Sunday, December 12, 2004

open letter to young people

We your elders ask for your forgiveness. At the same time, we also give you a challenge.

We ask you to please forgive us.

We have failed you in many ways, especially in making your country a better place for you to live in. It was already poor before you were born. But now it is even poorer. It was already “magulo” before you were brought into the world. But now, the country is even more “magulo”. We took you for granted. We gave you bad examples. We forgot you were watching us.

We did not take local and national issues seriously. We considered infidelity, dishonesty and corruption as a matter of fact of life. We allowed drugs to destroy you and dirty movies to introduce you to immorality. We looked at gambling as a part of life. And while we know what was wrong and what should be done, we said nothing, we did nothing. We behaved exactly as the three proverbial monkeys who see nothing, hear nothing, say nothing. We are sorry. We honestly resolve to do better.

But we also give you a challenge.

You are strong, idealistic and courageous. You have so much to give to your families, your communities, your nation. Do not sell your honor and integrity. Keep the truth and live by it. Never exchange your honesty and decency with money, authority or power. These come and go in the course of time. Your person and your conscience stay with you for life—even hereafter and beyond.

Our country is in dire need of upright leaders, honest politicians, genuine leaders. And these are you yourselves in due time. Prepare yourselves to inherit the land and to lead the people to what is good, true and just. Once you are resolved to do these, then we your elders can leave you in peace and at rest.

God bless, guide and keep you all!

29 October 2000