"P-Noy’s responsibility is first and last to his people. P-Noy’s concern is first and last his people. P-Noy’s priority is first and last his people." That is according to Conrado De Quiros in his PDI column yesterday which had me thinking while taking a bath this morning. Can you imagine that? Me having this much interest in Philippine politics? Hey, I'm the girl who dies for shoes!
De Quiros is among those plenty who are irked by P-Noy's move to give the Chinese government and its people the first crack at the IIRC report. He further wonders, "Truly you have to wonder what kind of people P-Noy has surrounded himself with." Exactly my sentiment.
But I digress from this one.
Everyone who criticized P-Noy about his decision to send to the Chinese government the IIRC report first had forgotten this: P-Noy is Filipino first before he is President.
What is a Filipino? What sets us apart from the rest of the world? Before laws and rights, we have traits and culture first. These two, the bases of our Constitution, the reasons for our madness.
Why do we save the best blankets and pillow cases and take them out because a guest happens to be in the area and asks if he can stay for the night? Why do we not touch the only fish on the table when we have visitors for dinner? Why do we open the blue-sealed canned goods that we proudly put on display in our "estante" and serve to Tatay's officemates one weekend they decide to show up?
When the children of my sister's friends come to visit, they get to play my nephews' newest and "bestest" toys while our nephews look on wondering perhaps, "Spiderman ko 'yun, ah. Bakit binigay ni Tita sa bata?" "Umba, beebee! Beebee, umba!"
When I was a kid, I asked my mother why my cousins get to sleep in our room and we at the living room. She answered: "Eh kase, mga bisita sila." My inquiry didn't end there. But the bottomline is visitors come first.
Those Chinese tourists were our visitors. We gave them hospitality not because they deserved it. They were given it because we are Filipinos. And as Filipinos, we have this crazy trait of hardcore fresh-linen-and-best-pillows hospitality. Whether you like it or not.
Filipino first and we have the blood of these Chinese tourists in our hands? Instead of the best reception, we gave them multiple murder. Instead of the best and choicest fish, we had them eat bullets.
Filipino first? That is so un-Filipino, if you ask me. Do you know what is being Filipino? It is bowing our heads when we pass when people are talking. It is the mother eating only what is left by her children in their plates. It is the mother taking only the smallest part of the fish. It is the first-born taking care of her siblings and sending them to school. It is the neighbor passing a bowl of calderata over to the fence of the other neighbor, "Mare, pasensya na. Nagluto ng konting caldereta. Eto, tikman nyo."
Filipino are never known to have the "Me first" mentality.
Don't, just don't confuse our people with others.