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Political Dynasties in the Philippines: In My Opinion

Next year’s Philippine midterm elections are fast approaching and it paints an all too-familiar image once again: candidates that are ei...



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JR Lopez Gonzales 5:08 AM 0

About two weeks ago, I spoke to the student writers of Northern Mindanao for the College Editors Guild of the Philippines (CEGP) for a journalism training workshop about opinion writing upon the invitation of the Chairperson Rommel Limjoco of MSU-IIT.
It was an enjoyable time which I considered as a matter of paying back to my fellow youth. I started my campus journalism stint in 1999 and I have to say that can very well relate to these college and high school students on the challenges of becoming a student-writer.

The seminar was well represented with delegates coming from Xavier University, Bukidnon State University, Mindanao State University – Iligan Institute of Technology, Mindanao State University – Marawi, Picardal Institute of Technology, Lanao Chung Hua School, Mindanao Sanitarium and Hospital, and Iligan Capitol College. Delegates from the MSU College of Law – Iligan Extension also attended the said event.

I was an hour-long lecture and after it, the workshop ensued. I asked them to make an impromptu essay for their workshop with the theme, “Are the Filipinos Hopeless?”. While I have to say that the theme has a hint of pessimism on it, it was my way of gauging the kind of foresight the new generation has for the country.
Below are some of the noteworthy lines written by the guilders on their impromptu opinion pieces written under time pressure:
“A man is a living paradox. I believe that there is no such thing as a purely evil or good person… With this, there is always a ray of hope in every situation that seems so dark.”

“… How to change these situations? There is still a way and that is to start changing ourselves.”

“All it needs is to open their eyes and realize that hope is right in front of them. Filipinos are not hopeless.”
- Mindanao Sanitarium and Hospital College delegates
“Filipinos are not hopeless, we have a chance to still be one of the best countries here in Asia. But to make that happen we need to have love for our country.”
- Lanao Chung Hua School student
“Filipinos” and “hopeless” are two words that just don’t go well together. We are a happy people, people who are still able to laugh, smile and make jokes out of our worst problems…”
- MSU College of Law student

… I’ve met remarkable individuals who have the passion and drive for change. But the thing is, one or [a] few people cannot change the whole country.
– Xavier University student

“So how can one say that the Filipinos are hopeless when in fact that’s not written in our vocabulary?”

“Though they [Filipinos] are suffering from poverty…still you can not see that they are losing their hopes”

“… we [the studentry] will realize our hopes by putting those thoughts into paper and transcending it beyond today’s generation.”

“I see hope within us. With unity and cooperation for all the Filipinos who still believe in change, we are still hopeful.”
- Mindanao State University – Marawi City delegates

“Filipinos are not hopeless when they take the problems as challenges, for them to become stronger…”
- Picardal Institute of Science and Technology

“As a young writer… I will do my best to [impart] good thoughts to my readers…”
- Iligan Capitol College delegate

“…coining Filipinos as hopeless people is like [judging] a book by its cover... Even Pandora treasured the last positive [trait] in her jar, and that is HOPE.”

“Filipinos strive for their own in times of difficulties. Even though how hard it is, Filipinos are very optimistic and they don’t have the ability to surrender.”

“… it [hopelessness] is a sense of surrendering to the solutions offered to us due to the fact that we expect there is no way…”

“Mythically speaking, the only positive attribute [which] came out [of] Pandora’s Box is hope… The term ‘hopeless’ for Filipinos is not fit…”
“… Didn’t he [PNoy] realize that more people [in the program] means that more people are going dependent to the government?”

“Philippines is rally sinking. And every one of us has a crucial role in saving her.”

“Our smiles… are one of the manifestations of our immeasurable hope”

I was surprised to know, upon reading their editorial pieces, that the view of the guilders are mostly positive. Despite the problems the country is constantly faceing, it sure was a breath of fresh air.

I just believe that we just have to couple this youthful optimism with the drive to do something good for the society. Guilders, mabuhay po kayo!

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