Social Spark

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

My Beloved Country, Please Change...

My friend, sent me this email few years ago.  I guess I just can’t get over it.  It might be because “I just don’t get it”, we Filipinos have the greatest mind… we are one of the most talented, gifted and innovative people.  We are very religious and we are passionate with our beliefs… But, why are we the poorest country who still tolerates corruption?  Is it hypocrisy to show others how we are so religious but do not practice our church’s teachings?  Why do we tolerate corruption and worst, participate in it?  A national officer of our armed forces just exposed how our taxes are being corrupted by some top officials and he even admitted he’s one of them. “The worse”.  The money could have been new schools, better roads, more works and better healthcare for us Filipinos.  We pay our taxes and this is where it goes.  How funny, government officials every year ask for increase in their budget because it is not enough… It is no longer enough but some still have the guts to take money for themselves.
Here’s one of our famous lines, “they are all doing it, so I have NO CHOICE but to do it or I’m dead”.  It’s only a scapegoat.  Can anyone really die by refusing a bride?  What if, someone offered you P500,000 per month, just to commit fraud to our country, Is it impossible to say no and tell them that you can’t do that?
The problem with our country is that people who commit corruption become too powerful that even our justice system could not punish them.  Even if it’s already OBVIOUS that they are guilty still our system finds it hard to prove that they are, because of technicalities. It’s a shame how the system works here.
What about us, are we guilty of corruption?  Are we guilty of the poverty in our nation? Well, do we hand money to a government or private official/employee just to get away from an offense or just to make our transaction easy or maybe so as we could ask for some favor?  Or if not, do we tolerate it; up to such point that we make ourselves believe that it is acceptable? Then we are guilty as charged.
I’m not losing hope in us.  I still believe we Filipinos would someday raise our heads up high.  Let’s start by saying, “It’s my fault, I’ll face the consequences of my action”, “I love my country and I love my people, I will not take what is due to them”, “I will be satisfied with what I have” (more especially if I already have more than enough), “I shall not steel or take anything that is not mine, I will follow this God’s Commandment”, “I’m proud to be a Filipino, because I’m a protector of my people and I will ensure that justice will prevail”, “I’ll wait for my turn and not take due advantage of others”… I have more… if you want… You may say I’m too idealistic and this is not a perfect world.  But am I asking too much?  I’m just asking each one of us to exert even a little effort to fight corruption.  Davao City made an ordinance for firecrackers and cigarette smoking in public… It is an effort but hey it worked.  It did not totally eradicate it nor was it easily implemented, but see the significant change it made.
Please let us change our ways, you can’t use your money when you’re dead, but your legacy of righteousness will forever be remembered.
Please read this essay about us, it is written by a Korean… God bless us all!!!

by: Jaeyoun Kim

Filipinos always complain about the corruption in the Philippines. Do you really think the corruption is the problem of the Philippines? I do not think so. I strongly believe that the problem is the lack of love for the Philippines.

Let me first talk about my country, Korea. It might help you understand my point. After the Korean War, South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world. Koreans had to start from scratch because entire country was destroyed after the Korean War, and we had no natural resources.

Koreans used to talk about the Philippines, for Filipinos were very rich in Asia. We envy Filipinos. Koreans really wanted to be well off like Filipinos. Many Koreans died of famine. My father & brother also died because of famine. Korean government was very corrupt and is still very corrupt beyond your imagination, but Korea was able to develop dramatically because Koreans really did their best for the common good with their heartburning with patriotism.

Koreans did not work just for themselves but also for their neighborhood and country. Education inspired young men with the spirit of patriotism.

40 years ago, President Park took over the government to reform Korea. He tried to borrow money from other countries, but it was not possible to get a loan and attract a foreign investment because the economic situation of South Korea was so bad. Korea had only three factories. So, President Park sent many mine workers and nurses to Germany so that they could send money to Korea to build a factory. They had to go through horrible experience.

In 1964, President Park visited Germany to borrow money. Hundred of Koreans in Germany came to the airport to welcome him and cried there as they saw the President Park. They asked to him, "President, when can we be well off?" That was the only question everyone asked to him. President Park cried with them and promised them that Korea would be well off if everyone works hard for Korea, and the President of Germany got the strong impression on them and lent money to Korea. So, President Park was able to build many factories in Korea. He always asked Koreans to love their country from their heart.

Many Korean scientists and engineers in the USA came back to Korea to help developing country because they wanted their country to be well off.  Though they received very small salary, they did their best for Korea. They always hoped that their children would live in well off country.

My parents always brought me to the places where poor and physically handicapped people live. They wanted me to understand their life and help them. I also worked for Catholic Church when I was in the army. The only thing I learned from Catholic Church was that we have to love our neighborhood. And, I have loved my neighborhood. Have you cried for the Philippines
s? I have cried for my country several times. I also cried for the Philippines because of so many poor people. I have been to the New Bilibid prison. What made me sad in the prison were the prisoners who do not have any love for their country. They go to mass and work for Church. They pray everyday.

However, they do not love the Philippines. I talked to two prisoners at the maximum-security compound, and both of them said that they would leave the Philippines right after they are released from the prison. They said that they would start a new life in other countries and never come back to the Philippines.

Many Koreans have a great love for Korea so that we were able to share our wealth with our neighborhood.  The owners of factory and company were distributed their profit to their employees fairly so that employees could buy what they needed and saved money for the future and their children.

When I was in Korea, I had a very strong faith and wanted to be a priest. However, when I came to the Philippines, I completely lost my faith. I was very confused when I saw many unbelievable situations in the Philippines. Street kids always make me sad, and I see them everyday. The Philippines is the only Catholic country in Asia, but there are too many poor people here. People go to church every Sunday to pray, but nothing has been changed.

My parents came to the Philippines last week and saw this situation. They told me that Korea was much poorer than the present Philippines when they were young. They are so sorry that there are so many beggars and street kids. When we went to Pasangjan, I forced my parents to take a boat because it would fun. However, they were not happy after taking a boat. They said that they would not take the boat again because they were sympathized the boatmen, for the boatmen were very poor and had a small frame. Most of people just took a boat and enjoyed it. But, my parents did not enjoy it because of love for them.

My mother who has been working for Catholic Church since I was very young told me that if we just go to  mass without changing ourselves, we are not Catholic indeed. Faith should come with action. She added that I have to love Filipinos and do good things for them because all of us are same and have received a great love from God. I want Filipinos to love their neighborhood and country as much as they love God so that the Philippines will be well off.

I am sure that love is the keyword, which Filipinos should remember. We cannot change the sinful structure at once.  It should start from person. Love must start in everybody,  in a s mall scale and have to grow. A lot of things happen if we open up to love. Let's put away our prejudices and look at our worries with our new eyes.

I discover that every person is worthy to be loved. Trust in love, because it makes changes possible. Love changes you and me. It changes people, contexts and relationships. It changes the world. Please love your neighborhood and country.

Jesus Christ said that whatever we do to others we do to Him. In the Philippines, there is God for people who are abused and abandoned. There is God who is crying for love.  If you have a child, teach them how to love the Philippines. Teach them why they have to love their neighborhood and country. You already know that God also will be very happy if you love others.

That's all I really want to ask you Filipinos.


  1. i love my contribution is not to throw garbage anywhere instead i throw it in a garbage can

  2. that's nice, sheng... i hope each of us will also commit to do something that would change our present situation... for the better... God bless

  3. I cried when I read the essay made by the Korean guy. In Japan and Korea they commit Harakiri to save face whenever they committed crime such as graft and corrupion.

    I remember when I went to China, I met and made friends with several Chinese. These great people I've made friends with studied abroad, some in the United States, Australia, Ireland, United Kingdom but they're back in China now because they love China. They only went abroad to study and gain knowledge and brought with them back to China the knowledge that they acquire from other countries. I believe we, Filipinos must love the Philippines more. We have to love the Philippines from our heart.

  4. Very well said. I do believe too that love is the key to anything.. Unfortunately some people are losing hope and eventually closing their hearts. But we always have to show them that we will not stop loving them.., ;)

  5. This post made me feel sad--it's the sad reality about our country. Because some of our countrymen are only concerned of their own personal gain. This is why corruption is so rampant. And those who work so hard lose faith in our government officials that they prefer to migrate abroad so that the taxes they pay don't go to waste.

    I still believe we can make things work. I think it requires our individual efforts, to do our part as citizens of our country, instead of just blame it all to the government and complain about all the hardships that we are going through.

    This was a very insightful post. Thank you so much for sharing. Take care and God bless! :-)

  6. A good read. I do hope everyone will do their part seriously.

  7. Most of the times I really don't understand anymore our Government, I am just tired of them LOL just dropping by here

  8. all I can is to pray. Praying that God will touch the hearts of these corrupt people so they can change.

  9. LOVE is the root of all GOOD.
    Love for people
    LOVE for family
    LOVE for community
    LOVE for our country
    LOVE for GOD
    indeed will prosper as we
    make LOVE the center of our being.

  10. I will always am Filipino by heart despite I am a US citizen now. Respect for elders cannot be taken away from me. Great articles :-)