Solano Stories

An Invitation To Death

Written By: Rex Solano - Oct• 22•14

What if Jeffrey “Jennifer” Laude had been honest to herself by divulging her true sexual identity admitting to PFC Pemberton that she is a transgender or had she not led a life of lies, deception and chicanery, would there be any fortuity or probable chance that she will be alive today? The burden of the crime committed by Private First Class Joseph Scott Pemberton, a member of the United States Marine Corps does not warrant him to be rebuked nor to be solely faulted for the killing of Jennifer Laude. It takes two to tango and there was a culpable contributing factor on the part of the victim by covering her true identity through way of deceit by masquerading as a female. We don’t really know what happened on that fateful night of October 11 at the Celzone hotel. We can only build an argument and for good measures, sympathize with Jennifer and reprobate PFC Pemberton for his action. But the question here in this murder case is, what triggered PFC Pemberton, the perpetrator to commit such a heinous crime ending the life of Jennifer? I read some articles of the columnist and every one of them were merely writing in a speculative way, supposition and conjectural theory of how Jennifer met her bizarre and gruesome death. I could only assume that Jennifer was killed because when PFC Pemberton found out that Jennifer was a transgender, he refused to pay for the service. Imagine what a big disappointment that was on the part of PFC Pemberton that a “sexual delight” had turned out to be a “horny-fying” frustration to not able to sexually engage in his desirable moment of chance. And when Jennifer found out that she will not get any payment from PFC Pemberton, an argument ensued. But little did Jennifer know that PFC Pemberton is a Black Belt instructor, Karate-Judo expert and Jujitsu. I would say that Jennifer messed with the wrong Marine and thus sadly, she met her death from a man who was enraged with fury and anger. There’s no other scenario we can be able to write a script on, in this horrible tragedy but to conclude that a disappointed Pemberton was bothered with the idea that Jeffrey also known as Jennifer was trying to ridicule and mock his macho image. Or perhaps, Pemberton did not also like the idea that he was tricked and cheated. Whatever the reasons why Jennifer was murdered we can only sympathize that a life was lost and perhaps the career of a young enlisted man who could have had a bright future in the United States Marine Corps is now “kaput’ to the sadness and heartache of his family back in America.
Filipinos have a penchant mood of getting too emotional over the death of Jeffrey also known as Jennifer. Critics and dissenters or even anti-Americans immediately called for the scrap of the Visiting Force Agreement ( VFA) without studying the impact and consequence that may come about to their own people. President Aquino was right and I agreed with him that the “sin of one person should not be reflective of his entire country.” History was already written that in the year 1992 when the Armed Forces of United States departed Subic Bay, so many people in Olongapo had complained about the changes of their livelihood. As the Subic Bay mayor said ‘ marami pong nagugutom ” ( Too many people were hungry) The Filipino people need the American presence in the Philippines especially now that a neighboring country like China keeps on bullying the Philippines in its own quest of taking over the Spratly island. Name any other country that is quick to respond when Philippines are devastated with typhoons, flood and other sort of calamities. Americans being a helpful, generous and compassionate nation always stands by its allies willing to safeguard and protect the welfare of its friendly nation. The death of Jennifer however, had not lessened nor threatened the national security of the Philippines. After the murder of Jennifer, the populace of Subic Bay found out those restaurants, disco and karaoke bars and other business establishments had turned into a ghost town. Military personnel were not allowed to share and spend their last dollars in the busiest nightlife of Subic Bay. Oh yes, Filipinos might have mourned the death of Jennifer, but then again, what about the people of Subic Bay who also are deprived of their livelihood in the event the Philippine government has to abrogate the VFA? The spurious moments of anger will linger for as long as we mourn the death of Jennifer, but let us not be too emotional and get carried away by prostituting the freedom and democracy of our own people. The crime committed by PFC Pemberton does not constitute the willful deprivation or even implicate other means of living for the Filipino people to sever ties with United States by abrogating the VFA but strictly, expeditiously and decisively, the Philippine Court must act and seek justice for the death of Jeffrey “Jennifer” Laude, and justifiably only for that purpose.

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