Cariño: Miriam, Leila, Diwa

THIS week, this column is about three women, Miriam Defensor-Santiago, Leila de Lima, and Diwa Mitchell.

Miriam is the name of a Biblical character who is revered as a prophetess, an elder sister to Moses, and a musical artist. Of these, it is perhaps as the elder sister of Moses that she is best known -- she who hid Moses in order that he would escape being killed by Pharoah’s men. The rest is history, if the Bible is to be taken as so.

What is inescapable history is the story of our Miriam, Asia’s Iron Lady, no less. It’s all been said about her, the country’s most awarded public servant who served in all branches of government and did so with trademark stellar brilliance that was oftentimes irreverent and always peppered with biting wit.

We miss her already, and console ourselves with quotable quotes. I still laugh at hearing the oft-quoted pick up line, “May band aid ka ba? Kasi nagasgas ang tuhod ko when I fell for you.” Ahhh, like I said, we miss her already.

Miriam’s death kicked off from the headlines all and any talk of Leila de Lima and the bruited about sex tape that allegedly has her in it and that is supposedly to be shown in Congress like any day now. Thankfully, a number of solons male and female have opposed such a showing. It’s been called reckless, foul, and any number of other things. It is all of these things.

Senator de Lima has said that she cannot understand what satisfaction people are getting from presenting her as a sex worker and, we suppose, such a sex video showing, the video itself reportedly unreliable (I.e., it’s not her in it). Answer: It’s porn and some men get off of it. Many of us wonder why porn can even be considered as acceptable in the halls of Congress. Miriam would have a one-liner to say to that, we’re sure.

Then there’s Diwa Mitchell, a friend’s daughter who took a cab last Sunday shortly before 1:00 p.m. from Cresencia Village to Quirino Magsaysay. She reported to the police later that day that the taxi driver of aforesaid vehicle, with plate number AAU 7414, touched her leg a number of times. He also said, “I like you. You’re very pretty.”

Despite Diwa’s reply, “Don’t touch me.” – the driver would touch her leg, though she was seated behind already, take note, every time the taxi would stop for traffic. Such criminal impunity.

We really shouldn’t wonder why President Duterte has declared a state of lawlessness and violence in the country. Just look at what happens on our very streets, where – really -- our kids and we all should be travelling safely. I just bet both Miriam would have a line against violations of the rights of the regular riding public, if it isn’t already archived somewhere. Even as now we call upon the LTO to investigate Diwa's case.


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