By Mario Casayuran
Boxing icon Sen. Emmanuel D. Pacquiao said the subject of patriotism should be taught in school as the word “patriotism’’ appeared to have lost its meaning among Filipinos.
He said he usually sheds tears whenever he hears the line in the Philippine national anthem that a freedom-loving citizen would love to die for his country.
But he said the feeling of patriotism is not felt because he has seen how citizens betray their fellowmen or are traitors to the flag.
“We should teach patriotism in the schools that we are loyal to our country and I cry because we love this country and it is the only one we have,’’ he added.
He said he has observed people who keep on moving, not giving proper attention to the Philippine anthem when it is being sung.
“Wag na natin kantahin yung Pambansang Awit natin kung sa bungganga lang tayo ,tapos wala naman…ipakita natin yung loyalty natin,’’ he said. (Let us not sing the national anthem if we just pay lip service to it…we should show our loyalty.)
He was interviewed immediately after the powerful bicameral Commission on Appointments (CA) confirmed him and eight other lawmakers, including House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, as colonels in the reserve force of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
As a reservist, Pacquiao said he has been trained to handle guns and is ready to fight for the country if called ipon to render military service.
Asked by Senate reporters whether he is thinking of enlisting in the active service, he said he would do so “para makapagbigay ng support at ma-inspire yung kasundaluhan,’’ he added. (to give support to and inspire the soldiers.)
He said he is willing to be assigned anywhere in the country to help in its anti-terror campaign.