Was it just me, or did Senator Miriam Santiago’s speech also leave you flabbergasted, slightly terrified, and with a horrible, horrible sensation in the pit of your stomach? I didn’t know whether I should have applauded her for doing what she just did, or if I wanted to mourn the death of the honor and integrity the Senate once had, with Miriam’s speech as the eulogy marking that turning point.
In any case, there are lessons to be learned here, and I realize that, notwithstanding the gravity of the situation, this can be a learning experience for all of us.
1. Senators are humans too, in the same way that squabbling seven year old kids are humans too.
Actually, squabbling seven-year old kids carry themselves with much more dignity, so maybe the analogy is a little unfair.
Apparently, expecting Miriam and Enrile to act like, well, senators, is too much for them.
2. Wisdom does not always come with age.
Do you remember that time when Miriam ran for President and you wanted her to win because you thought she was brave, feisty and morally upright? I miss the old (well, younger) Miriam. It’s been replaced by this immature, largely insecure, and loud personality prone to sensationalist soundbites.
Enrile’s track record as a public servant is spotty at its best, and morally reprehensible at its worst, so this whole debacle from his end is not that much of a surprise.
3. We deserve the leaders that we vote for.
To be honest, this is our fault really, since we keep voting these people into office (or we don’t vote at all, which facilitates people like these getting voted into office). We need to stop voting for people based on name-recall, or because they appear the most times on TV or the news.
4. Sometimes, it’s better to shut up.
I wonder what was going through Enrile and Miriam’s heads when they were writing their respective speeches. It would have been nice if they took into consideration the fact that: a) what they’re about to do will drag the Senate’s honor and integrity (or what’s left of it after the pork barrel scam) through the mud; and, b) their respective speeches were a complete waste of time, not to mention an abusive exercise of their privilege speech rights.
Senator Osmena gets it right: senate sessions have now become a source of entertainment rather than an avenue of legislation. Maybe, as Paul Begala once said, politics really is just show business for ugly people.
5. Senators are not above trolling each other on the Senate floor.
Trolling, per se, is bad enough, but to do it in the halls of the Senate just seems so, so sad.
Featured photo taken here.