‘Tulfo should learn to bite tongue’
In a recent episode of Raffy Tulfo’s public service program, “Wanted sa Radyo,” he interviewed Marimar, the biological mother of a 3-year-old girl whose badly bruised face was filmed in a video that went viral and caused public outrage.
Joining Marimar in the studio was her mother Marian, while interviewed together remotely were the girl’s father Melvin and his partner, the now infamous Berna Espina, who allegedly beat the girl up habitually, causing her two big black eyes, wounds, pinch marks, and bruises all over her body.
Marimar sought Tulfo’s help so she could be allowed to see her daughter, who was placed under the care of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). At the outset, Tulfo himself agreed with the DSWD that since the child’s father took her away from Marimar two years ago, reuniting and reintegrating the mother into the child’s life should be dealt with carefully, lest it confuses or disorients the latter. And as explained at the tailend of the segment via phone patch by Miss Lulu Rogado (OIC, protection services of DSWD Mimaropa), the psychologist and social worker attending to the girl would need just a bit more time to thoroughly assess her situation before deciding on Marimar’s request. She added that, due to the child’s delicate condition and possible sensitivity to whatever conflict there may be in her surroundings, the DSWD saw it fit to have custody of her for the time being after her hospital discharge. Anyone listening to Rogado’s sound explanations would glean that she and the DSWD were—of course!—only after the child’s best interest.
To all these, Tulfo replied, “That’s understandable.” It really should have ended there. But Tulfo went on, thinking he knew better. How exasperating listening to him talk as if he knew best in terms of what intervention or therapy the child needed. The DSWD isn’t the enemy here, that’s why his rather adversarial tone toward Rogado, who was composed all throughout, was uncalled for. How dare he undermine the authority, expertise and intention of such an agency that deals with sensitive child abuse cases! Can’t Tulfo accord such knowledgeable, capable and well-meaning people the respect and trust they deserve—and not say “bullsh*t” to them on his show?
Granted, Tulfo was speaking on behalf of Marimar who longed to be with her child, arguing that she had spent time at the hospital for a few days to care for her child who had started to call her “Mama.” Still, Tulfo should learn to bite his tongue, and just trust these people whom he himself acknowledged as “experts.”
CLAUDE LUCAS C. DESPABILADERAS, email@example.com
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