Gambling for the Elections

Gambling for the Elections

The world is like a reverse casino. In a casino, if you gamble long enough, you’re certainly going to lose. But in the real world, where the only thing you’re gambling is, say, your time or your embarrassment, then the more stuff you do, the more you give luck a chance to find you.

— Cartoonist Scott Raymond Adams

ACCORDING to former senator Ramon Magsaysay Jr., the son of one of the most illustrious presidents of the Philippines, vice president Maria Leonor ‘Leni’ Robredo is not just the “lesser evil” among the candidates but someone Filipinos can hope for in a good president.

The good former senator described that Robredo as a good candidate—no fake degrees, no corruption issues, no unexplained wealth accumulation while in public service, and certainly not a part of a political dynasty.

Actually, all this is true and the fact is she really didn’t choose to be a politician when her husband finished his term as Mayor in Naga. It was her husband Jesse Robredo’s death in an unfortunate plane crash that propelled her into the political arena that has brought her to where she is now.

And it’s also true that she is not guilty of any criminal cases or unlawful acts. This is no joke and not a sham. She simply cannot be compared to the rest of the other presidential aspirants because she is not a power-tripper.

And as a lawyer, she is the kind of lawyer who understands, respects, and upholds the law—a true public servant who values accountability, transparency, and community participation.

Apart from this, she, too, is a development worker who is immersed in the communities she serves. And as a teacher, she facilitates learning anchored in facts.

But what shines in her résumé is that of being a mother who raised educated and well-mannered daughters. The fact is that in our era of gender equality and women empowerment, she is an empowered woman through and through.

Given her track record, too, as well as the other relevant endeavors she’s been involved in, most of us can tell a lot about the kind of character she has. Long before she became a public servant, she was already closely working with and for vulnerable communities and groups who needed assistance from people with hearts and are empathic to the needs and concerns of the marginalized.

And Leni did all those things without fanfare.

If there is any official now in government who understands the plight of the people, it would be her. Yet she realizes and recognizes her shortcomings and failures by admitting that she cannot give solutions to all issues all by herself.

So, throwing support for Leni, as Ramon Jr. says, is not a gamble. It’s a step closer to a better.

These may all be true but there are things that worry me. Leni, if she caps the presidential derby, would become the country’s third woman president and as such, what I fear is that wouldn’t we again go through what we experienced during the administrations of Corazon Cojuangco-Aquino and the other presidential daughter Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo?

Just speculating because we are now at the crossroads of choosing whether we would remain bed-ridden in corruption or are waking up from the stupor and willing to pave the way for real reform and good governance. (ai/mtvn)

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