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On the ground and on the road, that’s what we’ve been seeing without letup from the good General, paying heed to what to many is a refreshing sight anytime government’s presence is felt and experienced many times over. For a great many of us, it’s always refreshing to see up close and personal how governance is being done. For a few, with sordid interests at heart, it’s pure theatrics, good for the show. Sad indeed that impure intentions are just as easily taken. Disappointing that disbelievers are quick to ascribe less than noble reasons.
Is it because we have been so used to the lackadaisical years and decades when politicians would rather be cooped up in his desk, safe in the comfort of his confining environment, away from the heat and cold of an ocular inspection of what’s on the ground, what’s on the road? Couldn’t we just accept that there are ways to go about in seeing to it that orderliness, for a change, must be upheld? If it takes someone to be out there, feeling and experiencing and seeing what seems to have escaped bureaucrat’s notice through all the years they’ve been sitting on their imperial seats, why put malice at all, why the fishwife tantrums?
If it can get fat, swelling asses to get moving, why not? Service, after all, doesn’t just get off the ground from where anyone sits. It comes liberally from having to know what’s out there, alive and in full sight, leaping out from the sweatless existence of numbers peeking from hard reports. It comes freely from immersions otherwise unlocked when peering into dreary language of what is out there. Are these not just worth the bother?
Time and time again, we as a people have longed for something like this, for leaders who can see for himself what Baguio is, on the ground, on the road, from the many dimensions of difficulties that have afflicted our city long enough for us to mutter, deep under our stale breath, enough is enough. No matter the weather, under the heat of the sweltering sun or assailed by the cold of a punishing rain, they ought to be doing just that, what others are loath to do. The goal is crystal clear: get Baguio well on the road to environmental progress, rather than merely coasting, drifting along on the wings of degradation that has been the bane these many years.
Up close and personal, we get to feel once more how uniquely situated our city is, despite all the warts and the woes that degradation has caused as a result of much too much of politicking, much too much of sweeping larger issues aside, in favor of piece-meal favors allowed or tolerated. Baguio has the singular character of being an environmentally-resourced highly urbanized and modernizing upland city worth handing over to generations next without remorse or regrets. Baguio is that kind of a city, not just for us who labor day, day out, but to those who dream of experiencing the kind of comfort unlived in other Philippine lowland cities. So we’ve had our own share of urban difficulties common to similarly-situated human settlements anywhere else. Which city has been spared of all that anyway?
We’ve got to harness all the will power to assert that things can get done in perhaps far better ways than ever thought of. Instead of saying maybe, perhaps, or even an outright No, we’ve got to say Yes, we should strive towards it and get things done now, not later, not much later, but now. All it takes are leaders whose vision run miles beyond their noses, whose will to do things right, and fast, stays well-grounded, unshaken by petty, gutter-type remarks meant to hinder and hamper and hamstring.
As a people, we have the strengths that have historically been our chief asset in getting things done, despite the odds besetting us every step of the way. We’ve demonstrated the tenacity to be just that in past trials, overcoming seemingly insurmountable challenges, rising from every fall, more steadfast than ever, more faithful than before, believing in our capacity to stand unfazed, believing that things can be done, work can be endeavored, and small gains can start off new beginnings.
As a people, we should all the more feel exhilarated that the breath of fresh air is finally infusing our environment, as fresh as a flower opening up towards a new breathless escapade. Fine, let us remain steadfast, let us stay the course, and once and for all, let us not get sidetrack over issues of less consequence, over issues that are plainly petty and simply crying for attention. Instead, let us find and offer middle grounds where attitudes and interests can capably converge, heedful of the need to argue more from commonly shared interests, and setting aside whatever feelings are bruised or waylaid.
Yes, it is time to realize that progress comes to those who work the hardest. Yes, let’s show the way to it, leading from the heart, working ourselves to the bone by the time-tested recipe of hard, honest work done as a team, in unity with one another, with genuine respect to each other, and love for Baguio.
As we’ve been saying time and time again, less than that is simply empty talk, not worth the walk at all, not deserving of history’s kind judgment. Less than that isn’t worth the bother. Not even the scantiest.