same person, nay troll, trying to adjust the fulcrum of public opinion. And where’s Vica Ganda’s tweet for the Palparan Warriors who flashed their printed streamers and called the Butcher “bayani”? I wonder how many kilos of rice those poor souls were able to buy after their mini gathering.

Man, has the world really gone this crazy?

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