KEEPING STOCK OF OUR OLD SELVES 

It’s not surprising to hear all these howl of protests against the Wilyonaryo “blooper” in ABS-CBN’s game show, WOWOWIE. Be it a “mechanical glitch” or a malicious attempt to deprive a poor man’s dream, this issue must be settled for good and – convincingly.

 

Recently too, there were mixed reactions to the Sandigan Bayan verdict on the ‘plunder” case of former Philppine President Joseph Estrada. The majority of these reactions question the credibility of the graft court to pass judgment of a president whose ouster to office is still unresolved, at least in the minds of the people.

 

On the ABS-CBN fiasco, we can say that the people’s reaction is also reflective of a valid fear – has the wheeling-and-dealing now gone to the game shows?

 

Bad as it is that our government is now plague by cheating, lying and stealing politicians. Are the game shows and their hosts no different from their breed?

 

Not too long ago, we had the same national embarrassment when we were stripped of our title in the Little League for allegations of cheating. We were not honest enough to declare the true ages of our Philippine team members who were later found to be over age for the league.

 

Not too long ago, too, we revolted against a Dictator’s stealing our victory in the 1986 presidential polls. Luckily, we succeeded in ousting him from power and had a chance to improve our image as a nation.

 

But the cheating, lying and stealing did not stop there.

 

The same victory in the same electoral process was denied to a people dreaming of redemption from the mess they were in. Allegations of massive fraud in the 2004 Presidential Elections preoccupied us again.

 

For the nth time, we succeeded in grabbing the world’s headlines as a nation of cheats. The controversial “Hello Garci” tapes did not help us either. It even made the headlines bigger with its affirmation, that the even the supposed guardian of democracy, the Comelec, is now accused of perpetrating electoral frauds.

 

What is appalling about all these indignities is that it inflicts on all Filipinos indiscriminately. It has a way of bugging us no matter how we ignore it. No matter where we are or who we are.

 

Whether “national pride” or “national embarrassment” there is no way we can avoid its resultant effect. In fact, we can not say “Labas ako dyan, pare. Sila lang naman ang mandaraya.” Or  “Eh, sila lang naman ang gumawa ng kagalak-galak.

 No! When the Filipino nation suffers, all of us suffer because we are the nation. Huwag mo’ng sabihing Kano ka na ngayon at hindi ka na naaapektuhan ng  mga kawalang-hiyaan ng kapwa Pinoy natin. Passport lang ang napalitan sa’yo. Pinoy ka pa rin! 

I received an open letter from a Pinoy expatriate, Francisco Masallo[1]. Attached to his letter is another letter – a HATE LETTER against Filipinos – by one, Art Bell of Nevada.

 

Ironically, this Bell doesn’t ring well. Nor is he an art. Well, he is just an inconsequential trash. His pen is as poisoned as his brain (if he has one). And whatever is left in that “coo-coo” shell of his is nothing but unbridled bigotry – one which is probably caused by an unhappy childhood.

 

Despite his venomous letter, however, I don’t think his pealing is enough to shake our deep sense of pride. We know very well how great the Filipino is as a race. We need not recite to, who’s that bug again, Mr. Tililing?      a litany of our great deeds.

 

But if we are to stop this fungus from growing again, we need only to police our own ranks. We need to get involve. Not merely react for every punch we take.

 

Incidents like that of the Wilyonaryo of WOWOWIE as well as that of the anomalous ZTE broadband deal and the ‘Hello, Garci’ tape will continue to breed bigots like Bell.

 

The stench of these scams will forever clog our nostrils and definitely, our neighbors will continue holding us responsible for our fowl-smelling brothers.

 

Get up and make a stand! Write to your relatives and friends in the Philippines and tell them to choose their leaders rightly. Remind them of our age-old values that helped all of us to be molded into upright citizens.

 

Don’t just sit there and wait for the results to be tallied after every election. Help us in re-educating our people of the need for moral leadership. After all, it is you – the expatriates – who suffer most from these seemingly endless scandals by the scoundrels we call PUBLIC SERVANTS.



[1] Click __ for the full text of Masallo’s letter.