The College Editors Guild of the Philippines extends its sincerest condolences to Christine Dacera’s families and friends.
Dacera, a flight attendant, was found unconscious in the bathtub of a Makati City hotel after celebrating the new year. She was rushed to a near-hospital but was declared dead-on-arrival. According to the police’s initial autopsy reports, there were indications Dacera was sexually abused wherein at least 10 suspects could be charged with rape and homicide.
Dacera’s death spurred calls for justice and condemnation of rape and victim-blaming.
In our country where a macho-fascist tyrannical rule of President Rodrigo Duterte exists, continuous victim-blaming and sexual abuses against women will persist as long as monsters and the system of these horrendous actions are not accountable and smashed. Duterte himself has been known to drop sexist remarks and rape jokes into his public speeches.
Weeks before he was proclaimed president in 2016, Duterte wolf-whistled at a female reporter during a national broadcast press conference, kissed a married Filipina woman on the lips in front of a large audience in South Korea, and publicly ordered to shoot a female New People’s Army (NPA) in the vagina, and declared that he wanted to rape a “beautiful” Australian missionary.
The instances stated above by the president are damaging enough for women to encourage the patriarchy that holds women down. Sexual harassment, too, is often an oversight. Unsurprisingly, Duterte is a “sexist-and-misogynist-in-chief” and a no-president for the Filipinos who instigate violence against women.
As we continue to seek justice for the death of Dacera and all victims of abuse, we must unite and rise to the challenge against all forms of violence and fight for genuine emancipation. Listen to the cries of every victim. Hold perpetrators into account. Smash the patriarchy.