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The STAR shines on

Twinkle, twinkle DAILY STAR
Readers wondered where you are
Did your writers go somewhere?
Did the COVID give them scare?
Ah, but STARS will shine and glow
Just to bring the news to you
Lord, please bless this earthbound STAR
Keep it shining near and far!

What do merchants say when they decide to reopen their stores or
offices? “BY INSISTENT PUBLIC DEMAND”. I guess that is what your
DAILY STAR could not resist with so many people, readers and supporters,
both locally and abroad nagging us about ever since we decided to pause
on October 16. Of course it always took a lot of explaining about how the
COVID had decimated our readership, and our income, naturally. To those
who keep insisting, and challenging us, our only answer was “Put your
money where your mouth is”.

Sarcastic, wasn’t it? But we did not reckon with the concern and love
of a lot of them who were actually willing to do that. And the Lord be
praised, here we are, back on the streets and newsstands, still as stubborn
in hoping for better days, as we had been when we started 38 years ago,
on April 12, 1982, precisely. I hope this will not be misunderstood that we
have let our original principles down. Since the beginning, some people
called us poor but proud because we never compromised our principles for
the sake of business.

And we held on, observing the principles of good and honest
journalism, which, on hindsight, could have also been the cause of our
failure to go on when Mr. COVID struck. But here we are now, as poor as
when we started, but still praying and hoping that the community will
remember, that no less than the Philippines Press Institute was quoted by
the DAILY INQUIRER as describing the Visayan DAILY STAR as a “Multi-
awarded community newspaper”, because of the national awards the
STAR had received not only from the PPI, but also from the Rotary Club of
Manila (twice) and the local clubs as well.

Oh, those were sad days for us when we could not come out with the
STAR for one whole month! And Oh, the messages and calls we got from
readers both locally and abroad, inquiring when the STAR would shine
again. And, indeed their prayers and ours were answered, when several
offers came to revive the STAR, and from people whom we know will allow
us to keep the independence that we have always espoused. So now what
we, myself, especially, are asking for are prayers from our readers and
supporters that we will continue to supply our community and readers, both
locally and abroad the news and opinions they had been used to reading all
those 38 years past.

Meanwhile, let us also pray in gratitude that the vicious
pandemic originally named the Coronavirus Disease that someone
had mercifully shorted to “COVID”, seems to be abating locally. In the
United States, as advanced as their country is in all areas, particularly
in medicine, more and more victims are being reported by the day,
and why is that so? Me, I suspect it is because many of their people
are hard-headed and refuse to wear the very simple precaution of

masks. Yes, even their president, who is soon to be replaced, was a
bad example, and even got infected himself. If he were not president,
with all the facilities and medical support available to him, he could
have been a COVID statistic himself.

If Bacolod has been showing a decline in the number of COVID
cases, it could be due to the fact that mask-wearing was made mandatory
and those who refused to obey were arrested! Imagine, being arrested for
not protecting yourself! But is seemed to have worked and, because the
STAR had not been coming out during those days, we were not able to
keep track of the violators whose names we would have published as a
warning to other would-be violators. This time, however, I enjoin our
readers to join the prayers for the discovery of an effective vaccine against
this virus that China has shared with the world.*

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May 2021

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