The truth hurts but it remains the truth. What is evil is unwanted yet evil it remains. This is exactly the predicament of the Philippines. The Filipinos are still by and large good and proper. However, a good number of their local as well as national leaders are either self-oriented or incompetent – especially those who are associated with palace comforts and possibilities. The over-all result of such a socio-political malady is obvious and palpable: The Philippines is rich in natural resources but the Filipinos by and large remain poor. The Filipinos are mostly work-oriented but jobs are few, the pay is low while the prices of consumer goods are high. The canals are full of garbage and the streets are dangerous to drive in and to walk on.
No wonder then that other nations not only in the West but also in Asia itself look down at the Philippines, considering this but a tiny, destitute, and helpless country which is wherefore good to but use but not to respect. So it is that the OFWs are looked upon as wonderful individuals to exploit but not to take seriously, much less to treat with deference. All these are painful to say, nauseating to think about, difficult to admit. To deny all these, however, would not only be futile but also hypocritical. What can be debated with sincerity and candor is the matter of degree – such are how poor and vulnerable really is the Philippines as a country, how used and exploited really are the Filipinos as Overseas Filipinos Workers.
There is even this triad of big, dangerous, and even deadly liabilities that besiege the Philippines and its people – courtesy of poor governance, notwithstanding all official protestations and paid for publications to the contrary: Criminals who have become more in number as well as openly unafraid of police authorities. Rebels who have been around for so long a time, who regularly sow havoc and even claim lives without mercy. Invaders particularly from Asia and who claim or in fact occupy territories they want even though these are within the long previously defined boundaries of the Philippines. This country is thus under attack from within and without – especially during these disturbing and trying times.
Such is some kind of a loud wake-up call to the government. No, the country, not even but Manila, is the “gates of hell” – as someone dared to think and write about. But neither is the same exactly the portals of heaven. While the Philippine socio-economic and political predicament are not al authored by the present administration, things are not better after three long years of the tenure and exercise of power. And it has three more years of governance ahead – if not less or more according to civil action or political design. No. It is not even thought of, much less required for a national leader to “walk on water.” But the same has no alternative than to walk and lead the country to a safer place to live in, to a more peaceful Nation to enjoy, a more respectable Philippines to be proud about.