Today has been quite draining. Today is elections day, and it is obviously the most important day of the year for many Filipinos. 55 million individuals from different walks of life have discerned and assessed which people are deserving to run the country and improve its current state. I am one of the 55 million who voted today. As much as I have admired PNoy and his administration’s work in improving the state of our country, I know that there’s so much more to be done, which is why I’ve placed my faith in Mar Roxas, Leni Robredo, and folks such as Risa Hontiveros, Walden Bello, and Leila de Lima when I voted today because I know that they are capable of shaping the country into a better one.
Now that the polls have closed and that votes are now being counted, it’s scary to see that the two people being tipped for the two highest positions in the country are men who will potentially bring the Philippines into a state of fear and terror. You have someone who promised to eradicate crime and drug addiction in a short span of time through bloody means, while you have another who blatantly denied the sins of his father to the Filipino people and ran away with the Filipino people’s ill-gotten wealth. I cannot accept this, and I hope you do the same. It’s scary that they are dominating the polls, and it is quite telling that many of us have chosen to go for someone who will provide temporary, unsustainable solutions to our country’s problems rather than uphold our basic human rights. It is also infuriating that many of us have chosen another leader who continues to deny his involvement with his father’s sins. There is also an ongoing trend among people my age who apologize for the Marcoses’ sins, which is quite appalling. There is no doubt Martial Law was one of the worst things that happened to our country— lives were lost and human rights were hampered. But what’s worse is that many people defend its rationale and continue to reduce its relevance to us as Filipinos. Seeing these things through the different forms of media that I consume is just giving me many reasons to be angry about our country. I just want a Philippines that will allow me to say and do what I please (as long as it’s in the context of the law), a Philippines that will give me opportunities for growth, and a country that will keep me safe. From the looks of these results, I am afraid that it wouldn’t happen yet. I am hoping (and praying) that things will turn around in this year’s election results, and that the people who deserve to lead this country will be the ones to shine instead of those who are projected to win. The Philippines deserves better leaders than these two.
But whatever happens, I will not give up on the Philippines.