From the reckless rhetoric of both Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and U.S. presidential nominee Donald J. Trump, one can deduce that they share the same speaking style: It’s rough, unorthodox and un-presidential.
During the inauguration of President-elect Duterte in Malacanang Palace, my wife and I were impressed while listening to his inaugural speech. That despite the criticisms of his presidential rivals and voters alike, he can be serious, sober, meaty and presidential after all, in his speech. We told ourselves, we were mistaken with our initial impressions of him in the political hustings. But this did not last long.
After conversing with a friend about the similarities of their manner of communication style, this friend responded that with Du30’s penchant for ranting and cursing, he suggested that Mr. Trump is more of an angel compared to Mr. Duterte.
Remember that then still undeclared candidate Duterte cursed Pope Francis for causing a traffic jam in Manila and asked the Pontiff to leave immediately? Thereafter, he joked about an Australian missionary who was raped and murdered that he could have been the first because she was a beautiful woman.
Then during his presidency, he chastised U.S. President Barack Obama as a “son of a whore” for the latter’s concern about human rights abuses and the extrajudicial killings of suspected drug pushers and drug lords? Later he told the U.S. president “to go to hell” if President Obama brought up the subject matter of human rights during their meeting in Vientiane, Laos.
On the part of Mr. Trump, he bragged that he can shoot anybody on Fifth Avenue in New York and still wouldn’t lose any votes from his supporters. Then during one of his campaign rallies, he boasted that he could punch anybody in the face if someone disrupts his speech.
He describes women that he dislikes as slobs, Miss Piggy, Fat, Miss Housekeeping, overweight and crooked Hilary. In addition, he mocked his fellow Republicans, such as Lying Ted, Little Marco, ineffective Paul Ryan, foul-mouthed McCain, etc. He was even heard joking about grabbing women by their genitals.
“When you’re a star, they let you do it… You can do anything,” he said in a 2005 recording.
“I’ll put her to jail” and “You’re such a nasty woman.” referring to his presidential opponent Hillary Clinton.
I cringe to the bones whenever I hear Duterte and Trump talk on television. I hope they will not self-destruct which is already becoming ominous.
However, the stark contrast between Mr. Duterte and Mr. Trump is their manner of dressing. Donald is haberdasher, always wearing a suit in public. On the other hand, Mr. Duterte is an unstylish, lousy dresser. A case in point is when he folded the hem of his new Barong Tagalog during his inauguration and matched it with a brownish trouser instead of a formal dark color. And most of the time, he just wears printed polo shirt and T-shirts in his official functions.
In my readings and by watching various cable news channels during the course of the U.S. presidential campaign, I have gathered enormous adjectives or modifiers that best describe Mr. Trump. They include: Misogynist (hatred of women especially by a man). Xenophobic (fear or hatred of strangers or foreigners). Sociopath (psychopathic personality whose behavior is aggressively anti-social). Ableist (prejudicial against people with disabilities). Homophobic (hatred or fear of homosexuals, lesbians and gay men). Islamophobic. Vulgar. Serial Groper. Absurd. Outrageous. Counter-puncher. Boastful. Con man. Tax evader. Demagouge. Comedian. Playboy. Erratic. Risky. Philanderer. Sexist. Racist. Bigot. Fascist. Bully. Unfit. Temperamental. Fiery. Onion-skinned. Belligerent. Unrestrained. Polarizing. Arrogant. Divisive. Rude. Confrontational. Volatile. Vindictive. Unfit. Whiner. Cry baby. Irresponsible. Dangerous, Disgraceful. Despicable. Disrespectful. Disdainful. Unpredictable. Liar. Treacherous. Erratic. Egoistic. Awful. Untrusted. Undignified. Unpolished. Self-aggrandizer. Narcissistic. Megalomaniac. Chauvinist. Boorish. Arrogant. Self-centered, Caustic. Tasteless, Insidious. Puppet. Volcanic. Horrifying. Hostile. Hitler. etc.
I have a few from my own arsenal of adjectives to describe Mr. Trump like, anti-matter, naysayer, convoluted, toxic and prophet of doom.
He has more horrendous adjectives than Clinton. No wonder, even his fellow top Republicans repudiate him.
During my hour of reflection, I ask myself, is this the president we want as a role model and the leader of the most powerful country in the world?
Do you have more adjectives to add up that I failed to mention?