Laugh with me. A recent report from the Inquirer online seems to confirm my observation that Proclamation 1017 had a “chilling effect,” not on media or the ordinary citizens, but on government functionaries, including the police, instead. Excerpts from the report:
“IF Proclamation No. 1017 had any "chilling effect" on the media at all, the police said they didn't see it. In fact, said Senior Supt. Samuel Pagdilao, it was he who got spooked.
"No, I don't think [I saw] any chilling effect on media," Pagdilao said, citing the way reporters based in Camp Crame had grilled him day after day during the week the state of national emergency was in effect.
"Did you develop fear? I don't think so. It was I who got afraid every time I faced you, guys. It seemed like it was me who felt this 'chilling effect.'"
"Every time, it seemed like you were going to barbecue me with your questions," he quipped.
Turning serious, Pagdilao said the police observed that the media "became more responsible in the exercise of freedom [during the national emergency]."
The police also believed the media had been fair, at least during the past week. "Fairness is one [thing] we saw. We have been given the same space. The newspapers, all the media outlets, were asking us for interviews to get our side. And there was this insistence to speak out the truth by means of counter-checking with us," Pagdilao added.
There you go. The "state of emergency" has become so funny. I guess that's the real reason why President Arroyo had to lift if earlier than expected.
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