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Bacolod City, Philippines Wednesday, October 4, 2017
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Twinkling
with Ninfa Leonardia
OPINIONS

Trump today's Nero?

Ninfa Leonardia American president Donald Trump lashed out at those who criticized him for playing golf in his new golf club on Saturday, and on Sunday also attended another golf event while the crisis over Puerto Rico was going on. Well, even history told us about Emperor Nero who played his fiddle while Rome was burning. So why can't Donald Trump play golf while the people of Florida, Texas and Puerto Rico are still trying to recover from the devastation brought by Hurricane Maria? Anyway, he dedicated the winner's trophy in the Liberty Golf Club to the victims.

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The Las Vegas police swiftly traced the perpetrator of the massive shootings that killed more than 50 concert-goers near the plush Mandalay Bay Hotel, but did not get any satisfaction for their success, because the suspect, all right, let's call him the murderer, had also killed himself with one from the stacks of weaponry he had with him in that hotel room. The man identified as Stephen Paddock, must have been very familiar, or influential with the hotel staff to be able to bring into his room all those guns with which he fired at random on the crowd watching the concert.

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Although the circumstances were not the same, somehow, the crime reminds us of what happened at the Resort World Casino in Manila where a desperate gambling addict was also able to bring a gun to the gambling area and start a fire that caused the death of several players and staff. The man also holed himself up in a room at the casino hotel and killed himself. How do psychologists explain the motivations of people who do that – kill others before killing themselves?

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Recall that the mass killings in Paris also took place at a concert hall, and the one in Great Britain also happened while a noted entertainer was showing her wares. Is there something about concerts that bring out the killer instinct in those people? An interesting thing about the Las Vegas mass murder is that the man blamed for it was said to be linked to a Filipino, or Fil-Am woman. But she is lucky, police have reportedly cleared her of any connection with the crime.

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One can imagine the excitement in Saudi Arabia with the announcement that their king had lifted the ban on women drivers. For so many years, with all the freedoms enjoyed by the so-called weaker sex in other countries, Saudi Arabia, with its wealth in oil, has maintained a ban on females driving vehicles, probably considering it unwomanly. But their leader now is probably more broadminded than predecessors, and has given them the go-signal to have and drive their own vehicles.

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The news prompted many changes, too. Now a university is offering driving classes for girls to prepare them for June next year when the order of King Salman takes effect. How the women must love the king for this. Seems it won't be long before other privileges are granted to Saudi womenfolk, maybe even allowing them to go around bareheaded. Now the big car manufacturers from the United States and Japan are focusing on women as potential purchasers of their products.

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Meanwhile, how can the government even think of going on with the supposed “peace talks” with the leaders of the rebel group comfortably ensconced in The Netherlands? Back home, ambushes not only on soldiers and cops continue, and lately, even foreigners who could be tourists, have even been subjected to them. It does look as if the head does not know what the tail is doing, or vice versa. While the alleged top guns are talking about peace, their underlings, who seem to have taken matters into their own hands, continue their business of attacks, ambushes and destruction. One can only wonder if they even communicate now.

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I am sure a lot of people have read or heard the (true) story about some policemen who had a shootout over a toothpick in Metro Manila that got into a national daily. Seems this young cop who was in a restaurant went to the table occupied also by cops, and took a toothpick from a container there. One of the policemen resented this and got angry, and they wound up in a shootout. Last Monday, at the Casa Italia resto, my sister asked a waiter for a toothpick twice, but it was never delivered. Fortunately for that waiter my sister did not have a gun!*

 

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