Editorial: Do it ourselves, people of compassion

FROM postings on social networks, it’s apparent that there are still those helping the Zamboanga crisis victims. But maybe, that’s because we’re in Mindanao and thus, majority of our followers and friends are from Mindanao, among which surely are the few who keep on with the massive task of rebuilding Zamboanga City.

There is no such post about Bohol and the earthquake. We just hope it’s because we’re from Mindanao and thus have comparatively fewer friends in the Visayas.

That we worry about many other things aside from the devastation of Typhoon Yolanda is a sobering, and sometimes even frightening, thought.

When the Zamboanga crisis broke out, we thought there could never be any greater lack of compassion when the decision was to annihilate every member of the Moro National Liberation Front led by Nur Misuari, even if they had hapless civilians with them, all pleading for their lives.

When the Cebu and Bohol earthquake happened soon after, we thought there was never a more frightening natural occurrence than when an otherwise undetected fault rises up and shatters just about every centuries old Catholic Churches along with several thousand shaken residents. We pitied the people in the two island provinces as they suffered aftershock upon aftershock in magnitudes we know would have already driven us running out of our houses in fright.

Then, came Yolanda?

Along with the super typhoon that flattened towns, cities, and islands in the Eastern Visayas comes the realization that lack of compassion can paralyze a whole bureaucracy, and thus the spirit of patriotism should no longer be in rallying behind the bureaucracy that is our government but in rallying the people, who are the real government.

Waiting for the bureaucracy to find their heart will mean another week of inaction or blame-throwing.

Comes to the realization that what we thought was the worst can quickly pale in comparison with what the future may hold.

What we have witnessed through all these three man-made and man-worsened tragedies, however, is our compassion as a people, and that is where our strength lies. Let us not lose this as we prepare ourselves always to help and be of service. The bureaucracy can go hang, we are the people, we are the government.
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