For the second time, President Rodrigo Duterte cracked a rape joke while expressing his support for the military and his prominent supporters called him out on it.
On Friday, while vowing to support the 2nd Mechanized Infantry Brigade of the Army in terms of legal support, military hardware, and prayers, Duterte made another rape joke.
He told the soldiers not to worry about the consequences of martial law.
“If you go down, I go down. But for this martial law and the consequences of martial law and the ramification of martial law, I and I alone would be responsible. Trabaho lang kayo. Ako ng bahala,” he said, to the applause of the soldiers.
Then, he added: “Akon na ang magpakulong sa inyo. Pag naka-rape ka ng tatlo, aminin ko na akin ‘yun. Pag nag-asawa ka ng pang-apat, tang ina, bugbugin ka ng…”
The first time he made such a joke was during the presidential campaign while narrating a rape incident about an Australian missionary during the 1989 hostage by inmate Felipe Pugoy at the Davao City Police Office.
As for his recent rape joke, his supporters took to Facebook to express how it was “very offensive,” “unnecessary,” “inappropriate,” and “overboard.”
Krizette Laureta Chu said that Duterte’s “alpha male jokes” are not acceptable.
“I support Duterte and what he does for the government, but I think he needs to be reminded by people close to him that his alpha male jokes with the military regarding rape are not acceptable,” Chu said.
“He should be called out for that, because he is the President and he needs to understand that rape jokes are very offensive,” she added.
She also called the joke “inexcusable.”
“Him telling the military however that if they rape women and “ako ang bahala” is something I find inexcusable,” Chu said.
“Dear President Duterte, I love you, but please stop with the rape jokes. You are offending even some of your own women supporters. You are better than that, and that joke was completely unnecessary,” she added.
Sass Rogando Sassot called Duterte’s rape remark ‘unnecessary, inappropriate” and something that “sends the wrong message.”
Former DLSU professor Antonio Contreras urged the President to stop cracking rape jokes because “they do not add anything to [his] message.”
Blogger RJ Nieto, a.k.a. Thinking Pinoy, also called Duterte’s rape comment as “overboard.”
The Gabriela Women’s Party described Duterte’s rape joke as the “height of insensitivity.”
“Rape is not a joke. Martial Law and the heightened vulnerability to military abuse that it brings to women and children are not a joke either,” the group said.
“President Duterte must be reminded that a rape joke made even as women and children’s lives are in great danger and when liberties and basic rights are being attacked is the height of insensitivity,” they added.