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HONORING MY MOTHER | Salvador del Mundo




IMAGINE sitting around a campfire enjoying the feeling of warmth on your face and the protective light against all the darkness that surrounds you.

My thoughts bring me back to spending one final night in Lake Venado, right after our Mt. Apo climb in 97. That had been such a wondrous time then, with office close friends and our trusty companion and protector against the biting cold, Gordon’s dry gin.

To now use this unforgettable image of that fond memory as an analogy to another one that is directly opposite and otherwise pleasant, might just seem unfair.

The one I refer to involves the growing strong resentment against the covid vaccines by some people. In a sense, it’s the deja vu of being in a campfire all over again, and I am watching this surreal and warped-but-similar image play over and over in my mind.

The situation likewise headlined quite a number of testimonies on social media by people who even went as far as showing some negative effects of the anti-covid vaccines on them and others. It makes one wonder, how come these gruesome evidential photographs had been put on Facebook and not submitted for investigation to the proper authorities.

Perhaps, because it has often been used as the all-purpose empowerment tool, doubling as judge and jury, social media has evolved to inevitably qualify and become “proper authorities”?

However, that is not the point here. While all citizens enjoy and have access to freedom of expression, the common misconception by many is that one can practically say anything regardless of motive. Remember Uncle Ben? “With great power comes great responsibility.” One cannot run around a darkened cinema and yell fire, then attribute it to your most cherished freedom.

In the same manner, these presentors on social media might need to add credence to their stories if they attach valid links, and legal documents if need be, that would authenticate whatever claims they want to broadcast. Fair? Just remember, attention span on reading in social media is pekpek short.

On a final note, this is a personal question. While you aim at stoking the fire, adding more wood so that there’s more heat, wherein lies your true purpose? Is it your innermost desire perhaps to be deemed a hero, savior, or supreme message deliverer? I know full well there’s a dopamine kick to be had in all this attention but, in the matter of taking and not taking the vaccines, life and death are at stake here.

The most telling suggestion in all this is if you do not want to take the vaccine, then please let others (even your family) decide for themselves. At least, if the end indeed does come, you die alone. As things are, let’s leave it to medical professionals when dealing with the topic of antivaxx and politicians might as well shut their trap on this too.

In the proverbial campfire of the mind, if you have an opinion that’s not beneficial to everyone, hold on to that stick-of-an-idea or sit on it to warm something else.

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