MANILA, Philippines — Women groups have slammed Rep. John Bertiz (ACTS-OFW party-list) for attributing recent bad behavior at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport to his “monthly period.”
Bertiz was seen confronting an Office of Transportation officer and refusing to take off his shoes at the airport’s final screening area prior to his departure Saturday morning. He was also seen shoving his NAIA access card in the officer’s face.
Bertiz initially claimed he had scolded the officer over a “Chinese-looking” passenger being escorted through security.
Office of Transportation Security Administrator Art Evangelista said Monday, however, that he had reviewed security footage from 30 minutes before Bertiz’s outburst and found “there’s no such incident, initially.” An investigation into the confrontation is ongoing.
‘Monthly period once a year’
In an attempt to defend his rude behavior, Bertiz said in a press conference on Monday that his “monthly period” got the better him.
Bertiz clearly does not actually menstruate, but it is common even in 2018 to ascribe emotional behavior to the monthly period.
“I’m very sorry for my actions. It’s really uncalled for as a public official. My actions at the airport were totally uncalled for,” he said in a press briefing Monday.
He added: “For the past three years that I’ve been a member of Congress, once a year namedyodapuantayo ng monthly period, di konarinpomaiaalisnataolangpo, namarupok at umiinitangulo—naiistress din satrabaho.”
(Once a year, we get our monthly period. I’m just human, who is weak and gets short-tempered and gets stressed from work.)
But women did not take his “ludicrous” excuse sitting down.
“The congressman does not seem to have read a single book on biology. He also seems to have been asleep during the last 50 years. Science has shown that this lie about women’s irrationality is just a fantasy made up by men like Bertiz to cover up that they cannot compete with most men and women,” advocacy group Every Woman said Tuesday.
Every Woman noted that Bertiz has become the norm of how government officials should behave under a “regime that thrives on misogyny.”
“Bertiz is a result of this government’s empowerment of the mean and ignorant. Who will impose a code of conduct now, when this is merely more of the same of what we have come to expect of the president?” the group said.
Rep. Emmi De Jesus (Gabriela party-list) also criticized her colleague for involving women in his arrogance.
“The issue here is his arrogance. Women should not be stereotyped as arrogant and entitled during their menstrual period,” she said.
Bertiz on Tuesday admitted that his “monthly period” remark was “stupid.
“Naging dialogue konalang ‘yunsa wife kopag may topak: ‘monthly period bangayon?’ Yeah, that was very stupid, classic question nakinapture. Sa mgahanay ng kababaihan, isa pa ‘yunnahumihingiako ng tawad,” he said in an interview on CNN Philippines’ “The Source.”
(It’s just been what I tell my wife when she’s ‘crazy’: ‘Are you on your monthly period?’ Yeah, that was very stupid… To women, that’s another thing that I’m apologizing for.)
Last week, the party-list solon was under fire for saying that those who do not know special assistant to the president Christopher “Bong” Go would not get their Professional Regular Commission license.
A video on social media also showed Bertiz figuring in a shouting match with a migrant group leader in Hong Kong.
Gaea KatreenaCabico (philstar.com)