The state of our ethos PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 19 December 2014 11:36

By REMEDIOS F. MARMOLEÑO

 

We reach a stage of  corruption which is more scary than your usual congressman or senator putting into their own pockets money which is meant for public service projects.  As they say, it’s only money after all. But when corruption  reaches the stage when those who are to implement the law to serve and protect the public  turn out to be buyable, that is scary indeed. For to whom do we turn when we are in need of being protected from those who intend to do us harm or when an injustice done to us needs to be redressed?

There was this justice in the Sandiganbayan who was dismissed for being too palsy-walsy with someone who had been brought before his bench. He was found out this one time and was dismissed but how many other times were there when he was not found out?

There was this director of a government agency whose job it was to weed out the corrupt and the incompetent in the police force but who turned out to be buyable after all, when he was caught receiving marked money from the two policemen who were supposed to be investigated by the commission. How many others did he simply slip through before he was caught?  He got richer but our police force became more riddled with corrupt personnel.

The two examples above actually came out in the news. What about the several other cases which are simply fodder for the bulong-bulong rumor mills whenever people get together in parties or in the coffee shops? These cases  do not come out in the media for reasons known to you and me.

And the media people themselves , they who are supposed to be unofficial guardians of  the ethical/unethical conduct of those who are  officially there to protect and serve the public -   how many have clean slates?  I have heard that some media people are on the monthly gift list of  a utility company in the city. Knowing the value that Filipinos give to “utang na loob” how can they possibly report on someone or some people who are their benefactors?

It’s a tough world out there and the 99%  of us who are not on the Forbes list  can surely make good use of some additional income. But what do we give back to make this additional income? That is a good point for reflection.

Cardinal Tagle has proposed that when Pope Francis comes in January people who care and who will welcome the Pope should wear T-shirts with the words “Huwag mag nakaw”.  The strategy is to highlight the importance of honesty and drive to shame the people who are thieves. For all we know many of those concerned individuals will not be wearing the shirts but will be in their best and rubbing elbows with others of their ilk and sharing the spotlight with the Pope. Welcome to the real world!