Don’t forget those masks!

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            Is Biblical history repeating itself in the Philippines? The massive floods in Cagayan and Isabela provinces seem to indicate so. I am sure I am not the only  person who got reminded of the story of Noah and his ark, when the news and reports came out of the deadly floodwaters that inundated those places and carried away both lives and property. The vivid scenes of the flooding and the desperate faces of people in neck-deep dirty floodwater were images that were unforgettable.

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            In the case of Noah, whose family was spared by God who instructed him to build an ark so his family could survive, the Lord also made sure that other living things like animals would be saved to support the human beings He had chosen to stay alive and to continue the human race.  He had  also created through the first man and woman he had created. Thus, the earth continued to be peopled by His creation, though, it now appears that the lessons from Noah have been forgotten by ensuing generations.

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            Now all of us who live in areas spared by the wrath of Ulysses, can do is pray, not only for our own salvation, but also for the coming generations, and the souls of those who were victims of the Great Flood that had washed over those provinces in Luzon. There must be something owing in this generation that has led the Lord to send us these reminders of our mortality and of what we owe Him. And also that the knowledge and skills He had granted that enabled  us to improve  our livelihood and existence should always be properly acknowledged.

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            How can we ignore the immensity of the power of God when we think of even wealthy and gifted countries such as the United States still being unable to control the surge of the pandemic and made it the country with the most number of victims? It is far advanced in science and technology, and yet, so far, it has not developed an antidote to the pandemic that continues to decimate its population. I wonder if its people, or at least most of them, have resorted to prayer at this point in their lives.

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            We are getting very somber with all this concentration on calamities,  but before we leave the subject, let us recognize that the cause of the Big Floods in the provinces of Isabela, Tuguegarao and the rest, has been traced to the practice of illegal logging by greedy people who had stripped their healthy forests of the trees that had protected earlier generations from such inundations. Which is why, our  lawmakers should ensure that stricter laws and penalties be passed to those guilty of doing it.

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            The greed of those illegal loggers has not made them realize that what they are doing now could be the undoing of their own children  and the generations to follow. Local officials should encourage their people to look out for those illegal operators and report them because of the great harm they are posing for future generations that will be composed of their own children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who will suffer from the effects of their greediness today.

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            Meanwhile, some people are wondering why President Duterte is very seldom seen, even on TV these days. That is understandable, because, as the leader of the country, we should ensure his protection from this virus that does not choose its victims. In the United States President Donald Trump himself had been victimized, but fortunately, or unfortunately for the American people, he survived to compete for another term. The case reminded me of the Spanish saying “Hierba mala nunca muere” or “Bad grass never dies”.  Anyway, he got defeated in his bid for reelection.

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            It is true, indeed, that “It’s an ill wind that blows no good”. This time I am referring to the Coronavirus Disease, nicknamed “COVID”, that has claimed so many lives, especially in the United States. And what is the “good” it has brought? At least it  taught people  discipline, that is, in accepting the rule of wearing masks, especially while in public. I think it was Dr. Anthony Fauci, the COVID guru, who said that the wearing of masks must have prevented as much as 90 percent of possible COVID victims. Hear ye, all disobedient ones!”*

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