Rajbir Singh, Intern at SpeakingThreads
Thiruvalluvar a much celebrated Tamil poet and philosopher once said that “The wound made by hurting with fire will heal but the wound created by harsh words uttered using out tongue leaves an indelible scar.”
Donald Trump, I thought was the only one significant political leader who did not have control over his tongue; but here comes the Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte who stole the cake in unguided language. Trump is still not holding any public position or to say so, a government position. But this man Duterte is head of an important nation. How could he afford to get carried away in his public speech?
Duterte, who cussed Obama as a “son of a bitch”. He went on to say “Who does he think he is? I am no American puppet. I am the president of a sovereign country and I am not answerable to anyone except the Filipino people,” Duterte mocked in a speech Obama “Son of a bitch, I will swear at you.”
Earlier, he made a disparaging homophobic comment about the US Ambassador Philip Goldberg.
Duterte said that while Secretary of State John Kerry is “okay… I had an argument with their gay ambassador, the son of a whore. He pissed me off”.
But now the Philippines head appears to be regretting. It is too late now as arrow is already out of the bow. Expressing regret after his obscenity-laden outburst against President Obama, the White House cancelled planned bilateral talks between the two leaders.
It is understood that Obama was to confront Duterte about his country’s dealing with drug dealers, including extrajudicial killings.
Privately some US adversaries must be congratulating Duterte for his guts but for any political science, international relations and public administration student, it was a thoroughly illegitimate, immoral, improper and unethical act. His words have caused immense damage to the people of Philippines, the whole perception about the political leadership of the nation has gone down the drain.