Resisting tunnel vision

There has been ongoing debates on what to do with regards to the current situation in the Philippines.

A certain portion of the population (25% of the population, assuming that 50% is against Gloria Arroyo, and 25% supports her with open hearts and empty stomachs), I believe, thinks that it is better to look ahead instead of dwelling in the now. And within that 25%, there is a call to stop the current forms of resistance (resistance is futile and inconveniences everyone) and instead channel all energies towards the 2010 elections.

Some of the current “proposals” suffer from tunnel vision, I’m afraid. In medicine, tunnel vision refers to the failure of an individual’s peripheral vision. It means that a person can only see directly ahead.

In this case, tunnel vision refers to man’s propensity to look ahead without regards to the past and the now. Specifically, the propensity of some people to ignore or dismiss the present (and the past) and instead plan ahead so that what is happening now will never happen again. There is nothing wrong with that; I think it is good thinking, to think of what needs to be done to correct the current mistakes.

However, what I am totally against is tunnel vision, and for several reasons.

One, ignoring the current situation means allowing injustice to proceed without hitches. When things could be better and are not due to incompetence, wanton disregard of laws and rules, or just plain apathy to the common good, not doing anything is being complicit to the injustice of the situation.

Two, planning for the future generation is well and good, but what about the present? Sure, planning for the future generation is well and good, but that would be useless when the present has all but destroyed the things that the future would need. With widespread land conversion (to escape agrarian reform or to increase taxes on land) and deforestation, for example, what planning can save the future if we don’t stop the plunder now?

Three, what happens today has a direct effect on what will happen tomorrow. If we want to ensure that tomorrow will be better, we attend to the present. We continue what we think is good, and correct what we think is wrong. After correcting what is wrong, then we plan so that it will never happen again.

Lastly, if there is a fire, you put it out, you don’t plan on how to put it out, you just put it out. Right?

I am all for planning for the future. What I am against is the thinking that we should just plan ahead instead of dealing with the present. It is short sighted and detrimental to the common good and to the future.

Is resistance futile? No, unless we surrender to the current situation and instead hope for the best.

Why should we resist? We resist because injustice needs to be fought. We resist because it is our duty to correct our government from its their excesses. We resist because we have to preserve what we have. We resist because we have to preserve what we have for the future.

This is a Club sponsored post for Budget Hotels in the Philippines.