Pilipinas, kay Ganda
Poor Tourism Secretary Alberto A. Lim and his new "Pilipinas, kay Ganda" campaign! There was such a great rush to reject it that the merits of the new DOT slogan became inextricably lost in the confusion of the fight.
I myself wanted to tear it to bits a couple of days ago. But now I have become quite circumspect about the whole thing because no one ever took to the positive side of the debate.
This no longer appears to me as strange, ganging up on our own. We Filipinos have developed an inopportune tendency to take sides - any side but our own.
Incidentally, I think it is high time we dumped this unnatural way of thinking and start adopting Country-friendly mindsets as citizens, bearing always in mind that in the end, after everything has been said and done, we are (and we will always be) joined together in this Republic endeavor.
The new "Pilipinas, kay Ganda" slogan does have its merits. So what if its in Filipino, that is not a handicap! I realize that we are trying to attract foreign tourists but not all of them speak English. That this new slogan showcases a sampling of our national language already shows a glimpse of who we are.
After all, who we are is basically what we are offering in tourism and not anything else. We are not trying to offer anyone more of the same of their own Country, we are trying to help them discover what is distinctly and uniquely ours.
Sure Secretary Lim's team might have taken an idea or two from Poland's tourism department (it's not like it's plagiarism). But no one ever noticed that the Poland slogan is in Polish. And that (pardon me for being frank) it has a lot less pizazz to boot.
If we had not already spent so much of our own money on this new slogan, it would have been prudent to just let the old one stand (i.e. Wow, Philippines). But since we already did, I am of the belief that it would be a crime to just toss the new slogan out the window. We should find a way to use them both, side by side.
And then let go of the thinking that every new administration has to re-invent the wheel because: If it ain't broke, why fix it? And if it ain't workin', why keep it?
Let us realize from all of this, here and now, O my nation, that this kind of thinking have really only kept us Filipinos down from our real potential because what we really need in this Republic is momentum and continuity.
In the end, selling this new tourism slogan is a matter of pure conviction. We just have to like it first and then find ways to like it even more. After all, how can we Filipinos sell it if we ourselves are conflicted about it.
The real work behind all of this lies in making our Philippines the home away from Home that all Filipinos believe in and deserve - our Land of Promise.
Of course, my fellow Filipino compatriots, that's the work we're all currently engaged in doing at present - each according to the freedom of our gifts - in our Nation, our Responsible State, and our Common Market: hearts joined together under God as one Republic undertaking of Country, one lineage of hope, 7,107 islands strong - one work, one people, one destiny.
Mabuhay ang Pilipinas! God bless us all.