The contents of this speech emanate from actual events in Philippine history. The author/blogger does not have any grudge or hatred against any mentioned nation, race or cultural community. The author/blogger composed this piece for a friend’s high school son, who will be competing in a national oratory contest.
A NEW DAY FOR A WEEPING NATION
A four-word statement that embodies our past, personifies our present and epitomizes the future.
A declaration of hope. An avowal of faith. An affirmation of a celebrated tomorrow.
Today, in behalf of my fellow youth, I stand before you to repeat the words that stirred our nationalism—To enflame once again that dying candlewick of loyalty to our nation.
To fuel again the fading faith that within years not too remote from this day, a new generation of patriots will emerge from the pearl of the Orient to carve our lineage in the archives of mankind.
These words should have new meaning for all of us today.
Tracing the richness of our history through the manifolds of foreign conquerors who tilled, cultivated and exploited our land against our approval, to the blinding promises of globalization, the claws of modern technology, the mayhem of Martial Law, the historic era of Edsa Revolt and presently, the threats of government turmoil brought about by self-greed and corruption, I beg my fellow youth to lend me their ears.
I may be a child but from my own fair share of library visits, I dug the elaborated records of our humble beginnings. We fought our way from oppression to liberty. We perspired blood to regain our freedom. We upheld our right to love and live.
Shortly after Spanish regime and Japanese occupation, we sought to establish a culture that we can claim as fully ours. However, the Americans came to our rescue in the guise of education and Commonwealth to employ true colors of colonialism. Until now, we savor hamburgers better than our very own adobo.
In the light of globalized and modernized world, where United Nations agrees that they will stand next to another, cultural boundaries can no longer be defined. We lost grip of our traditions, imitating customs of foreign start.
In these present times, we kill to survive—butchering animals and consuming thousands of trees to accommodate our needs. We forget that the more we neglect our Mother Earth just so we can give in to our desires, we rob future generations of their right to see the luxury that we now get to exploit from our dear nature.
While we earn education on our sleeves, we grow indifferently towards our brethren.
We no longer care. We only think of ourselves.
For us, to succeed means to go on our own. We do not remember that from a not so distant past, “Bayanihan” was a concept that our race was once known for.
While we gain determination to read, we lose appetite to learn. We forget to help our country for own sake. Our working force continues to take flight to greener pastures, leaving a huge dry portion of brain drain on our own soil.
Love of country now lies miles behind love of self.
Gusty typhoons must have blown away in vain the lessons of Martial Law and Edsa Revolution.
The leaders that we select and elect to the government take away money that are supposed to ensure our brightest future. Our leaders choose the dark path of greediness, money and power— stealing our dreams, shattering our hopes and ruining the happy life that we all ought to have.
With all these events simultaneously happening before our very eyes, I already imagine a different picture of our beloved Philippines. That although it is 100-million strong, it is also 1000-million limp.
Orphaned. Astray. No nursing arm to go home to. Literally struggling to keep up with the world’s pace— alone.
This is not the Philippines that the youth of today is supposed to inculcate in their minds!
This is not the tale that we trailed for hundreds of years!
This is not the pursuit that our ancestors, venerated and unsung heroes alike, had headed to for centuries!
In this country, where the environment is blessed with green and abundance, no one deserves to live in poverty. No one deserves to work in another terrain just so his or her family can eat three full meals a day.
In this State, where promises of justice lie in wait, the laws of the land must see its people standing on equal footing and breathing on similar vein. No one should be detained in the comfort of an air-conditioned room with cable TV while others are imprisoned in hog’s cage.
In this nation, where each person is gifted with talent and intelligence, equal education and employment opportunities must be given to all. No discrimination, no selective recognition, no unequal protection.
In this land, where visions of democracy sit on top of all our political affairs, rights and responsibilities must meet on common end so that nobody will ever cross the line in its people’s expense.
I maybe a child but I take this chance to address my very own state of the nation.
The problems that we face today do not the mark the end. Rather, they signify another beginning.
What our nation bears and wrestles in this pressing time is a battle onward a new dawn. A new start that is enough to plead every citizen to help in continuing to fight and emerge triumphant of. A new unfolding of history that is worth of being retold generation through generation.
Let our voices traverse all boundaries of the Earth, proclaiming that this race will not vanish without a fight! Filipinos will live on. Filipinos will survive.
And yes, I am a child.
I am Filipino.
Truly, I am proud I am.