It was a news cycle that ran for eight days until the pint-size bully who kicked and walloped a taller classmate was summarily dismissed from school. By then, the bully-vs-bullied story – the bully was the smaller, shorter guy – was primed to be kicked out of the front-page headlines by another bullying, the victim this time being a policeman who was disarmed, slapped, kicked, whacked, spat on by a gun-toting congressman and his mayor-father.
Bullies we will always have with us, even if the parents of the victim in the Ateneo de Manila junior high school incident pointed out how their son did not “fight fire with fire”; in other words, the boy lived up to the Christian virtue of turning the other cheek. On the other hand, the cop in Guimbal, Iloilo need not have turned the other cheek as one cheek was already, vividly cut in bleeding red after a 45-minute exercise of civilian power and authority. One day later, the congressman apologized with half a heart, berating the cop for his “betrayal of public trust and a clear abuse of his position.” Come again, Mr. Congressman? A police general (not involved in the present case) described the punishment as unique: “In my 30 years I have never seen anything like this.” Another general said that what provoked the maltreatment was “something so petty.”
The father-son tandem plus their bodyguards and cops assigned to protect them – from whom? – should also apologize for disabling the CCTV and depriving the people of a chance to watch the painful humiliation of a man in uniform by a gang of bullies. How the public would’ve feasted on that video!
The most ordinary citizens have heard enough stomach-churning tales about abusive policemen, true enough, just as they may have experienced firsthand the wrath of power-tripping government officials, be they duly elected or not (duly). Predictably, such examples will be repeated in the near and certain future. Six, seven years from now, will the boy bully end up in PNP or Congress?