A Country On Its Knees

I

“The Philippines’ flamboyant former first lady Imelda Marcos was acquitted of tax evasion [to the tune of 39.4 million pesos] Wednesday [in June 2007] after a court ruled she did not receive any tax notices because she had fled into exile.”

Her defense implies that she didn’t know that she had to pay taxes. I’m sure that’s not true; and even if it is, ignorance of the law excuses no one from compliance. I can’t believe she won this case.

II

“Starting this school year [2007-2008], the Department of Education is implementing Executive Order No. 210, which calls for the use of English as the primary medium of instruction in public and private high schools. The order is aimed at improving the English proficiency of students and their chances of landing a job in call centers, a fast-growing industry in the Philippines.”

Grooming the children for call center jobs, really? Anyway, I would’ve let this intention slide if there were accompanying steps to improve the quality of instruction of English as well as the local languages, so that students will be proficient (and not half-baked) bilinguals. And speaking of quality of instruction, how about improving on science, math, and the rest of the subjects too? Especially for public schools.

III

The first buildings of the University of the Philippines in Diliman were positioned thoughtfully. The administration building was at the head. The library was at the heart, representing the desire for knowledge. On both sides of the library were the College of Engineering and the College of Arts and Sciences – the arms – because the arts and sciences should extend society’s reach. Next to them were the College of Law and the College of Education – the legs – because society should stand on justice and education.

So much for standing.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s