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‘Getaway cards’ in the time of pandemic

/ 05:01 AM July 16, 2020

This pandemic has taught us many things. It has exposed the vulnerability of the ordinary working Filipino in terms of health care, job security, and food security. It has also exposed our tolerance for corruption. Instead of learning from our shortcomings, many in our community still have the temerity to hide from the law under their “padrino” blanket.

For years, we admired people who are “malakas” — those who got away with violations, those who could cut through lines, those who had “magic” calling cards to show to law enforcers, and sometimes, those who just happened to have a silver insignia on their shoulder boards, or an “honorable” to their names.

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We used fixers to make life more comfortable for us. We resorted to “pampadulas” to get things done. We tolerated the wrongdoings of people simply because they were our “ka-brod, kaklase, kabaro.”

Today, even after all our sufferings, we place fake logos on our windshields just to get through checkpoints, cut through fast lanes dedicated to essential transport, skip quarantine just because facilities are “not comfortable” enough for us, and we call on our padrinos, ka-brods, kaklase, kabaro to help us get away with it.

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The consequences are now higher, and lives are at stake. This virus moves faster than a graft investigation.

So, stop putting fake passes on your windshield, stop skipping quarantine procedures, and stop using your padrinos. If we can get rid of these “getaway cards” completely, maybe we’ll recover faster from this pandemic. Maybe the “new normal” will be a “better normal,” maybe our government will become more competent.

Because one thing is certain, your padrinos won’t make you immune to the virus.

Tristan Velarde
Naga City
[email protected]

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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TAGS: coronavirus pandemic, coronavirus philippines, COVID-19, Fixers, Letters to the Editor, padrino system, Tristan Velarde
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