I don’t know about you, but I’ve never been so proud about being proud of my president. It has happened twice in the last decade!
As if eight years of Barack Obama hadn’t been enough, I am now being treated to six years of another great president, Rodrigo Duterte.
For the first time in my lifetime, I am proud that at the helm of the Philippines is a leader that has unequivocally shown his sincere love of his country — selfless in his determination to improve the lot of every Filipino, while gaining an unprecedented respect from world leaders, including those from countries which we (and other world nations) have historically distanced from — China and Russia.
I am in awe at how a probinsyano (someone from the province) can rise up to become (reluctantly at first) the leader we Filipinos have always yearned for — someone who is on the side of the ordinary citizen, the poor, the downtrodden, the disadvantaged, the true heroes that endure personal and family sacrifices for the sake of a better life for those they leave behind.
I am in awe that someone is actually waging war against one of the greatest ills of Philippine society– corruption.
I am in awe that despite his seemingly patriarchial ways (which many would rather label as dictatorial), he is respectful of the constitutional rights of citizens to disagree and to criticize, rightfully or not.
I am in awe at how he stands up to scheming politicians, oligarchs as well as international influences that look down at our government, country and people as the proverbial third-world inconsequentials.
I am in awe at how he is looked up to by world leaders in our region, as well as some in the West, who are seriously watching his rogue ways that are raking in positive results.
Yes, I am a ‘Dutertard’ and proudly so.
Because, at the end of the day, what this means is that I am proud to be Filipino.