I have given so much thought as to what to do with this next post. Like so many, there is so much I want to say, but I’m going to resist the temptation for now as I like to think energy is better spent in encouraging donations and encouraging the good things that are happening. What I will say I shall keep fairly brief and it’s not intended to stir up any hornet’s nests, just encourage reflection.
As for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda all I can say is I cannot begin to really imagine what you have gone through. Words are cheap I know so if I may, I will just say I’m so sorry for all that has happened to you people. Grieve your losses and after the tears have faded, I just pray that out of this something good can come. I know not what and you have been treated awfully by nature and let down by many, but the people, not just here but worldwide are wishing to help. Let’s hope out of this tragedy, you start to get treated with the due respect you deserve and never be put in a hell you just came from again. I do believe after all that has happened, something good has to come from it eventually. Just my hope, saying much else is just a speech and I’m just hoping.
Like I said, I thought a lot about how to write this. Well, I’ve come to the conclusion right now that this isn’t the time to go over some well-aired failings. I understand that this was mammoth. I understand that in no way could tragedy have been prevented for the most part. I do feel that after everyone is safe and the worse is over, then a serious inquest is needed. Really, something has to be done and measures put in place that will eventually mean that the authorities are able to do a better job.
If the failings were budget, lack of equipment, lack of a plan, lack of logistical support, then it’s time to make sure that it never happens again and to get serious about actually doing what needs to be done to prevent the problems with the relief in the future. We can’t stop the storms I know. I’m sure that many were overawed and I accept human failings, I know those that could do their best have given it their best shot. People are still fighting for you and people are wishing to help and above all, people want change. Let’s just keep hoping.
From a personal point of view, it’s just left me shocked and bewildered, angry and confused, God only knows how those that were in the path of the storm must be feeling. That’s why I would not attempt to be any kind of spokesman right now. What I want to happen is that everything that has happened has people questioning why. If you’re confused like I am as to why there was a lack of genuine will from some individuals in government, then we really have to put them under the microscope, but at the right time. They must not get away with the inaction, the lies need to be exposed, and if any of the criticisms are unfair, then let that be shown in time. Right now, all I can say is there is a hell of a lot of questions, not too many have been answered honestly up to now. Again, let’s hope some political good can come out of this.
As angry as many of us are, we have to try to simply put down our differences, focus on encouraging the relief, get everyone fed and safe, after that, I don’t even know but that has to be achieved and fast. I’m so grateful for the help that has come from abroad via soldiers, medical teams and relief specialist’s equipment and knowhow and as always, the Red Cross. The many Filipinos who did all they could without the tools or help; they need a special mention, too.
Nearly one week later, I’m at last feeling that things are starting to improve. Overdue or not, let’s just be happy that that is the case. Anger just makes everything worse, but it’s completely understandable. I don’t think it’s anyone’s place to use lame defences of “stop complaining and just help.” That’s too convenient a way to hide the failings, but yes I do agree the focus must be on helping. I think enough has already been said by many angry people. I really can’t blame them. Please ensure that everything that went wrong with the relief operation in the early days never happens again. Stop finding scapegoats and continuing with vendetta politics because frankly, that’s not helping much either.
I hope the foreign media from now on wakes up to realising that there is more to report in the Philippines other than the smiling and friendly people. Things are very wrong here on so many levels. The people are not bad people; they are just misled and disregarded. I just hope the world media has noticed that and looks a little deeper into what is really behind all that. Just because it’s an alleged democracy, it does not mean that many wrongs don’t exist. They get away with much because the outside world has been disinterested. I cannot say why. Resources maybe I don’t know, but I hope the world re-evaluates what is really happening here as they really have no idea.
So for now, well done to all those who have donated. Everyone involved in the relief efforts and the help from overseas too are like a light in the dark. World media, please don’t forget the Philippines when there is a bigger story somewhere else to move on to. I don’t want to see guillotines or gallows for the failures; I just want things to really get better here. I want the ones holding this country back to either reform or get out of office. Long way to go I know, but again, let’s see.