What happened to ‘America’s Miriam’?

By Alex P. Vidal

“It isn’t a disgrace not to reach the stars, but it is a disgrace to have no stars to reach for.”— Benjamin E. Mays

THE Iloilo-based senior male lawyer who once used the social media to defend controversial female American lawyer Sidney Powell from accusations she was “unhinged” and “an avid believer of conspiracy theory,” must be quivering in embarrassment now that Powell has pleaded guilty to six misdemeanor charges over efforts to overturn Georgia’s election results won by President Joe Biden in 2020.

The Iloilo lawyer had lashed at Powell’s Filipino critics, including this writer, and called the 68-year-old flamboyant lawyer from North Carolina as “a genius” and “one of the most credible and bravest female lawyers in America.”

“Atty. Powell is the Miriam Defensor-Santiago of America,” wrote the Iloilo lawyer, who once served as the legal adviser of a nationally known Ilonggo female politician. “It’s easy for her bashers, especially those who don’t belong in the legal profession, to sully her reputation because they don’t have her talent.”

Powell was one of 18 people indicted alongside former President Donald Trump and is the second person to reach a deal with prosecutors. Powell’s two other co-accused also pleaded guilty as of this writing.

The senior Iloilo lawyer, who was once suspended by the Supreme Court for a domestic problem that went awry, is a look-alike of the late singer James Ingram, who popularized the 1981 hit, “Just Once.”


Powell is also believed to be one of the six co-conspirators listed in the Justice Department’s indictment of Mr. Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

According to POLITICO, Powell is a former federal prosecutor. She was raised in North Carolina and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill early, entering the university’s law school at 19.

After graduating, she worked as an assistant U.S. attorney in the western district district of Texas for nearly a decade, prosecuting cases along the border.

In 1991, Powell became a private federal appellate lawyer; she represented some of the executives at Enron, which at the time was being sued by the Justice Department.

From that experience, Powell became convinced that prosecutorial misconduct was a widespread problem, POLITICO reported in a 2020 profile.

According to Associated Press, Powell also engaged with the conspiracy theory QAnon. She was suspended from X, formerly known as Twitter, in Jan. 2021 for spreading QAnon content, and her legal defense fund accepted money from a conference featuring far-right speakers and organized by a QAnon supporter.


The following rules are useful in keeping us mentally healthy:

  1. Get plenty of rest, relaxation, fresh air, and good food.
  2. Avoid worrying excessively. Most things that people worry about seldom happen.
  3. Face your problems squarely, realistically. Be ready to make changes and adjustments in your plans to meet new situations that arise.
  4. Use up some of your excess energy and strength in interesting hobbies, sports, and other types of recreation.
  5. Do not magnify unimportant happenings into major events. Example: The fact that your friend didn’t smile and wave at you when he passed by was probably because he didn’t see you, not because he was angry at you.
  6. Seek satisfaction from those things you do well, and from those natural advantages which you possess (we all have some). Do not yearn for things that are possible only in daydreams. Do not envy others who seem to have more than you; they are probably envying you from “their side of the fence.”
  7. Set yourself a goal–certainly! But make sure that it is a realistic one–one that is within the reach of your abilities.(Source: Rules For Mental Health)


SAVING OUR PLANET. Don’t dispose. Instead of disposable dishcloths that have to be thrown away and replaced every few weeks, let’s choose cotton cloths. They will stand the test of time and can be washed and reused for many months.

Below are the 10 simple things we can do to help protect the Earth, according to the National Ocean Service:

—Reduce, reuse, and recycle. Cut down on what you throw away. Follow the three “R’s” to conserve natural resources and landfill space.

—Volunteer. Volunteer for cleanups in your community. You can get involved in protecting your watershed, too.

Educate. When you further your own education, you can help others understand the importance and value of our natural resources.

—Conserve water. The less water you use, the less runoff and wastewater that eventually end up in the ocean.

—Choose sustainable. Learn how to make smart seafood choices.

—Shop wisely. Buy less plastic and bring a reusable shopping bag.

—Use long-lasting light bulbs. Energy efficient light bulbs reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Also flip the light switch off when you leave the room!

—Plant a tree. Trees provide food and oxygen. They help save energy, clean the air, and help combat climate change.

—Don’t send chemicals into our waterways. Choose non-toxic chemicals in the home and office.

—Bike more. Drive less.

(The author, who is now based in New York City, used to be the editor of two daily newspapers in Iloilo.—Ed)