Lacson gives tips on debates, public forums

Published February 8, 2022, 10:14 AM

by Mario Casayuran

If you don’t know about something, read. If you don’t understand what you read, ask. If you are asking, listen. And if you listened, but still can’t absorb the idea, don’t even try debating about it.

These were the honest, straightforward tips Partido Reporma chairman and standard-bearer Panfilo ‘Ping’ Lacson gave to candidates, who are afraid to face forums or want to sharpen their skills at facing the public to present their thoughts, or answer difficult questions during this election season.

“Kung hindi mo alam, magbasa ka. Kung hindi mo maintindihan ‘yung binasa mo, magtanong ka. Kung ikaw naman ay magtatanong, makinig ka (If you don’t know, read. If you did not understand what you read, ask). At kung nakinig ka at hindi mo pa rin ma-absorb ay huwag ka nang mag-attempt (If you heard it but could not absorb it, don’t attempt) ,” Lacson said in a radio interview.

To avoid embarrassment in joining a debate or discussion a candidate knows little of, “Patayin mo internet mo para hindi maintindihan sinasabi mo [Turn off your internet so they don’t understand what you’re saying],” the longtime public servant jokingly said.

“Importante talaga mag-aral (What is important is you study). ‘Di ba, sabi ko nga doon, ang kasabihan huwag kang sasabak sa giyera kung hindi ka handa (Don’t go to war if you are not ready),’’ Lacson told a radio host.’

The former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief has stood out in recent “head-to-head” presidential interviews with the other candidates in the May 9 elections, giving straight, no-nonsense answers to serious national issues while fending off old propaganda and fake news against him, like the Kuratong Baleleng and Dacer-Corbito cases.

According to a report on netizens’ perceptions following the KBP Presidential Forum last Friday, Lacson got the highest positive mentions at 24 percent and the lowest negative mentions at 18 percent, while 51 percent were neutral and 5 percent were unrated or undecided.

Several political analysts have also remarked that Lacson displayed the greatest readiness and skill in unveiling his platforms of governance and his plans for the country, once he gains the Filipinos’ mandate as Chief Executive for the next six years.

In turn, the veteran law enforcer and lawmaker has lauded his excellent and hardworking staff and supporters to help him present his ideas clearly to the public.

‘’Whenever a forum ends, I am happy. That indicates that you are satisfied with your work, with your performance. If you’re frowning after a forum, even if you say you’re satisfied, nobody will believe you. Then if you would have to explain, {and}you’ll have a lot of reasons, then it means you are not satisfied,’’ he said.

‘’You know, with the difficult questions, I’m even grateful for them… because you don’t have to memorize the truth. If it’s falsehood, even if you memorize it, you will falter,’’ he added.