by jun asuncion
The year 2010 is finally here- and lucky are those who survived because 2009 was a year of calamities and human tragedies for the Filipinos.
Still, the tired Filipinos have the right to wish for a better year this time, a year with less natural devastations and a new national leadership that would give them back the face of dignity that they have lost and inspire them to continue fighting for the virtues they dearly hold.
Hence, this new year is our chance to go a step forward by choosing a president that has a stately character and the intelligence that’s focussed on how to improve our situation. That’s why choose freedom first above everything else and then choose your president this year.
I can no longer imagine another four or eight years of weak national leadership , another years of deception and series of insult to the Filipino mind. That’s why be wise this time, protect your mind, consider a bigger cause and then choose your president this year.
The Philippines is still not the nation we have envisioned. It is deep within it fragmented and has no direction- the reason why there is no peace and progress.
Though we may proudly declare ourselves anytime and anywhere of being friendly and hardworking Filipinos, in truth we have no common defined goals on how to change the situations that for decades have been hindering our progress. That’s why we need a national leader that will give us this definition that we need and support our personal struggles for a nation. A multi-ethnic place like the Philippines needs a strong and incorruptible national leader who will work for and not against a Filipino nation, who will put to end this culture of impunity and replace it with culture of justice and human rights; a national leader that places national interests first than patronage politics.
This could be too much of an expectation for this means to go against the flow of the Philippine real politik. But this is exactly we need in this socio-economic dead-end, somebody who will break the old wall and lead us to the other side where there is more space for positive growth and development.
The same way with our local governments: Choose freedom first and then choose your mayor and governor. Respect your local officials and political candidates but don’t trade freedom for slavery. It’s more human to be poor yet free than to be poor and be a slave. Avoid manipulation of all kinds, fight for your integrity and choose freedom first.
This is the privilege we enjoy each start of the year – to reset ourselves inwardly and to dream again for a better Philippines. Indeed, it’s a new beginning for each of us, but an end to those who choose to remain un-free and who have stopped dreaming.
Personally, you might have lost good friends and/or failed to reach your goals you have set for yourself last year. But this should not stop you from dreaming anew. The new year will also bring you new friends when old ones are gone and a new hope so that you can set up new goals again.
Friendship and politics are two things that go hand in hand: Good friendship stays and endures the test of time and expectations, hence has a deeper quality and meaning. Good politicians are friends to the people for they work for the people’s welfare and never turn their back on the people once they have secured the power but maintain this friendship in an atmosphere of freedom and trust. The result is good governance.
To talk about freedom may sound altmodisch or old style. But for all we know- or for all that we don’t know- freedom needs to be defined and redefined constantly in a society that’s changing and struggling like the Philippines. It is as old as philosophy itself but still remains the sine qua non of our political dasein and humanity. I’m experiencing that even in places considered to be the most free, progressive and democratic ones in the world, the people’s fight for freedom has never ceased. On the contrary, it’s omnipresent in their daily political debates and in their everyday dealing with one another.
As a matter of fact, freedom is an issue as pressing as the issues on global warming and climate change and in a way, these issues affect one another: People who choose freedom first and whose freedom is respected have more impact on industries and government decision-making, hence can achieve more in their fight for a cleaner environment than their less-free counterparts in countries that don’t acknowledge such freedom.
The bottom-line now is to keep your dream and your passion for a free life. There, exactly in that place where you feel you’ve reached your own dead-end, break that wall and start again. This is really the only way to go to another higher definition within your self. Avoid people and situations that seem to compromise your inner balance or people who attack gladly your own weaknesses. Ignore them and focus on your own strengths so that you’ll be more happy and successful in your own ways.
And finally, don’t underestimate the value of dreaming for a better world for yourself because it is actually your good dream that keeps you alive in this world and keeps you breaking the walls.