Manny Pacquiao, now the undisputed wonder of the boxing world, should start fighting everyday. According to this report from USA Today, the crime rate during his fight versus Oscar De La Hoya was virtually nil.
What do you say, Manny? If you really want to make a change, instead of running for Congress or public office, just fight everyday. But I'm not sure you'll do that. You'll probably come home to a ticker tape parade, bestowed with more accolades, record more "Pacman" audio CD's, and enter into more advertising, licensing and franchising deals, which will no doubt plaster your mug around Manila's crowded city highways on giant, monstrous billboards (by the way, do those painkillers really work?) Which is fine. After all, you deserve it. You won the fight. You made the Filipino nation proud. What's the problem with making a few bucks while uplifting the dignity of one of the poorest third world nations?
I just hope one day when you wake up years from now, after all the champagne is sipped, after all the giant, sprawling advertising billboards in the Philippine metropolis bearing your name and a product long gone, your CD and DVD sales all spent and your youthful energy exhausted, that you will realize the potential you had in effecting real change. The Filipino nation, tired of hearing bad news of corruption and governmental scandals, is literally at your command. The irony here is not wasted on some like me: with good news of your continuous wins, the newspapers choose to flash you on their front pages instead of what real news is about. Why don't you start speaking about the real truth?
You, of all people, the people's champion, have the mandate to do this: borne into a world of poverty: the poor boy, who thru hard work, discipline and divine providence, captures a world boxing championship crown and wins more respect than any "elected" official of the Filipino nation. The people who afford you this respect are the very people suffering today from the unfair and corrupt practices (of which, I'm sure you suffered from during your difficult rise to the top) of the Filipino government and commerce --- who, oops, also happen to be, by the way, your prime sponsors and backers.
To say that your victory is a victory for the Philippines is a fallacy, borne of flawed logic, allowing government officials to effectively sweep more corruption related problems and scandals under an already overcroweded and dirty carpet.
This victory is yours, and yours alone. You can offer the victory to the Philippines, but it is not theirs. Cherish it, do not abuse it. Honor your fallen fellow boxer and countryman Rolando Navarette. And while there is still time, use your power wisely. If you are not afraid to step into the ring with deadly prizefighters, at the risk of shedding blood and feeling enormous physical pain, surely, then you should not be afraid in using your celebrity as a starting point in taking on other deadly fighters (of the economic and political kind). After all, we've heard more outrageous stories: A housewife with minimal knowledge of her nation's politics, whose husband was once murdered by a tyrannical President, led a revolution and became it's first woman President. Her name was Corazon Aquino.