Filipino Children smiling. Photo: www.visayans.org
ith 2018 winding down, we should all be thankful that we’re about to make it through to another year. Some of us have friends and loved ones who will no longer be around to ring in the new year like we will.
As we get older, we realize that the gift of life is truly short and precious. And such a gift must not be wasted.
The late Ferdinand Marcos’ signature slogan during the infamous martial law years was: Sa ikauunlad ng bayan, disiplina ang kailangan (for the country to progress, discipline is necessary). While there is some truth to that statement, it is not surprising that someone like Marcos would choose to use fear and repression to instill discipline on his people.
We believe a more apt slogan for Filipinos is: Sa ikauunlad ng bayan, respeto ang kailangan (for the country to progress, respect is necessary). Respect not just towards others but also towards one’s self.
They say we Pinoys are clannish to a fault, and anyone outside one’s clan hardly matters. But if we have respect for one another—everyone will be given a fair shot. Unlike today where the rich, powerful, and well-connected get all the breaks, even when they don’t deserve them.
We Filipinos also need to “unlearn” decades—even centuries—of conditioning that cause us to look down on the less fortunate and leave them to fend for themselves. We should instead see every child (be they the son or daughter of a wealthy haciendero, or a child begging in the street) as a Pinoy who can someday change the world. Those kids deserve our commitment to make sure they all have the opportunity to reach their full potential. They deserve nothing less.
As we have in the past, we will make it a point to call out those who, because of their greed, arrogance, or incompetence, short-change the Filipino people and prevent them from succeeding. There are unscrupulous individuals in government, and the private sector who amass great wealth illegally. They then use that wealth to buy power and place themselves above the law. Those people need to be called out and brought to task. At PNL, we will not shrink from this duty. Our guiding principal going forward will be respect for the Filipino. Published 12/29/2018