By Dr. Dencio S Acop
Democratic elections are almost here once again and so are the usual mudslingings among the political aspirants. National suffrage denotes the selection of a national public servant to serve the people. And it naturally assumes that the electorate still represents a nation — the Filipino nation. A nation is a group of people who generally share the same fundamental values. Emplace that nation within a defined territorial geography and you have a country — the Republic of the Philippines. But are we still that kind of people? Do the majority of us still share the same fundamental values as when our country was granted its independence 75 years ago? Honestly, I am no longer certain that we are still a nation today judging by how much we are divided as a people not based on our fundamental values but on the candidates running for the presidency regardless of their values.
So what then spells the difference between and among the several aspirants for national leadership? I think the aspirants we ultimately choose reflect the kind of persons that we are. They reflect who we are deep down inside. They manifest our character. However, things may be lost on people for one reason or the other, those candidates who are genuinely for the common good of the people more than just their own personal vested interests are those who are leaders of character. Such leaders are moral men or women. They believe in the pursuit of what is morally and legally good for every member of the nation they vow to serve. They believe that the promotion of the common good is the highest good as it aspires for the greatest good for the greatest number. That is democracy. The question is why are we so divided as a nation if our common aspiration is for the good of every Filipino? The only relevant question should be who is the most qualified to lead us to this ‘promised land of milk and honey’? I posit that the most virtuous among us all should be that leader. It is only up to us to make it happen. That is why democracy is the most ideal governance methodology because it gives the ultimate political power to every qualified citizen who chooses that power as his surrogate.
Choosing a candidate is a piece of cake right? But not if the dominant, overriding characteristic of voters is merely individualism or provincialism and not nationalism. The country as a whole remains problematic politically, economically, and socially. Regional power Communist China claims us as its province! What could be more politically challenging and uniting than this? Unemployment and inflation will be serious challenges for us from the ongoing pandemic and from irresponsible borrowing and massive corruption during the Duterte administration. And the widening gap between the rich and the poor can partly explain the departure from fundamental values of our marginalized brethren owing to the neglect of the more endowed among us more interested in making their political dynasties becoming eternal. In short, sin divides us. This sad reality is no more glaring than it is today when we no longer seem to operate as one nation with the same fundamental values enshrined in our Constitution or in our Churches. How can we triumph over adversity when we even are divided in our aspirations? How can we get out of this rut? This sin that divides us, left unchecked, will obliterate this nation until it is no more. Mark my word. It is just my opinion but based on my own investigation and research, almost all presidential aspirants except Vice-President Leni Robredo are Manchurian candidates. They are willing to play footsie with Communist China because they believe that the Chinese Communist Party-led China is the next global power after the United States. That China is a necessary evil better joined because it cannot be defeated. Except that doing so will spell the end of our country as we know it. Sin divides us. Which makes us easy picking for Communist China. Only virtue can unite and save us now. A yellow storm aided by divine providence once saved this republic from a local tyrant 25 years ago. This pearl of the Orient, loved by divine providence, is still fighting for its nationhood. Perhaps, a pink avalanche can still save the sinking soul of a lost nation.