“Stop the Killing of Journalists”
SUCH was the recent and emphatic, clear, and loud shouts of people from Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao. In particular, such is the lamentation and plea made by the families and friends of murdered journalists—murders that have been long since going on the Philippines. Such is also the anger and disgust registered by the public in general, when journalists are readily eliminated for saying and/or writing the truth—about individuals who are not exactly known for their sanctity in promoting what is proper, true, and just in Philippine society.
One thing really exasperating in this country is the infamous phenomenon that after the assassination of these and those journalists, the atrocity is usually followed by three standard disgusting chapters: Chapter 1: Investigation is done. Chapter 2: More investigation is done. Chapter 3: Much more investigation is done. And that’s it! It is enough to recall the “Maguindanao Massacre” where many journalists were nonchalantly killed and unceremoniously buried—as a matter of course. Some four years later, the investigation still goes on and on and…
Truth is something dangerous and wherefore hated by those guilty of graft and corrupt practices, of depravity and perversion, of vicious behavior and criminal acts. These are antisocial individuals who enjoy living not only errant but also erratic lives. And precisely because they live in lies and survive through hypocrisy, they hate the truth. Woe to anyone who dare expose their real selves and savage persons—especially when the truth about them is publicly revealed by journalists.
Killing is such a horrible act against anyone that among the 10 Commandments, one of these is precisely, “Thou shall not kill.” In fact, even the killing of oneself through suicide is covered by the said Mandate. Among other salient truths that exalt life, it is good to think of the following big celebration of life—all intimately connected with the life of Christ:
First, there is the birth of Christ—the centerpiece of Christmas that the Filipinos in particular avidly celebrate.
Second, there is the celebration of the “Holy Innocents Day”—little children who innocently protected life of the newly born Christ.
Third, there is the Resurrection of Christ which is an affirmation of life—the singular celebration of life.
“Stop the killing of journalists” has a profound significance in the intrinsic value of life, has intrinsic relevance to the proclamation of truth!
The World Extends a Helping Hand
NOTWITHSTANDING all its mortal costs to precious human lives, its destructive impact not only in complementary but also necessary temporal goods thus bringing about the consequent misery of millions of Filipinos who through no fault of their own, happen to be on the way of the worst typhoon so far registered in the modern times, it is, however, still consoling to note that it is the same killer and destructive phenomenon that proves the humanity of man-to-man. So it is that the people disabled by a ruinous typhoon are now being helped by able individuals, families, organization, and others. Surely, the basic universal Mandate of “Love your neighbor,” after all still remains written in the hearts of people.
It is no secret that in this country, there are many cases and numerous instances when public officials bring about public distress, undermine public welfare, and thereby instigate public disgust. And for sure, such errant and even erratic public scandal will continue to take place in the days yet to come. Meantime, however, typhoon “Yolanda” manages to halt such atrocious and shameful phenomena—even but for the time being. But more than that, it took a typhoon of such magnitude in destructive force to do away with the inhumanity of man-to-man, even but momentarily. The following are some of not simply consoling but also deeply inspiring and endearing facts taking place:
The truth that after all is said and done, it is still Divinity that humanity eventually seeks, needs, and ardently calls upon in times of helplessness, anguish, and desperation. God, who is close to man 24/7, understands that man usually becomes close to Him during desperate times. Reason: Where will man ultimately go, whom shall he ardently call upon, in whom can he really hope on? Meantime, God knows that when things are just right and living is relatively easy, man usually takes Him for granted. One thing is certain: He understands!
The reality that although they may not be saints, it is in such times of great lost and big grief that Filipinos still show their “Bayanihan” spirit—their cultural neighborly concern. Tri-media has been doing its neighborly job rather well in repeatedly showing, talking, and writing about the havoc brought about by the typhoon, continuously asking for help for the people it devastated. And the response is edifying.
The fact that people the world over—irrespective of their race, color, and creed—are extending their helping hand to the Filipinos in urgent need of assistance even but in such basic human needs as food and water, clothes and shelters. This good news attenuates the bad news brought about by “Yolanda,” Filipinos and foreigners together extending their helping hand: Thank you! Mabuhay! God bless you!