By Alex P. Vidal
NEW YORK CITY — Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. exhorted candidates in the Sangguniang Kabataan and barangay elections on May 14, 2018 to control their emotions.
Even if they want to, most of them can’t control their emotions.
Even if they need to, many of them won’t control their emotions.
Elections are an emotional event; candidates always fear defeat and everyone wants to win.
For the reelectionists, there is no substitute for victory; there’s no room for defeat.
For their challengers, victory is right around the corner; as harbingers of change, they aren’t supposed to give up.
When candidates, especially those vying for position of punong barangay or village chief, are running against a friend, a kumpare/kumare or a relative, emotions are at all time high.
The restlessness and bitter feelings are shared by their relatives, as well.
Emotions are at fever pitch especially during the campaign period when mudslinging and accusations fly thick and fast, and after the election results have been known when egos and pride are totally wrecked.
Because of the size of a barangay, candidates find it hard to avoid each other physically after the elections’ final reckoning.
Some of the candidates are, in fact, neighbors if not colleagues in a religious organization.
Unlike in the elections for mayor, governor and congressman where the protagonists don’t meet face to face immediately for a long while in time for the wounds of campaign bickering to heal, candidates in a barangay election can sometimes rekindle their fresh political rivalry when they bump each other in coffeeshops, barbershops, bakeshops and nearby alleys the morning after the tough and excruciating electoral slugfest.
“An emotion is a complex psychological state that involves three distinct components: a subjective experience, a physiological response, and a behavioral or expressive response,” according to the book, Discovering Psychology.
This probably explains why it’s so impossible not to get emotional if you are involved in the elections as a candidate on Monday, May 14.
As a journalist, I go with the Tulfo brothers in their feud with politicians like Senators Bam Aquino, Antonio Trillanes IV, Nancy Binay, and Kiko Pangilinan who sought for a senate probe on the scandalous P60-million Department of Tourism (DoT) advertisement to PTV-4 that ended in the block time program of Ben Tulfo, brother of resigned (or dismissed) DoT secretary Wanda Teo.
While it is their duty to call for an investigation, many of them are probably only trying to get even with the embattled Tulfo brothers after they have been criticized in the radio and TV programs of the hard-hitting brothers in the past.
But on the question of propriety or delicadeza, I disagree with the Tulfo brothers and former Sec. Teo that there was no conflict of interest in the doomed deal.
Based on the paper trail of how the P60 million was released (three trances), the transaction reeks not only with fish, it was done in bad faith from the very start no matter how they tried to sugar coat it.
Teo was right to resign, err President Duterte was right to sack her.