Flipinos of the year

WRECKORDER - FGS Gujilde (The Freeman) - January 7, 2021 - 12:00am

I itch to name my personal choices for male and female athletes of the year that was, despite decreased tournaments to measure their individual performances due to corona. Quite a few stood out even if the sports landscape flipped inside out, from virtual to live competition without the audience who give them life.

But also because of the crowned virus, I defer proclaiming them, to install with pride the medical front liners as Filipinos of the year. And with empathy, especially for the bereaved family of the fallen heroes who never abdicated their bounden duty to protect public health even at the cusp of death.

But with protest, at how some of them were treated and maligned by the misinformed and the self-informed. And with a shocked conscience, at how underpaid and undervalued they are. This is not resilience, but plain patriotism or pure altruism. I don’t know which one motivated them the most. But either way or both, they have authenticated genuine public service, in unwitting rebuke of those paid by public purse to do it.

They, along with the soldiers and policemen, most of whom did the right thing while a few did something worse than nothing, and the civilian volunteers who served more than those who were paid for, and many other front liners who faced the faceless enemy to animate us when we were stunned to a stand still.

They brought to fore the best in the Filipino whose finest qualities and best practices in the face of adversity redefined pure sacrifice. But there is always the worst at the opposite side, who else but the thieves in broad daylight, those who stole some people’s lives and the chance to survive, those who stole public health and their insurance benefit.

The public too, like those who wore facemask on their chin and face shield on their forehead. While a good number wore them the proper way, some did three meters away from each other and took them off three feet close to each other’s mouth and nose. It must be rude to cover your mouth when you talk. It is not surprising, before corona they placed helmets on their lap, that body part protected by muscle and flesh that bruise on collision course, and not on the head, that body part protected by cranium that crack on impact.

Why head protectors and seatbelts need to be worn at the behest of legislation likens them to a prey oblivious to the predator right under its nose. No sense and sensibility. Just sins. Of omission and nonchalance. To be more specific though, cranium is the part of the skull that encloses the brain. There is nothing to protect after all. That explains.

 If it is any consolation, they have great company, no less than the most powerful American who mimicked the antics of some Filipino politicians, downplayed the viral threat and replaced scientific proof with his theoretical goof. But horror of all horrors, millions believed in his delusions, many of whom think they are the supreme race. Stop saying only in the Philippines then, stupidity is universal.

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