By JULLIE Y. DAZA
Two days to E-Day and are voters ready?
Personally, I feel let down by Namfrel’s withdrawal as Comelec watchdog. As each hour goes by I should be biting my nails, wondering how much more I should worry about being worried by how the exercise of free, honest, and clean elections will look after 6 p.m. on Monday the 13th and, just as important, if the results will be what we deserve, as a reward and not in the karmic way of being punished for a bad deed.
After watching, covering, and assessing so many elections in so many years, I cannot see how the political scene has changed much; it is as if we stood still and merely continued to age, election after election, while time passed us by. Been there, done that, seen it all. Are elections more peaceful today? Why are “political rivals” still in the habit of eliminating each other with bullets rather than ballots? The police are on multicolor alert, their massive deployment a sign to be nervous. So much money changing hands, they say: What price democracy? The drama isn’t healthy. Young adults are not encouraged to get out the vote, but better to see them bored than cynical.
The electorate lacking in political sophistication and discernment? Look again. It’s those officials whose hides have grown thicker, their greed for pelf and power become more insatiable the longer they stay in power. Thank God, there is a rare breed of hardworking men and women out there who work quietly behind the scenes, unlike the loud and hollow ones, that they risk being underappreciated. And why call down voters for being “easily bought for a few hundred bucks” when it is their learned, educated candidates who keep their constituents poor and forever in their debt?
Paranoid, me? To quote from Ecclesiastes, “Vanity, vanity, all is vanity.” The day comes that our candidates stop defacing parks, markets, vacant lots, electric posts, walls, trees, gates, doorways, even mountains; when they show their respect for our surroundings and order the distributors of their trash to remove the same the day after elections, win or lose — that will be the signal, Day One, to reconsider.