Monday, July 7, 2008



Crime does pay when it is committed by the high and mighty in the Philippines. A man is sent away by his boss to escape a senate investigation. When he came back he was accosted by armed men who took him for a “joy ride” against his will. He would have been kidnapped or worst if not for the vigilant media who took interest in his case. He was about to spill the beans you see and deliver critical information over the ZTE broadband scam. At that time the people who abducted Jun Lozada were not really sure if Jun was still on his side or perhaps he already turned against them. Uncertain they had to bring Jun Lozada round and round until they can make a decision about the kidnap victim. Isn’t it frightening to have a government who kidnaps people in broad day light? What kind of government would kidnap a citizen of the republic and then have the gall to defend a non-existent human rights record before the international community of nations? Remember Jonas Burgos? His poor mother is still looking for her lost son who may still be alive, tortured, and languishing in a government cell.

According to human rights groups: torture, something that should have been a thing of the past, is now being used once more by state security agents under the Arroyo government. Women kidnap victims who were thought by state security to be sympathetic or allied somehow to the communist front have been raped, beaten, battered, and mentally tortured by elements from the military according to those who have somehow escaped. And yet what are the people doing about all of these things. Nothing, we have lost the will to fight for our rights therefore we no longer deserve a decent government unless we change our ways soon.

Decent people shouldn’t tolerate torture and kidnapping from state agents, rebel groups, or criminal syndicates. Decent people shouldn’t have to tolerate such things. But what is indecent about this whole thing is that we have grown apathetic and uncaring about the plight of the victims of abductions, torture, and extra judicial killings. We no longer care about the plight of Jonas Burgos. I asked some students if they still remember him and they replied by asking; “Jonas who?”

And now that the excitement has come and gone, do we still care about Jun Lozada? Should we reward a fellow Filipino who has gone to great lengths to expose anomalies in the land by turning our backs against him now that he really needs our support the most? The government is now prosecuting (persecuting) his wife, whose only fault was that she was frightened and concerned about her husband, for perjury. The government is saying that she committed the act of perjury while forgetting that they were the ones who forced her, and Jun’s sister, to sign the damn thing anyway.

Indecent, that’s what we are if we do turn our backs to the Jonas Burgoses and the Jun Lozadas of our lives! Indecent is what we are fast becoming because this government is anything but decent.

Despite the economic and food crisis what do we do in our spare time? We cruise the malls and ogle at each other forgetting that there are people who are languishing in jail, tortured and humiliated by their captors. We forget that there are still some people out there who still sleep on rooftops while six foot high mud remain lodged in their homes. Instead of trying to help the victims of Typhoon Frank and other such people who need our help some schools are getting their students to miss their classes by organizing club fairs. What kind of values do we still have as a people?

Values, rather the lack of them, are at the root of many of the troubles in this country. Our people wallow in poverty despite the government’s pronouncements to the contrary. This poverty is aggravated by corruption. Corruption is a moral problem and not just a political and economic dilemma. So are vote buying and selling, electoral fraud and the like. The symptoms are torture and all kinds of human rights violations. At the heart of this is a chilling reality. Some of our people have become spiritually numb. They no longer care about other people and that my dear friends make them indecent.

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