"We are thankful for good sense."
The celebration of Thanksgiving Day is largely a Western tradition. Still, people the world over, Filipinos included, could do with an attitude of gratefulness despite the particularly challenging 2020. Or perhaps because of it.
Foremost we are thankful that at least three pharmaceutical companies have shown great promise in developing a vaccine against this dreaded virus.
We know, however, that such progress should not embolden us to drop all precautions we have been practicing since March. Weeks and months will pass before the vaccines enter their final stages, are mass produced and distributed to all the countries of the world.
We are thankful too for technology, which has allowed us to continue working and to keep in touch with friends and family even as we stay at home to protect ourselves from the virus. We have realized we could still do so much even when without physical interaction.
The tech-driven activities, we hope, have made us more productive and more discerning. But they have also revealed that some things —a hug for the elderly members of the family, for instance, or an hours-long conversation at some cafe—just have no substitutes.
We are thankful for those who render tireless service despite the difficulties and the prolonged risk posed by their jobs. We are grateful for those who show genuine compassion and empathy to the victims of disasters and recognize that there is a difference between true public service and feeding one’s ego. We hope for the courage to dish out criticism when needed and recognition when deserved.
We cite the good sense to forego present gratifications—like refraining from old habits and fighting the temptation to hold large reunions as is customary during the holidays. Finally, we are thankful for the ability to rise above politics and pettiness, and imagine where our country could be long after this crisis.