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A Balikbayan’s Lament: Life In PH Is Difficult And Dangerous Under Duterte

A Balikbayan’s Lament: Life In PH Is Difficult And Dangerous Under Duterte

“Unti-unti na tayong pinapatay ng pamahalaan ni Duterte.”

A Filipino who left the country twenty-five years ago used the social media platform Facebook to express his disgust over the sad plight of the people who are doing their regular life routines.

Wilfredo Pacual, a Filipino essayist living in San Francisco, California, personally experienced the hardship that an ordinary or average citizen needs to go through in his or her everyday life. The struggle of commuting, the worsening traffic situation, queuing long lines and all the time that is wasted in the process.

The balikbayan said it was only last year that he visited the country thrice for the entire year.

“In 2018, I mostly stayed at Airbnbs in Manila and got around through Grab kasi hindi ko na makita yung mga dating landmarks. Pero hangga’t kaya pinipilit kong magcommute. Hindi ko kinaya. Pero hindi ko sinukuan. Hanggang huli nagkocommute ako kahit gusto ko na talagang maglulupasay sa frustration,” Pascual wrote.

“Nasubukan ko sa BGC yung nagdaan ang gabi ko na naghihintay lang ng masasakyan. Tawid ako ng tawid sa susunod na kanto baka kasi mas madaling sumakay doon. Siguro nakapitong susunod na kanto ako bago ko napansing umiiyak na ako sa galit,” he added.

“Nasubukan kong umangkas sa motor sa gabi, iwas ng iwas sa mga pulis. Paglabas mo sa MRT na siksikan, feeling mo talaga para kang pigang-pigang basahan na nanglilimahid,” the internationally-acclaimed essayist further stated.

Pascual immediately issued a disclaimer that his Facebook post was not a typical rant of a balikbayan because according to him it is useless to compare the nation’s situation even to the less developed countries in Asia and Africa.

“Pero tang ina ibang level talaga sa Pilipinas. I’ve never seen anything like it,” he said.

Pascual clarified that what really broke his heart is not the traffic situation and the inefficient public transportation system in the Philippines. It is seeing the long line of people.

“Iiyak ka talaga. Lalo na iyong hindi mo na matanaw kung saan iyong dulo. Dito nawawasak ang puso ko. Yung pagpunta sa dulo para pumila. Kasi isa-isa mong makikita ang iba-ibang mukha ng kapaguran. Durog na durog talaga ako,” Pascual penned.

The multi-awarded writer deplored the fact that the time wasted in queues should have been utilized in more important and meaningful things.

“Dalawang oras na naman ang kinaltas sa buhay mo. Oras na sana nagamit mo para magpahinga, magsulat, magmahal,” Pascual stated.

“Yung emotions ko talaga nagliliyab na parang wildfire. Talong-talo naman tayo dito. Bakit naman ganito? Pinipilit naman nating maging mabuting tao. This is insane,” he continued.

Pascual eventually shifted his anger on the leaders whom he accused of killing and betraying the people.

“Mga kriminal ang namumuno sa bayan. Traydor, sinungaling, balahura. Puro kababuyan. Mga ganid sa pera at kapangyarihan. Mga magnanakaw ng panahon,” he lamented.

“Gusto mong sabihin sa bawat Pilipinong dinadaanan mo sa pila, you work hard, you deserve better. And your patience will not help you. May mga pinapatay sa bala at meron din iyung unti-unti ka nang pinapatay. Unti-unti na tayong pinapatay ng pamahalaan ni Duterte,” he further said.

As a parting shot, Pascual urged the people to think and act in order to address the problem.

“Think about it. Maybe it’s time to get more involved,” he concluded.

Pascual’s post has gone viral with 11,000 reacts and 4,200 shares.