How will Duterte go to Baguio City now?
“…Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse…” – Romans 12:14
With the prohibition on profanity in Baguio City, what happens when President Rodrigo Duterte visits and delivers one of his speeches, which, as we all know, are often laced with swearing and invective? Would police arrest him on the grounds of violating a city policy? If he isn’t arrested, would local law enforcement then have the authority to enforce the law on the general public cursing in public?
While the ordinance was motivated by noble intentions, if enforcement is inconsistent, that only makes the policy an embarrassment, which would invite even more cursing from the all sectors of society. I find myself wishing public officials were more circumspect in discharging their duties and responsibilities.
“P ***** ina mo” is a “mere expletive”
According to decisions by the Supreme Court, hurling invective and profanity are not immediately considered defamatory. The court clarified, phases such as “P ***** ina mo” (or, “Your mother is a whore”) are simply expressions of disgust or anger.
However, in February 8, 2000 decision, then-Associate Justice Bernardo Pardo said “P ***** ina mo” could be considered defamatory if the circumstances in which it was uttered showed intent to disparage. The court called the phrase a “mere expletive” often articulated in ordinary day-to-day exchange with no deliberate intent to malign another or literally call another person’s mother a prostitute.
Blessings for others creates blessings for us
The Bible offers a strict admonition against cursing in Romans 12:14, “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.” Undeniably, we, who believe in God, are commanded to pronounce blessings to our fellow man at all times. We should declare blessings, goodness, good health, peace, success, and prosperity to our siblings, relatives, friends and associates all the time.
There is a serious justification for this.
If others are experiencing blessings, success, and prosperity in their lives, they are more likely to maintain better relationships with the people around them – which leads to general peace and order. That being the case, I implore everyone on the side of the law, do not curse. We should instead declare blessings to all the people around us! Watch and listen to “Ang Tanging Daan,” a Bible exposition and prayer session that runs 24/7 and is broadcast in English and Filipino. The show airs live on Facebook at facebook.com/ angtangingdaan. Please send reactions to 0917-984-2468, 0933825-1308, 0977-805-9058, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.