We the People

Guam is so entrenched in politics and government that I almost find news like white noise. I do subscribe to Twitter feeds for most of the local news stations though. I don’t want to be totally clueless, but a daily paper seems like a horrendous soap opera that just gets my  hands black.

In recent weeks, I have been particularly curious about this new candidate for the congressional election, Karlo Dizon. Young, well-educated, progressive and Filipino. Very interesting. I listened to a radio interview today and was impressed by much of what he said. He took a stance at times and noted that he would rely on the wishes of “the people” at other times. So, who are “the people”?

Unfortunately, if you listened to today’s interview (and most radio talk shows for that matter), you’re going to hear a kind of people that is sadly disrespectful, pompous, and basically close-minded. I’ll call them the “I-Know-Club”. I was saddened by the constant reference to the fact that Mr. Dizon is not “indigenous”, or does not speak “our language”. I don’t speak our language. Does that mean I cannot represent our island? What is the significance of being “indigenous”? I can appreciate a beautiful palm tree or flower that is not “indigenous,” but has been transplanted and has developed strong roots in island soil.

This young man has grown up in the village that has one of the lowest socio-economic populations, the same village I grew up in. He has gone to local public schools which seem to be failing so many. Despite this, he has forged a path of accomplishments that few ever achieve in their life times. I don’t know Karlo Dizon, but, as I always do, I’ve done my homework. I think it would be a travesty if we let ethnicity be the determining factor. In my eyes, he represents the people. Guam is a mix of so many ethnicities that racial lines should have been erased long ago. Moreover, as a Christian, I don’t see compartments and barriers that keep one group from another. We are all “the people”.

Let the man speak, put fabot.

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