While it is still day in your boxing career, Manny Pacquiao, the sun is about to set. Frankly, it will set sooner than your ambitious mind may think or be able to come to grips with.
Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao supposedly has reasons to remain fighting far above “ego” and money considerations. Pacman has to be a boxer until he tangles with the Mexican counter-punching “power” for the fifth time and/or until the Mayweather-Pacquiao hip-hop tango is seen on a boxing floor, people say.
But, what for?
The myth about Pacquiao is not in Pacquiao being a Pacman, the boxer. Everything is real about the grandeur of his achievements in boxing. No question. Pacman has nothing else to prove at this juncture. But he is not done yet with his gloves, for some reason. The myth is in Pacquiao being a boxer, politician, businessman, endorser, actor, TV game show host, etc. all at the same time. However, being a new man in Christ, sharing God’s Word is the thing he can’t do without even as a boxer, side by side with hard and ferocious training to dismantle an opponent inside the ring.
Pacquaio ought to realize that the quadrilogy “shock fall” means more to him than a “Knockout of The Year.” The reality is that he is Pacman, not Superman; that his ability to fly as boxing phenomenon is not literal, but figurative. Someone other than the superheroes in Avengers or Justice League has yet to succeed going against life’s basic rule of keeping oneself on the ground.
Boxing and politics demand focus and dedication as in all other fields of endeavor. Excellence requires single-mindedness in performing a task, for no man is omnipresent that he can be everywhere at a given specific time to be good enough at something.
“Shun politics!” as I cautioned Pacman four years ago (Philippine Daily Inquirer, 5/12/09). Pacquiao in boxing and politics is formula in itself towards failure. I used to admonish him before he got elected to Congress for the first time that he could stray “happy and blind” along the road and thus be driven crazy to countless “bad falls” of his own making being a proud “multi-task goose” champion.
The gripping wake-up call of Pacquiao from his sixth round “sleep” stunner last December 8, courtesy of a magician, is to get out of “politics” and “entertainment” while in boxing. It is the most practical way for him to be saved from an alarming “deep sleep” and from getting knocked out cold by pound-for-pound multiple shadows emanating from no other enemy but himself.
Pacquiao cannot be any figure in Philippine Congress other than a legislator. There is no such thing as a “fighting Congressman,” only a “legislating Congressman.” If Pacquiao wants to “help his people” as he proudly asserts during interviews, he can do it best as a non-politician without having to be “absent” most of the time. Hence there could be motivations other than what is being said why he insists being into politics. Though we may speculate, he may not even know what motivates him.
Or, it could be plainly an effect of damaging influence by the “political” gurus around him who want a ride. Perhaps the same politically minded “associates” of Pacquiao have prevailed upon his wife and brother who incidentally have succumbed to run also in the coming elections.
Everything seems right to a person who treks on the wrong run unless he sees the end.
If Pacquiao wants to do noble deeds and desires to become a great philanthropist like Bill Gates, Warren Buffet and many others, he need not hold a political position or be involved in a political jungle where there are tenfold more chances that he can be bitten by snakes anytime, regardless of his “sincerity” in helping others.
Truth is, a huge majority of those, if not all, who did magnificently for humanitarian causes are men and women of godly character, outside of politics, whose hearts are simply pure in reaching out to a needy world, unmindful of recognition and applause.
Mahatma Gandhi, Rev. Martin Luther King and Mother Theresa are among the so many of the truly great and inspiring personalities in history. They were selfless creatures who gladly risked their lives and whose contributions to their beloved country and the world are unparalleled. They are no politicians or “politicians.”
What, in fact, have politicians done to the world?
A great nation lost its prayer and Bible reading in school by way of legislation purportedly in regard of the few who don’t believe in a Supreme Being (silly) and unwittingly to build godless societies. They legalized the murder of babies in their land, pampered homosexuality, glorified violence and villains in movies and television for future criminals as they resolutely aim to arm every one of their citizens with guns allegedly for “protection.” And what about the pathetic consent of government for unwed teenage pregnancies and the toleration of immoralities as accepted norms even among the youth and children in their country?
The rampant use of Performance Enhancing Drug in sports is “legally” being ignored by authorities. Lance Armstrong’s admission of PED involvement should be a step in the right direction towards a meaningful journey to clean up the sports. Armstrong shouldn’t be the last athlete to confess or be found out. Alas, the clamor is again falling on deaf ears.
Politicians are cute and cool. They seem to be interested just in getting elected and getting seated in elegant shaped offices.
What, in fact, have politicians done to the world?
A big nation with a booming economy is ready to wage an all-out-war by bullying a tiny island of a poor small country to own a body of sea which rightful owner/s have yet to be determined and decided upon by the United Nations. But, for the meantime, equal “partnership” among the nations who have pending claims over the contested water area would be an ideal relief from the standoff and mounting tension, should the “cold war” persist to be unabated. It is only when hidden selfish motives get in the way of a negotiation that problems get to stay unresolved.
Violence is a means for no sane individual or country. Armed struggle is only for losers and losers to be. Peace and reason never get tired for winners.
Unless a nation’s leaders are not human beings, the use of deadly weapons or waging a war against that nation cannot be justified however problematic and complicated the situation may be. But if such is the case, the innocent people (civilians and soldiers alike) need not be dragged into untold war miseries. Let only the few evil ones at the top be treated accordingly and as adversaries to defeat with the willing participation of their very own people.
What, in fact, have politicians done to my country?
In the Philippines, corruption has long been the “SOP” in dealing with government offices, prostitution is named “tourism,” destruction of nature is bartered in favor of “development” but just for certain privileged tycoons, abortion or subverting the Divine Will for human births is being promoted as women-health-care through RH law; the spread of legalized gambling is encouraged as “laudable projects” to pump-prime economy, “private armies” are allowed to massacre political opponents and their clans, impunity and murder are justified as “extra-judicial killings” while wanton abuses are being perpetrated through “mandated” political dynasties.
It is a wonder why a boxing hero has to enter politics in order to “help his people” when he has already done so much for the people in his capacity as a national sports icon in ways beyond what he can do as a politician or as an entertainer.
It is a marvel how further this icon can think of “helping his people” by plunging himself into muddy politics when most of the persons who got into politics don’t have the welfare of the people as their primary agenda. Hence they eventually end-up merely building “political dynasties” for the indelible inscription of their names on and in power to safeguard their family interests or for purposes known only to them.
One or Juan can easily get lost in politics.
Such is the reason being why a number of well-meaning political aspirants who had at first the right heart “to serve the people” have thus far intermingled with the corrupt, perverted and imbedded system of political “public service.” Thus in the course of time, they could no longer be distinguished as being any different from among the rotten eggs of the grand circus where clowns don’t wear mask.
Hence politics, to me, is synonymous with and equal to abhorrence.
What Rep. Pacquiao intends to do in Philippine Congress as a legislator can well be done, even probably better, by anyone of the 287 of his colleagues who are “present and involved” in the crafting of laws inside the chamber, not in the ring or gym. But no single one of these Congressmen, physically well-built and highly educated as they may be, can do and accomplish what Pacquiao can – in boxing.
I pray that Pacquiao would discern his purpose on planet earth and stick to it; that he would do away with having his finger on every pie from this moment on, lest he eternally regrets being “simultaneously” in two or three or four planets at a certain point of his life, ignorant of dire consequences.
“Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall.” - II Peter 1:10
There is but one sure vote I would cast, election year or not: The vote for Pacquiao to win over magical “Dinamita” and against the few remaining boxing stars that he would have to conquer before he bids goodbye to a cruel sport.
But until then, think no politics. Be you, Pacman!
This article was contributed by reader Reni M. Valenzuela. If you would like to write an article about Manny Pacquiao, Juan Manuel Marquez, boxing or sports in general please e-mail it to sportseditor[at]opposingviews[dot]com.