Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Humbling Realization

Logging into the internet after weeks in the mountains somehow prepared me for all the bad news of our world. From what I have been updated so far, the three Filipinos convicted in China are dead, Willie Revillame is again in hot water because of his show, the AFP is the most corrupt government agency in the country and finally, the national transport strike slated tomorrow. All these added to the other problems and disasters that our world had in the past months or so. But then I am refusing to be eaten up by the misery of these things lest I become another cynic or self righteous blogger. I just came from a place they call Sitio Kamugna. Its the farthest Sitio of Barangay Datu Danwata, Malita, Davao del Sur. And it is from this place that I wish to inspire some form of hope amidst all the troubles we are facing.

The place is said to be the core of the insurgency in this part of the country. Its location is the boundary of Alabel and Malungon Towns of Sarangani; and that of Malita, Davao del Sur. Although I came there to look for the bad guys, I was greeted with the good guys. The three people I met there may perhaps be the most committed government workers in the whole country.

Ma'am Pearly, Sir Lemuel and Sir Ryan, they should be the model upon which every Filipino should build their character on. These three are teachers of the Tribal Filipino School of Kamugna. They are not popular people, they are teachers, but more than that, they provide me with a living hope that all is not lost in this problematic country of ours. From Poblacion Malita to the center of Barangay Datu Danwata, these three will ride on a "habal-habal" motorcycle for three hours. If one thinks that their troubles end there, it has not begun. Once they arrive at the Barangay Center, they will begin a two day hike towards Sitio Kamugna crossing seven (yes, as in one, two, three, four, five, six, seven) mountains that they have to climb. They do this twice a month. First is when they report to their school and then second is when they will go down to civilization to enjoy their one week rest. And they have been doing this for the past three years. And that is because the school has only existed for three years and they have made it their crusade to see to it that the children of this far off sitio will finish primary school. Although they are employees of the Department of Education, they use their personal money to provide basic school supplies for the children that they teach and all other things that they deem necessary to educate these children. Sadly, they have succumbed to the uncertainty of relying on government support to do what they have to do. More than educating the children, they also have to educate the parents on the value of education. That entailed shouldering every requirement for education as long as the parents will continue to allow their children to attend school. While the rest of our citizens complain about many things in our country, these three continue to strive to do what they have to do. Being a soldier with my own set of complains and difficulty on the job, it humbles me that they persist. Consider this, when Japan was hit by a tsunami, the Japanese people took it as an opportunity to unite and together rebuild their country. When our oil prices fluctuate, transport groups lunch a nationwide strike to crucify our government. I would like to think that many of the things we consider as "problem" is the least of our worries. I believe our problem is the way we see ourselves as Filipinos and our roles in helping our country. When oil prices go up, we demand government subsidy, we refuse to take part of our government's struggle to cope up with these prices even if it is common knowledge that we do not have a say on the prices of this commodity in the world market. We have somewhat assumed that the government "enjoy" the fluctuation of these prices and so we blame them and insist on lower prices even if it will take a toll on our dwindling financial resources. Our people is so disgusting. When my wife and I disagree on something, I have made it a point to at always look at our marriage before reacting or doing anything that might destroy it. At some point in my life, I have accepted that marrying her was a permanent thing and that whatever our issues are we should be united in working together to make our marriage work despite our issues. The government is like married to its people. The two should work together to be able to move forward. When they come into difficult odds, they share the burden of making it through. While the husband in a marriage is expected to provide for the family, the wife is to support him. I believe I have seen a government trying to provide a good life for all of us despite the diffiuclt times, but I have yet to see the support of the people. None of our Presidents was ever good enough. Our people is so selfish.

Moments ago, I learned that some advertisers have withdrawn their ads on Willie Revillame's show as a result of the child abuse fiasco. I believe both sides have valid points. My concern though is how the very incident mirror the kind of society we have. Mind you, this is not the first time that something ridiculous happened in these type of shows all for the money. There was one old lady whose breast accidentaly popped out on live tv, a big winner who was later found out to have cheated her way to big bucks, a woman who peed on her own pants and many other incidents... All for the money. While others would claim that it was a case of child abuse, I also would like to think that the young boy and his aunt did not care as long as they get the big bucks. I somehow get this idea that if our people can muster that kind of attitude in doing their individual responsibilities as workers, family members, students or whatever responsibility they have the big bucks mught just come in the long run. Our people seem to think that the good life that everybody dreams of will come by some strike of lightning. People will line up to these shows very early in the morning just to get a shot at whatever price in store for them. This is also true with lines on Lotto outlets and even illegal number games. But when doing ordinary jobs, its always more of complaining rather than doing it well. Our people are so foolish. I can rant on and one with so many observations like this. I guess with the kind of people we have nothing will ever be good enough. If only we can just be like the three Teachers at the Tribal Filipino School of Kamugna. I am making my commitment to helping this country:

I will never complain about my job (or maybe I will just keep it to myself)

I will always remember that doing my responsibility as a citizen is my simplest contribution to nation building

I will always tell people of stories like that of Ma'am Pearly, Sir Ryan and Sir Lemuel. I will always be persistent with what I have to do even if I am not noticed.

Lastly, I will pray that my countrymen will do the same.

May God Bless our Nation....

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