Do I really have to talk about Alma Moreno for this week’s column?
As Karen Davila said, of course, she is running for the senate.
For those who have yet to watch the “awkward” interview, it is about the 8-minute or so viral video clip of Karen Davila interviewing Alma Moreno with regards to her decision to run for senator.
It is not about adding salt to injury, nor riding on social media bullying; rather it is about time that we are being confronted with the reality of Philippine politics. It just so happen that Ms. Alma Moreno has become… well, sort of the sacrificial lamb for a greater cause.
The Philippine constitution enables any natural-born Filipino who can merely read and write to vie for any electoral post. These simple qualifications inspire, and successfully landed many celebrities in various positions in the government, from the humble barangay chairman to the highest position in the land—the presidency. We do not question nor insult the capacity of these people, for many have proven their worth, such as Isko Moreno, Herbert Bautista, Vilma Santos-Recto, among others. They excelled in their chosen positions perhaps because experience prepared them, or their background beyond their showbiz career provided them foundation for public service.
But there is a kind of ambition that is expected to be established from mere popularity, and offers nothing more.
Because of the failure of an earlier party to carry Ms. Moreno’s candidacy in different posts in Paranaque City, she agreed to run, from being a city councilor, to senator. And, despite her “credentials” that she enumerated which, according to her, prepared her for the senatorial seat, she made it clear to everyone that she is not.
A legislative position is far too serious for playing around. Yes, anyone can be a local chief executive, but please don’t be a legislation—legislator, I mean (excuse me po), if a word as simple as “reservation” confuses you.
The laws in the land apply how we live our daily lives; it affects us from the moment we open our eyes until our children lay us to our final rest; please don’t mess with our laws!
For crying out loud, where are these people’s concern to our children, the government’s reputation, our public fund?! Nor to the lost time because we have to endure another senatorial term with a wasted seat, and more wasted time in house deliberations just because the senate, and the house of representatives for that matter, are beginning to flood with people who offers nothing but popularity.
We need legislators who may not be lawyers but are capable of understanding our laws, who are apparent to know and speak for issues confronting our future as a nation, who understands that the issue on population control is not as simple as switching on a light bulb!
I will not apologize for my manners this week because my whole being is burning against the seeming insult of these people, for their nerves to use their popularity, and nothing more, as political tool and take advantage of clueless Filipinos. The Philippines is the only nation we’ve got. Our Republic is the only government we have. Today is the only road going to the future. Every action a government makes involves public fund. In fact, the mere seating of a politician costs the public millions of pesos—in salary, vehicle, security, office, etc. A failure of choice represents not only loss in time but loss in public fund. And at one point we wonder why we are at the verge of bankruptcy…
Sadly, if we face reality, these celebrities have greater chance in winning than great men and women who made significant impact and contribution to the society, but lack the popularity that only showbiz can offer. Yes, despite the netizen’s uproar on Ms. Moreno’s awkward interview, she may actually win this election.
May we be one and united Filipinos enough this 2016 elections, to demand change and install change to our political system. This is when every one holds power fair and square—not the president, not the senator, not the chief justice—to topple demeaning, insulting, useless and corrupt people in the government. The votes we will make will determine how our nation will be ran, how our taxes will be spent, how our future will be prepared.
As the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) ads said, “the future is in your hands—don’t drop it!”