2007 was a very fruitful year for me, my family and my loved ones. It was the year when Ria passed the bar. My father won as congressman. I got a seat in the provincial board. And Ria and I finally got engaged (after 7 years!).
Had a lot of blessings, and I am truly grateful for them. Maraming salamat, Lord.
Now for the semi-serious stuff. 2008. As a citizen and resident of this great archipelago, here is my short wishlist for the Philippines:
1. I hope that all of us elected officials look at ourselves in the mirror and come to realize that we are not princes or princesses, lords or dames, dukes or duchesses, to be worshiped by our constituents, but PUBLIC SERVANTS who work for the people. And as a start, we should all drop the title, HON., and stick with plain and simple, MR. or MS. Do you know we're the only ones who put a premium on being elected into office? For goodness sake, after the elections, we're all just employees, man! Pare-pareho lang tayong nagtatrabaho.
I really think one of the several causes of corruption stems out of the wrong belief that public officials are 'higher' than the common tao. Kasi pag-tingin mo talaga na royalty ka, feeling mo kelangan mayaman ka din. Well, something like that. Mahirap i-explain in a few words, but I hope you get my drift.
2. I hope that all of us criticize government only if we truly believe we are DOING OUR PART to uplift the country. Pay our taxes. Follow Traffic rules. Don't be hypocrites, man! Read "12 Little Things Every Filipino Can Do To Help Our Country" by Alexander Lacson, and start following them.
Hindi lang kasi parati na lang si Gloria ang may kasalanan ng lahat ng poblema natin. Hindi parati ang kongreso, o ang mayor o ang gobyerno ang puno't dulo ng krisis. NASA ATIN din kasi.
Blame those responsible, yes. But do your part as well.
I can only echo what JFK said over 40 years ago: "Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country."
3. Finally, I hope that the Church stops meddling with politics, since there is suppose to be a separation between Church and State.
For example, if they don't favor contraceptives, fine. Tell that to your followers. Preach that during Sundays. No problem. If because of that, all catholics don't use condoms, well, then good. But don't interfere when government chooses to have a reproductive health program. Don't blackmail our policymakers by threatening them on election day, they're just their jobs. If it conflicts with Church teachings, blackmail is not the proper solution. Be more aggressive in your sermons during mass.
Madami pa akong ibang wishes for the country pero I need to go to another pakain. As you know, Christmas celebration in the Philippines doesn't end until the Feast of the Three Kings.
Happy New Year everybody!