Philippine Senator Risa Hontiveros gave this talk on the Seattle leg of her recent US tour. Hontiveros is a prominent leader in the fight to defend democracy and oppose corruption and impunity in government. She is a champion of women, LGBTQ, children, disability, Indigenous, student, worker, farmer, and senior citizen rights.

A former journalist, she served as the representative of the Akbayan Citizens Action Party in the House of Representatives of the Philippines from 2004-2010. In 2005, she was nominated for a Nobel Prize for her efforts on peace, diplomacy, and dialogue. Hontiveros was elected Senator in 2016. She is a key opposition figure against the Philippines current controversial drug war and continues to fight for social justice, reform and national progress through legislative work.

Senator Hontiveros toured the US to give an update on the recent Philippines midterm elections (May 13). President Duterte's allies won a sweeping victory, shutting out all opposition candidates. Known as "the Punisher," Duterte is seen by many as a violent, macho-fascist populist. He is widely condemned, locally and internationally, for a drug policy which has lead to extrajudicial killings of over 12,000 people (or more), including 54 children in the first year. Currently there are only four senators who oppose Duterte–including Hontiveros–and all have been accused by the administration of "crimes." Along with justice warriors like Hontiveros and her colleagues, a Filipino youth-lead democratic mass movement is also on the rise to block what is predicted as Duterte's move towards dictatorship.

She warned Filipinos-Americans at packed community forums up and down the U.S. west coast that the next three years will be tough for Philippine democracy and “will get worse before it gets better.”

Senator Hontiveros described the “hit-and-run” ramming of a Filipino fishing boat in the Recto Bank as a “perfect metaphor for the state of affairs in the Philippines” where President Duterte and his allies ignore or harm the public interest with impunity.

Thanks to Akbayan USA and LELO (Legacy of Equality, Leadership and Organizing) Recorded 6/25/19

Program Details
Topics Democracy, Duterte, History
Episode S8E29
Broadcast Week Jul 22nd 2019
Duration 00:57:59
Audience Rating TV-G
Genre Action
Theme Academic & Education
Language English
  On YouTube

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