STFU, freedom of speech
Mrs. Arroyo was in Bacolod City Friday to inaugurate the Bacolod-Kabankalan road project in the city’s Tangub village.
The report said that as Mrs. Arroyo waved to people through the open window of a bus, members of the Kabataan party list group showed up and shouted for her ouster.
Police rushed to the protesters and covered their mouths until the presidential convoy left. Read more.
Interesting timing. TJ and I have been discussing how the Philippines has pretty much been under undeclared Martial Law thanks to Arroyo, with protests and rallies being squelched regularly. It’s kind of rich of Arroyo to be doing that, seeing how she was swept to power (I hate that term, but oh well. How about “buoyed to the presidency”? “forced to become president because, eh, she just happened to be the vice president”) thanks to a popular revolt. I expect she thinks having to apply for a permit to rally will dampen the surge of righteous anger as the application slithers through the red tape, and ideally force people to say “Fuck it” and give up on the rally altogether.
That hasn’t stopped people from still holding protests, however, even as the police do their darndest to force the rallyists away. It’s the first time I’ve heard of them actually literally keeping people’s mouths shut, however. There’s something itchy about the thought of complete stranger’s hand on your mouth, and it’s even itchier when you think that it’s supposed to be a hand that should be raised in your and your fellow citizens’ defense.