Thursday, July 1, 2010

A speech that resonates

I have excerpted a few portions of President Benigno Aquino III's speech that resonated with me, and I suppose with my countrymen as well. If the 20-minute 2,043-word speech were cut down to chaste, I believe it would have boiled down to the following phrases. I hope and pray to the Almighty that these words would come to fruition within the next few years, for it has heretofore remained a dream. Only then can the Filipino hope to rise.

So help us God.

Source: original text here, translated version here. [English translation in brackets]
...Alam nating lahat ang pakiramdam na magkaroon ng pamahalaang bulag at bingi. Alam natin ang pakiramdam na mapagkaitan ng hustisya, na mabalewala ng mga taong pinagkatiwalaan at inatasan nating maging ating tagapagtanggol. [We all know what it is like to have a government that plays deaf and dumb. We know what it is like to be denied justice, to be ignored by those in whom we placed our trust and tasked to become our advocates.]

Kayo ba ay minsan ring nalimutan ng pamahalaang inyong iniluklok sa puwesto? Ako rin. Kayo ba ay nagtiis na sa trapiko para lamang masingitan ng isang naghahari-hariang de-wangwang sa kalsada? Ako rin. Kayo ba ay sawang-sawa na sa pamahalaang sa halip na magsilbi sa taumbayan ay kailangan pa nila itong pagpasensiyahan at tiisin? Ako rin. [Have you ever been ignored by the very government you helped put in power? I have. Have you had to endure being rudely shoved aside by the siren-blaring escorts of those who love to display their position and power over you? I have, too. Have you experienced exasperation and anger at agovernment that instead of serving you, needs to be endured by you? So have I.]

Kami ay narito para magsilbi at hindi para maghari. [We are here to serve and not to lord over you.]

To those who are talking about reconciliation, if they mean that they would like us to simply forget about the wrongs that they have committed in the past, we have this to say: there can be no reconciliation without justice. Sa paglimot ng pagkakasala, sinisigurado mong mauulit muli ang mga pagkakasalang ito. [When we allow crimes to go unpunished, we give consent to their occurring over and over again] Secretary de Lima, you have your marching orders. Begin the process of providing true and complete justice for all.

Ang sinumang nagkamali ay kailangang humarap sa hustisya. Hindi maaaring patuloy ang kalakaran ng walang pananagutan at tuloy na pang-aapi. [Whoever violates the law will have to face justice. We will not allow a system of non-accountability and continued oppression of the weak.]

Walang lamangan, walang padrino at walang pagnanakaw. Walang wang-wang, walang counterflow, walang tong. Panahon na upang tayo ay muling magkawang-gawa.
[No more influence-peddling, no more patronage politics, no more stealing. No more sirens, no more illegal short cuts, no more bribes. It is time for us to work together once more.]

Kayo ang boss ko...[You (the people) are the boss...]

And if I were to cut it down even further to the bare essential:

"Walang wang-wang, walang counterflow, walang tong."

-- that would be the perfect antidote to everything that is fundamentally wrong in this country.
Only when this nation starts to respect the fundamentals that we go through in our daily lives, only then can we say that the bigger and greater goals are reachable. We have to see the change in the little things we see everyday. Only then can we believe we are genuinely starting on the road to progress.

You are spot on, Mr. President.

And may God be with you.



Anonymous said...

As Smokey says: "I second that emotion". Luke 16:9-13 seems appropriate, especially verse 10.
- TE

WillyJ said...

9: I tell you, make friends for yourselves with dishonest wealth, so that when it fails, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.
10: The person who is trustworthy in very small matters is also trustworthy in great ones; and the person who is dishonest in very small matters is also dishonest in great ones.
11: If, therefore, you are not trustworthy with dishonest wealth, who will trust you with true wealth?
12: If you are not trustworthy with what belongs to another, who will give you what is yours?
13: No servant can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.

(Luke 16:9-13)
Thanks TE.

WillyJ said...

Also, verse 13 seems to be very appropriate for the new president.