In his Gettysburg Address in 1863, Abraham Lincoln, to me the greatest American president, defined democracy as a "government of the people, by the people, for the people." He also expressed hope that it "shall not perish from the earth."
One Stanford paper says democracy as a system of government has four key elements:
1. A political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections;
2. The active participation of the people, as citizens, in politics and civic life;
3. Protection of the human rights of all citizens; and
4. A rule of law, in which the laws and procedures apply equally to all citizens.
Knowing these elements, one may conclude that in the Philippines, democracy is being raped every day. Why?
1. There is no free elections in the Philippines.
Voting machines decide who should win and lose. The Supreme Court says it alone decides who are qualified to be presidential candidates. So an alien with no known progeny can be declared a natural-born Filipino and must have had 10 years of residence in the Philippines if that alien thought in his/her mind he/she had wanted to reside in this country 10 years ago.
People are not free to vote. They sell their vote to the highest bidder. A candidate also can buy votes from the Commission on Elections which allows slogans (like "Matuwid na Daan") as proper middle names for formal names of administration candidates. It's like Rocky Marciano calling himself "The Raging Bull" as his formal candidate name and the voter shades the circle on its right. The vote then becomes Bull Shit.
2. There is no active participation by the people.
Only 100 families have ruled this country for the last 100 years. And this is a country which has more than 25 million families.
In the last 55 years, Philippine presidents came from exactly just four families-cousins Ferdinand Marcos and Fidel V. Ramos (26 years), father and daughter Diosdado Macapagal and Gloria Macapagal (13 years and a half), mother and son Corazon and Benigno
Simeon Aquino III (12 years and four months), and actor Joseph Estrada (30 months). Note that if you don't come from a politically entrenched family and backed by the economic elite, you don't last very long. Erap is the prime example.
The 20 richest Filipinos produce two-thirds of economic production. That is the most iniquitous economic setup in the world.
People are perpetually hungry. Agricultural production has risen by an average of 0.20 percent per year in the last 30 years while the population grows by two percent per year. So in 30 years, the population grew by more than 60 percent compounded, while food production went up by just six percent compounded. The result is massive poverty since food is 55 percent of family expenditure.
Poverty means you cannot go to school. If you cannot go to school, you cannot be employed except as a farmer or a fisherman (the poorest of the Filipino poor). If you are a farmer and you march towards the Palace, you are massacred like in 1987, or march along the highway in Kidapawan, you are again massacred like in 2016. Those who are not massacred are arrested, jailed and denied liberties, without charges. Farmers have no future if the president is a haciendera (like Cory Aquino) or haciendero (like BS Aquino III).
If you cannot be employed, you resort to crime and drugs. A P5 rugby will save three meals for a boy of eight on the street. He feels filled up. Crime means robbery. Survival is the basic instinct of human and animals. It is also the basic human right. Thus, you steal to survive. Except if you are Jojo Binay. You run for president. This makes our so-called democracy much more fun.
In a society where crime and drugs become the mode for human survival, human rights cannot thrive. Neither can rule of law.
In Moses' Ten Commandments, Thou Shall Not Kill (No. 6) is a higher or bigger crime than Thou Shall Not Steal (No. 8).
In fact, on the day just before Jesus Christ died He promised to bring a thief beside him to Paradise. The lesson here: There is redemption in stealing. But not if you are a killer.
Yet, surveys show the No. 1 candidate for president is a self-proclaimed killer and would be murderer, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte. He is a four or five percentage points ahead of a self-proclaimed natural born Filipino, Grace Poe. The margin is equivalent to 1.7 million to 2.0 million votes.
No. 3 is a man accused of multiple thievery, Vice President Jejomar Binay.
No. 4 is a man considered to be well-educated and not a killer but one who condones thievery and murder (of farmers and soldiers) under the current Aquino administration, Manuel Araneta Roxas II. Not being able to help Aquino solve the massive problems of this country, Mar is considered incompetent.
Recently, Duterte, it was discovered not only loves women. He also loves to rape them. This is commandment No. 10-Thou Shall Not Covet Thy Neighbor's Wife. It is the lowest of the Ten Commandments, two rungs below No. 8 Thou Shall Not Steal, and four rungs below No. 6, Thou Shall Not Kill.
So take it from there on May 9. Remember democracy also means bad choices which means choosing the least bad of the very, very bad.
But why do Filipinos love democracy, no matter how fake it is? It's fun, especially in the Philippines. Indeed, democracy shall not perish from the earth. It can only be raped.
Source: The Standard