Right now, the country is being bombarded by one of the worst typhoons in recent memory. Typhoon Ondoy has laid waste to 25 provinces, prompting President Arroyo to declare them under state of calamity. Moreover, several cities in and out of the metro are still in deep floods and are impassable to traffic, stopping business and stranding commuters in the process.
Now, the Philippines is a tropical country, which means that it is bound to get around 6 to 7 tropical storms per year. And it is quite elementary for the government to have some kind of plan in events like this. However, even with the said plans, thousands are still getting in waist-high floods whenever there’s a typhoon affecting the country. Just ask thousands of people affected by Ondoy. If you’re looking for someone famous, ask Christine Reyes. The star of Eva Fonda (who lives in Marikina) is stranded on her roof, and rescue for her (or anybody for that matter) is bleak because…wait for it…THEY’RE STUCK IN TRAFFIC!!!
Now, being Filipinos, we should blame this on people other than ourselves right? Well, there’s our favorite scapegoat,, namely the government. I mean, we can blame almost anything on it. The MMDA isn’t doing they’re job in preventing floods; the NDCC isn’t allocating their resources well; PAGASA totally screwed the weather forecast; and the local government are too busy fattening up their wallets with public funds to do something.
Well, these things might partly be the problem. Incompetence in a public position results in casualties in a massive scale. However, we should also look in our own incompetence. Do you think it’s not our fault if we throw away plastics and other non-biodegradables so carelessly? How about other stuff we do to contribute to worsening climate change? Do we even think of its effect on the weather and our flood problems?
We should look at this tragedy as a lesson: There may be a lot of blame to go around in the next few days, but we should all do our part in order to prevent this from ever happening again.
To contribute and help Typhoon Ondoy’s victims, check out Manuel L. Quezon III’s blog entry here.