It was discussed in our class that even if we are in a democratic country, we should also keep in mind that we are part of the list of the “top 10 most corrupt governments” in the world. Needless to say, we are a country ran by the allure of money and the luxury that goes with it.
During elections, there are hundreds of news beats and articles covering vote buying, be it during elections affecting respective baranggays to the ones that affect the whole country. There would always be bloodshed, lives lost and back stabbing just so a candidates gets to become a “public servant”. It was only recently when we got to prove why exactly they want to be “public servants”. They are in it for the money. Just like Napoles, Erap and the rest of the members of the government who are involved. Name dropping is something the group opt to do because it is no secret that the aforementioned government officials have been charged of getting government money (an amount which we didn’t think we actually had) for their own good.
Democracy in the Philippines feels like it is wasted on the Filipinos. Media is controlled by large monopolies, government is controlled by money. Once action is taken against a powerful person, it is as if we live in the time during Martial Law. If you go against, or even expose the truth about the people “up there”, it will come to no surprise if tomorrow, you are missing. Their power makes them untouchable, which makes it hard for us to exercise our democracy. We live by their rules and just go with the flow, but still complain 24/7 on the “bulok na sistema ng gobyerno.”
For our government project, we wish to address this issue on democracy. It is not enough to call the Philippines a democratic country. Rather, the Filipinos must act upon this and think about democracy not just as a term, but as a privilege.
In this issue, the whole country is involved: students, professors, government officials, professionals, fisherfolk, farmers, policemen, members of the youth, the working class, senior citizens. Each individual has a power and role s/he holds upon to be able to exercise democracy. Now the question is, are they all willing to get out of their comfort zone and risk what they have to be able to seek change? This is exactly why we need to know the true essence of democracy and why we need to step out of our comfort zone. We are not only doing this for the people, but also for us. The betterment of the country and the state of being we wish to achieve as individuals lies on the decisions we make. We have the freedom to make these decisions.
As stakeholders of the democratic society, our involvement will lead us to what we want to achieve for our country and our countrymen: that is to fully enjoy the privilege of democracy.