The 7 Filipino Sins: Sloth

Note: This is a continuation of  The 7 Filipino Sins: Wrath published on December 1, 2011.

I’m pretty sure you know about Juan Tamad; he’s the star of many Filipino folk tales, most of which depict him as lazy and stupid. Many people, both local and foreign, often say he symbolizes the work ethic of some Filipinos. In reality, not all Filipinos are lazy. No, that goes against everything I know. We’re hardworking, but sometimes, the lazy Filipinos stand out more than the hardworking ones.

Here in the Philippines, slacktivism is incredibly popular. Slacktivism is something that can potentially be dangerous. We, as human beings, want to make a change. Now, in the social networking era, slacktivism has become more and more widespread. Slacktivism is when we think we’re making a change by doing something incredibly small. Many people consider it as something bad because it makes us feel that we’ve made a change through something meaningless, at other times, these small and “meaningless” acts can actually do something good.

Remember when we banded together to raise funds for that kid featured here on DF? How about when we posted pics of one child in order to help find him? That’s the beauty of social networking; we turned slacktivism into something positive. At least all that effort went to a real person.But remember when the “pornbook” controversy reached us Filipinos? Somebody made a chain mail saying it was our fault, and some of us, in an effort to make a change, shared it. We looked like fools! “OMG WE’LL BE BANNED!” became the cry of the Filipinos.That’s where slacktivism goes out of control. We’re addicted to clicking “share” for things that we expect to make a big impact. Our hands are glued to “sharing.” Sometimes, we don’t check! “Share this and this kid gets two cents!” or “Share this to stop the war in Aghanistan!” Seriously? One of these days, someone is going to get creative and scam us all of our money by using that trait against us.

When we all voted for the underground river in Palawan, it suddenly became a frenzy to vote again and again for it.People acted as if it was their vote that made the cut and that anyone who DOESN’T vote for it is not doing his or her duty as a Filipino. Honestly, I didn’t vote for anything. It’s just a contest; a poll that was under fire for being “unrepresentative” and being “only for those with access to the internet.” Honestly, the real people I should thank for their efforts are the ones who maintain the river, not the ones who voted for it. For me, it’s a hollow victory if we won just because half of all the Filipinos in the world just voted blindly for it. If this is supposed to represent the people of the world, us winning may just be the result of us all zerg-rushing the other contenders.

What do you really KNOW about the river? If DOT and DENR puts all their attention to this one river, shouldn’t they also be doing something else too? It’s just my two cents, but seriously, that river isn’t the only thing we should be boasting about. Sloth is not using your talents to the fullest; we’re not using our resources to the fullest. The river is an amazing place, but I also want our forests, and everything in it, to be saved. While we’re all hyped up, I suggest we also try to save the forests that are being destroyed everyday. We have a “vote-then-forget” attitude; After we vote, we believe that that’s it. That’s all. You just did what your country needs you to do! No. Our country needs real change.

We’re jumping in the bandwagon, but the sad thing is that we’ll all jump out afterwards. The government released an ad detailing the beauty of the river and people endorsing it. DOT’s commercials pale in comparison to the ads of India, Malaysia, and Korea. While they promote a country or city, we promote just one thing when there are so many other things to boast about. Is that river the only thing in our country? Hell no. While Incredible India’s campaign has nice shots of their temples and culture, our government once copied and imitated the plan of another country.

And what if we don’t win? Do we get mad because “The guy who made the poll BELIEVED that we should’ve won!” or something like that? Just move on. I can bet that we could win, but other places NOT on the list will still be visited more. Plus, with the state of cleanliness in our country and in tourists spots like Boracay, coupled with our “Meh.” attitude, that river is going to be flowing with trash once it gets too popular.

Remember when DSWD used photoshopped photos of three officials and pasted them in official pictures? We ridiculed them and made it a local meme. That’s how lazy our government is! Instead of doing the real thing, they give the media something to feed on. Sometimes, they don’t even try.

Patriotism or loving your country is not judged by wearing a T-shirt or how good you are in Filipino; It’s the amount of heart and soul you give into it, whether or not people like what you’re doing. Sometimes, when someone tries to share knowledge or something that’s beyond the norm, we do our best to bring that person down. Sound familiar? Go back to my previous articles, see “Wrath” and “Filipino inventors.” I don’t mind the comments, but read on how people still refuse to believe the truth. Read carefully on how people still refuse to believe and how they don’t want the people to reach their full potential.

“No, I still believe in Eduardo San Juan and/or Daniel Dingel” and “No, your article is hypocritical. Hate-mail against hate-mail.” By the definition of sloth, we can put that in too. We’re not using our heads and we refuse to listen. “So, Linewave, if you don’t like sloth then why are you just writing about it? Shouldn’t you be out protesting?”

Then who’d listen? Times are changing and not everyone can go out and protest. If you’re the type that doesn’t believe that writing, even a simple blog post, can change people, then you’re also the kind of person who doesn’t read a lot. Remember this, my fellow Filipinos, we need to stop Sloth before Sloth stops us; because, in the end, only we can stop ourselves.

~~~~~~~ Note:
I really like the responses to my last few posts; though it hasn’t been as popular as “FilInventors,” I’m happy to know that at least more than a thousand people are reading it. If you’ve read this far, or you’re just scrolling down to the comments, I’d like to say thank you for taking the time to read. I’d like it if you’d comment honestly, and if it’s negative, go to this link ->

Thanks a lot!

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