Daily Tribune (Philippines)

Two strong women

- SHE SAYS DINAH VENTURA

Even with 10 presidenti­al and nine vicepresid­ential candidates, it should be quite easy for feminists out there to choose their bets.

Only one female for president in Vice President Leni Robredo, and one for VP in Davao Mayor Sara DuterteCar­pio. Piece of cake, right?

But is this the way people are making their choices this time?

Is it still provincial loyalty — Bicolanos for the Bicolana, and Davaoenos for the Davaoena?

Do their principles matter at a time when party-hopping is the norm and no one really is quite clear about each candidate’s platforms?

And with “debates” rendered into laughable exercises when they would be better called “interviews.”

Watching from the “sidelines,” or rightly via the news whether traditiona­l or new, we have seen how the national candidates have fared thus far in terms of public “These

two women will no doubt make it hard for people to make their choices given the range of personalit­ies now dominating the airwaves and the Internet highway. perception.

This being women’s month, I would like to focus on the two strong women in the game.

See, I find it a little strange to think that Vice President Leni Robredo, whose key message at her proclamati­on rally was to put “the marginaliz­ed… at the center of our governance,” has been getting all-out support from mostly the SUV-driving, Hermes-toting crowd.

A “pink wave,” it has been called lately, with countless homeowners in private villages showing their support for the lone female presidenti­al contender through various objects of pinkness.

Her relevance comes ever to the fore during this month, with woman achievers and the strong pink shade still pairing exceedingl­y well.

A much-forwarded quote comes from Angad Bedi, which goes like this: “Pink is the color of strength, a color of conviction, a color of decisionma­king.”

Leni, who had remained stoic through all the “exciting” phases in the election circus, er, world, is seen by her supporters as the better choice because she epitomizes the strong woman.

Again, the use of pink seems to be behind this symbolism.

Even if the choice of color has anything to do with the suspicion that it was just to draw attention from the “yellow” associatio­n and all that it had come to mean, there remains the fact that neighborho­ods, mostly rich or middle-class, are erupting in the color loved by most little girls around the world.

Meanwhile, the same kind of fervor seems to surround the consistent frontrunne­r Inday Sara, who wears green — also a color of the women’s internatio­nal day along with white.

Mayor Sara had never been the quiet sort of woman — she could walk into a room and command attention, even while wearing an unobtrusiv­e T-shirt and pants.

She can never be forgotten for punching that official in Davao for not treating poor people right. Succeeding her father as mayor of a city of over 1.6 million people, the tough lady has similarly nontraditi­onally feminine interests like big bikes. She also gave her children interestin­g nicknames — Sharkie, Stingray, and Stonefish — revealing her love of the ocean.

Personally and workwise, these two women will no doubt make it hard for people to make their choices given the range of personalit­ies now dominating the airwaves and the Internet highway.

No doubt people are still debating about who’s in and who’s out among the presidenti­al bets alone.

Let’s see in the next few weeks how things will turn out for the rest of the top contenders.

“Do

their principles matter at a time when partyhoppi­ng is the norm and no one really is quite clear about each candidate’s platforms?

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