Election Madness in the Philippines

This year, 2016, is perhaps one of the most crucial years for Filipinos. After almost six years of service of the incumbent administration, it is now time for electing new officials.

It is just weeks away before the Election Day and political campaigns are getting intense, and well, terrible as it approaches.

During these times, I can’t help but wonder why Filipino supporters of some politicians are getting immersed on knocking down the rivals of their bets.

It is just really, really awful. Why can’t we just support our candidates without dragging anyone down? Why can’t we stop making issues out of nothing?

And it is even harder to face the bold truth:

we are desperate.

Desperate, it really is a complex word for this issue.

First, we are desperate for change. Not that it’s a bad thing, but the sad part here is that we have different definitions of change. Maybe it’s why we are struggling to attain the zenith of success that we have been waiting for long.  We should have, first, look at the same direction, have the same perspective.

Second, we are hungry for power. We, nowadays, have been desperate to put justice in our hands. We want to make a whole new different story, a new society. We have learned that we should not just lay our backs but take actions.

Third, we are desperate for ideals. We always tend to compare political candidates to their deceased relatives. We want a leader who is close to perfection.

Fourth, we are desperate for attention. We often do things that will make a national or global noise. We want to set trends, we want to be different, we want to be unique, we want to be on top. But too much of these can lead to much bigger problems. Being desperate for attention would lead to trouble or violation of some laws and/or human rights. We want our candidates win so we seek attention and degrade their rivals.

Fifth, most of us are desperate for temporary enjoyment. Some politicians take advantage of the people’s shortcomings, especially the poor. Bribery has been rampant these days. There’s a lot of new gimmicks to buy votes of the poor. Desperate people take desperate measures, right? Being desperate for a small amount of money is a big NO. People who do not have the right reasoning will surely end up regretting. What is the value of a 500 peso bill on a term of a politician for at least three years of corruption? A dishonest person in a small thing will also be surely dishonest in big things.

Last, we choose to be desperately divided. Every time I watch television or surf the internet and come across political issues, I would see how most of the Filipinos regard one another as either “yellow” or “red” and some other colors. In the Philippines, yellow and red are almost synonymous to “Aquinos” and “Marcoses”, the two of the most influential political families in the country. I often read some interactions like:

Sayang siya. Magaling sana ngunit makadilaw kaya mahina.” “He’s a waste. He is great but he’s yellow (Pro-Aquino) so he’s weak.”

“Pula iyan. Mayaman kasi kurakot.” “He’s red (Pro-Marcos). He’s rich because he’s corrupt.”

Or something like that. 

We judge according to colors. We let– choose ourselves to be divided. We choose to be unreasonable.

Continue reading “Election Madness in the Philippines”

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