I’ve personally tried to not talk about anything political here in my blog, partly due to how divisive and polarizing it has been fairly recently, at least in the Philippines. And, to be honest, living outside the country has not made things any less tangible to me.
I’ve long known that I’m argumentative and sometimes combatative – if I feel strongly about something, I will push for it, and advocate for it almost to zealotry, especially in my twenties when I felt like I had nothing to lose. I’ve attenuated that somewhat as I’ve grown older, as I’ve appreciated more and more that the world isn’t objective and rational: although I’d like to think myself as clear-headed and level and rational, the reality of it is I am as biased and as emotional about everything as everyone else.
I’ve always tried to find the nuance and the shades of gray in things, even in my most argumentative. I’ve tried to keep an open mind about me: the only idea I’d like to think I hold most strongly is that I can be wrong. Those have always been my guiding principles: nothing is ever really black and white, and I am as fallible as anyone else.
I also had faith that society at large would naturally correct itself, that history proves that this too shall pass.
The recent mid-term elections in the Philippines have made me question those precepts.
Privately, I’d like to think that I’ve advocated for that nuance, that there are things in this government that have moved our nation a little forward, that there is some good here. But how can I still hold to that when the electorate has deemed to put into power a guy who’s still on trial for graft, the daughter of Marcos responsible for the death of a student during Martial Law, and one of the architects of the ongoing drug war in the country, among others?
I honestly don’t know.