By Michael L. Tan
You just can’t win. If you look at the Internet you’ll find, on one hand, the usual trolls and contrarians accusing the government of not doing enough during “Ruby.” On the other hand, there are others who cry “OA” (overacting) for the way classes and work were suspended for so many days.
Good news has been in short supply in the sad aftermath of Supertyphoon “Yolanda,” but here’s a report that blazes a small trail for helping students in need. As a means of offering relief to its students from devastated Eastern Visayas, the University of the Philippines is waiving collection of tuition from at least 30 students who have cross-enrolled in UP Los Baños, in order to allow their families breathing room to take stock of their situation and begin the daunting process of rebuilding. Additionally, three students from UP Tacloban will be given free accommodation in UPLB dormitories. And UPLB Chancellor Rex Cruz has also called for pledges to cover the students’ meals for a semester.
By Cecilia Ejercito
I’m sure I won’t remember their faces, nor will they remember mine. Never more than an hour together, never any face time, never much conversation. My hands were only on the wheel, eyes only on the road. Our interaction was limited to me opening my car, popping the trunk, and getting them to their destination. A few directions given here and there, and some small talk about the distance I was driving—nothing more.
By Tiffany Chan
We cannot keep making the same mistakes. “Yolanda” was not the Philippines’ first encounter with a category-5 typhoon. In 1990, Cebu and other provinces was hit by “Ruping” (international name: “Mike”), which left damage worth P10.8 billion and a death toll of more than 700.
By Conrado de Quiros
The incredibly—or miraculously—providential thing, the dazed survivors would say, was that it was a holiday. There were no classes, there were no open offices, there was no hustle and bustle that went with the normal workday. Or else a lot more people would have died. A lot more people would have had stone and concrete tumble over them. A lot more people would have been buried under the rubble. A lot more people would have been trampled on the violently shaking streets.