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Manila Is Not A ‘Hellish’ City

Written By: Rex Solano - Jun• 09•13

When American novelist Dan Brown repulsively called Manila the “Gates of Hell,” he did not only stir a straw of controversy but furiously made some Filipinos react with anger and exasperation. Readers of his book will always inject and project in their minds the author’s delusional portrayal about Manila, as a depraved and perverted sin city to the point of being true. Dan Brown, author of his latest book “Inferno,”can build an argument that it is a only a fictional story, but when the writer  despicably described in his book the negative aspect of how Manila is viewed among readers,we can no longer ignore it as merely a work of fiction. He knew what he was writing about. He vividly depicted the character in his book who happened to visit Manila as having a hallucinating experience, trapped in a densely populated city where she was able to absorb all kind of problems troubling her.  Siena, as the character portrayed in his book “Inferno,” had withstood the sights of an unhealthy environment, dispirited people of different ages trying to survive the epidemic of such unholy living conditions. In the eyes of Siena, she saw it all. She agonized looking at all those thousands of indigent faces of human beings, young and old, openly viewed in a picture of desperation and self-pity. The surroundings in a crowded city of Manila were mired with so many vices and illegal activities such as child prostitution, robberies, crimes and horrifying sex trade that it was too odious and abominable not to take offense at the writer’s depiction of Manila calling it the “Gates of Hell.” Yet he has never visited Manila. How Mr. Brown can accurately described Manila as a poverty stricken city was beyond my knowledge and comprehension. How he was able to depict in his own account regarding the six-hour traffic jams, the child prostitution and sex trades, the poor living condition where residents live in a squalor and shanty areas, as well as women of all ages wandering in the street during the night soliciting sex; that to tangibly pick Manila as a road to perdition among cities of the world needs a substantial explanation from the author himself when in fact some other cities looks even worse?. And yet again, Mr. Brown never saw the light of dawn, the rays of hope and how beautiful Manila is in these modern days?  I was inspired to write this blog when I came across an article written by Alejandro del Rosario in his Back Channel column,  about “ Dan Brown and the Gates of Hell,” when he said it best, that ” Filipinos, it seems, have a twisted sense of outrage. We sometimes say the worst about this country and its leaders but won’t accept it if foreigners say the same things.” Del Rosario is absolutely right. Our egos are bruised so easily and our prides when it is wounded through harsh criticism, revolted defiantly.  Yes, for some Filipinos, there are always that sense of umbrage, an acrimonious display of hostility towards Dan Brown’s writing. However, who are we to argue and why we have to, when in fact his impression about Manila is merely an observation which was concocted from his wildest imagination? Yet it was Mr. Brown’s masterful work of fiction which gave nothing but leaves Filipinos in their furious moods.  His descriptions of Manila as the “ Gates of Hell” were so convincing and so real  that one has to be morally responsible whether to believe him in his writing or not.  Of course as Filipinos we take offense. The real consolation about his book “Inferno” is just an account of the story or a conception which is an invention of a human mind exposing the stagnant livelihood and corruptible living in Manila as he sees fit. I wondered if Filipinos will have the effervescent joy and tenacity to watch his masterpiece work of fiction, if indeed in the future his book is to be made into a movie. But for now we can only personally draw our own conclusion as a convenient to ease our minds from any inaccurate portrayal of Dan Brown’s description of Manila as a fictional story and nothing goods are coming out of this but to believe rather that Manila is an “Entry to Heaven” instead of the “Gates of Hell.”

The Day After Thanksgiving

Written By: Rex Solano - Nov• 24•12

 

It was the year 1967 when we arrived in Hawaii. It was such a memorable year for us as we were ushered to appreciate the beauty of the island and got accustomed to the diverse cultures or even the ethnicity of its various races. I always felt so blessed and loved Hawaii because it has given me a lot of opportunities and the aura of lives that had bestowed upon me; all too good to be considered, the reason I would be thankful, as people will always chant the beautiful words so pleasant to hear telling me “ lucky you live Hawaii.” I would not for a moment dispel any notion and admit for that matter, that I am the fortunate one. But I always believe that we are created under the images of God, surreptitiously mired with gladness, ‘order cialis online the potential of the abilities that allow us to exploit to that venues. The Thanksgiving holiday may be gone, and we look forward to its advent next year, but the last thanksgiving day had awakened my spirit, encompassed with so much love and closeness with my family. There was an abundant amount of food served on the table, abundant feelings of joy, abundant laughter, kids running around and prayers that went well along with it. I had discovered through the years that I had been so selfish about how the holidays were being celebrated. But I will not be subjected to the ignominy of disgracing myself to the point that will force me to divulge the indifference of my internal feeling. I knew for myself that our Thanksgiving celebration went so well without traces of any insincere thoughts and rancor hearts. Another year of thanksgiving may come, and we will continue to celebrate that tradition in accordance to how it is celebrated with a true spirit of goodwill in our hearts. I will continue to deepen my faith with profound thoughts of sharing my love and friendship to those who have been afflicted and aggrieved. I will not succumb myself to pressure when unkind words pierced my heart with hatred and animosity. I will not come to someone’s door knocking when vehement and arrogant words bruising my pride and ego telling me that we are not invited and are not welcome. With respect, I think I am as civil and educated to learn the value and sincerity of such words. All this time, I thought when the holiday comes, it is for the purpose of sharing the family bonding, the love and togetherness without reflecting on how hard you worked, the food you brought and the sacrifices that were put into it. But apparently some individual has a different view and way of interpreting the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year holiday with an ungenerous and inconsequential perspective. Then I know for a fact that we are living backward, retrogressing to the years when no one tells us about how and what we do during the holidays. It would have been a nice time to remember celebrating the day after Thanksgiving had it not for some past memories re-surfacing to disrupt the satisfying and glorious moment of a perfect Thanksgiving celebration. Those past memories had left an indelible scar, carved with unwanted bitter memories and negated with so much unwelcome thoughts that it irresistibly beguiled me, wondering if ever there are rays of hopes lurking through the years to come.


 

 

 

 

 

Manny Pacquiao’s Last Fight Was Muddled With Controversy

Written By: Rex Solano - Jul• 10•17

There were so many conjectural speculations, accusations and intriguing issues prompting us to ask what really happened on July 1, Saturday night (Sunday in Brisbane, Australia) where WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao lost his title in a stunning unanimous decision to challenger Jeff Horn. A friend of mine told me that Manny Pacquiao was robbed of a victory. Others opined their thoughts and opinions that it was a hometown decision. However, what was more unbelievably painful, disdainful perhaps was the verdict rendered by three ringside judges, scoring the fight 117-111, 115-113 and 115-113, all in favor of Jeff Horn. When the decision was announced, I yelled at the top of my voice that the fight was rigged and that Manny Pacquiao, for my own reason, indeed was set up. If anyone remembers the fight between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley, Jr., it was almost similar in any given circumstances that Manny Pacquiao also lost in that fight. Right after the fight, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum declared that a rematch was in order for Timothy Bradley to defend his title. Now the same scenario is happening again to Manny Pacquiao’s last fight with Jeff Horn. If it is really true what promoter Bob Arum had declared that there was a clause for a rematch with Jeff Horn, then it is up to Manny Pacquiao to take up to the challenge. However, so many naysayer and his boxing followers as well, that at his age of 38, it was time for Manny Pacquiao to quit boxing and hang up the gloves for good and served full-time as Philippine senator.

In my own honest personal opinion, I don’t think he will retire just yet. The defeat he absorbed at the hand of Jeff Horn and the unanimous decision rendered by the three judges was to me so painful and distressing to bear that to quit now is nothing but to relinquish his pride and respect that he needed to regain. Manny Pacquiao knew that he was robbed of all the honor, dignity and the glory he would have love to share with his Filipino boxing fans. I knew too deep in my heart that he won. I had the same scores like what the ESPN was flashing on the screen. I had Manny Pacquiao ahead by two points, it was four points after the 9th round but for some reason in the latter stage of round ten and eleven, Manny Pacquiao was just going to the motion thinking probably that he won. Even referee Mark Nelson assigned to the fight was not helpful at all, why he did not give a warning to Jeff Horn about his dirty strategy of throwing a cross punch with Horn’s elbow hitting Pacquiao’s head. Also there was no warning about the head butt and for reasonable measure should have deducted a point from Jeff Horn. Yet this did not happen.

The title fight was over a week old now and we are still hearing from boxing fans that Manny Pacquiao at the age of 38 are calling for him to retire. For me I will not entertain that idea. Why would anyone in their right mind will ask Manny Pacquiao to retire if it is true to their own belief and conviction that Pacquiao, indeed, was the true winner of that fight? If I were Manny Pacquiao, I will honor the rematch clause in his contract in order to dispel any notion and to prove to those who watch the boxing match that he actually won the fight. Money is not a question here. Manny is already super rich. This is neither a lust for more money nor a coveteouness of being greedy. It is that unfairness and the controversial unanimous decision rendered by the three judges looming over his head that ultimately has instill a haunting legacy to his illustrious boxing career. For the last time of his fight if the rematch with Jeff Horn ever happens, he needs to win back the pride, honor and respect that were once personified as a symbol throughout the reigning of his boxing career.

People Die Being In A Wrong Place At A Wrong Time

Written By: Rex Solano - Jun• 11•17

Drugs, drinking and gambling are some of the vices that any person who indulge and inveterate with, are the main culprits leading to the ruination of someone’s life and those of others. So many people are so addicted to the culmination of these degrading and immoral habits that somehow we wonder if there are any solutions to curb and stop the ills of these social problems.

Watching the CCTV footage of such tragic incidents where a lone gunman entered the gambling establishment that has known to all as Resorts World Manila had given me a shivering thoughts and eerily feelings that it is not safe to enjoy and entertain ourselves to the extreme, thinking that these isolated incidents are happening everywhere. It is not even safe to watch concerts such as what happened in Manchester Arena in England where American singer Ariana Grande was performing a show, when an apparent suicide bomber detonated a bomb killing at least 22 people and critically injuring dozen others. We do not even feel secured when we walked along the street where a lunatic driver could just mow down the pedestrians or even to go to the bar or nightclub to engage in socializing with friends after an arduous and hectic day of work.

These only prove to me that to meet our fates in a bizarre unexpected way has got to be faulted with what others are saying that these tragic incidents happened to people who were being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Why would I say this; because I was there at Resorts World Manila with my wife and two cousins? We played most of the night in a slot machine, not in the gaming table where the gunman set it on fire, At the time we were innocents to think of any untoward incidents that happened last June 2 killing 38 employees and guests including the lone gunman. By contemplating it now, has caused an alarming furor, a frightful feeling asking myself, “what if we were there when it happened?”

When we go to the casino establishments, we always have that feeling of self-assurance that we are safely guarded from any proclivities or disastrous criminal acts posing as a threat, aside from our ultimate desires of either winning or losing money. We are so confident, complacent and trustful that the casino security personnel will responsibly protect our back. But in this incident, the Lanting Security Specialist Agency, the provider of security guard to the Resorts World Manila who was manning the doors leading to Casino, had done the unthinkable. When the female security guard who was not armed confronted gunman Jesse Javier Carlos, she relented and instead ran for her dear life, when the gunman pointed and threatened her with the M-4 Carbine. Perhaps, she must have thought that to be a live coward is better than a dead hero, and so the heroism of the security guards seemed futile and in vain as scores of dead people had became a nightmare for the surviving families.

We already knew that there were lapses in security and safety operations in the Resorts World Manila. The one thing that I keep on asking, why the employees and the guests had to run for cover in a room instead of the exit? We also knew that the gunman never intended to kill or harm or shoot at anyone who was visibly within his sights as we saw on the CCTV footage that the gunman even took the elevator with two women riding along with him. Those who died had all the time to escape through entrances and fire exits instead of huddling in a room where they died of smoke inhalation leading to their deaths. Panic! Perhaps, but to serve ourselves with this perfidious theory of incredible conclusion, one has to wonder that the gunman was not even a killer. Jesse Javier Carlos had concocted a plan to get strictly even with the casino establishment. It was retaliation at its worst moment after incurring so many losses at the casino having deeply accumulated four million in debt, losing his job and separated from his wife. The burden he carried in his heart has heavily seeped through an excruciating experience of depression and desperation. The last straw that probably had embarked to the journey of doing criminal acts was when he was barred or banned from entering the Resorts World Manila. Anyone who incurred so many losses, time and time again will go to the casino to chase and recoup those losses but because Resort World put a restriction on him to gamble at that establishment, a motive of vengeance or retaliation was compelling and conceivable.

The Risk Of Flying The Friendly Skies

Written By: Rex Solano - Apr• 17•17

We are always reminded of the famous saying that the “customer is always right.” But for Dr. David Dao, a passenger of United Airlines, it was not so. Official statements from United Airlines claimed that Dr. Dao was disruptive and belligerent, the reasons, he was forcibly dragged off from an overbooked flight, to make way for four United employees, despite Dr. Dao telling the three Chicago Department of Aviation security officers that he has to be in Louisville by tomorrow morning to attend to his patient. Some passengers who witnessed the horrific incident voluntarily submitted a statement that Dr. Dao was neither defiant nor even having a fighting attitude but only told the Aviation officers that he will not give up his seat.

What really bothered me about this incident and at times so disturbing was the fact that it was not managed appropriately. It was so disgraceful and at the very worst so humiliating if we are in Dr. David Dao’s own predicament. The actions of the three Aviation Officers were bold and injudicious that it behooves me to wonder why they were so fixated and demanded vigorously that Dr. David Dao had to vacate his seat when in fact by way of prodding to come to some alternative solutions, there are, maybe, other passengers who were probably willing to give in if the United Airlines raised the offer of compensation from $3,000 to $5,000, plus hotel accommodations. The United Airlines could have deal with or managed it differently by asking all passengers before boarding the plane, if anyone is willing to give up their seats. However, in this incident, it was neither done tactfully nor even to have a sense of pride with its commercial slogan “fly the friendly skies?” The United Airlines Customer Service Supervisor was not up to the tasked, but instead asked the Aviation Security Officers to remove Dr. David Dao, by forcibly dragging him off his seat to the outrages of other passengers who were traumatically shocked upon witnessing the physical display of harsh maltreatment and the so called arrogant attitude of saying loudly to the befuddled Dr. Dao, that if you do not give in to give up your seat we will get you off the plane either by hook or by crook.” And this is what the Chicago Aviation security officers did to the 69-year old Vietnamese-American doctor David Dao who was traveling from Chicago to Louisville.

When the United Airlines reasonably claimed that they initially asked for volunteers to give up their seats, whereby three of the passengers voluntarily did so, and when nobody volunteered for the 4th one, they then looked in the computer randomly to select one, which happened to be Dr. David Dao. Upon asking Dr. David Dao to vacate his seat, he refused according to the security officers; I read an article with some inflammatory comments that one reason Dr. David Dao’s name was randomly selected on the passengers manifest lists because he was Asian. Are we to believe that racial profiling played a part on why Dr. David Dao was forcibly dragged off his seat instead of an alternative desperate effort by the United Airlines staff to go down the passenger manifest lists and asked for more volunteers? If no other passengers come forward to volunteer, then the United Airlines should have declared an ultimatum that the plane will not depart unless a passenger is willing to give up his seat. In these instances, the United Airlines did not demonstrate good public relations or even diplomacy to avoid any tensions between the United Airlines and its paying passengers.

Bad publicity and outrageous scandals will always leave a bitter pill for the Corporate Company to take. Repercussions will also give a black eye and bad name to a company likes United Airlines, one of the popular carrier in the world, whose stock price or shares took a tumble, after a footage video went viral for the people to judge the company for the way they had conducted and managed its business.

Well, as one would always tells me, that the success of every company is dependent on its function and ability to render good services to those they are dealing business with. I remember, a parent advised her daughter who just got hired on her first job, that no matter what circumstances may befall her never argue with a customer because the saying or slogan will reminds all of us that “ the customer is always right.”

Death Penalty, A Cruel, Barbaric And Disgraceful Punishment

Written By: Rex Solano - Feb• 05•17

I was so hesitant to write a blog about a sensitive and controversial topic that involves human lives especially those criminals and inmates whose fates are hanging in the hands of a legislative power vested in the two chambers: the upper chamber of the Senate and the lower chamber of the House of Representatives. I have read an article regarding the bringing back of the death penalty in the Philippines with grave concern, and it strikes my heart with sadness that we allow the legislators, once the bill becomes a law, the executioner of a man’s fate. So often, when one of our fellowmen is sentenced to die in another country, we begged for their lives, why now, do the Legislators become so aggressive in its stance to end the life of their very own? For me, this does not make sense at all. Life imprisonment is sufficient to punish the evil-doers and criminals, at least it will benefit them for chances to reform themselves, repent and ask for forgiveness, recompense to society the crimes they committed. When we put inmates to death, they are taught precisely nothing because they are no longer alive to learn from it. And so what happened to the term called rehabilitation, reformation and a second chance to live in our social world? Verily, I asked, does the death penalty really help deter crimes?

As a pro-life, I am having a reservation about the passing of the death penalty bill by putting inmates to die has not really given us propitious advantages nor any gain from it, except a life is obliterated or extinguished in our society where criminals are no longer to be able to commit crimes. But then again, the world is built around us with so many imperfect self-recriminations. Generations upon generations, there will be good people and bad people commingled in our lives. We have good people who think nothing but to be successful in life while the bad people are those who are trying to survive the living condition of an impoverished state of livelihood. A desperate measure of an unemployed person will resort in committing crimes because that is the only means of survival that will push him to his daily existence. All those criminals now incarcerated will attest to my own belief that once they are given a job will not commit a crime again. I think the Philippines government will centralize and focus their strength like creating a job and provide a job to those who are jobless so that their criminal minds will reverse into something good and beneficial to others. Depriving inmates of any second chance of life renders them helpless. We are no longer being compelled as to come to terms like rehabilitating and reforming them so that inmates will return to our society learning from the chance of the gift of life that only God has all the power to take it away. We are only followers from all the edict of God’s law. To impose the death penalty, even though as it is stated in one of the Ten Commandments of God, “thou shall not kill “is nothing but cruel, barbaric and disgraceful to the point of asking ourselves, what is our purpose of living in this world, if the human lives of criminals and inmates are eradicated by way of imposing the death penalty?

I am so confident that the restoration of the death penalty will be met with opposition and purportedly thrust into the hands of conscientious legislators whose love, pity and kindness dwells in their hearts. As a proponent of pro-life, I wish nothing but to protect and preserve the life of humanity, for I strongly believed that the world we all live in is not perfect itself. Even our judicial system is flawed. To give all inmates an extension of life is in itself a moral victory for them because they have been given a chance to feel remorse and ask forgiveness from God for all the criminal sins committed on earth. Philippines is a forgivable nation showering its mercy and compassion to the criminals whose wayward lives have led them to the path of a sorry state of unlawful acts. Let the judgment of God become the executioner of a man’s fate, and say NO to the restoration of the death penalty.

Our Commitments To The Words- ” New And Change”

Written By: Rex Solano - Jan• 05•17

Happy New Year is what we always chanted whenever we conveyed our greetings to our family, relatives, and friends about the beginning of the new year. It is a yearly tradition celebrated or observed around the world. But what is it all about and what does it really mean to us? Are we ready to prepare ourselves to make some changes toward the coming of the year 2017, like rectifying the errors we made in the past or shall we change our behaviors and attitudes by trying to be pleasant to others? Cogitatively, I have doubts about it. We are only pressed upon to follow the so-called tradition of celebrating the changes of New Year 2017, which is too frivolous for others, given an example, like a politician who made all those promises about change and once getting elected, a discomfit of miserable lives, are thrust upon its citizens. Even with the likes of the ISIS ( Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) terrorizing the ever tenet lives of innocent inhabitants, I do not think the ISIS will allude or commit themselves to the word –change. With their evil minds always come cruel intentions. We would never attain peace and a quiet life anytime the terrorists, the ISIS, continue to spread terrors to the people of all nations. This is the kind of change that we like to see in the coming year that the terrorist or the ISIS will stop decapitating innocent people. Hoping with the beginning of 2017, people of all races will change. It is with fervor, heartiness and dutiful obligation that we must unite, cherish all our dreams and hopes that mankind will attain lasting peace and freedom for this is what change is all about. It is of interest to note, that in the midst of our ever longing and desires for prosperity, positive outlooks in life, and opportunities, we are challenged to the tasked of making well of our commitments. We can transform and reform ourselves with all the changes imposed heartily upon our lives, only if we make a commitment to change.

For all the trending stories I have heard, and the superstitions that come along with it, never in my entire life have I had the luxury of enjoying what I had been wishing all those years. I don’t really believe in superstition but a fool as I was acting to be, once the clock strikes midnight, we were all ready to bang and pound those pots and pans, believing it will drive the devil away; we also wore dotted shirts and bought all those round fruits with great anticipation that it will bring us financial prosperity. Sometimes we keep money in our pockets believing also that through all the year, we will never run out of money. To me, this is pure nonsense! I will not go as far as spending all those hard earned money to buy fireworks and firecrackers with one purpose in mind, to get rid of bad luck and drives those devils from misfortunes or that were cursed upon us. The irony about these; however, is the fact that believers are so fixated to drive bad luck away has instead brought revelers to its miserable condition as they sustained injuries like losing an index finger, burns, and scarring their legs and the devils for all we know were probably laughing at how these diverse and cultural tradition became such a farce

For so many years I have celebrated the New Year Eve without believing and following all those superstitious beliefs. I have fully come to my senses that we just have to be practical and deal the reality of life with what God has in store for us. In no time at all, the year 2018 will be upon us. For this New Year 2017 let us all make some changes for the betterment of our nation. Let us open our human hearts with much love, care and compassion. Think about the human values that will endear and preserve the lives of others. This year 2017 is about change and a new beginning. It is about our commitment. It’s about the freedom of choice and the decision we make that which will ultimately lead our lives to the path of goodness and righteousness so that we will all be living in a peaceful, harmonious, and wonderful world.

A Year Of Silence

Written By: Rex Solano - Dec• 31•16

As we await the advent of 2017, there are lots of flashback memories to reminisce for or even to assuage ourselves if the year 2016 had been fruitful, prosperous and joyous to give us that ultimate hopes and optimism for the coming year. Almost every year we tend to prepare for the coming of the New Year. Everyone always conveys their greetings of a very Happy New year to family, relatives, and friends after the stroke of midnight, as well-wishers extend congratulations by shaking hands, embraces, hugs, and kisses. Traditionally, we have been doing this every year, but please allow me to ask? Have you been happier for all those past years or are we contented with the way we lead our lives? I come with some incongruous conclusion that most of us do not feel the same ways like others. I for one have that burden heavily carried in my heart, the pain so unbearable to endure, the fake smiles and those hypocritical feelings to be happy when deep inside I am not, and the constant affliction of sadness to pray always to God that He may grace my mom the ultimate joys in life and to withstand the physical sacrifice that a son can ask. My mom who has been bed-ridden due to stroke going to almost three years now has never given me all the reasons to be in a celebratory mood. It would be unfair on my part, to say the least, that someone will wish me a happy and prosperous new year and the reciprocation I accorded to them is not sincere. It is better to shy away from all those fun, laughter, and let my moment of silence be in constant interaction with God’s guidance through prayers.

But how do we actually define the coming of the year 2017? We can be happy in all our undertakings in life and where it lead us to, but when we sauntered our thoughts what is happening throughout the world, we have that notion in mind that we cannot gain love, peace, and freedom if terrorists keep on spreading fears and violence to humanities. To be happy on New Year Eve and beyond is but a temporal cure of our own happiness. There is another thing that we are confronted with, and that is beyond the power of our means. When we wish someone a Happy New Year, make it so sure, he enjoys the happiness according to how you have conveyed it to him. Conveyance of the greetings and messages has to be sincere.

Verily I will say this that some people are so fortunate. When they have that blissfulness, life is but a smooth sailing like a ship navigating in a calmer sea.

In another light, there are people that are less fortunate than you. They may have lost someone close or is confined at home or the hospital this year. Keep them in your prayers that next year will be a good year for those afflicted. Or better yet, visit them wherever they may be and it will surely put a smile upon their face to see familiar sights that people normally are too busy during the year with the hustle of their busy lives. Take the time to reach out to those that are unable to reach out due to circumstances beyond their control. Remember those that have passed away. Their spirits have surely watched over you all year during times of duress. This last day of the year would be a good time to pay homage, and to kindred spirits, may they rest in peace.

May the next year be blessed for all your families with good fortune, prosperity, successful ideals, health, and welfare?

From the Solanostories.com family: Rex, Hyla, Troy, Quincy and Jessica wishing you all a very “Happy and Prosperous New Year “for the year 2017.

Of Doubts, Uncertainties And Suspicions

Written By: Rex Solano - Dec• 12•16

We all have doubts and suspicion regarding the presidential victory of Donald Trump over the erstwhile favorite Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. It’s hard to believe or even to imagine that a presidential candidate in Hillary Clinton who was leading in all surveys, exit polls and owning a lot of massive endorsements would lose the election in an unbelievable fashion, at times so cruel and painful to bear, even so unjustified and quite very demeaning, a disappointment in our worst feeling of anticipation that has now strikes the core of everyone’s mind, how the American people’s faith in the electoral system were perfidiously tested and compromised.

Hillary Clinton won the popular votes by a stunning margin of over close to 3 million votes. Donald Trump won the electoral votes 306 to Hillary Clinton’s 232. Somehow the popular votes of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump electoral votes to me do not make any sense at all. The disparity and gaps did not quite measure to the will of the American voters.These electoral systems need to be examined and thoroughly scrutinized. There is a flaw and needs to be looked at with great concern.

I would not write any bad stuff about Donald Trump. As true to his campaign promised that he likes to lead America the way he envisioned making it a great nation, so be it. But let us spare the American people, the unconscionable and agonizing feeling of guilt that Donald Trump indeed won the presidency, fair and square. Also don’t let us give any reasons to cast a shadow of doubts, uncertainty and suspicion over the legitimacy of his victory; that the result of this year’s election was not illegally stolen with “the aid of interference by a hostile foreign dictatorship” as claimed in an article written by James DeVinne.

If it is to be believed that the Russian hackers interfered with the presidential election, then America as a nation must act to protect this country, the world and its people from further future intervention by a hostile foreign country. Nobody wants a sitting president whose victory was tainted and questionable, casting a doubt of suspiciously deceptive acts.

Have the American people spoken? I believe so. With protest and riots sweeping parts of the nation, I would say and as I observe, that the voices of the American people do not resonate well to the outcome of the presidential election. Again there are doubts and suspicion riding on everyone’s minds that there indeed were frauds and anomalous, even some discrepancies committed, resulting for Jill Stein to file a recount in the state of Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania.

As of now, presidential-elect Donald Trump is assembling his transition teams even before the Electoral College handed and finalized its crucial decision on December 19. For Hillary Clinton’s supporters, there are great expectations and of mighty hopes that Clinton will win this one. If the CIA’s findings are proven to be true that Russian hackers interfered and helped in making Donald Trump win the presidency, the Electoral College when they voted on December 19, have no choice nor any second thoughts but to vote for Hillary Clinton as mandated by the popular votes she garnered in the last general election.

Well as former basketball coach Dick Motta would remind us all, “The Opera isn’t over till the fat lady sings.”

“Be Careful What You Wish For”

Written By: Rex Solano - Nov• 06•16

I can neither fathom nor understand a candidate running for president with so many skeletons in the closet and haunted with an intemperate dark past. Presidential candidate Donald Trump, probably in his own rights, has never thought of nor imagined that all the accusations against him will come to light. Claiming that he is so smart because he dodged paying taxes for so many years does not bode well to us honest taxpayers that during filing tax time, we give back our hard earned money just to comply with our civic duties as abiding citizens of America. A man like Donald Trump running for president with the aspiration to lead our nation will never make America a great nation; if uncertainty and doubts with his character or even his personal behaviors are hanging in the balance of our futures.

I have read and learned enough of Donald Trump. I do not think I need a sales-talk or even a persuasive word to ask me who I will vote for president this coming election. I think I am still sane and in a good frame of mind to decide which crossroad to take. For me, Donald Trump has too many excessive faults to carry in his baggage, much less to run for president of America.

Like any ordinary citizen of America who likes to live a simple life, we do not want to hear about a candidate associated with, or dealing with all the negative aspects that will put our country in shambles. After all, Donald Trump lacks acumen in dealing with foreign policy. His own political agendas are somewhat reckless and irresponsible. He has no respect for women pulverizing the issues telling us all that those women accusing him of groping them are liars and there were so many of them. And so in the event if ever he becomes president of America would he continue to deny your daughters, your wives, your mother and girlfriends of any sexual charges they bring about against him? I would only conclude one thing as what Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton would put words in our own comforting minds that “Donald Trump’s disregard for the values that make our country great is profoundly dangerous.”

I can go on and on but an evil schemes even if only one is enough to persuade anyone that we have a deceitful candidate trying to make a mockery of our political system and even how he disregarded our Federal law by making a secret dealing with other nations like allegedly violating the Cuba trade embargo. This is one example of dangerous political moves, and least we know Donald Trump is betraying our trust and probably even selling our souls to the devil if given a chance.

As a citizen of America, I would like to see our country to be going in the direction to the path of righteousness and good governance. The Solanostories has not been asked to write a blog about the presidential election. It is my personal opinion and solely my own political views. I stand for what is written in this blog as true and accurate to the best of my knowledge. I am just a concerned citizen who likes to see America to be a greater nation. I have read the qualification of both candidates and my conscience is clear with God’s visionary help that Hillary Clinton is qualified and best suited to lead our country with her strong leadership, political experiences, profound caring and compassions for the American people.

So on November 8th General Election I am with her. Please always be reminded that “Be careful who you vote for and also be careful what you wish for”.

With Hillary Clinton, we are stronger together.

Is Colin Kaepernick A Disgruntled Football Player?

Written By: Rex Solano - Oct• 10•16

The trending news or the controversial issues regarding San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s national protest about not standing for the national anthem will adorn our lives, not with love, friendship, and camaraderie but with hate, anger, and discontent for years to come. It’s been over a month now since the time Colin Kaepernick voiced his freedom of expression about how the minorities are being oppressed and the police brutalities in question so direly needed to scrutinize, so reprehensible at times, have made all of us looking at our nation “sugar-coated” with so much divisiveness, enmity, and rancor regarding the stance and beliefs demonstrated by others. This protest spearheaded by Colin Kaepernick reprovingly disrespecting and dishonoring our patriotic flag will linger for as long as it is tolerated and condoned by some organizations especially the San Francisco 49ers football team for which he is listed as a backup quarterback. Right now, we are facing an unhealthy society and political detraction going forward to see other athletes following suit on the stance of Colin Kaepernick that to kneel down instead of standing at the singing of the national anthem will give them ultimate justices, listen to their cries and their sentient gripes or disapproval over social inequality, police brutalities and oppressions believing it will send a strong message and generate a lot of supports from those who have been oppressed. Though I believe it is not a pretty sight to watch those athletes kneeling or raised a fist during the singing of our national anthem, explains to me thoughtfully and intelligently, if ever it helps or solves the racial tensions and how they viewed about the police force not safeguarding the welfare of its community? What is so ignominious or loathsome about Colin Kaepernick’s action and what his protest inherently is trying to relate to the American people, had instead divided this country with furor and disgust. Sometimes as a respectful and obedience citizen of this nation, I have come to wonder why they have to act so repulsive and disdainful to the country where they are a part of or had even been given all the chances and opportunities to be successful in their lives, while others have not had that sumptuous privilege to enjoy. Many people living in America does not have that luxury in life where one like Colin Kaepernick has to play, strictly football and made millions to the envy of others. If those who protest do not like how the government is being managed and conducted, then for the good measure of the law and civility, they are also given a free reign of their lives, to that so called freedom of choice to leave the country, in the same manner, they also boldly claimed that it is their constitutional rights to the freedom of expression.

Honestly, ever since Colin Kaepernick had waged a war of his stance about oppression, social inequality, and police brutality, it has really impacted my life. It changes the “landscape” of how I like to steer the direction of the road I want to take. Even now I stopped watching NFL football which for so many years had become my ultimate pastime. It has not given me the pleasure and the joy to embrace the game ever since Colin Kaepernick infused in my life the irrational rhetoric of how his protest can be so demeaning and degrading to the conscionable one who sublimely and dearly loves this country. Gone are the excitements and the celebratory moods that were once a part of me.

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As I was trying to cogitatively analyze the truest sense of Colin Kaepernick action and behavior, I found it so digressing, unworthy of any praise and just so contentious. Colin Kaepernick reminds me of a disgruntled employee who became so argumentative questioning the leadership of his supervisor. At one time, Colin Kaepernick was idolized and revere because of his talent when he was a starting quarterback for San Francisco 49ers, almost leading his team to Super bowl victory. But when he lost his starting job to Blaine Gabbert, his attitude and demeanor delusively changed. I just wondered if his protest not standing for the national anthem had something to do with losing his starting role as San Francisco 49ers primary quarterback. And so, if it happens, if the SF 49ers decides to give him back the starting quarterback, will he start standing for the singing of the “Star-Spangled Banner? Well, like a disgruntled employee who has an attitude problem because he was bypassed for promotion, we can also expect the same for Colin Kaepernick if given another chance by the San Francisco 49ers to name him as their starting quarterback where he was once a catalyst of a proud organization with a winning tradition.

United We Stand, Divided We Fall

Written By: Rex Solano - Sep• 11•16

Any which way we look at it or read about it, Colin Kaepernick stance protesting the singing of the national anthem by kneeling instead of standing, given my own personal view is contemptuously wrong. Colin Kaepernick may have his reason by voicing his own opinion with the constitutional rights being conferred or granted to the American people, but to dishonor and disrespect the symbolic freedom of our patriotic flag is as disdained, despicable and ignoble as anyone can imagine. The singing of the Star Spangled Banner in any sports events, concerts and other entertainment functions have been a social and cultural tradition that had been practiced since the time he was not even born to life. What made Colin Kaepernick think that his protest against social injustices and police brutality as he personally claimed by not tending to honor and respect the national anthem will solve social ills and racism that is confronting America today? For me it just does not make any sense at all. Really! Why desecrate the American flag for which our branches of United States military and even our police officers had fought, for our freedom and democracy; to me, this is in itself a travesty and unpatriotic to our own creeds and beliefs for the way we lead our normal life.

If Colin Kaepernick continues his protest by kneeling during the singing of the National Anthem while the rest of the football fans are standing with some placing their right hands on their hearts, then with Colin’s arrogant stance dishonoring and disrespecting the American flag; he just made some people especially the football fan looks like a fool.

But I still do not get his point though. What police brutality and social inequality is he talking about? We all have our constitutional rights, but he must bear in his mind, that our constitutional rights have also its limits. Do we have constitutionally a right to drive speeding in a freeway over the posted speed limit as governed by laws because one is going to be late for work? Or to smoke in any establishment where a no smoking sign is posted and then continue to smoke because one has to satiate his own habits? Or even when a police officer stops a motorist by running a red light, and then when apprehended resisted to cooperate with the cop thereby insinuating police brutality? Colin Kaepernick just totally missed the whole picture. He probably did not know what the American flag stands for. It is a symbol of America’s strength and unity. It beholden us to beam with pride and inspiration, that our brave soldiers had fought for our freedom, liberty, democracy and the pursuit of happiness that million of American people have now come to cherish and embrace for. I may not possess a brilliant mentality as what Colin Kaepernick is trying to infer but I will not follow his stance protesting by kneeling at the singing of Star Spangled Banner because deep in my heart it was absolutely wrong even if he was freely given his constitutional rights of the so called freedom of expression.

I knew and I always believed that America is fair. As a Filipino who came to America in awhile ago, I always have great admiration of how America shapes the lives of its citizens. When I was drafted by the United States Army and eventually assigned to the war torn country of South Vietnam, where during the times the escalation of the war was extremely dangerous, I feared for my life. I asked myself, “What am I doing here?” Either I can go back to the Philippines or become a conscientious objector? But I put aside all those thoughts and fought side by side with American soldiers because I love to live in America; willing to fight, protect and secure the freedom of a great nation even if I had to sacrifice my own life. This is what Colin Kaepernick could have done. Seattle Doug Baldwin once said that “we honor those who have fought for the freedom we cherish. And we stand to assure the riches of freedom and the security of justice for all people. Progress can and will be made only if we stand together.”

But for Colin Kaepernick, however, he took a different stance, making it hard for other people to understand his true gestures, the real reasons behind his advocacy and to justify his personal attacks about country’s injustices and discrimination.

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