Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Eh-hum # 87

The stampede in ULTRA was a tragic event...but I though it was blown out of proportion when the government sponsored/created a fact finding inquiry on this. Also, I somehow anticipated that anti-GMA elements would be using the incident to their advantage, like saying the incident was caused by poverty and the governemnt's inability to deliver the masa's basic needs. Hmmm...maybe that's why they created the fact-finding body? Jeezzz.

Nonetheless, I was also shocked to hear DILG Undersecretary Marius Corpus' comment that the network treated the crowd as animals. Corpus apparently stated that "[the huge crowd that turned out for the show] was enticed and made to suffer all sorts of inconveniences and, in that sense, were exploited, manipulated, treated like animals" and "[offering only a few tickets to people who had lined up for days] was like throwing a small slice of meat to a hungry pack of wolves and that triggered the stampede" (quoted from the Philippine Star, date 08 February 2006). Okkkaaaaayyyy. This remark makes it clear that the DILG is so sure that the network is the only one liable for the incdent.

True enough, the network is responsible for the incident, whether they were unable to control the crowd or underestimated the number of people that would be lining up outside. However, my question to the DILG is this: while your fact-finding committee alleged that since Monday last week people were already lining up or perhaps affecting traffic, why did not the local government police of authorities (in Pasig) did not became active in securing the place prior to Saturday's event? Where's the initiative on their part to tell (or remind them) the network of the number of people already lining up? ABS-CBN is liable, but i think the DILG, especially the Pasig's leaders, also has some level of responsibility in controlling the growing crowd in ULTRA.

Moreover, while it is also inappropriate to say this, the reality is that people belonging to class D and E are not exactly the most open-minded among the Pinoy population. It's possible that they became unruly when they refuse to understand the situation that they cannot anymore get to see the show and earn some serious cash, which can be described as a limited good. Whoever made the first push, he or she or they were really bent on getting some of the limited goods offered by their show. It is sad to note that Filipinos are not the most disciplined of all peoples. To illustrate, perhaps only a percentage of the population actually use pedestrian lanes when crossing the streets, use the sidewalks, or follow the traffic rules. Being a MRT-rider, I am frustrated at how some of the commuters resort to pushing people out of their way (or pushing them into the train) in order to get a seat. Without discipline, the MRT is a haven for accidents. In other words, the selfishess and disregard for simple unwritten guidelines (like respect for others) has a lot to do with the ULTRA incident. This can happen anywhere, even at the MRT/LRT or at malls.

All I am saying is can't really blame the whole thing on just one person or entity...many factors can come into play that led to the tragic incident. What I wish for people to become more responsible or at least realize that they could have done something but didn't. In this case, while there is really no point in feeling proud after announcing that "its their fault, not mine", what should be done is to help one another in order to alleviate the pain left by the incident.


Speaking of crowds...

What is this, a mass action in China? Nope, just students "lining up" to register for entrance examination at an art college. Posted by Picasa

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