Sunday, June 29, 2008

Frat Violence... Again

Seems frat violence reared its ugly head-- again-- at UP, this time along AS Walk on a Tuesday morning. I don't really care if these frat guys kill each other, so long as they don't hurt (or even inconvenience) non-participants when they do so. It would really be better for everyone if they just do their mutual killing away from school grounds (and away from any kind of civilisation, for that matter).

That said, I have to say I'm getting sick and tired of the predictable statements and rallies of outrage coming from UP student leaders, the latest from the ironically-named UP-SAWA. Really, is that the best the UP community can do? Make statements or hold rallies?

The law and the SDT have their hands tied when it comes to punishing these people-- the Mendez and Dungo cases are testaments to that. Add to that the fact that these frat guys usually have rich and powerful brods, who ensure they have only the best lawyers defending them. Waiting for the law and the SDT to punish these people is like waiting for pigs to evolve wings.

So if they cannot be punished legally, why not punish them socially? Ostracise them. Make them pariahs. Turn them into untouchables. If a frat is invioled in a rumble, kick out all their members from organisations, committes, and councils. Bar their members from attending any university or college activity. Extricate them from university life. Tell them that their brod's actions-- and their defence or tolerance of them-- are unacceptable. Tell them that there will be no forgiveness or reconciliation until they hang their erring brods out to dry, or they resign from their frat (which some brave men did after the Mendez case).

UP-SAWA's statement calls on everyone to "to take small but significant steps within their personal circles to continuously and emphatically condemn any and all forms of fraternity-related violence". Are they now ready to sever their academic and personal ties from members of the frats they so "continuously and emphatically condemn"? Are they ready to put their money where their statement is?

All for one and one for all implies the acceptance of collective punishment, so give it to them. Since the law doesn't seem to be any disincentive against frat violence, maybe social ostracisation will send the message home. Kung wala silang hiya, hiyain nalang sila.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero.



Tu ne quaesieris (scire nefas) quem mihi, quem tibi
finem di dederint, Leuconoe, nec Babylonios
temptaris numeros. Vt melius quicquid erit pati!
Seu pluris hiemes seu tribuit Iuppiter ultimam,
quae nunc oppositis debilitat pumicibus mare
Tyrrhenum, sapias, uina liques et spatio breui
spem longam reseces. Dum loquimur, fugerit inuida
aetas: carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero.

English translation here.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

My ref magnets...

...make me happy. They remind me of where I've been, what I've experienced, who I've met.

Ref magnets are my souvenir of choice; unfortunately, my collection is way incomplete. But I do have a few magnets from places I haven't been to yet-- those on the lower left-- given to me by family and friends. Any addition is more than welcome. :)

I hope to someday ride the Mongol steppes, eat paella in Valencia, get my feet wet in Lake Victoria. I like to experience the everyday side of the places I visit-- not the Disneyfied touristy stuff-- and local food, of course, is a destination in its own right. In Discovery Channel terms, Sandra Brown is too touristy while Bear Grylls is too tough. The set bounded by Ian Wright and Andrew Zimmern is just right for me, with Anthony Bourdain being my optimal travel style. Oh to have a job like Tony's.

Speaking of travel shows, that show hosted by Tim Tayag over at Living Asia Channel just irritates me. Ok he's a comedian and he has this humour style, but that doesn't mean the show has to be so inane. I recall an episode featuring MRT stations-- Tim was interviewing DOTC Sec. Leandro Mendoza, asking him these nonsensical questions. I swear, the ex-PNP Chief had this look that said, "If only I could shoot him now." They already spent a lot to get the host, producers, crew, etc. to those various places; why not put in the effort for better scripts and segments? Really, the show is like a very bad hangover. With traveller's diarrhoea and lost luggage.

Yeah, I'm envious. Very envious. I should be paid to travel. A lot. To places with weird-sounding names. The more alien the better. Then I go home and stick another magnet to my ref.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Acta de la proclamacion de independencia del pueblo Filipino

Today is Independence Day. Today should be the holiday for our country instead of the sectarian holidays we religiously observe; instead, it's a regular working day, the holiday moved to last Monday for the sake of holiday economics.

Practically every American child has seen a copy of the US Declaration of Independence, usually framed prominently in their school or public library. Rare is the Filipino adult who has seen, much less read, the Philippine Declaration of Independence. I, for one, was 19 when I first saw a facsimile of the Declaration.

So, in honour of Independence Day, here it is.

Downloaded from here. Read the English translation here.