Sorry but whenever education setbacks in the Philippines is the topic, I can't help but turn my raised eyebrow on the country's media too.
They are not the only ones at fault here for sure. The society in general and the families of the students have their share in the blame. But I truly believe that media has the bigger share. Why? Let me count what I think are the reasons:
1) News programs
Unless there are bigger stories to tell (impending disaster, war, and the like) what's on the menu: (a) Politician X joined Political Party XX so he can run for president 2 years from now. And switching parties to achieve an ambition appeared cool, to prepare for an election years ahead. (b) Politician Y is reported dating Actress X – spends a long airtime. (c) Philippine economy gets a boost (yawn) – short airtime and instead focusing on the details of the news, anchor gets an analyst to ask "nararamdaman ba 'to ng ordinaryong mamamayan?" Of course the already impoverished Filipino will answer "hindi" and it will be reinforced by the predictable answer of the analyst. The analyst seemed to miss explaining the hope part. (d) Showbiz news!!! Yehey!!! You know what happens next. – long, long, long airtime.
I remember there was a news about a Near-Earth object that will miss us by a hair-line (in astronomical measurements of course) that was reported in one of our prime time news programs. To my dismay, apart from saying that it's an asteroid according to PAGASA, the anchor next discussed that they interviewed an ASTROLOGER (not -NOMER) that said it has no effect in our future. (You don't say) End of news.
2) Variety shows
Hey look Actor X here is good at dancing and is now rich and famous! I heard he didn't finish schooling because of poverty but he got out of it.
Kid: Ma, audition tayo.
Ma: sige anak bukas na bukas din. wag ka na pumasok sa school. bobo ka naman e pero may talent ka.
(nanay pa mismo nangunsinte)
A lot of things are said about these.
My wish now is that I can get Jamie and Adam (of Mythbusters) to come here and test the fantasy formulas of these soap operas to show that it will not work in the real world; to prove to the audience that these shows are mental poison that they've been feeding their minds long enough!!
By the way, why did I mention soap operas as one of the problems in education? Because I myself saw when I was a student, the kilig moments in these shows are replicated by some of my classmates that even the teachers are impressed to the point that we all forgot we're at school and we're there to learn. Hindi para magligawan.
4) Comedy shows
Personally, I can appreciate Dolphy's old style of making audience laugh because to me it still has a touch of decency. But now, I prefer more to watch Beavis and Butthead than be entertained by the "e di wow" comedy that is so popular today. One time I overheard two female high school students arguing over a topic at school. It ended with "ay ewan sige panalo ka na magaling ka e." Tapos ang kwento! That's how you conclude an argument now. By the way, why Beavis than the popular comedy now? kasi sa B & B mas pinagtatawanan ang lipunan; yung uso ngayon, madalas panlalait ng individual ang tema.
5) Radio shows
One time I heard something like this in the taxi:
Female DJ: May email tayo humihingi ng payo tungkol sa bf nya na iniwan sya
Male DJ: E di iwan din nya
Female DJ: Oo nga! E di iwan mo din. Mag enjoy ka sa life mo…
Wait, where's the advise? Is that suppose to be helpful? Exactly what have we learned from that? Am I suppose to give the same advise if someone with a similar problem talks to me? Que horror…
I can go on and on…
Oopps I might get the "anong problema mo? Di naman tinatapakan ang karapatang pantao mo a"
To answer (1) My problem is that the already deteriorating education of the country is made worse by the media; and (2) My human right is not being affected, directly. I bought a TV to be informed and be entertained. Since you seemed to be forcing your brand of entertainment in our throats, you might as well make it good! It's not actually free TV, you know. If we the consumers stopped buying the products of your advertisers, who do you think will pay for your crappy shows?
E di lumayas ka ng Pilipinas – oopps no one has the right to tell me that. Only I can renounce my citizenship. Besides, it's not the country that I hate. It is only the few who is dragging the quality of intelligence of the Filipinos who I despise.
E di wag ka manood. – I remember a few years ago there was a similar sentiment regarding the billboards along EDSA some of which shows women in bikinis that distracts some drivers. One model replied "e di wag ka tumingin" to which one article in the Reader's Digest is applicable which says "if you don't want to inhale smoke, don't breathe."
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