Give me some air or I’ll be hyperventilating to death…
I read this petition from our batch’s mailing list. And then I searched for related “stories” from INQ7.net and the other journalist-petitioners’ sites. My initial reaction was WTF? Why do media people always see the military as “freedom’s” antagonists?
I traced the press release back on 04 March ‘05. LtGen. Edilberto Adan’s “proposal” to sanction the media who interview “known terrorists” doesn’t at all sound irrational for me even if others say that the bill (Anti-Terrorism Law) bearing “proposal” would be outrightly dumped by the Congress because it violates Section 4 of the 1987 Constitution.
Section 4. No law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.
What is obviously being unfair here? The media had become the “media for the terrorists”, and not the “media for the people” it should have been. How often is the media punished for any false information it delivers or for any misconception it brings to people for that matter? Today, due to the media’s power, it has slowly turned the real life battlefield scenes into soap operas. These rebels and terrorists, “unheard”, “unfed”, “suppressed” for long were likened to the slave-driven protagonist of the primetime drama. And the military’s side of the story was an analogy to the unforgiving “kontrabida”.
They deliver “what the people want”. And most often, “what the people want” are the media’s own creation. Now, should the media be at all protected by what’s stated in the Section 4 of the Constitution?
Remember that the AFP is out there to “protect the people.” The real enemies are these “guys whom others call Filipinos” who threaten the sovereignity of the State.
Right now, obviously, my sympathies are with the military since I’m with the institution. But as an individual, I too, am rightfully aware of my right to express my opinion.