I believe that squatters are the reason why this country is hard up in rising to the heights that it supposed to reach. Aside from reducing the elections in this country into a contest of who can give them food for a day, these squatters are also the epitome and illustration of the worst Filipino trait: “Lulusot kung pupwedeng makalusot.” Just like the jeepney and tricycle drivers that many of them are, they will only follow the rules if somebody enforces it upon them. Turn your eyes for a moment and they will be like mice left alone by the cat. In another analogy, in that timeless illustration of the bayanihan spirit where people carry a bahay kubo in their shoulders, these squatters are the ones who hang on to the trusses, further adding weight to the load instead of carrying it.
Squatters know that what they are doing is wrong. Looking at the sidewalks, they know that it is wrong to construct anything in it. But these very same criminals will ask for a court order once somebody attempts to demolish their houses. But did they care to get a building permit in the first place? These people will always interpret the law in their favor and you can see the politicians kowtowing to them because of the votes (for sale) that they supposedly command. Manila City and Quezon City politicians are the most notorious in this MO with many elections for the mayoralty race decided by the swing votes from the squatters area.
I remember another episode also in ABS-CBN where one of the guests was QC District II Representative Winston Castelo. Castelo was insinuating that arson may be behind the several fires that happened in squatter areas because he noted that the owners appear to be ready to move in and reoccupy their lands by fencing it and posting guards after the fires. He further said that because of this, he is mulling of crafting a law prohibiting these acts by the land owners.
This style of Castelo is the “style na bulok” that is reflective of the mindset of many Quezon City and Metro Manila politicians. This is the very reason why Quezon City, specifically District II that Castelo represents, is the undisputed kingdom of squatters. Incidentally, District II QC hosts the House of Representatives. (I am wont to ask, could it be that this phenomenon is just a way of the area to keep up with the reality that the biggest kingdom of criminals, robbers, and squatters in this country is located in those four buildings inside the National Government Center Compound, Constitution Hills, Batasan Road, Quezon City? But that is another story.) Castelo wants to be popular with the squatters. But is it not that there is an existing law that prohibits constructions without the corresponding permits? Even fencing needs a permit. So why is it that the squatters can re build their illegal houses without any permits but the owners who have the required permit can’t?
Squatters are the real scums of the society. They are the textbook example of people who do not fight fair. Their reason “kapit sa patalim” just doesn’t cut it anymore (pun intended). Just look around the squatters area: many of those people there are only renters who pay to “owners” of the houses. Perfect example of professional squatters as defined in that stupid Lina Law. Even inside many big police camps, policemen themselves are paying rent to civilian "house owners" people who in the first place have no right to be there!