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That’s a good word we need to remember right now.  We have the “Alabang Boys” bribery scandal, we had some violence party going on in Valley Golf and Country Club… just two more of the glaring bold headlines that greet us every morning.  Tell you what, though; later on in this year, I’m giving up all hope that we will remember.  We would probably forget all this happened, suffer a little bit of social amnesia, and push all of these issues and concerns onto the back burner, where they simmer and eventually evaporate.

One thing did catch my eye reading the paper today: the news that Armando “Jun” Ducat, Jr. hostage taker extraordinaire, visited his school one year and nine months after he held the children under his stewardship hostage in the name of social justice.  I do not condone what Ducat did then, and I certainly think that he should pay for what he did, but Ducat – in the commission of a crime – managed to have our eyes riveted to a purple bus parked somewhere in Manila, waiting for what’s going to happen.

Change.  America can expect it from Barack Obama, we can expect it from politicos with billboards and tarpaulin with messages of hope that’s slowly vanishing and fading away.  I guess we all want to forget that low point in our nation’s history where we banked hope and change and a better tomorrow on a man with a gun, with the ill-disguised threat to shoot kids in bad need of food, air, and a piss.

On that fateful day, we banked our hopes for change on a common criminal.  We lit candles for him, we cheered him as our version of John Q.  Only it wasn’t heroism or desperation, but a politics we can either agree with or disagree with.

Since when was the last time that happened… oh, I completely forgot, that happens every darned day.

Ducat returned to his school with 64 students less than what he started out with before he loaded up his pistols, his guns, and wiped the dust off a grenade.  For what?  Nothing much, really.  The same stuff he riled about: injustice is still here, inequality is still here, corruption is still here as it was one year and nine months ago.  So much for jail time.  So much for prison.  So much for making an ass of yourself through CNN.

Ducat is an ex-convict, a kidnapper, a hostage taker, and there he was before, demanding stuff we can only expect of the genuinely righteous.  And here we are.  Damn, eh?

“Waiting for what’s going to happen…”  I guess that’s a theme we all have to deal with these days.  Perhaps, like Ducat, every axe we have to grind against the whole machine of a f**ked up System will have to be dulled by the grindstone of time, more issues, and all the more shikata ga nai.  Bahala na. Heck, his own victims have forgotten, forged the path of peace, and still trust the man.  I can’t blame them; even I don’t know what to think or what to do anymore.  After all, we have Government officials who are bribed on a daily basis, and the monotony of political issues are broken up with novel allegations of Cabinet members and local government officials beating up people.

Perhaps there’s nothing more we could do, really, knowing that everything is… well, forgotten.  Just like Jun Ducat’s crime, and Ducat himself, at that: forgotten.

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