Years after being turned into a cartoon, or, ahem, a caricature of his former self, Senator Joker Arroyo tries to show us that he’s still a nationalist by attacking the go-to guy for instant patriotism points, the United States of America.
He slams the US for cutting US$2 million in military aid to the Philippines because of our dismal human rights record. “If you look at yourselves in the mirror, you will see that you are even a worse violator, because itâ€™s a state policy sanctioned by the (US) government,â€ he says, playing the part of the beggar to whom much is owed by the world.
At least in the Philippines, Arroyo argues, human rights violations may be carried out by the military and police, but not as a state policy. It’s their own initiative, and not some government order.
â€œOther countries can lecture us, not the Americans,â€ he says, reminding everyone that he has been in the human rights movement for a long time (and an administration lackey for quite some time now as well.) Notably, this tack did not charm the Americans into giving us back the US$2 million aid package.
It’s hard to stay relevant when you’re a cartoon, and Sen. Arroyo can’t be faulted for trying. Knee-jerk reactions have won the masses over in the past, but when the reaction pretty much boils down to we’re better than you, we’re not buying it even if it’s from some cute muppet.