Monday, September 04, 2006

magic of charter change

Cheating, lying and stealing would be open atrocities of the past. Poverty and hunger would be gone for good. Employment would be abundant and the economy would be bloom. There would be education for all. No woman or child would ever be again exploited. Disregard for human dignity, violation of human rights and waste of human lives would be but a bad dream. In short, now it can be said with sanity and truth: charter change would make the Philippines an enchanted kingdom—with super regions due to super governance that would no longer need to sell with super maids.

With charter change, the following national blessings are also fervently predicted: there would be socio-political unity productive of national peace and prosperity. Public office would be truly a public trust. Public welfare would be real government priority. Public funds would be duly accounted to the tax paying public. The political community would be at the service of the civil community. The ordinary citizens would no longer be expected to bow in awe and subservience before their powerful local and national political leaders. In other words, with charter change, this country would be veritable heaven and earth!

Really?

The National Leadership pushing for charter change remains suspect in honesty and integrity. Those singing the praises of charter change are not altogether free of personal interests and ulterior motives. The much acclaimed “People’s Initiative” is anything but the people taking the initiative. And in case this “People’s” approach does not work, the “Constituent Assembly” by, of and for those now precisely in tenure of power, is already being contemplated and arranged.

Something must be wrong somewhere in all this intense craving of the present officialdom for a charter change—no matter the means, whatever the costs. It goes without saying that the people who made the fundamental law of their country, can and may change this at their own popular option. The question is why they are adamantly told to change it—even if they do not really know why. And why they are also being told that changing their charter is the answer to all their worries and woes, their misery and anxiety.

It is incongruous to give a new car precisely to a bad driver. Building a new one for those who do not know how to care for a house is an exercise in futility.

+O. V. CRUZ, D.D.
6 September 2006