his 4th of July, America celebrates its 232nd year of independence. And Filipino-Americans celebrate this momentous occasion along with her. For all her faults and many shortcomings, America is still the greatest nation on earth.
For Filipinos here in the Philippines, it behooves us to take pause and understand what it is that makes America the powerhouse that it is. And why it is that the Philippines, its former colony and the most "Americanized" country in Southeast Asia at one time, has failed emulate those ideals that makes America the great country it is.
For instance, during the 1950s Manila was considered a world-class city, and the envy of neighboring countries. Today, Manila ranks below most Asian cities. In another example, the Manila Stock Exchange was the first such bourse to open in Southeast Asia, but today it has been outclassed by those of its neighbors. There are numerous other examples that one can point to that illustrate this country's drop from the top-of-the-heap during the fifties to the "bottom-rung" today.
However, rather lay the blame on others, let us first realize that we are all responsible for the predicament we find ourselves in. Secondly, let us look to the Americans as well as other developed countries to see what they are doing right. They say Filipinos are copycats, well then let us use that to our advantage by incorporating into our culture that which will help move us forward. By the same token, let us shed that which is holding us back. It is time we Filipinos started moving up in the world once again.
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