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Sunday, August 18, 2019
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Abellanosa: So what is the state of the nation?

Fringes and frontiers



THE State of the Nation Address is a misnomer. Do presidents honestly tell us in their SONA the real “state” of the nation? Well, history teaches us that the SONAs in the past were more of revelations of the “state of fashion” among our legislators and the other officials of our government.

If there are people who are in the best position to speak of the “state” of the nation, it is not the rich members of the government but the poor, the laborers, and even the low-paid professionals who are being governed. Through the years we have been made to listen to scripted speeches that tell us of nothing but the dreams of the sitting president. In fact, presidents have been using their SONAs as an upgraded medium of political discourses.

The real state of the nation is not the president’s description of the country. It is not also what he desires for the country. More so, it is not what “he simply wants us to believe” of what this country has become. The real state of the nation is essentially and practically what people are experiencing every day. Heavy traffic, unexplained extrajudicial executions, abounding criminality despite the continual trumpeting of a government that is willing to kill criminals... these are just a few of what describes the state of the Philippines.

A sadder situation is the fact that there are still Filipinos who are also in complete denial that the state of this country is not getting better. With all their profession of faith towards the gospel of fake news, some diehard supporters of the admin cannot just admit that there has been more irregularities in the way things are managed under this presidency. A D-tard, recently, told me that the West Philippine Sea issue is part of the Liberal party’s strategy to discredit the achievements of Tatay Digong. OMG! What a discovery!

This kind of thinking lacks both logic and goodwill. It’s a childish remark devoid of honesty in admitting that there are objective realities which even the supporters of the president should not deny because duty to country demands from them loyalty to a higher cause. True, we must be good citizens and thus supportive of a government. But we should not just say “amen” to everything that this government says even if at stake are the more important elements of our polity.

There’s no question as to the validity of the reminder that we have to give our government a chance. It is also but fair to support a sitting president most especially that he was legitimately elected. What is not fair is for us to be told that we should not complain or point out the defects of our country just because some people believe that this country is getting better. All the more is it not fair to be told not to complain because the country is getting better when in fact it is not.

Let’s be blunt about it, the current state of the nation is one of utter fear and confusion. People know that there is something wrong but they’d rather not say it for fear of being charged with sedition. People also know that there is something unacceptable with what the president is saying but they don’t know how to react. In fact, some of us actually know how to react but would have second thoughts doing or verbalizing what we think.

Sadly, people’s confusion deepens. And as fear heightens, the oligarchy is metamorphosing. Corruption has mutated into different forms and personalities. The age-old problems of the country have become more deeply engrained. Yet many continue to believe that “change is coming.”

But what can we do? Well, we just have to let the day pass and assume that there exists this excitement to listen to another round of ranting. At least some fashion models in Congress look amusing.


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