You have the right to complain.


Due to the weather not working well with my immune system, I spent the day at home and chanced upon seeing the live broadcast of SONA. I wasn’t really planning on seeing it and was actually asleep on the couch nursing body malaise but for some reason, I woke up as the coverage was starting.

Because I am your typical net addict, I was on fb and twitter while watching Pnoy give his speech. Now, there were those who did great publich service like @Karen_DaviLa who provided real-time updates (woot! woot!) and then there are those who complained about every sentence that came out of the President’s mouth.

It makes me think of how much change can come out of all the yapping and complaining. Will all your criticism build roads? Feed the hungry? Educate our children? Make a better future? I wonder how much the effigy contributed to our economic growth? How did the rally and the chaos improve your life status? How much of the budget will have to go to fixing ruined public property? I say, the call is for vigilance and not pessimism. Don’t confuse the two!

You absolutely have the right to complain but as you do, can you think of what you have contributed to our country ? Have you volunteered for a worthwhile cause? Not cheat on your taxes? Followed traffic rules? Reported law violators? Recycled? Opened your mind for possibilities? Here’s a thought: The Philippines is not just Noynoy Aquino, it’s made up of Filipinos — all 101M of us.

Mind you, it’s a long way to go and the government has not earned my praise yet but I know my responsibility and I accept it. My country needs me to change with it and I shall.

So to you — Don’t just be a Filipino. Be an active Filipino!

Links to SONA 2012:

ambisyon 2010


April 7 was atypical of my Friday nights. For the first time since I was a regular student, I found myself in the familiar insides of the UP Film Institute. I had heard about Ambisyon 2010 in a news segment while facebooking my evening away and though I have often been only present in outskirts of social awareness, I had the familiar inclination of wanting to be involved, to participate and once again, be inspired to part of a society that wants to make a difference.

The project was a collection of 20 short films, running at four to eight minutes in length and directed by brilliant indie filmmakers. Hats off to Paolo Villaluna, Ditsi Carolina, Emmanuel Dela Cruz, Kiri Dalena, Henry Frejas, Jeffrey Jeturian, Jade Castro, Jim Libiran, Erik Matti, Brillante Mendoza, Ellen Ramos, John Red, Raymond Red, Jerrold Tarog, John Torres, Paolo Villaluna, Sunshine Matutina, Pam Miras, Aissa Penafiel, Emerson Reyes, Gym Lumbera and McRobert Nacario.

“Ganito tayo ngayon, Paano na tayo bukas?” was directed by Jeffrey Jeturian and is the sole film that received an X-rating from the MTRCB. The ridiculous “Censorship High Court of the Philippines” claimed that the film undermines the faith and confidence of the people in government. What is there to undermine anyway? The current administration has successfully lost the faith and confidence of the Filipino people a long time ago!

“Ayos Ka” by Brillante Mendoza initially also had an X-rating but it was lowered down to an R-rating after a re-review. MTRCB said that this film was injurious to the prestige of the Republic of the Philippines and its people. Was this film injurious to the prestige of the Republic because it showed a part of the Philippines that they would rather ignore? I think it is more disgraceful that we have such hypocrites running important offices in our country.

Except for the opening part, the majority of Kiri Dalena’s “Requiem for M” only showed images but it conveyed a very strong message. It tackled the Maguindanao Massacre and was the heaviest of all the films I saw that night. Kiri said that “Even if you believe you can’t achieve justice, you still have to keep telling the story” and she did it well because that night, I and the whole world listened.

Of all the 20 films, I cried my heart out with Ditsi Carolino’s Lupang Hinirang. She showed the plight of the Sumilao farmers to fight for their 144-hectares of land and re-reminded all of us that despite the 20-years of agrarian reform in the country, we still have thousands of farmers who are still fighting for land that should have been given to to them decades ago. This film had made me realize how much we fail a lot of our countrymen. I have time and again complained about people from the provinces trying their luck and squatting all over metro manila. In my mind, these people are disillusioned and unpersevering… and then I realized what chance did they have when they have nothing but empty promises?

Each of the 20 films have their own statements and though I may not agree with all of them, each had enlightened me to not waste my vote, to live each day supporting at least one cause, and to never forget.

To know more about each short film, read on at  http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/04/10/10/how-earn-x-rating-and-other-lessons-ambisyon-2010

I will end this post by borrowing a line from the project itself and hopefully, like me, you will also be searching for your own answer.

amBisyon2010 brings together the dreams of a nation—and the possibility of change.
Ikaw, ano ang ambisyon mo?

Noynoy will run for 2010


Exactly 40 days after President Cory Aquino’s death, her son Senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III has officially announced his candidacy for the 2010 Presidential Elections. The announcement was made at around 8am-ish at the Club Filipino in San Juan (the same place where his mother took the Presidential oath).

“Tinatanggap ko ang hiling ng sambayanan. Tinatanggap ko ang tagubilin ng aking mga magulang. Tinatanggap ko ang responsibilidad na ituloy ang laban para sa bayan. Tinatanggap ko ang hamon na mamuno sa laban na ito. Tatakbo po ako sa pagka-pangulo sa darating na halalan”
.

It seems that each of their reluctant acceptance of political responsibilityis always (but not incidentally) triggered by the death of one great family member. Cory to Ninoy’s and now Noynoy to Cory’s…. And so the challenge goes on for the Aquino clan.

While I am hopeful, I am not yet ecstatic. Noynoy like his mother is no doubt the most noble and principled candidate in the shortlist of Presidentiables, his political (in)experience still concerns me . While he was obviously instilled with everything I admired President Cory for, does he have the same wisdom, steel courage and faith — or at least enough for him and the whole Filipino nation to survive 6 years. I urge everybody to vote wisely and that means to continue to scrutinize each candidate until the actual ballot is right in front of us. To research, to know the issues, to hear each candidates platform, to hear their debates. Cory, and recently Noynoy, reminded me that decisions cannot be done hastily. Decisions should be made in a long painstaking process…. as we exercise our right, let’s make a vote that our heart, our mind and our Lord has blessed.

Cheers to a hopeful 2010. 🙂