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EDITORIAL: Chicken and Egg

The controversy involving the issue about the qualifications of partylists to participate in forthcoming political exercises guides us to inquire into the purpose and spirit of our National Anthem (Lupang Hinirang).

This is in the light of conflicting views about the personality of these political organizations, particularly in reference to their alleged tie up with the NDF-NPA which some quarters have declared as a terrorist group.

Some of those in the military, emboldened by hard line pronouncements by President Duterte, hold that those who belong to the so called Makabayan Bloc be disqualified unless they publicly condemn the armed left leaning movement.

The last two lines of Lupang Hinirang state: ““Aming Ligaya nang pag may mang-aapi ang mamatay ng dahil sayo”(it is our joy to die for you against a tyrant). This portion of the National Anthem is very significant considering that one offers life for the sake of the country, against any tyrant (mang-aapi).

The question is, given the present situation obtaining, who is the tyrant against whom one pledges life itself?

Tragic as it may seem, the tug- of- war between tyrants who are mostly engaged in corruption on one side and the dissenters, may never find an end, given that the nation has been continuously saddled by a distorted sense of morality and culture, which consequently confuses the measure or standard of success.

In these times, acquisition of higher education and attainment of academic excellence turn inferior to power and wealth. If at all, very rarely, the former is being used as a tool to achieve the latter. Just the same the situation causes extreme dissatisfaction among the people.

Unless poverty, the major root cause of disenchantment, is effectively addressed, there will never come a point when popular dissatisfaction would simply disappear. And the major reason? Corruption in government offices which diverts efforts and public funds intended for inclusivity, that further widens the gap between the rich and the poor.

This explains why those who struggle against the powerful, some even with the use of arms, never give up. Sometimes a lull occurs but only for a brief period. Administration after administration has been continuously haunted by the same predicament. Use of arms has never been proven to be effective to put an end to the problem.

In the process youthful human resources are squandered. Both those who want to end the struggle and those who engage in armed conflicts, lost human potentials. Neither side wins the fight. The national bleeding continues.

Somehow the relationship between government and citizenry is similar to chicken and egg. The chicken needs to incubate the egg to ensure the latter’s usefulness and protect it from infection.

In the ultimate analysis, war mongers, power brokers and others of similar persuasion, benefit most during critical times. While it may be true that an armed struggle has become obnoxious, its root cause must be uprooted. Otherwise it will rise time and time again.


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