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Bacolod City, Philippines Thursday, May 5, 2016
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Choices We Make
with Benjamin Calderon

Please vote wisely

Benjamin CalderonThe past month has been an interesting and at times very disturbing overflow of information, exchange of opinions and revelation of facts, as well as spins in relation to the choice we have to make on who our President and Vice President will be for the next six years. This past week has been intense as we digest the exchange of viewpoints in helping us make the critical decision.

In my opinion what stands out to date are the appeal of Mr. Ramon R. del Rosario Jr. for us to please vote wisely when he says, “… I fervently appeal that we all review our choices one last time before we vote.  Let us not vote out of despair or sheer disgust at an indecisive, slow-responding administration, or the infuriating traffic, or rampant crimes. Let us not go for a solution that may be far worse than the problems we are addressing. Think instead of what your vote will mean for your future and the future of millions of younger Filipinos, including your children or your younger siblings and coworkers. Consider the tremendous cost of the wrong choice.

“Focus finally on the leaders we need to build on our gains, and to address the indecisiveness and ineptitude that have deterred our progress. Let us select no less than leaders who embody the decency, honesty, competence, toughness and patriotism that we want, and who have the capacity to bring us all together after the elections, so that we can be one united nation in pursuit of a better life for all Filipinos.”

The second significant helpful perspective was presented by Solita Collas – Monsod in her column where she wrote, “Certainly, voting is our right, but every right has a corresponding responsibility — and in this case, our responsibility is to vote for the best person for the job, especially when we are voting for those who, for the next six years, are going to be steering the ship of state. Please, Reader. This is not a horse race, or a popularity contest, where we can throw out our tickets or cash them in, and walk away without further thought.” She uses integrity, people empowerment, and experience/competence as criteria for her choice.

Let us end with this anecdote to encourage us to smile while we continue to become wise. Young Mia, only four years old, returned home from Wicor Nursery School complaining, 'Mummy, I've got a stomach ache.' 'That's because your stomach is empty,' Sarah, her mother replied kindly. 'You'll feel better when you have something in it.' She made Mia a small snack and sure enough, Mia felt better immediately.

Later that afternoon Mia's class tutor dropped by to see Sarah, while she was chatting with Mia's mum, she mentioned she'd had a bad headache all day long. Mia perked up straightaway and announced to her teacher, 'That's because it's empty. You'd feel better if you had something in it!'*

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