Paano na ang bukas?

by Resia Ann Occidental

I have lived in the Philippines for 17 years. I spent my time walking on the soil of the my Mother Country. However the real question is, have I ever contributed for my country? Am I curious and interested enough to be called a rightful citizen of the Philippines? Have I placed enough value for the freedom my heroes fought for, or am I just taking it for granted? 

The Philippines is known to be a 3rd World country. Corruption have never really subsided and has always been an issue to the country. The election period has been a time of concealing what the players do not want the public to notice and see. Money is used in order to win the votes of those who are below the poverty line. Due to poverty, those people will forget about the importance of their votes and accepts the money in order to somehow answer to the calling of their empty stomachs. What bothers me is that people keep on saying “Do not take the money, and vote wisely” however those people are not the ones who starve all day and hear their children cry due to hunger. They do not seem to understand the situation those people are in that leads them to take the money that will help them get through the day. I am not saying that using money in that manner is good, what I am saying is that before we command other people to do something, let us first consider the circumstances we are in. Honestly speaking, the society is made up of many levels in different aspects. Before being mister or miss know-it-all, let us first be sensitive to other people. In order to solve a problem, we must first find out the roots of it.

I am aware that a country would not exist or survive without receiving and/or giving out help from others. However with the case of the Philippines, I think we became overly dependent on other countries. We are like a baby being trained by other people how to walk, rather than our parent. In this manner, we lose our sense of independence, we miss the chance of having things our own ways. I truly believe we have what it takes, and we Filipinos know that, we are just afraid of taking the step and the risk. Yet how will we grow without taking the risk?

Another bothering thing for me is the way how people rant non-stop and command other people what to do. However, they themselves do not know how to walk the talk. I guess it is never really a question of what you know and say about your country, but what you know and do for your country.

The Philippines also is a majestic country. It bothers me that not everyone sees it the way it should be. To describe it using the modern definition, it like a girl waiting for a guy to notice the good qualities she has yet the guy is too obsessed with a foreign beauty. The Philippines can offer more, the publicity is just not enough for it to garner attention from the people both foreign and local. To add to this beat, fact that those “foreigners” who go here for vacation appreciates the Philippines more than its natives is bothering. We work so hard to get out of this country and serve other nations. What now will happen to the future generations? Will we just all fly and leave our country in vain? Who will be there to tell the kids that the “Filipinos are worth dying for”? Who will continue telling the stories about the Philippines? We admire and love other countries too much we forget to give some to our own. 

Nowadays, we give great recognition to our heroes, to those who fought with their lives and sacrificed in order to give us what we have and cherish right now. We also have those heroes, our soldiers. The soldiers who put mud on their faces, who put riffles on their bodies, who pull the trigger without hesitation, and who doubtlessly take a bullet in order to save the lives of the many. It bothers me to think that they die in vain, they leave their families behind weeping, yet they  are not given the rightful recognition. Come to think of it, when a famous personality is hospitalized, the people will be so eager to know its details. Yet when a soldier dies, no one, to be honest, really pays much attention. That soldier who have taken a bullet may have spelled the difference between war and peace if he did not do so. It also bothers me to think that they are not given enough salary and weapons to fight while other people buy condo units that is worth a material that could protect civilization. I think we should pay more attention to people who are really dedicated to their country, and not much to those who are taking advantage of the society.

Let us not be hypocrites, the bothersome cases I have written above are also applicable to ourselves at times. It bothers me to think that the beauty of the Philippines is clouded by the wrongdoings of its people. Decades ago we, Filipinos, dethroned our conquerors because of our love for our country. We had enough of what they were doing to us so we fought through swords and pens. However, it seems that right now we are not in a battle against other bloods; we are fighting our own people, we are fighting with ourselves. 

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