Echaves: Salute | SunStar

Echaves: Salute

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Echaves: Salute

Monday, October 02, 2017

EACH generation always merits from the previous. Either it repeats the successes or learns from the lessons of misses.
Still, each parent tries to be better than his own parents, but no less determined to raise children happy and fulfilled.

This, despite differences in parenting practices. As a child, my father noticed very few planes in the Philippine skies. So he wanted to be a pilot.
But my grandfather said, “No, your legs cannot reach the pedals.” He must have meant height requirements, though in my father’s time, I saw PAL pilots no taller than my father.

So, devoid of hybrid courses, Vicente Sr. decided that his son Vicente Jr. be a lawyer. Thus began my father’s life as a lawyer to law professor, to dean of the UV College of Law, to judge of the Court of First Instance (now Regional Trial Court), and jurisprudence author.

My father let us his three children decide on our college course. The only condition: Choose and follow through to the end. He would have wanted one of us, especially me, to follow in his footsteps.

But I felt that everywhere I turned, I saw Echavezes in law --- he and his two brothers, uncles, cousins, and even brother-in-law and cousins-in-law.

They were trial lawyers, notaries public, law professors, or judges. So, at family gatherings, they were one big noisy bunch, including their wives (some were also lawyers). Na-ah, no law studies for me, thank you.

Fast forward to now, and I marvel at the close to 100 alternative careers for law graduates, many of them quite interesting and challenging.

Their careers could shoot off from such starting points as teacher, law professor, arbitrator, government worker, or politician.

From teaching, the law graduate could be a journalist, legal recruiter, stockbroker/investment advisor, foreign service officer, lobbyist or judge.

The law professor could also work as a legal editor, banker, entertainment agent, or media/television host like my favorite Chris Cuomo of CNN.

Tired of being a government worker? Our lawyer could be a news commentator, investment banker, law librarian, labor negotiator, even chief executive officer.

The arbitrator could be human resources director, NBI agent, management consultant, state bar administrator, private investigator, or law school career counselor.

And the politician could become a policy analyst, motivational speaker, fundraiser, contracts administrator, union organizer, consul or ambassador, national legislator or country president.

But some I’m glad are such pacesetters in their careers to even consider career shifts. The likes of high-profile lawyers like Sen. Leila de Lima and Lorna Kapunan. Strong and feisty, they keep their male counterparts ever awake and plotting how to outwit them.

Also Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, who, in the face of President Rodrigo Duterte’s threat to have the Ombudsman office probed, responded, “Sorry, Mr. President, but this Office shall not be intimidated.”

Awesome. Classic. I stand to salute you, complete with goose bumps.

Published in the SunStar Cebu newspaper on October 02, 2017.

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