Grace and Integrity (Post Election Thoughts) – May 10, 2022 (130/365)

So I was supposed to chime in on my thoughts following yesterday’s Elections here in the Philippines, but, I don’t know, after one, or two attempts to write, I ended up erasing everything. This is me just trying to churn words, not necessarily thinking while I type, just typing. I wanted to jump into Psalm 10, Psalm 110, and Proverbs 10 as I would usually do and type, but for some reason I’m just going to keep on going.

Maybe I will talk about what I have in my mind right now, just, what, 24 hours after the results presented high probability of the candidates I chose winning? I remember, more than the thrill of seeing Bongbong Marcos and Sara Duterte absolutely winning the Presidential and Vice-Presidential slots without a shadow of a doubt, there was all sorts of noise going on in social media… well, in Twitter, to be precise. It was a combination of my co-supporters of the tandem celebrating within the confines of 140 characters per post, and their retweets and screenshots of those who voted for that other candidate, absolutely livid, literally losing their minds, also within the confines of 140 characters per post.

A couple of things I’m learning here: First of all, it’s never okay to gloat. You gloat, and you retrieve your reward, right then and there. You sort of cancel the pleasure associated with keeping your peace, which is not only much more potent, but lasts a whole lot longer. You gloat, and you immediately go down the levels of decency that you were openly speaking against. The greater revenge to be had is in helping your enemy back up on his feet.

Second, well, I’m reminded of the age-old lesson associated to losing your proverbial shit. You lose control, and you lose. In this case, our brothers and sisters who chose the presidential candidate who decided to run only to go against Bongbong Marcos, well, they lost control, and in the process they indirectly expressed their own personal defeat. What’s worse is that in their ‘losing’, they curse, not only the presidential candidate, but the people who voted for him. It was as if they couldn’t believe that so many people would rally behind Mr. Marcos.

I don’t know, but I simply could not tolerate such levels of hatred. It’s sad – these are fellow human beings, fellow creations loved by our Creator – These are our brothers and sisters who have also been fearfully and wonderfully made, and they are loved just as we are loved. These people? Christ gladly lay down His life for them, JUST as much as He lay down His life for us, and for the rest of humanity, that we would come to the knowledge of His saving grace. In their being created as we have also been created, they certainly display all sorts of creative styles and expressions, clearly seen throughout the entire campaign period. I have to admit that their crowd is certainly a creative bunch.

It’s just sad, really, when you see all that potential, and all that passion, infected by an uncompromising hatred for one person and his family. Oh, these people have called Bongbong Marcos, his father, his mother, his siblings, and his own wife and children so many things – The former people in power did such a slick job to condemn this poor family to a fate worse than Roman damnatio memoriae; See, they weren’t erased from history, they were accused, again, and again, and again, of crimes ranging from murder, theft, lying, and every other sort of sin imaginable.

I couldn’t say that the Marcos family is immaculate – no, by no means. They’re just as flawed as we all are, but by the apparently twisted minds of those in power back in the day, they held back on actually bringing this family to justice (or, at least it appears to be this way), only to keep bringing them back to the spotlight for the nation and the world to see them only for their flaws and the crimes they committed. Sure, they may have made mistakes, and they probably could have done bad things intentionally, but that is no excuse to keep crucifying them, day in and day out, month after month, year after year, for 30 years.

Do you see why I held back? Do you see why I’ve tried to write something about all this, only to erase everything I did, at least twice? I get it, I just broke my streak once again, but only to make sure that the words I share here wouldn’t be picked up by some rabid supporter, leaving me unnecessarily vulnerable. I held back, because I didn’t want to focus on the hate, but I wanted to share something on integrity, instead.

Well, before I wrap things up with integrity, one more thing about hate – it can only get you as close as second place. It’s integrity that would take a person all the way to the very top, without a shadow of a doubt.

I’m not saying that Mr. Marcos is without sin. No, but what I am saying is that he may have his own issues, but he has definitely been bombarded with the same accusations they gave his father, and instead of trying to defend his name, he just keeps on going, serving the community, getting voted into higher and higher government positions up to this moment where he vies for the top position. I’m saying that he showed some extraordinary grace for a man whose humanity, whose past, present, and future is continually being placed under undue and inappropriate scrutiny. He showed extraordinary grace for a husband whose wife was also attacked, extraordinary grace for a father whose sons were also lambasted.

And through it all, he didn’t need someone else to defend him. He didn’t need anyone to speak for him, though people wouldn’t stop talking about him – He spoke, free-form, to the crowds at the rallies, to the media folk who were genuinely interested in having a conversation with him instead of putting him up for the rest of the world to accuse him. Point is, in his campaign, he was being himself, and the marketing and publicity were secondary. That’s what got him 31 million votes this time around.

This is what I have so far, but I don’t think I’m going to stop any time soon. Maybe I’ll keep going through this, tomorrow.

For now, God bless us all.

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