Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Putting Politics of Personality in Place

One reason why we can't move on as a country comes with our penchant of following the politics of personality. It's like tagging our selves as a kapuso or a kapamilya. Whether the show they are showing you is trash or not is out of the question. If it's from the network you love, you'll defend it with your life.

Same in politics. We vote for our leaders. We suppose to choose leaders based on platforms and ideals. But the reality is with the way we elect, there are no platforms needed. Only personalities. If the person has charisma and likable, that person will be voted. And once elected, without clear platforms, he'll do and say things that people will just believe on everything he says. They won't question his decisions and actions. It may have a negative impact but people will put it aside by saying, we're better off with this person compared to his predecessors or his possible next in line. And if someone criticizes that leader, you will be tagged as anti-government, anti-admin or a supporter of someone corrupt. Or that you are paid to do that. 

And even if it's the action of that person you are criticizing, you will still be tagged the same way when you are criticizing the person. This is where the problem becomes obvious. For many, they are not able to separate persons from actions. No one's perfect they say. True. Then if that's the case, how could you think that the person you are supporting can't make wrong decisions if you believe he's not perfect? Accountability. Have you heard of it? That's where leadership lies upon. If there's none, then there's no leadership.  Let's start discussing the issues isolated from the personalities from now on. Make these things the talking points in choosing our next leaders.

PPPP - Putting politics of personality in place. Let's do it now.

If I'm the LTO Chief

We eat bad news for breakfast. It usually is the case. A quick glance on the news ticker is enough to make one's day the worst. I'm one of them. I feel affected more than I should be, or how I think I am. The moment I turn off the tv and go outside, it's when reality sinks in. Most bad news has little direct effect on me. Though some might have big ones later. But the 2 which has the impact the moment I step out of the doorways are the weather news and traffic report. We can't control the weather. We can only prepare for it. Forecasts are given but still, it can always change. But it's never an excuse not to bring an umbrella when the news says that there will be an incoming storm. It's critical to know what the weather might be the next day.

On the other hand, the traffic. Same with the weather, we don't have power about it. Maybe we have. A little. About how we drive or how early we go up if we are commuting. But it's not that different from what we can do about the climate situation. The way we drive almost have the same effect when we carry boots or umbrellas during the rainy days. Doing either can protect us only to a certain extent. But luckily, unlike the weather, there are powerful people that can work and decide to protect us from the hardships of daily road jam. Whether they are using the power properly or not, that is the question.

I guess, it's high time for the LTO authorities to utilize the power of multimedia. It's very difficult to fix everything but they can definitely focus one by one. But they can learn on how other people do things to promote awareness and discipline. And the good thing here is that, many will surely follow and go with them since everyone is affected with this thing one way or another. And if I have my way, here's what I will do:

1.  Use funds for TV advertisements to focus on the usually neglected but hazardous traffic violations that most drivers commit. Focus on one each week. 

2. Coordinate with the traffic enforcement bodies and let them be on full alert for the violators of the one featured on the said advertisement. 

3. Increase the penalties for the focused violation for that week.

4. The following week will focus on the next traffic violation.

5. Do it for at least three months having been able to cover at least 12 traffic rules that people  neglect, that might be enough to instill some understanding and discipline on commuters and enforcers.

6. There will surely be direct impact felt by everyone if implemented properly. And if it does have, people will notice it and Pavlovian studies will tell that when something good is happening, people will continue to do the same thing as response, hoping for the same results to happen.

Even the daily news include traffic jams on their headline. That's how big the problem is. And we all know it. We all talk about discipline. But discipline won't take us anywhere if we don't know the rules. A disciplined baseball player can't win games in basketball. And vice versa. So let's all get back to the basic.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Witnessing Christmas

For those who fret to have work shifts on the 24th and 25th, remember that the first witnesses of Christ's birth, the shepherds, were at the middle of their jobs when it all happened. Rejoice that you are in good company. Wherever we are and whatever we are doing, it must not hinder us from celebrating the true meaning of the holidays. Merry Christmas everyone.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Time and Space and Life and Love

What does life has to offer? What can I offer to life?
When you ask for a pillow, you’ll be given a knife.
And then you ask yourself, what it is that I see.
Is this my imagination, or is it the reality?

There are days that I want to shed all negativity,
Though circumstances take me off my objectivity,
Trying hard to get things going, acting like a hero,
While the easiest thing to do is just to let go.

An ordinary human would succumb to all these pain,
And nothing could be done to keep a person sane.
That would happen certainly if you are all alone,
Thus like a weakly kingdom with a queen-less throne.

There’s always a Divine plan, but we’re given a free choice,
Which makes it tough to follow while fighting all the noise.
But directions from above will always be the pure one,
With a clear mind you will know when things are to be done.

It was never perfect, but is relatively near.
With you beside me, there are few things that I fear
One is the thought of not having you with me,
It’s like living in this world when there’s nothing else to see.

We’ve shared all this love that is bountiful and overflowing,
That adds up these two beating hearts, so lively and fulfilling,
To them we part our joys, our present and our future,
That no matter how hard this life is, together we’ll endure.

Beautiful portions of my life, most of the reason is you,
From the deepest pits of it, you’ve always pulled me thru,
The smallest things you do push me to stand up,
The biggest deeds you make pull me back to where we start.

Time and space have always been so important,
But being beside you makes these things irrelevant,
Adding up these two kids, the four of us together,
Having you all close to me, I want now to be forever.

Happy birthday to my wife Cel. Thank you and I love you.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Imaginary Enemies of Insecurity

There’s a sudden increase of quotes and posters going around the social media that portray heroism out of underrated roles in the society. Or, are they really?

Playing the victim card is rampant not because people are real victims but most of the time, it is caused by insecurity. There are those who think that their roles in the society are lowly and that people look at them degradingly. Truth is, thinking low starts within the person himself, not from the outside. Unaware of this, an insecure person starts justifying his existence by magnifying and dramatizing his acts. And while doing so, he creates imaginary enemies like those whom he think are belittling his contributions and in the process doing ugly comparisons and ends up as the one guilty of degradation of the role of another person.

Insecurity is never a justification to put someone on a higher pedestal while dragging another one below. Insecurity is an illness of the society. Confidence is the better alternative. Confidence is to understand that what you do is important for who you care for and not for the others to care about

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Educate Yourself by Reading Facebook Comments (and being lazy)

 I am the laziest person that I know. There are some guys that might beat me at that but since I can monitor myself more than them; I get more evidences that I’m the one. I don’t know how some people can focus and complete their jobs easily. They are good at deadlines. Following and remembering instructions for them are so relaxed. I can’t do most of my tasks without being distracted a lot. Before I typed that last sentence, it took me a while to write it because I heard some noise downstairs and it got me thinking far from what I was doing. I thought of food. 

It is a cliché but Facebook indeed plays a big part of our modern lives. We’ve been surfing the internet scattered for some years before we were sucked into this black hole which we now call the social media. It’s an organized disorganized way of sharing and telling people what you do, where you go, what you are, what you think even what you eat, wear, read, watch, hate, like, love in the world wide web. It’s not even surprising that it makes a good marketing ploy for some as news spread like fire when there’s something controversial explodes in our midst. Log in and you’ll see the information in a minute. Or even seconds. 

With all these shared news, what I usually do first is read the comments and look at the common and popular ones. There’s that usual phenomenon on these sections that 70% of the comments are similar, 10% are informative, 10% are in contrast of the majority, 5% makes sense, 5% is total garbage, or maybe more for the last one. If you ask me how I got this, this is from 100% of my opinion and observation. And I’m sure that many will agree with it though. And some will not, but it’s ok since you are only 10%. 

Seeing how similar most people think, it makes one ask if it’s reality that most of us are agreeing with each other or it’s just many are lazy to think deeper.  Replies are too predictable. And we can’t learn anything from them anymore. 

Again, laziness gets into me when I read these comments that when I think I have something to contribute to the discussion, I still choose not to. But when I feel like it, I look for the most commented and liked one. Most of the time, I disagree with it. I am not trying to be a contrarian but that’s what usually happens. I know that there’s something wrong with what they are saying. But just saying that they are wrong wouldn’t give any value to them, to the readers and to me. So I start researching and reading anything about the subject. After getting more facts and drawing some conclusions, I may reply to the post, and may also not. Sometimes I write about them here. Or I just talk about it and share with people around me. And by doing that, I understood the matter more than before. And the bottom line is I learned something better from reading the Facebook comments. And my laziness helped me on that.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Bitay Bitay!

"Ibalik ang death penalty!"

Panigurado na kada bukas mo ng comments tungkol sa mga balita ng mga nangyayaring krimen sa bansa, yan ang laman at ang pinakamaraming likes. Nakakapanggigil naman talaga ang mga nababalitaan sa araw araw. Walang nang sinasanto ang mga kriminal ngayon, saan mang lugar, ano mang oras, edad, kasarian, lahat ay wala nang nakakaligtas. Hindi na nga tayo mapapalagay. Oras oras na lang tayong nagdadasal at kinakabahan tuwing di natin kasama ang mga mahal natin sa buhay. Umaasa na sana ay di sila ang susunod na maging biktima. O kaya e tayo mismo rin ay makaiwas sa mga walang pusong kriminal na yan. Talagang mapapasabi ka ng "ibalik ang bitay"!

Siguro nga, talagang gugustuhin mong mamatay ang isang taong halang ang kaluluwa para ipaghiganti ang mahal sa buhay na biniktima nila. At siguradong hindi lang simpleng pagbitay kundi yung pinakamahirap na kamatayan ang pipiliin mong igawad sa kanila.

At hindi biro ang usaping ito

Pero ang death penalty, tulad ng iba pang parusa ay isang bagay na magagawa lang pag tapos na ang krimen. Ang argumento dito ay matatakot ang mga kriminal na gumawa ng masama kapag may batas ng pagbitay. Baka nga naman kabahan sila, magbago ang isip at mabawasan. 

Pero kadalasan ng gumagawa ng mga krimen na may hatol na bitay ay hindi naman naiisip ang parusang ito. Kahit pa nga walang death penalty, kung tutuusin ay puede rin naman nilang ikamatay ang krimen na gagawin nila.. Ang isang nanghoholdap, nangre-rape, nagnanakaw, o papatay ng ibang tao ay puede ring mapatay sa akto na mahuli sila sa kanilang ginagawa. Alam nila yun. Pero wala nilang takot na ginagawa ito dahil sa mas matindi ang kagustuhan nilang isakatuparan ang krimen. 

Ang parusa ay umeepekto lang bilang panakot sa isang taong may matinong pag-iisip. Ang isang rapist ay wala sa katinuan ng pag-iisip. Ang isang taong walang takot pumatay sa kahit anong dahilan ay wala rin sa matinong pag-iisip. Ang pagsasabing ang bitay ay nakakapagdulot ng takot sa kriminal ay para lang sa may rasonableng pananaw. Kung tutuusin, ang pagkakakulong habambuhay ay nakakatakot nang pangitain sa isang taong normal. Pero para sa kriminal na may tama sa utak, wala na sa kanila ito. Mas nangingibabaw ang kagustuhang mairaos ang kanilang mga makamundong hangarin.

Idagdag pa natin ang kabagalan ng hustisya sa ating bansa. Ilang kaso ang gumagapang sa bawat araw dahil na rin sa napakarami at lumang sistema na meron tayo sa kabuuan. Ilan kaya ang nakakulong ngayon na walang kasalanan at hindi pa rin makalaya dahil sa hindi lang matuloy tuloy ang kaso? Pano pa kung may bitay? Hindi malabong magkaroon ng hatol na bitay para sa mga walang kasalanan. Paano pa mabibigyan ng pagkakataon ang isang walang kasalanan kung hahatulan na agad ng kamatayan? 

Isa pa dyan ang pagkakaroon ng malaking hadlang sa pagkakapantay pantay ng tao sa hustisya ng bansa. Ang mga simpleng kaso lang ay kailangan nang gumastos ng malaki. Meron mang mga pro-bono na abogado, kakailanganin pa ring magbigay ng oras ang isang nasasakdal o nagdedemanda. Paano na ang mga dukha na hindi kakayaning hindi magtrabaho para lang maghabol sa hustisya? Hindi pa natin pinag-uusapan ang sinasabi nilang ang hustisya ay para lamang sa mayaman. Paano kung ikaw na simpleng mamamayan lang ang napagbintangan at mahatulan ng bitay laban sa maimpluwensyang tao?

Bukod sa panawagang ibalik ang bitay, kaakibat na rin ng mga salitang ito ang patutsada sa Simbahang Katoliko. Kontra daw kasi ang Simbahan kaya di ito mapatupad. Puro bawal bawal daw pero wala naman daw maitulong sa nangyayaring krimen. At marahil, iisipin ng iba na kaya di ako sang ayon sa bitay ay dahil sa bawal ito ng Simbahan. Pero ito po ay mali na agad. Hindi po tahasang sinasabi ng Simbahan na masama ang bitay. Bilang pangunahing tagapagtanggol ng buhay, ang mga matatawag nating bayolenteng pamamaraan ay natural lamang po na hindi ayunan ng Simbahan . Kaya nga kahit anong yurak ng iba sa kabuuan nito bilang isang boses laban sa contraception, abortion, euthanasia, divorce, etc, hindi binabago ng Simbahan ang posisyon laban sa mga ito.

Pero kung patungkol naman sa bitay, katulad ng giyera, kung babalikan natin ang kasaysayan ay ilang beses na ring sinuportahan ng Simbahan ang ganitong pamamaraan. Importante ang buhay pero kung ang pagkitil ng isang buhay ay magliligtas sa mas marami pang buhay ay maaari itong payagan. Subalit matatawag itong “last resort” na ika nga. Kung wala na talagang magagawang ibang solusyon, pinapayagan ito ng Simbahan ayon na rin sa ating katesismo. Kasama dito ang gyera at ang pagbitay. Kung may hihirit ng aborsyon, tandaan na ang bata kailanman ay walang kasalanan at walang kahit anong dahilan para kitilin ang kanilang buhay.

Ang krimen ang siyang problema. Kung magiging mas maayos lang sana ang mga batas, ang mga nagpapatupad, ang mga nangangalaga, ang mga namumuno at tayong mga tao bilang kabahagi ng lipunan, mababawasan ang mga ito. Bakit naman sa ilang bansa na walang bitay ay may mababang crime rates? Ano ang meron sa kanilang bansa na di natin magawa? At bakit may ilang bansa naman na kahit may bitay pa ay malala pa rin ang lagay ng krimen kumpara sa ating bansa? Kung titingnan na lang natin mismo sa Estados Unidos na kung saan ang kanilang mga estadongmay capital punishment ang siya pang mas mataas ang bilang ng kaso ng pagpatay kesa sa mga wala nito at habang tumatagal ay mas palaki pa ng palaki ang agwat ng mga ito na maaari na rin nating sabihing patunay na hindi pinababa ng death penalty ang mga kaso ng murder sa kanilang bansa bagkus ay wala lang talagang epekto sa bilang ng gumagawa nito o mas pinapalala pa nga.

Payag ako sa bitay kung mangyayari ang mga bagay na ito:

-         Magiging maayos ang pagpapatupad ng batas ng gobyerno at kapulisan.
-         Mas magiging maayos at progresibo ang sistema ng hudikatura.
-         Magiging mas mapagmatyag at matulungin ang bawat isang myembro ng lipunan sa kanilang kapwa.
-         Mas magiging pantay na ang batas sa pagtrato ng bawat kaso ng bansa, mayaman man o mahirap.

Pero isa lang ang problema dito. Kapag natupad kasi ang mga hiling kong yan para ipatupad ang bitay sa bansa, malamang, di na natin kakailanganin pang manawagan ng bitay dahil ang mga bagay na yan ang mas tunay nating kailangan para mabawasan at masugpo ang maraming krimen sa ating kapaligiran.

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