Irony to a Tee

In the Grand Theft Auto series, my favorite handheld melee weapon is the golf club.  There’s nothing like swinging the damn thing all over the place, beating civilians up for their money.  There’s also a kind of fun and enjoyable carnage to be enjoyed in it.  But when your government officials start to act like Tommy Vercetti – or if there is an allegation of it taking place in the news or in the blogosphere – I bet you have the right to be pissed off.

Caffeine_Sparks has a rather interesting entry over at Filipino Voices; apparently, Department of Agrarian Reform Secretary Nasser Pangandaman and his son, Masiu Mayor Nasser Pangandaman, beat up 56-year-old Delfin dela Paz and his son, 14-year-old Bino, at a golf course in Antipolo City.  GMA News has an interesting account of the story, and Bambee dela Paz writes an eyewitness account of what happened to her father:

We leave.  We walk to the clubhouse to file a complaint.  My brother asks for a doctor.  My dad could barely walk.  Their group comes to the clubhouse, sees my brother.  Once again my brother pleads, says sorry, and is crying.  He was CRYING, for crissakes.  But no.  The relentless mayor still punches him in the face, and then sees my dad and goes after my dad again.  Him and his friend pull my dad to the ground, pulls at his feet, and steps on him like he’s dirt.  I run to him and try to hold him back, holding him back by his shirt, while this other guy and this girl tries to stop me.  She tells me to just stop it.  I scream in her face “they’re beating my father up and you want me to stop?!”  I pull at his shirt–I don’t let go.  All I can see was my dad being trampled on.  I didn’t even see my brother getting beat up.

To be fair to the Pangandamans, I think we need to hear their side of the story.  Based from what we have to work with right now, both Pangandamans and their bodyguards beat up Delfin and Bino because of their slow playing.  The other side of the story was that the elder Pangandaman asked dela Paz to play at a faster pace in a nice way, but the latter ended up hitting the DAR Secretary with an umbrella.

A lot can be said about the issue of agrarian reform (like, say, CARP) at this point.  Heck, it’s ironic – even sarcastic – to speak of the caprices of golf when you’re running the Department of Agrarian Reform, and if you’re a mayor in one of the poorest provinces of the Philippines.  That, though, can wait for another day.

In any court of play – whether it’s a basketball court, the schoolyard, or a golf course – any elementary school student knows three basic rules that govern any and every game:

  • Play fair.
  • Play nice.
  • Wait for your turn.

In golf, discipline and sportsmanlike conduct is expected.  Whether you’re chipping away on  the sand trap or you’re putting on the green, you should always be courteous on the fairway.  Even a beginner golfer knows how to conduct himself or herself properly when on the golf course.  I don’t know if the flannel pants and the Lacoste polo shirts have something to do with the tightwad-ness of many golfers, but golf is a game that emphasizes discretion.  You don’t hurl your clubs into the manicured golfing greens, you always play the ball where it lies, and most of all, you never beat up anyone at the golf course.

Nobody, especially in the Philippines, deprives anyone of the right to re-appropriate agricultural lands to be turned into golf courses.  In golf courses and country clubs that specialize in denying access to average Filipinos, the least you could expect is to demand courtesy and respect from everyone in the course.  That is expected of everyone from our golf-happy politicians right down to the caddies who eke out a living in these places.

What pisses me off as a citizen is not as much the irony of the Pangandaman duo’s favorite pastime, but the fact that political violence – that is to say, violence that involves politicians – took place in this country.  For people who preach peace and yet engage in a pastime so ironic, the least we want right now is answers.

Unless, of course, this issue goes the way of Garci and ZTE.

30 thoughts on “Irony to a Tee

  1. Wow! Having never played golf I realize now that the golf club is a double-edged sword. It can be used to play a game of pleasure or inflict pain on others.

    May Your Glass Always Be Half Full

  2. I’m sorry but I have to say this…Golf is a gentleman’s game..so no matter how slow one is playing, no one has the right to even ask them to hasten their pace. The Dela Paz are also PAYING MEMBERS to this golf course and they deserve to play at their own speed…The family don’t need to hear Mayor’s side.. They need an apology and a good settlement..and that mayor needs to know his manners..I dont know where college he went to but that’s not how we do it in the city

  3. After the Dela Pazes had aired out in news blitzkrieg their side of the story, the Pangandamans have come out with a knee-jerk rejoinder on the issue — claiming it was the senior Dela Paz or the daughter who started the melee by hitting one of the Pangandamans with a golf umbrella… Anyone with a common sense wouldn’t dare do such provocation against a person, much less a group of male (factors), surrounded by an omnipresent, intimidating cordon of pea-sized-brain and fully-armed bodyguards — whose purpose is to rabidly, blindly serve their handlers who feed them, and to do so regardless of consequences and at all costs since they anyway shall be covered with the extended mantle of impunity. That’s how it operates here in this Banana Republic. The people involved in the fracas are neither idiots nor weaklings, regardless of how they overnight image themselves as the victims. Stop playing possum, all of you – media practitioners and bloggers included. They are no strangers to pelf, power and influence either not to immediately distinguish their own kind. The filthy rich jealously, immediately dislike in their conceited viewpoint of exclusive, monopolized self-importance their own kind. Self-love breeds contempt against all others. I also have second thoughts entertaining the side-track comments of the Pangandamans that the Dela Pazes “acted as though they owned the territory (Valley Golf).” The bone of contention was but a “few minutes of ownership” of “privilege playing rights” of Hole Number Three at the time of the dispute — where the Dela Pazes contend that it was theirs in physical possession of at the time; while the Pangandamans insisted it was theirs in the first place as they were merely lagging behind a group that was already playing holes far in advance. Both parties argued for preference and priority — with or without advertence to Golf Manual 101. That was the deal breaker that broke the spirit of the Holidays. “Love of self, amor propio, ako muna bago kayo.” Can’t and don’t blame anyone — people who do so get crucified for doing right. Flashbacks of the Rolito Go parking slot shooting and that of the similar Loyola Cemetery parking fight episode. What I am certain of is that somebody burst a short fuse, and one act of intemperance and inconsideration paved the way for more violence and arrogance. The circus is now in town. The parties involved were supposed to play the gentleman’s game of golf — but, like overgrown brats as they all are really, did some other silly, childish thing that has found them now in the limelight of exchanging brickbats in full view of the nation. Regardless against the backdrop of what is supposed to be the Happy Holidays. I leave you to elevate your love of self in full view of the amused public. We can use some pointers for life. Be that as it may, lessons shall be learned the hard and painful way for all parties concerned. Good luck on this episode where only the devil gets to win! – JVC

  4. Does anyone ever go to jail for doing this anymore? I’d be contented with banning these bullies from playing any golf course in the world for life, but I wasn’t the one beaten up. Our poor government should not tolerate bullies like these. Poor judgment of this sort makes for mediocre governing.

  5. in this incident, the dela Pazes were first given attention by the media and add that to the fact the natural tendency of many filipinos (including me) to hold prejudice against moros, my first reaction is anger at the pangandaman.

    and i am still angry at them up to this moment. secretary and mayor pangandaman should have known better and should have acted with prudence no matter and however they were provoked. they are no ordinary citizens but persons vested with responsibility by the people.

    however, i now tend to give credence to the story of the pangandamans after my friend who happens to be a member of valley golf related his brush with the dela Pazes. and so the story goes this way:

    shortly before christmas, he was practicing his putting in one of the three putting greens in vally golf. in the other putting green is bambee de la Paz also practicing putting. mind you, this family of dela pazes are terrific golf players! all of a sudden, bambee, together with her mother fanning herself like crazy, joined my friend in his putting green, stroking the house balls here and there, oblivious to the presence of my friend. golf etiquette 101: this is not beig courteous. the same issue they used against the pangandamans. fortunately my friend is no pangandaman and so the scandal happend days later and not involved my friend. after around 30 minutes of pure arrogance and “i am a champion and who are you” attitude from bambee, she and her mother left my friend in the practice green with the 12 house balls strewn all around. etiquette 101 again: this is, again, not being couteous. the ball holders clearly bore the sign “replace after use.”

    after i heard this story of my friend, he and i thought, well, the arrogant dela Pazes met their match in the equally arrogant pangandamans.

    now, we are angry at all of them for bringing their lies to the public and wasting our time!

  6. I’ve refrained writing a blog post on this issue because I have not yet heard from both sides. I agree that what the Pangandamans did was utterly devoid of humanity, but there has to be something which triggered that act, something of equivalent magnitude such as disrespect or arrogance that put out such an amplified result, i.e., hostile retaliation from someone who possesses bloated self-conceit. I fear that when an ant bites the hand our most likely action is to crush it dead.

  7. Begs the question, Pulis na Pogi, if you think that your testimony will stand in the courts to negate the credibility of the Dela Paz family, don’t do it in this blog. Tell the courts, methinks. :D

  8. marocharim,

    hehe, the hell i care about them. they have their money, they pay their lawyers. i am just expressing my second opinion about these cry babies de la pazes for asking for public sympathy in the internet. early in this brouhaha, i posted this opinion on you tube:

    “and these muklos wonder why they are being discriminated against in the urban centers? fuck them, they should be banned from going out of their sorry sefdoms. they better stay there and beat the crap out of their bullshit subjects all they want.

    and why do they need guns in a golf course? this is not lanao!

    the pangandamans are they best evidence of the saying that you can take the muklo out of their shithole but you cannot take the shit out of the muklo!

    exterminate them!!!”

    now, i realized that both parties should be exterminated! the de la pazes never thought that they will meet their match in the equally arrogant pangandamans!

    hahaha

  9. now, the official security incident report is now out! find it at http://midfield.wordpress.com/2009/01/02/valley-golf-guards-report-pangandaman-security-men-drew-guns-on-dela-pazes/

    and guess what: take a look at lines 5, 6, and 7 and let me quote (with all the typo errors):

    “but based to the statement of VGCCI marshall/ starter (mr elmer saguisa) at that time he talk already both parties but sudenly he was not expected that argument was not settled.”

    aray! now, where did this detail first appear in the blogsphere?

    answer: from the post of brianna asal above, posted on the 29th of december or 3 days after the incident and i cut and paste:

    paragraph 3, lines 7 and 8: With the said explanation, del Paz replied “Okey, kortesiya lang.”

    paragraph 6, lines 5 to 7: “Nasser Jr. reiterated to the marshall what he explained to the elder dela Paz, which his knowledge the former already accepted his explanation.”

    paragraph 8, lines 3 and 4: ” “Akala ko po, Sir, nagkaintindihan na ho tayo kanina”.

    another answer: from the post of p that only appeared yesterday, or 1 week after the incident: and i cut and paste again:

    paragraph 6, line 14 and 15: Thinking that things had been cleared up, Mr. dela Paz said, “Okay, kortesiya lang” (”Okay, just seeking courtesy“) .

    paragraph 8, line 8 to 12: During their break, the marshal approached Nasser Jr, stating that the dela Paz’s were complaining that there were five of them in their group and why they overtook the dela Paz flight. Nasser Jr. reiterated to the marshal what he had already explained to the elder del Paz, to which his knowledge the former had already accepted his explanation.

    aray again. now why are these very telling details not in bambee’s blog? it is now clear as daylight that before the fisticuffs started, even the mashalls thought that the overtaking issue was already settled! ask mashall mr elmer saguisa!

    aray! aray! aray!

    ps:

    and thanks to manuel quezon iii for marking my posts as spam and deleting them even before it is moderated. now, your pseudo-personality (leytenian) is commenting on my posts even if i cannot find it in the enties above! hahaha

  10. here is the ultimate aray for the de la pazes:

    this is the post of a certain rge in pinoygolfer.com forum. he is a member since april 2007 with 595 posts to date (he is a pioneer member i supposed, as the forum started only in end of march 2007) he placed his address as valley golf, orchard, eagle ridge so i suppoed he is personally known to many others in the philippine golfing community and is a “somebody” given his access to information sources. his preliminary statement said it all.
    http://www.pinoygolfer.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5801&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=pangandaman&start=180

    I just spent some time with the head of the fact-finding committee. He has submitted all pertinent facts to the board and leaves it to them to make the necessary decision based on all the facts. I will outline the facts to you as it was outlined to me. Rest assured that the facts were obtained from all parties involved and all witnesses at each incident site. The statements were obtained both by the valley fact-finding group and by the NBI as well. Testimonies were recorded, verified, and re-verified. Fortunately for the parties involved, there were always witnesses to give supporting statements on the events as they occurred.

    i now wonder what is take of the de la pazes and their apologists on this?

  11. for those who care to read, here is rge’s post (mabuhay si bill gates for the cut and paste technology!)

    I just spent some time with the head of the fact-finding committee. He has submitted all pertinent facts to the board and leaves it to them to make the necessary decision based on all the facts. I will outline the facts to you as it was outlined to me. Rest assured that the facts were obtained from all parties involved and all witnesses at each incident site. The statements were obtained both by the valley fact-finding group and by the NBI as well. Testimonies were recorded, verified, and re-verified. Fortunately for the parties involved, there were always witnesses to give supporting statements on the events as they occurred.

    I will compose the outline shortly as it will be lengthy but just to whet your appetite or get you thinking, you will be quite surprised with the findings. Let’s put it this way, the people we thought of as villains weren’t quite what they were depicted to be. and the supposed protagonists may have yet been quite as factual in their testimony as it turns out to be. Even our 14-year old isn’t as innocent and “prayerful” when all the details come out. just give me a few minutes….

    In the interest of making sure that no facts might be left undisclosed, I will take it upon myself to start from the very beginning. Firstly let us start by saying that on or at about 12:40 p.m., the party of the Pangandaman’s registered at the starter’s area. They registered for 2 flights comprised of 4 individuals per flight. Unfortunately, they still had 2 members of their group that had not yet arrived, so they initially tee’d off as 2 successive threesomes. The starter and marshall were informed that the 2 individuals that had not yet arrived would just catch up with them in the fairway. On or at about 1:05 p.m. the Dela Paz group registered initially as a twosome but since this isn’t normally allowed, they registered as a 3-some even if the elder Mr. Dela Paz was not really going to play.

    When the Dela Paz 3-some was playing on hole number 3, they were passed by 2 golf carts containing Mayor Pangandaman and his companion (in one cart) and the caddies being brought by one of the starter personnell. The Pangandaman’s did not ask permission to drive through because they did not want to disturb the Dela Paz’s who were in the middle of the fairway. Upon reaching the green of the 3rd hole, Mr. Dela Paz asked the caddie why the people in the cart just went through. Mayor Pangandaman who was already positioned at the 4th hole, personally informed Mr. Dela Paz that they were part of 2 foursomes. At this point, Mr. Dela Paz said “ah okay, courtesy lang naman”. This was verified by the caddies. Mr. Pangandaman said that he did not disturb them anymore because the player was about to hit. At this point, Mayor Pangandaman thought everything was okay so he proceeded to the 4th hole (Par 3) where his other flightmates were. In the records it says that Mr. Pangandaman was not yet even done pitching into the green when a ball landed near his 8-year old child so they immediately made sure the child was secured in the cart. ( For those unaware of the common practice at Valley Golf, on every par 3, the group behind you is signaled to hit into the green once everyone from your group is already on the green) Until you have been cleared to hit by the group ahead, you should not hit into the green. It is common sense and basic precautionary procedure.

    In this particular case, we have no corroborative testimony. One set of caddies say they were given clearance, while the other say that no clearance was given as of yet when the ball/s had landed.

    The Pangandaman’s claim that the same situation happened in the 5th hole (Par5). Even the caddied confirmed this. At this time, Bambee Dela Paz had called the Marshall to tell him that the flight behind them was complaining about why their pace was slow and that the cause of the delay was the 5-some in front of them. Shortly thereafter, a marshall on his motorcycle appeared and approached the Pangandaman’s and asked if they were playing as a fivesome to which the Mayor said no. “We are 2 foursomes”. Nonetheless, the Pangandaman’s had already agreed among themselves that they would rather the Dela Paz’s play through. The Mayor was even quoted saying to his Father. ” magagaling yung mga bata at malakas pumalo, baka mabagalan sa atin” They informed the marshall that they would just let the Dela Paz group play through and the marshall informed the Mr. Dela Paz of this. ( Just as an aside, the investigative group actually asked the group behind Dela paz if indeed they had complained about the slow down and the group said that the y said no such thing to the Dela paz flight. They were not even in contact at anytime before they arrived at the tee house to see the fight and eventually help stop it) When the Delapaz group reached the green of hole 5, the caddies of the 2 kids gave them their drivers so that they would waste no time playing through. The Mayor, who at that time was sitting along with their companions, stood up to personally tell Mr. Dela Paz to play through. Caddies, and the tee house server claim that the Mayor told Dela Paz na “Mauna na ho kayo” and walked to approach Dela Paz, The response of Dela Paz was “Huwag mo akong pagtaasan ng boses” Dela Paz began to question the Mayor why they were playing as a fivesome. The Mayor said that this was not the case but Dela Paz was insisting and even said (again corroborated by the caddies) “Linoloko mo ba ako?” “Member ka ba dito, Kilala mo ba ako?” (as you can see, this question did not come from Pangandaman. In fact, in the recorded testimony, this is exactly what Pangandaman claimed delapaz had said to him and yet in Delapaz’ recorded statement, he never said that the mayor asked him ” kilala mo ba ako” Completely different from when the media was already involved.

    When Delapaz was posing the above question, the mayor was heard to say. “Sandali lang, hindi naman tayo nagaaway dito. Akala ko ba naayos na natin yung issue kanina sa hole 3? At about this point Delapaz closed his umbrella and then poked the mayor on his stomach using the pointed end ( some caddies say Dela Paz swung the umbrella and some say that he poked the Mayor) The investigative board asked Dela Paz what he did, he said that he poked the Mayor in self defense. When asked who was attacking him, Dela Paz said that he was being surrounded by 4 men. The caddies and other witnesses on hand said that when the umbrella incident happened, it was only Dela Paz and the mayor that were talking. The other parties were in the tee house about 15-20 yards away. The Mayor says he was poked and so he backed off and just as he was about to be poked again, his brother, Hussein ran and attacked Delapaz and hit Delapaz knocking him to the ground.( At this point the commotion took place. One of the things observed is 14-year old Bino hit the Mayor with his driver. Apparently, the mayor parried with his forearm and hand so this is where he sustaned the injury. In the process also, Hussein was being pulled off the older dela paz by his 2 children but again Bino was seen to hit Hussein in the face and head while Bambee had scratched the other side of Husseins face. At this time also, witnesses say, that 3 or 4 other members of the flight excluding the Secretary, the 8-year old boy, and the girlfriend of Hussein were involved in attacking or subduing the older dela paz but this lasted very shortly and when the combatants had been separated the existing people in the tee house as well as the new flight that was playing behind the dela paz’s.

    At this point the Secretary told the delapaz group to leave so as to avoid any more trouble. As the elder delapaz was leaving he was heard calling someone on his cellphone saying ” may away kami, pumunta kayo dito”
    No one knew who delapaz was speaking to as he walked away towards the main clubhouse. A few minutes later, the secretary and his group decided to end the day instead of continuing to play. When they got to the clubhouse, Hussein wanted to wash up because he was bleeding in the neck area. As he got near the reception area, he saw delapaz and was heard to have said “O, nandito pa pala kayo” to which Dela Paz said “Hindi pa tapos ito gaganti pa kami”. At this point, Bino got in between his Dad and Hussein while saying ” Tatandaan ka namin” (None of the witnesses in the clubhouse, and there were many, ever saw Bino kneel and say that he was only 14 years old at maawa na sila) On the contrary, Bino was acting like anything but a helpless child. He sounded tough, angry, and antagonistic enough that the fight broke out again. At this point, the bodyguards of the Mayor ran into the clubhouse via the poolside entrance. When questioned about this, the mayor said that one was his driver and the other was his “Yayo”. As far as the board was concerned, the “Yayo” was also a bodyguard. Said Yayo came into the clubhouse with a clutchbag containing a gun and brought out the gun without pointing it at anyone. The Mayor immediately instructed him that there was no need for guns and the gun was put back. During the investigation, the Mayor said that the handgun was his and that his “yayo” was likely going to give it to him but he declined. Upon instructing his “yayo”, the man just stayed in one corner. At this time the wife of Dela Paz and his other son arrived. The son was wielding a baseball bat and the wife had a knife which she pulled out of a scabbard. These two were subdued by security but they were verbally threatening the Pangandaman’s during this time. There was also a reported incident where the driver of the mayor ran out and came back with a suitcase containing a supposed armalite as claimed by valley security. The driver never pulled it out or pointed it at anyone but it was readily accesible

  12. and here is what the site admin of pinoy golfer.com says about the post of rge:

    “Great account of the incident, Ray. My compliments. I heard the same details third-hand from my sources. I agree with the others; Mr. de la Paz was foolish to pick a fight with his children present.”

    aray, aray, aray!!!

  13. may isang linya pa pala ang site admin ng pinoy golfer.com:

    The revelation of these facts cast a severe shadow on the Bambee’s blog, don’t they?

    aray uli!

  14. I believe that fighting broke out at the Valley Golf Club among the Pangandaman group and the Dela Paz group. I also believe that weapons were brought into the fray, and that blood was spilled. But I do not believe that we are hearing the whole truth about this incident.

    Because of the backlash that was generated by Bambees blog, the Pangandamans are hard put to defend themselves against a tidal wave of animosity and disgust from all sides. But the pieces of the puzzle are not yet complete, and we must realize that there are always two sides to every story. We are quick to complain and condemn, even before seeing the whole picture.

    Oftentimes, we find it easier to believe the words of a pretty lass rather than the protestations of adult men. In this particular case, we must choose between believing the accusations of a girl student athlete or the denials of a politician and a government official. Who do you think will be more believable?

    In an effort to present a more accurate view (perhaps) of what really transpired during that fateful day at the Valley Golf Club, I have created a page in my blog (http://www.thisismylife.info/is-this-the-truth/) which aims to share some information I have gathered from a separate website. I ask you to read the transcript carefully, and then to make your own conclusions regarding this issue.

  15. i wonder what is the next thing that the de la paz apologists will say, now that valley golf expells Dela Paz and only suspends for two years the dar chief.

    valley golf concluded that de la paz instigated the fight!

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