Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Thoughts on poverty in Dumaguete

There are times when I see photos from Philippines- or read stories from there- that I become almost overwhelmed by sadness. I am very sensitive to the problem of poverty in the country.

An example of one recent story that upset me can be found on Poverty News Blog It tells of the growing number of women turning to prostitution to support their families. This is a tragedy beyond words. I can't imagine the feelings of despair these woman must have.

Being married to a Filipina, I come in contact with several American men who have a Filipina wife.Sometimes, because of social events, I find myself in the company of some that I would not otherwise associate with.There was one particular American here that was looking for partners to join him in buying a bar in Philippines.He let it be known that there was a lot of money to be made because of the women who worked there.Most of the Americans who knew this man told me that he was just one who liked to talk and I shouldn't be upset, but I was greatly insulted by his proposition.The idea that someone would take advantage of someone so improvised is disgusting to me.

Of course,not everyone born into this kind of poverty is going to take the same route. There are countless numbers of highly religious and moral people in Philippines.Still, it is also a tragedy that too many are forced into becoming overseas workers in order to help their families.It is unfortunate that there has to be so many working in the Middle East separated from their loved ones.

I wish I knew the answer.

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