By Conrado de Quiros
I was congratulating myself last New Year’s Eve that the demonic bedlam that takes place every New Year’s Eve to drive the demons away lasted relatively briefly. It took only less than an hour where I lived, rising to crescendo by midnight and tapering off about 15 minutes or so later. Finally, I thought, we had come to our senses. Or the pleas about just sending the money to the victims of Yolanda instead of burning it in one senseless, wasteful and (self-)destructive ritual had finally fallen on not-very-deaf ears.
By Neal H. Cruz
On this first day of a new year, I wish everybody to be happy and prosperous for the next 364 days. Among the happiest people this year will be officials of the Quezon City government, especially the councilors. They will have an additional P60 million to play around with. That will come from the [...]
Two hundred forty-four, and counting. That’s the number of people injured by firecrackers and stray bullets as of yesterday morning. It may look like a tiny number against a national population that’s well over 90 million, but injury by firecracker is no simple incident. The injured are often children, left unsupervised or inexplicably allowed to indulge in this dangerous activity. And the bodily harm can range from painful burns to the loss of fingers, even a whole hand, as in the recent case of a 14-year-old boy in Cebu whose hand was shattered by an extra-powerful firecracker called “Super Yolanda.”
By Neal H. Cruz
Happy New Year! I hope you still have all your fingers. Tomorrow (Tuesday) night, the Philippines will again appear like a war zone. Mini bombs and fireworks bursting everywhere and smoke from the explosives will envelop the atmosphere like a fog. Hospital emergency rooms will be crowded as overworked doctors and nurses treat the wounded [...]
The yearend celebration will be particularly poignant because of the recent calamities that hit the country. A big number of Filipinos are in mourning and hard put to look to the new year with hope. It is but fitting for those fortunate to be spared tremendous loss, whether personal or material, to respect those who have lost everything. They can start by shunning the ostentation—let alone noise, to speak nothing of risk to life and limb—of expensive firecrackers and fireworks.