July 01, 2013

The Senseless Violence In Zamboanga Must Stop

Since 2012, there have been around 250 victims of gun violence here in Zamboanga City. It's an alarmingly high number and yet, not much has been done to prevent an innocent life from becoming but a mere statistic in this tragedy. These days, the violence has become even more frequent. No one in this city truly feels safe anymore. What has happened to La Bella Zamboanga? What is happening to my beloved hometown?

Art by Anjomar Alcarazen

Like most people, I am also the kind of person who's very defensive about Zamboanga City. I've briefly stayed in a couple of cities for a few months, so I'm aware of the prejudice that outsiders have for my hometown. I used to laugh at the way they think that this place is a warzone. There was even one person who believed that Mindanao was the home of cannibals! I always make it a point to tell them that the often sensationalized news about Zamboanga does not apply to the whole city. Just like in every other place, crimes happen. Zamboanga City has more to offer. All they need to do is give it a chance.

These days, even I feel a little uneasy in my own hometown. How can this be when I was able to live a relatively peaceful life here for more than two decades? This is probably a question almost all of us are asking. Most speculate that these heartless criminals are resorting to violence just because they can. As I mentioned earlier, most of the cases of the 250+ victims are left unresolved and sadly, forgotten. They become mere numbers in the death toll. People, who are unable to settle differences through dialogue, have chose to pick up a gun instead. To them, it's probably easier to take a life than to talk it over.

I mourn for these people. I mourn for my city.

I may not be someone who's in power, but I at least want to contribute to the effort of showing everyone that I am against the senseless killings in Zamboanga City. I appeal not only to our political leaders and law enforcers, but to the masses. In your own little way, support our cause by praying for our city and keeping the peace. This campaign for peace cannot be achieved through the higher ups alone, but with the cooperation from all sectors. That includes you and me.

Are you still at a loss at where to start? First, you can follow the activities of this Facebook page, then maybe you can sign this petition as well.

Also, if you're a fellow blogger, let your voice be heard by taking a break from your OOTDs and product reviews. Instead, post something that can move your followers to contribute in the efforts of restoring the peace and order in Zamboanga.

I'll be installing a banner on my sidebar. Feel free to grab it using the code below.

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