If I were a parent who lost a child due to police brutality, the logical recourse for me is to sue the cops.
No parent deserves to lose a son or daughter, worse not in the hands of those who vowed to “serve and protect” the nation, regardless if there was a crime committed or not.
But for Sandy and Lorenza delos Santos, the first step towards achieving justice for their son Kian is be having a sense of calm. Something they only achieved on National Heroes’ Day, after meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte.
According to reports, the couple met with the President to discuss more about their plans of moving forward. Sure, there is no way that their lives will be normal again (there is no such thing as normal when you lose a family member, more so when you lose a child), but paving the path to justice was what they wanted to be assured of.
And yes, the President spelled it out to them: justice will be served.
Those words gave them a glimmer a hope, which could be seen on their faces as they did the “fist bump” pose with the President (faking the pose would be very difficult for a grieving couple, and their emotions would reflect in their gestures had they been there to spite Duterte). And from the looks of it, the road to avenging their son has formally begun.
Why only now for the Delos Santoses?
For starters, the couple and their family have not yet started to grieve. Kian’s death was quickly transformed into a media circus, with everybody jumping on the bandwagon offering a mix of condolences and uncertain assurances that justice will be given to them. Senator Hontiveros set aside psychosocial concerns for the bereaved family and friends and has now allegedly “abducted” witnesses in the hopes of bringing his case to Senate hearings. Groups from all over the country released their respective statements against the ongoing drug war, and ultimately his funeral was turned into a rally to further amplify public outcry.
But it was only the President who was able to dig further and address their burning needs. The meeting, as per Lorenza’s request, opened doors for them to start to cry over their loss, to breathe from all the unnecessary hoopla, and to start moving towards seeking justice.
Did he promise justice to be served swiftly on a silver platter? No. But his words gave them assurance that they will get that, no matter the cost. Because at the end of the day, it is still him who does the dirty work to get the job done.
To give them the sense of calm is more than enough for Sandy and Lorenza to gear up for the real battle for Kian. Was this bypassed by Hontiveros and her cohorts? Maybe. But perhaps this is also one thing that they can never ever provide.