“Nobody informed me”, we can still remember that infamous line by Christopher Lao when he was complaining about the Quezon City flood on national TV.
Before the cancel culture swarmed the internet, Christopher Lao was one of the victims of this in 2011 during Typhoon Kabayan.
It all started when his car floated after driving through the waist-deep flood in Quezon City. A journalist from 24 Oras interviewed Lao, who expressed his utmost frustration of why MMDA didn’t put road barriers in that particular street. He also mentioned that he could’ve been informed that the flood is already that deep.
This snippet of the report went viral on social media, making him one of the original victims of social media abuse.
In the Machong Chismisan Podcast, he revealed that he didn’t like the tone of the GMA reporter, which made his answers sound arrogant on TV.
“Ang bastos kasi nung tanong eh. Syempre hindi naman nila ilalabas ‘yun sa clip kung paano s’ya magtanong. [Pero] wala s’ya masyadong tanong tungkol sa baha. ‘Yung mga tanong nya is more on, ‘di ba dapat alam mo nang may baha sa Pilipinas?”
This interview trended on Twitter both nationwide and worldwide. He was labelled as the “bobong lumusong sa baha” on social media platforms. On top of that, eagle-eyed netizens also dug up his UP Law background that heightened the vicious smart-shaming attacks towards him. This made him feel worthless that the thought of killing himself even crossed his mind.
“Hindi rin naman madaling grumaduate ka ng summa cum laude ng undergrad sa UP Diliman para lang masabihan ng bobo. Imagine mo, ‘yung pinagkukunan ko ng lakas nawala so might as well, patayin ko na lang ‘yung sarili ko,” he shared.
Lao also mentioned that, “Kinailangan kong umalis ng bansa. Hindi alam ng lahat kung gaano kalala ‘yung pinagdaanan ko. Hindi ako makakain, hindi ako makatulog. Akala ko ang galing galing ko pero wala pala akong kwenta. And I was always rejected by law firms.”
In the two-part episode of his “Machong Chismisan” guesting, Lao admits that he might be sabaw during that time. Lao was reviewing for the Bar exam when he miscalculated the depth of the flood.
“Sabi nga nila, kapag nagre-review ka for the Bar, hindi naman maiintindihan ng mga tao ‘yun. ‘Yung pressure and tsaka kung ano ‘yung nangyayari so siguro halo-halo na rin [‘yung nasa utak ko noon.]” Christopher Lao said.
Fast forward to 2021, he is now a lawyer and has been an advocate against cyberbullying and cancel culture in the Philippines.
Listen to “Machong Chismisan” S11E08 Part 1 and Part 2 on Spotify for FREE. Machong Chismisan is the longest-running comedy podcast hosted by Makoy Pare, Ingo Cruz and Tito P under the biggest podcast network in Southeast Asia, Podcast Network Asia.