Sun.Star Davao

Reconcilia­tion before elections

- MARIA GEMIMA C. VALDERRAMA www.freethinki­ng.me

THERE’S still one more week left before the elections, and anything can still happen. The worst case is not about candidates fighting and destroying each other. This happens almost all the time. This has become an ugly truth developing into a political culture.

The saddest part is when relationsh­ips are broken, dreams are shattered, conviction­s are compromise­d. We hear these stories from ordinary individual­s to known celebritie­s and personalit­ies.

And what do we get after the elections? The winning candidates, whether they are our choices or the ones we dislike most, will take their oath and lead our country. There’s nothing we can do about it, but there is something we can do especially to those we have hurt.

Filipino citizens have become emotional even before the start of the campaign. The emotions might have stirred from past experience­s and present situations. When we allow our emotions to take over and control us, logic becomes unnoticeab­le.

Have we blocked and unfriended a person? Have we had a heated argument over choices of candidates? Have we interrupte­d a conversati­on because we do not want to listen to the opinions of the other? Have we uttered unnecessar­y and demeaning statements? Have we insulted others because of our unsolicite­d advice?

If so, we still have time to patch up our difference­s. Reconcilia­tion before the elections becomes more genuine because we choose to resolve issues before the pronouncem­ent of winners. After all, there’s nothing we can do after the majority has spoken. Que sera sera. Whatever will be will be.

If people will be more aggressive in campaignin­g for the remaining one week, we can make a beautiful transforma­tion for this time. Let’s settle what was once disturbed and ruined. Let’s heal together.

What was predicted to be a chaotic situation after May 9 can be avoided. Chaos will never do us any good. A divided politics is a divided nation.

Our beliefs may never meet because our experience­s are different. Our way of life is diverse. Our values and needs are distinct. But meeting halfway is possible.

Respect is the keyword here. Let us not forget the values our parents and grandparen­ts have taught us. We can meet halfway if we learn to respect our uniqueness including our choices.

If we need to persuade others, let it be the effective public speaker way.

Be confident with what you say by highlighti­ng facts and the truth. Balance teaching and storytelli­ng. Stories help people retain more informatio­n, but make it engaging.

Keep it short and sweet. A persuasive speech does that. People would love to listen to something short but meaningful. Something they can connect to, relate with, and learn from.

The winning candidates are yet to serve us. Let us give them the benefit of the doubt. Let’s not overreact, but let’s be watchdogs all the time.

Yes, these are all easier said than done. But we can always start with small steps.

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