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Courage

Courage
Ronald Roy — Feb. 12, 2014

“When moral courage feels that it is in the right, there is no personal daring of which it is incapable ” (Leigh Hunt)…and if I may add, “…even as it borders on the suicidal.”
This is the simple yet startling sense derivable from statements given by socialite Ruby Chan Tuason, in connection with her having offered to turn state witness against her friends: former Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile (JPE), former Senate President Pro Tempore Jinggoy Estrada, and former Chief of Staff of JPE, Atty. Jessica “Gigi” Reyes, relative to the ongoing Janet Lim Napoles-related pork barrel scam imbroglio.

Why Tuason Came Back
In an interview with Inquirer reporters, Tuason, a reportedly devout Catholic who frequently goes to Mass, said that her values and principles succumbed to friendships when she agreed to serve as a conduit for kickbacks for Senators JPE and Estrada from their Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) allocations, adding that she was back from hiding abroad to ease her stricken conscience, prepared to reveal all she knew about the pork scam at the risk of being liquidated.

She stressed nothing was more disastrous than losing the love and respect of her children and grand children, who stopped talking to her soon as her involvement in the scam broke out in the news. Additionally, life would have been worthless if she had opted to stay beyond the reach of the law as a despised fugitive. Yes, coming home to confess and tell the truth would be her only chance at redemption.
As I write this piece about a week before its publication, there is no doubt that Tuason has already won the hearts and minds of citizens as she stands like a tiny David pitted against the formidable JPE-Estrada Goliath, in a showdown that should end in her favor as the righteous underdog — if the biblical story and the prevailing popular mood are to be relevant.

Neither Fairy Tale Nor Basketball
The trouble is: the pork scandal is not a fairy tale where good always prevails over evil. It is one of the most catastrophic corruption sagas ever to have rocked our nation in recent years, where crime and punishment, conviction or acquittal, are fodder to legal minds competing in a public forum that is vulnerable to external pressures like power, influence and awesome material resources.
All these usually lead to distortions — if not concealments — of material facts, not to mention illicit methods in the manufacture of sundry kinds of evidence. And all this cloak-and-dagger stuff, dear Readers, happens in real life, not only in Hitchcock or Spielberg thrillers.
We recall how hoopla broke out all over the place after DOJ Sec. Leila de Lima announced that the State had virtually clinched its case against the senators with Tuason’s testimonial “slam dunk”, followed by what Estrada sharply observed as her NBI agents feverishly dovetailing Tuason’s sworn statements with those of the whistle-blowers led by Benhur Luy.
Yes, all of this has created the public view that the senators are dead meat. But whoa, rein in your horses, dudes, this isn’t anywhere like P-Noy’s state resources shamelessly acting in concert to ensure then CJ Renato C. Corona’s impeachment removal from office last year. No, I’m not at all implying that JPE’s Impeachment Court convicted an innocent chief justice.

Trial By Publicity Recalled
What I’m saying is that a chief justice was removed from office in an impeachment trial by publicity presided over by then Senate President JPE. The raging tempest of the “mob” outside the senate hall demanding Corona’s scalp is back, this time demanding the scalps of Corona’s scalpers. But if JPE is the superlative legalist that he is reputed to be, this seemingly strange twist of fate has gotten his juices flowing as the legal luminary that now confronts the same mob to whom he had given a chief justice’s scalp on a silver platter.
Hmmm…I wouldn’t put it past the foxy JPE to start trying to win back the countless people who had hailed his impeachment performance with a roof-shattering 71% approval rating. He may now be musing: “Those guys are thinking of slam dunks. But this isn’t basketball. This is my game, a court trial where a wide array of arsenal is at my disposal, like timely time-outs, delaying tactics, tripping hostile witnesses, nudging lap taps off the tables, timely brown-outs, advising prosecutors never to walk the streets alone at night, and reminding them they owe me for their appointments.”
Well, ahh, at this point I have become tongue-in-cheek giddy…but seriously, the time has come for us fuzzy-headed simple folk to demand a just and speedy resolution of the charges against the senators, consistent with their right to due process and a presumption of their innocence.

( https://musingsbyroy.wordpress.com | 09186449517 | @ronald8roy | #musingsbyroy )

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