When I was growing up, most of the people I know in my hometown, when radio was the only source of news, looked up to America as the source of the good life, being the “Land of Milk and Honey,” and the Americans as the ideal models. But with the advent of the internet, we have seen the sorry side of America and its people. But I know of many Americans who are down to earth.
Somehow, the joke that went viral on social media, “Everything you hear or read is an opinion until proven otherwise,” is true.
I was unnerved listening to the news yesterday morning about a parent who threatened to arrest the teachers who would compel his child to put on the face mask when in school. Here is a kind of parent that would rather jeopardize the health of his child and that of others just because of his so-called freedom of choice. Only in America!
Who doesn’t love freedom? But freedom has limitations because too much of it could imperil others’ rights. That’s why we have the laws to regulate that freedom in order not to disregard or endanger others’ lives and safety. What has gone wrong with America? Worse, they have elected officials who defy science and use the health issue for their vested political interest.
Here, we’re fortunate that President Duterte, despite his bravado and invectives, believes in science and not on those voodoo talks about this new coronavirus that had already claimed millions of lives worldwide. He leads us in complying with the health protocols. Never mind his expletives against his political opponents.
Without fear of contradiction, I am proud to say that we, Filipino parents, would rather put ourselves in harm’s way than endanger the lives of our children. Some of us may also be hard-headed that President Duterte quickly labeled the Cebuanos as “gahi’g ulo” last year when the rate of infection of Covid-19 was so high that he sent Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu to implement strictly the health protocols.
Other officials, national and local, should set themselves as good examples to their constituents especially on the efforts of the Duterte administration to vaccinate the majority, if not everyone, to attain herd immunity so that this invisible enemy, Covid-19 and this fast-spreading Delta variant, would be a thing of the past and we could return to our normal lives.
There are still a lot of Cebuanos I know that are still hesitant to take the free vaccine because of wrong information they get from Covid-19 and vaccine deniers. Perhaps, it’s about time for Congress to come up with an emergency law that makes vaccination against Covid-19 mandatory because we are in abnormal times.
Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio issued an executive order mandating vaccination of all the city workers. Otherwise, their employment would not be renewed if they refuse to be vaccinated. I wonder if the local officials here in Cebu would replicate Mayor Carpio’s order, while the vaccines are free, so that the rate of vaccination would rapidly increase and in due time, we could attain herd immunity.
If all the officials set an example to the community by having themselves vaccinated in public, I am certain that those who are still in doubt or scared of the vaccine would follow suit. Pabakuna na ta!