EVENTS surrounding Manny Pacquiao, our revered boxing champ, has taught him some valuable lessons, not once but many times. But Manny does not budge an inch in acting in conformity with the lessons that these events have divinely postulated for him.
Indeed, money is a powerful instrument that could warp our ability to appreciate the beautiful abstractions that gives deeper meaning to life, even more precious than the glory of fame and the glitters of gold. One is momentary; the other is immortal.
Manny has starred in so many movies, but all of these had flopped. His movies? crowd-drawing power was terribly dismal, if not shameful. The public performance of his movies was much more dismal than that of Eddie Gil (remember that presidential candidate who promised to pay the country's debt out of his own money?), despite of the fact that he was then publicly regarded as the modern Caligula.
If Manny were an ostrich, he could have already buried his head in the sand in shame, considering the frustrating performance of his movie, WAPAKMAN. The latest news is that- it is now being pulled out by cinema owners from their respective movie houses, and had it replaced with other more bankable films to avoid further losses.
Why the movie of one of the most popular man in the planet was trounced in terms of public acceptability by the movie of a shady character, whom the public had perceived to be an insane person, carries with it a divine message. We should remember that Divine Providence, in order to send-in His message, would always create, or allow to happen, the most stunning, disdainful and the ugliest of things either to correct society (like the Maguindanao massacre) or to force a realization (like what had happened to St. Augustine).
The realization here is that God is not likely to shower to one person all the blessings of life, and that one must only have to use to the optimum what He had given him. This is the spiritual reason.
But the logic is not only spiritual; it is also social. God is the first socialist. It was He who said that if we have a pair of trousers, we must give one piece to the other who has none. It was also He who said that when we already had used a piece of land for our personal benefit within a period spanning 40 years, that land does not anymore belong to us. It belongs to others who have no land at all to till.
Clearly now, politics and showbiz do not belong to Manny. What was given him was the boxing arena, and it is in this arena where he had already built a name, and where he continues to reap fame and grandeur. These facts were made known to him in the most painful and shameful way. We hope that, by now, Manny had realized this.
With the embarrassing record of Wapakman, Condrad de Quiros was right when he said that the people have had compartmentalized their admiration of Manny. As a boxer, they admire him as heaven-sent, but they look askance as him as an "artista". It is because it is not his world; it is not what he is made to be. It is not within the processes of his becoming.
In the entertainment world, boxing and showbiz are "relatives". In fact, they are "first cousins". But this fact does not prevent the compartmentalization of the people's perspective on Manny. The public fascination on Manny as a boxer fails to radiate into Manny's showbiz career, which is not only in a rough-and-tumble situation. It has finally fallen into a deadly abyss where survival is impossible.
Manny has entered the political arena once in the 2007 congressional elections, and with the same twist of fate, he miserably failed. He ended up with his political leaders laughing away with his money. In politics, he is a convenient source of money for the wise and the wily. On the other hand, he is the source of campaign funds for the politicians. Unfortunately for Manny, he is not being looked up as a leader who brings hope, but one who could easily part of his money.
Again, the people's perspective of him was compartmentalized. They revered him as a boxer, but not as a politician. But this fact is yet to dawn on Manny. He has again filed his candidacy for a congressional seat in Sarangani Province. All indications point to the fact that he will again reel in defeat.
The logic is very clear. Boxing and politics are no longer "relatives", although there are times when they both appear to be equally entertaining.
In the boxing ring, Manny is admired for his amazing footwork. It is because it is his world. In the political field, Manny is prone at committing wrong steps. It is because it is not his world.
Take note of this fact. Manny has taken with the scions of the founder of Sarangani Province and the architects of its unprecedented development against whom victory is remote for him. Yet, to compound his misfortune, he intervened in the politics of GenSan by publicly indorsing one of the political adversaries of Representative Darlene Antonino-Custodio who is, this time, running for City Mayor.
In addition to these, there are consistent rumors that Manny is also financing all the mayoralty candidates that have fitted themselves against Darlene in the mayoralty race.
Many political analysts in the city view this as one that is not reminiscent of Manny's magnificent footwork in the boxing ring. His act of creating a conflict against Darlene who trounced him by a very wide margin in 2007 is a wrong step, a discordant foot play. It is running roughshod over propriety.
In fact, others call it stupidity. For who can be more stupid than a person who, when faced with the enemy he cannot win against, still decide to create more enemies for himself.
Fortunately for Darlene, with the cannons of all her political adversaries (there are three of them) mounted against her, she appears like a superwoman, an underdog fighting so many enemies. In real life, as in the movies, an underdog would always emerge triumphant in the end.
Politics is not as simple as others may have believed it is.