Seriously? A honk-free day in the Philippines? We need to get to the bottom of the kind of thinking House Representative Lucy Torres-Gomez (wife of movie idol Richard Gomez) was applying when she came up with House Bill 4542 which, according to this Gulf News report, “aims to bring to the people’s attention the importance of being patient while on the road, while at the same time bring down the ambient noise levels in Philippine roads.”
Torres-Gomez elaborates further…
“Some of them do not realise that their noisy impatience would not improve traffic congestion a whit. Worse, drivers of public utility vehicles actually impede the smooth flow of traffic by stopping at certain road points longer than allowed by the rules and honking their horns continuously in order to attract passengers,” she stressed.
She also proposes that Sunday be the ideal day to impose the honking ban “considering solemn religious activities are celebrated during this day”.
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That sounds like a good idea. Perhaps we should also institute hefty fines for a bunch of other instances of bad breeding Filipinos routinely exhibit on Sundays, including loud karaoke singing in the wee hours of the night, pissing on public walls, horking loudly and spitting juicily, staring, building houses on property without first obtaining the owner’s permission, walking around with shirts raised and beer bellies exposed, wearing tacky clothes, smiling inappropriately during solemn occassions, sporting tacky combinations of expensive branded clothes, not returning phone calls, not responding to emails, chewing with their mouth open, talking with their mouth full, loud lip smacking while eating, getting too much food at buffets and failing to finish it all, queue jumping of all types, texting while being spoken to, texting while walking in the mall, asking people when they will get married, asking married couples when they will have a child, having 4-hour conversations on the topic of money, and cooking tuyo or burong talangka in high-rise apartment buildings among others (we are open to suggestions).
And as a grand finale for our proposed long-overdue Comprehensive Anti Bad Manners bill, let’s finish with a stipulation prescribing severe prison time for loud talking in movies, loud talking in church, and (hey, why not?) loud talking in general. Also, why limit a ban on bad manners to just Sundays? Why not make the new law a 24/7 ban on bad manners instead? Perhaps in this way, exhibiting good manners may someday become instituted as a routine way of life in the Philippines. Indeed, baby steps are needed to solve this monster of an instractable Filipino social problem, but a boost from a big-time celebrity solon always helps!
We’re all behind you Congresswoman Lucy Torres-Gomez! It’s time Filipinos are taught manners, even if we have to begin with just being good well-bred citizens only on Sundays. It’s a good start!
benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.