Press the Pork

The horrendous Pork Barrel Scandal is conflagrating the nation. A humongous issue like this needs to be digested by the public in the simplest but most comprehensive way. The media should be doing its duty—not just to pass awareness to the people but to let them realize that they are involved and should be doing an action.

The media is a key player whenever national issues arise. Basically, its role is to disseminate information to the public through news, but more than that, the media is also a great help when it comes in encouraging people’s participation.

Evidently, the media is just one small sector in the society. Its whisper is so loud it trembles the entire nation. Its voice, however soft or loud it is, roars. When critical issues surround the country, it is very important for the media to responsibly ‘voice out’ to the public that they should be heard too.

The Pork Barrel Scandal reveals public officials, including legislators and government employees, conspiring with private individuals in malversation of public funds by channelling billions of money through bogus non-governmental organizations (NGO). Ghost projects were implemented by the bogus NGOs. Therefore, the people’s money is gone. Oh, not really gone, it just went hiding on the plunderers’ deep pockets and bank accounts.

The nation was shocked with this systematic corruption. It’s so hard to imagine that such thing would happen in a country where politicians are revered as ‘honorable’ and the people are considered ‘bosses’. Painful moments like this make imagination harsher than reality.

As investigation is still on-going, it is not yet established how much money was misused but it is undeniable that billions of money was corrupted. The taxpayers who worked hard for their income were fooled by those greedy politicians. Everybody knows, except the plunderers, that the Pork Barrel system is very vulnerable to corruption.

The billions of money corrupted could have been a great help in sending child laborers to school; in putting smiles to teachers when they reached 65; in shielding our soldiers against enemy’s bullets; in sheltering families in a house they can call home; in showering farmers with life-blooming seeds; and, in extending lives of ailing patients.

The media is being accused of intensifying trial by publicity against the people involved instead of simply delivering ‘factual’ news to the people. Who cares? The people involved in here are public officials abusing the use of public funds. Besides, the ‘fact’ is that they’re grilling their own pork and it smells bad.

It is in the public’s discretion whether to act or not but as they’re already slapped by the harsh truth, are insensitivity and inaction still options? Maybe, after all, it’s in the media’s shoulder to let the public feel that they should act. As the media only occupies a small space in this country, it is for the best if the greater sector’s voice be heard. The media just enkindles the flame and the people should keep it burning.

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