PRESIDENT Duterte is wrong to call Supreme Court Justice Antonio Carpio buang, for criticizing his statement to allow Chinese fishermen access to “Philippine waters.” Buang means stupid — certainly a description that applies to the Yellow senators who claim Duterte would be violating the Constitution to allow that.
But Carpio isn’t stupid. He’s worse. He is so ignorant about an issue he blabbers on about but doesn’t understand that he should be ashamed to be in the Supreme Court, an institution dedicated to arriving at the truth based on facts.
But I don’t think Carpio is ignorant. He is diabolically devious, and his criticism of Duterte is just another instance of his incessant propaganda to stoke anti-Chinese xenophobia using our territorial disputes with China, exploiting the respected pulpit of a Supreme Court justice.
First, let’s be clear about what Duterte said. He was asked on Monday night whether government would bar Chinese fishermen from Philippine waters after a Filipino fishing boat was allegedly sunk in the Reed Bank by a Chinese vessel. He answered, in a roundabout way: “I don’t think China would do that. Why? Because we’re friends. They are of the same view that that should not result in any bloody confrontation.”
Duterte obviously meant that if we ban Chinese fishermen from the area, the Chinese will retaliate by banning our fishermen. The two countries won’t do that because they respect each other now.