I apologize for the delay in the construction of what should be a much-awaited sequel (I had things to do and places to go!!) Anyways, here I go 🙂
It took a lot out of me not to voice out my opinion on this. Honestly, I didn’t want to seem like a lot of things– defensive, sensitive, easily offended. I wholeheartedly respect and admire those that did voice out their thoughts, but there came a point when I found myself disagreeing with how they chose to express their counter arguments.
Thus, I give you this verdict: my thoughts.
First of all, this should not even be about Mr. Jose. Yes, I do respect and admire him, as any writer should. But he’s not the star here– and he shouldn’t be the subject of everyone’s counter arguments. Dissect not the man, but his thoughts– and the frightening reality that he’s using his reputation (and column space) in order to perpetuate dated beliefs that just don’t deserve to be heard.
Secondly, what is left for us Filipinos of Chinese descent to prove? Binondo is the oldest Chinatown in the world. Siomai and siopao have assimilated into Filipino cuisine so well that some tend to forget their Chinese origins. There are people like businessman Kenneth Uy, who chose to stay in Tacloban post Yolanda in order to help rebuild the city. We may have our roots, and our heritage… but is there not enough evidence that the Filipino Chinese are Filipino enough? Perhaps one has not heard of the stories behind the Chinese who aided in the Spanish revolution, or those guerillas that fought the Japanese?
I was born here, I grew up here, I live here. My parents did and so did their parents. The same goes for my peers.
I feel as though that’s all that needs to be said.
2. Swan SONA
Last July 27 signaled the beginning of the end for President Aquino’s presidential term, as he delivered his last official State of the Nation Address.
I honestly found it long and a bit drawling, but found the noteworthy parts laudable. From emotional thank-yous to probably his most respectable sounding gripes ever, P-Noy’s speech was nicely written. Yet, there were a lot of things he missed out on that eventually would cost him PR wise.
- The exclusion of Mamasapano
- The woes of the transportation system
- The gaps surrounding health coverage in the country
- The passage of the FOI bill (a campaign promise that never came through).
The emotional parts of the SONA felt like an inside joke that the normal Filipino couldn’t relate to (especially the parts where the president thanked his staff), while the beginning, which was meant to provide context, seemed too colored by P-Noy’s tendency to hate on the previous administration. Overall, I give it a C, but add in the + for the gentle gripes.
3. Counter Attack: On The TSONA
I officially regret waiting for this to happen before composing this entry– honestly, if the SONA had its share of substance issues, this was much, much worse. One of the articles I read included a quote from a spokesperson that claimed the counter-SONA would feature facts and data that would counter the data in the ‘official SONA’.
I tried my best to veer away from the ‘complaining netizen’ framework in previous blog entries, but feel as though I won’t be able to keep that up as I write about Binay’s speech.
First of all, the fact he even had the gall to deliver a counter SONA is just plain… disrespectful. He may have had his reservations about Aquino but to even call it a ‘ Counter SONA’. You resigned from the Cabinet.. ang kapal ng mukha mo. You clearly failed at strong arming your way past political alliances in order to do some real good for the people.
Facts and data? More like mentioning the President’s mistakes and using them against him! There were enough flowery words in that speech for a garden, enough dramatic paragraphs engineered to make the most naive voter believe Binay is the right choice when he’s clearly not!
The saddest part of this argument is… if not Binay, who?
Grace Poe is a political neophyte, but her inexperience may just come as an asset. Mar Roxas’ survey ratings aren’t exactly a positive indicator, and his track record (if such exists) needs to be publicized in order to prove him a worthy candidate over Binay.
Wait, back to thoughts on the ”TSONA”.
Binay ended his speech by reciting the names of the 44 fallen SAF officers that were massacred at Mamasapano. Upon initially reading about this, my first impression– smart PR move! One that tugs at heartstrings and might just win over the unfortunate families left behind by these noble soldiers. Upon further thought, I realized this was… despicable and rather disgusting. Talk about using this incident for his personal political gain! Shame.
The real question is: will the families of the SAF 44 see it that way? They were clearly disappointed P-Noy excluded them from his SONA, and Binay’s perfectly timed PR stunt could have just been the key to winning their political favor.
I’d like to end this entry by informing my good readers (if you do exist, I don’t exactly have the time to look through my WordPress site’s analytics), that I’ve finally registered to vote!
I joined my brother on a morning trip to city hall where we answered a quick form and had our biometrics and photos taken. Honestly, it was a relatively quick experience, but one that had it’s share of harsh realities.
Here’s a lowdown of the process:
- We lined up to show our valid government IDs (I used my passport) and showed them to a grumpy fellow behind a window. This young guy was serving multiple lines, which was the reason perhaps behind his not-so positive demeanor that morning.
- After we were validated as first time voters, he handed us forms which we had to answer in triplicate (ever heard of carbon paper?). I was sweating bullets as I answered the forms, which were, in fairness, printed on quality book paper.
- After finishing the forms, we went back into the appropriate office and handed the form to a sassy middle-aged lady who wrote our names on a logbook and asked us for our contact numbers.
- Then, we had our biometrics, signature and photo taken on a webcam taped to a CD container.
- Finally, we stamped our thumbprints on the forms and were provided with the slip that would allow us to get our IDs.
I’m not quite sure whether the process can be this quick in other city hall offices, but this was how it was in QC on a Tuesday morning. My main point here: take the time and take action, friends!
The real power we have lies beyond our social media accounts and our blog sites, and in the legitimate action we can take in order to make the change we want become a reality. So let’s do that… shall we?