One lesson we should learn from Cory

James Ryan Jonas

Cory AquinoIn the last several days, the media has constantly harped on the notion that the death of former Pres. Corazon “Cory” Aquino is something that unified the country.
Wrote the Philippine Daily Inquirer in its editorial on August 2:

Unity is a rare thing in our country; we have it now; and adding to the feelings of grief is the wistful realization that it took the passing of Cory to reunite a divided nation.

If there is one lesson we can learn from Cory Aquino, it is that this country needs to be united once more.
The “one-ness” of the Filipino people is something that has eluded us for decades now. These days, everyone seems to be taking different and, in most cases, divergent paths. No wonder we can’t arrive at a single end goal — that’s because we have no common end goal to talk about.
Unity means putting aside the bickering, the vested personal interests, and the “Ako Muna” mentality. What we need is a common vision of our future, unity and cooperation among ourselves, and a new set of leaders who will show us the way.
Fortunately for us, the fate of our future is in our hands when we elect a new government next year. In 2010, let us take the opportunity to show Cory that we have learned from her the lesson of unity.
When we vote next year, let us choose leaders who will unite rather than divide us, who will inspire rather than disappoint us, and who will make us proud rather than ashamed as Filipinos.

James Ryan Jonas teaches business management, investments, and entrepreneurship at the University of the Philippines (UP). He is also the Executive Director of UP Provident Fund Inc., managing and investing P3.2 Billion ($56.4 Million) worth of retirement funds on behalf of thousands of UP employees.