Missing Dads | Philstar.com

Instead of starting with our main subject on “Missing Dads”, let me touch on a political subject which I believe must be a revelation from the Lord, since I am not very interested in political analysis. . Today, millions of Filipinos will vote for a new government and new leaders, but as I constantly say in every election: what will we each do for ourselves in and for our own lives? During the campaign period, a number of people have asked: how can Filipinos maintain the belief, hope, aspiration and “power” attitude that we all exhibited during the campaign and exploit as a source of energy for national transformation, regardless of the winner or the winner? lose? How to get the different colors and teams to come together around common ideas, projects or even businesses that would generate jobs, promote community growth and ultimately elevate community spirit rather than clientelism or political dependence?

In my circle of friends and on social media, the common bond is faith and the church. For others, it is a network of associates, colleagues, neighbors, or enthusiasts of a particular hobby or sport. But when it comes to politics, none of us are members of a real honest political party that stands for something or represents a platform beyond colors and characters. Elections and campaigns in the Philippines are more like personal events or “personal”/personality-based politics rather than organized groups and goals. We come together informally only because of a common aspiration or frustration and when elections are held politicians start the campaign of divide and conquer, pitting us against each other! This is what needs to be fixed in the Filipino political party system which honestly does not exist in its true form.

Political parties must have real members of good and long standing! We should stop recognizing political parties whose only members are politicians in local or national office. How the hell can you have party list reps that don’t even have real party members? By imposing the nationwide membership requirement and representation, we are planting the seeds of Filipino participation and engagement. Those who aspire to have or lead a political party will need real members and the only way to have real members is to give people a reason to join the party. Party membership turns into real power well beyond campaign periods because if a party fails to maintain its membership, they could be suspended or declared non-functional. Comelec should be pushed to invest more effort in the development of real political parties by demanding a defined percentage of voters, distributed throughout the country and a real set of long-term political platforms that are not mere copy-pasted slogans from paid hackers. Platforms should be representative of a group’s history.

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Coming out of the Mother’s Day celebration yesterday, I noticed something consistent and odd about the many social media posts honoring mothers around the world. Many family photos showed mothers and siblings, but more often fathers were missing. I realized then that most of the “dads” are deceased, which explains why they are absent from recent family photos posted on Facebook. Time and time again we have heard or read that the average Filipino man has a much shorter lifespan. I think it is even a worldwide statistical reality that women outlive men by 5 to 10 years, depending on the country or continent. So the question is: Will we “senior dads” make it to Father’s Day? I hope so!

With not much to do for the rest of the day other than vote and later bite their nails while waiting for the election results, it may be worth considering the fact that statistically speaking, the average Filipino lives to be 71. ,53 years. Most of those lucky enough to reach the age of 80 are usually frail, immobile or limited in their range of motion and movement or completely dependent on the tender mercy of younger offspring or caregivers. .

I remember one time when Ambassador Danding Cojuangco went out and bought a Honda Goldwing or mechanized hog that had 1200ccs of power and the immediate reaction from people around him was “Boss, No!” or “Sir, this is very dangerous” and other similar statements. As the shocked circle began to subside, someone curiously asked what made him buy a big bike in his senior years? In vintage ECJ style, the Boss replied, “Kailan pa ako mag momotor? Pag hindi ko na kayang itayo yung motor pag natumba? (When will I ride the bike differently? When I can’t hold the bike upright if it falls?)

“When else would I?” This line resonated with me during the two years we all experienced a nationwide quarantine and various lockdown seasons. Unable to do things we used to take for granted like travelling, taking walks, bike rides, working or shopping, we suddenly miss them and place a high value on them. When the finality of death and separation hits us all repeatedly, we all realize the people we love and esteem. There will be no “see you later”, no “see you for lunch” and, sadly, our absence will not be punctuated by a blank white oval in the photos or images. meetings in progress.

So when “Father’s Day” rolls around next month, try to make the most of it. Take lots of pictures, do some really special things, and remember that the average Filipino dad has a shorter lifespan than mom.

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