The year that went was not a bad year.
Some people just whine it so. What really happened was that the media, traditional or social, got a drubbing in 2016. Or to be more precise — their politics did. Which hardly makes for a bad year.
Granted, the year that was began grimly with David Bowie’s death. Now, the passing of any human is a cause for sadness. But in this case, as they will repeatedly do, the media exploitedly glossed such with un-nuanced idolatry just to advance their ideology.
Considering the rightful discomfort over Vince & Kath & James attempted rape scene, Music.Mic’s report should give everyone pause regarding Bowie: “Amid the adulations that followed Bowie’s death were murmurs of Bowie’s statutory rape and rape allegations.”
That death is later followed by a gorilla’s; a cause célèbre that was actually a non-event. Simply a choice of prudence between a child’s life and an animal’s. Yet, Harambe mutated into a highly politicized debate over the environment, the value of human life, and even racism.
The media’s insistent politicization of everything (including death) has become intellect-numbing: Carrie Fisher’s became a feminist group hug, George Michael’s focused almost exclusively in celebrating the gay lifestyle.
What about Phyllis Schlafly or John Glenn, both having lived purposeful courageous lives?
In the Philippines, meanwhile, despite the abundance of real national problems, people went nuts over the burial of a former dictator. Or former president.
What many, either supporting or protesting the burial, many born after Ferdinand Marcos ruled, seem to miss: the family kicked out due to an apparently popular 1986 uprising has managed to install themselves in national or local positions through democratic elections under an Aquino constitution and Aquino-friendly press. And that two Aquino governments had a collective 12 years to ensure Marcos was not buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. That Congress had 30 years to make a law prohibiting such burial, the lack of which left the present Supreme Court with no choice but to declare that legal fact.
The point: the country is clearly deeply divided over this and unless the truth, unvarnished and whole, is squarely looked and soberly discussed by Filipinos, there’s no way we’re going to move on. If Filipinos insist in seeing only what they want to see, then anything we do is just futile noise.
Then there is “Brexit.”
People here who are quick to point out the evils of globalization are all of a sudden agog at Britain’s plan to leave the European Union. Where is the logic in that? And for a people that get rightly angry at China’s interference over our territory are bizarrely aghast over the triumph of democratic Britain’s sovereignty over unelected EU bureaucrats.
All that media misdirection ignored 2016’s genuine bright spots.
As pointed by CNN, China bred good mosquitoes to fight the bad ones, West Africa is now ebola-free, Gambia and Tanzania banned child marriages, the death penalty is illegal in more than half the world, 300 African communities pledged to end female genital mutilation, Pakistan passed a law against “honor” killings, the tiger population finally rose after 100 years, Pandas are no longer endangered, there is a possible ninth planet in our solar system, NASA’s Juno finally made it to Jupiter, and scientists found an Earth-like planet just 4.2 light years away.
So why pick on 2016, a year practically like any other, with any year’s ups and downs?
The answer is politics.
Most in media (and the academe) are liberal progressives (or profess they are). Then 2016 saw Donald Trump.
Well, narratively, surface-wise.
More accurately, 2016 revealed the failure of liberal progressive ideas: the bankruptcy of socialism; the lies behind “social justice”; the irrationality of rejecting human dignity (from conception onwards), family, marriage, and religious freedom; and the inutile paternalistic belief that government should take care of people’s lives.
People awakening to common sense explained the Republican dominance over the presidency, Congress, and State governorships.
And note: Donald Trump — despite being the Republic standard-bearer — isn’t even a conservative. Neither is Rodrigo Duterte. Both demonstrated, however, in an-in-your-face kind of manner, the logical consequence of progressive thought and tactics.
“Post-truth,” a phrase coined by progressives to disparage the Trump age, was ironically created by progressive practice: viral news that inevitably turned out to be liberal cover-ups for abuses by immigrants, terrorists acts, and leftist intolerance; false reports of violence against minorities; malicious depiction of Christians as ignorant bigots, and the progressive manipulation of words (including calling abortion as “choice,” redefining marriage to include gay unions, and contraceptives as “reproductive health”).
2016 wasn’t bad; it was just illuminating.
For the Philippines, however, 2016’s revelations included the tragic: our loss of values.
We mourned the deaths of Alan Rickman and Debbie Reynolds. But then upwards of 6,000 Filipinos (at least as reported) were killed in the last 6 months.
That stain on the national soul will damage us long after 2016.