Reign of truth

By: JASON BAGUIA May 22,2018 - 09:44 PM

BAGUIA

Heaven has been kind to us in this sweltering summer month that is May. Rain falls on some nights, providing us with respite from the harshness of the season.

It is the month for children to learn the faith. It is the month of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

The other day, I was delighted to see buckets of roses and frangipanis next to a church, all for devotees to buy and offer in the Flores de Mayo prayers.

The Archbishop of Manila, Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, has called on the faithful to spend the last days of the month in prayer because the nation is facing what he calls a “crisis of truth.”

It is hard to disagree with His Eminence.

The Philippines has not only become a favorite case for the academic study of fake news. Our polity is also suffering distortions of the truth in high places.

Where is truth when justices who have behaved so that their sense of fairness has become questionable insist that they were fair in judging and penalizing someone they accused?

Where is truth when officials removed from office following reports of corruption are shown to suffer no consequence — a signal that disservice is acceptable?

Where is truth when a leader tasked to oversee the probe of the murder of a priest vilifies the victim instead of updating the public about the status of the pursuit of the perpetrator?

Incidentally, Cardinal Tagle’s call comes in the same month when we celebrated World Communication Sunday, for which Pope Francis has written a letter to galvanize men and women of good will against deceptive use of the media.

While he had words for media consumers, the Pope has appealed to professionals, particularly journalists to make peace part of their agenda.

“I would like, then, to invite everyone to promote a journalism of peace,” the pope said

“By that, I do not mean the saccharine kind of journalism that refuses to acknowledge the existence of serious problems or smacks of sentimentalism.”
Pope Francis continues: “On the contrary, I mean a journalism that is truthful and opposed to falsehoods, rhetorical slogans, and sensational headlines.

A journalism created by people for people, one that is at the service of all, especially those — and they are the majority in our world — who have no voice.

A journalism less concentrated on breaking news than on exploring the underlying causes of conflicts, in order to promote deeper understanding and contribute to their resolution by setting in place virtuous processes.

A journalism committed to pointing out alternatives to the escalation of shouting matches and verbal violence.”

We face crises of truth and opportunities for truth. May the prayers and flowers offered in the Flores de Mayo help bring us such favors as the return of the reign of truth.

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