Issue of June 16, 2019

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Need we "improve" our voting styles?

IF YOU WERE perhaps watching – before or after you went to cast your vote in the last electoral Exercise, you had seen most, if not all, of your co-electorates, queuing to the precincts in the ‘normal’, dignified, noiseless manner, etc., you’ve witnessed all these years. And you self-exclaim:

“AH, WHAT PEACEFUL, silent Exercise of our Right of Suffrage we always have! It is so solemn and fulfilling.. especially for us the Masa (masses) they call it: Election time: it is!” But

GO OUT-IF you perhaps did, some allowed meters from the Polling place – in the coops and stores where people were having their refreshments; or, under the shades of trees where your fellow-voters were conversing, exchanging jokes or pleasantries, etcetera, and you heard or saw ‘pro-active’ talk, analyses, discussions; the likes of:

“WHY, WE JUST voted for the same mayoralty candidate.. but different in the Congressional; may I know your most primary reason why you went for him, for Congressman?” Or, “Candidate (Let) X is related to our family; but so is Candidate Y; so we had to split our total five (5) votes – 3 against 2, before we finally went to vote!” Or, this one:

“YOU DIDN’T VOTE yet? It is almost 12 noon. Let’s go.. by the way, vote for Candidate M, it’s his “last term”. But the other one counters:

‘WHY IS YOUR reason that? Have you forgotten that his rival Candidate N, is your bloodkin.. 3rd cousin? And N’s wife is your wife’s kailian? D’you hear? [but you see the other guy now ‘busy’ looking at his kodigo copy].

SUCH FAMILIAR AND often repetitive scenes, you and I usually witness – just like what we’ve heard and seen Elections prior.

AS OF THE last Elections, at least in our area – and in other areas adjoining, the following ‘observations’ are cited as perennial, or en general, obtaining:

WE USUALLY VOTE for: 1) the bloodkin; if not, 2) the ‘distant’ relative, naikhaitan; if not, 3) the putative kir, nadayaw ay gait / kowansha e kabakian; and

IF NONE OF these, 4) those who ‘voluntarily offer’ us basic ‘merienda’ needs like cheesebread, pan de barra, tinudok-diket, softdrinks, etc,; if not, 5) those with whom our ‘influencing’ elders and leaders co-prevail, mengaaddok, over us to: “please vote for~”! Ah-ha. And so,

MANY ASPIRANTES ‘COME out’ – or using the Electorates term: lumuslusot because of those factors, i.e. they are what are described in 1), 2), and 3) (Supra); or they qualify in descriptions 4) and 5). So

AFTER THE ELECTIONS, is everybody happy? Yes? No? Some are not, etcetera? But

COME TO OUR ownselves, and viewing anew what have been cited (Ibid.) and afore described, have we considered ‘other angles’ – apart from those five (5) factors.. to proudly stand before the mirror and declare: ‘I voted, I’ve done my part, I’ve exercised my Right of Suffrage – fair and square(!)’?

WHAT ABOUT THE: (6) ‘Qualifications’ of the Aspirante you voted for? “Good enough”?; “~will do”? “Not-so.. but okay lang”? Then

(7) THE TRAININGS OR L.e.a.d.e.r.s.h.i.p preparations of the candidate? “Convincing enough’ – as you match these with the Position he is now presently running for? And yes!

(8) HIS AVOWED PLATFORMS! Take a close look again at the Poster you are now holding: what agenda, purpose, mission, project/programs are what he is saying? [Sometimes, it is like a joke hearing people say this or that candidate has no ‘doable’ agenda (um)]. And so forth.

BUT LET’S SAY: you’ve considered up to 8) and analyzed them each, thoroughly and judiciously, wait:

THERE MAY BE a 9), and 10), etc., factor to consider, but let the 1) - 8) suffice as of now; so, how do you rate yourself – as a voter? Of course, with more criteria and more reflections, you can claim (or start-ambition to be:) “Hopefully a citizen with an improved voting style!”

INDEED, MANY ARE that already; or so, as they publicly say. Even some candidates in the May 13, 2019 Elections were pleasuredly eyeing and banking on the ‘Intelligent Voters’ of this time, of Nowadays, huh?

BUT LOOK AT the Results: ‘same-same’ or almost; and analysts conclude – the number of our ‘Intelligent Voters’ has been quite slow to increase in years. Still, concerned civis we are,

WE SHOULD NOT despair. Instead, let’s presuppose: the Improvement of our voting styles has now taken off.. and, in due time, it shall have shaken off the tentacles of Ethro-cultural Centrism, of habitual ‘closing-eyes’, of plain Indifference, Dis-consideration and Insensitivity.

WE CLING TO the hope that: “if others can (improve their voting styles), why can’t we?”

FILIPINO NURSE – DANILO Favor has just been voted Mayor of East Grinstead, West Sussex, United Kingdom, the papers say, and what do you and I say?

WHY, HE MUST have been elected by some few Filipinos there.. some friends of other nationalities.. but definitely: mostly by British voters.. ang galingnaman! How so nice to hear!

“WHEN I WAS yet ion College, I read of a Japanese – American (but pure Japanese blood) – Inoue by name (sorry I forgot the Initials), who was elected, not just once, as Gov. of Hawaii. Years passed, and they voted for him to become a United States of America senator!

AFTER HIM, WAS a Filipino Hon. Ben Cayetano, who became Governor of Hawaii, U.S.A., and others of course.

If Apo Ben Cayetano and other Filipinos like him thereat shall become U.S.A. senators one day, should we still wonder? – they have refinedly improved their voting styles over there! Datayoditoyngai? Just asking the question, po.

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