Building Our Dream Philippines

Alex Lacson
Dr Jesus Estanislao’s Booklaunch: 
“Building Our Dream Philippines”
27 November 2018

I: INTRO

Exactly 18 years ago, in year 2000, my wife and I seriously thought of migrating our family to the US or Canada. Two years before that year, my older brother and his wife sold everything they had in Negros and migrated to the US. My youngest brother and his wife, together with their 3 kids, were also applying for migration and eventually left a few years later. Our country was in deep economic crisis then. Philippine peso plummeted from P27 against the US dollar, to around P50 versus the US dollar. Many Filipinos wanted to migrate to another country. So my wife and I were also tempted to follow my two brothers.

But after talking about it for almost a year, my wife and I decided against it. We decided to stay. We decided to live our lives here, in the land where God planted us.

But while we decided to stay in the country, there was this nagging question that haunted me at that time. This question continues to haunt me to this day. What if the country, twenty years later, would not improve and become so much worse? Paano na lang, kung after 20 years, lalong lumala ang mga problema at sitwasyon ng ating bansa?

It was in this context that I decided to become a writer. I wanted to help. It was in that context that I wrote my first book “12 Little Things Every Filipino Can Do To Help Our Country”, which was about patriotism and good citizenship.

I wrote that book with the sincere belief that a big part of the solution lies with the Filipino people. I believe that good citizenship, along with good leadership, is an essential part of the solution we seek. I believe that we can only have a world-class country if we have world-class citizens in it, world-class citizens who would elect world-class leaders to run the country.

I wrote that book with the honest belief that we are a great people, that the Filipino is great and talented, that the Filipino is not inferior to the Japanese or to the SKoreans, that the Filipino is not second class to Singaporeans, or to the Taiwanese or Germans. I sincerely believe that we are as great as they are. If they were able to build their countries great and prosperous, we too have what it takes to build our Philippines great and prosperous.

I wrote that book because I wanted our people, especially our youth, to believe in it. Na kung kaya nila, kaya din natin. Kaya din ng Pilipino.

When I published that book, to my pleasant surprise, it touched a raw nerve among millions of Filipinos, not only here but also among Filipino communities abroad. I received so many speaking invitations to share the book’s message, speaking invitations that brought me to many faraway places in our country.


But 18 years had passed since year 2000. It has been 18 years since my wife and I decided to stay in the country, instead of migrating abroad. I have been giving speeches about my book in the past 14 years.

What do you think po? Ano po sa palagay ninyo?

Is our country today better than what it was 18 years ago in the year 2000? Or has it become worse, so much worse?

Kaya pa po ba nating baguhin ang ating bansa?

May pag-asa pa ba ang ating Pilipinas?

Is there still something that we can do that would really change our country for the better?

Please let me be very clear about this.

First, despite the many problems that we face as a people and as a country today, I am firm in my belief that the Filipino remains one of the most wonderful human beings in the world.  For the Filipino is one of the kindest persons on earth. For the Filipino is one of the most caring and one of the most helpful human beings around in the world. The heart of the Filipino is very big, and it is very kind and loving. It is love and compassion that would make our world a better place. And for that, I truly believe that the Filipino is one the best hopes of humanity today to build a better world for all humankind.

Second, I firmly believe in the potential of the Filipino. I firmly believe that, as a people, we have all the essentials, around us and within us, to succeed as a nation. I believe that someday soon, we would be able to find the correct formula in solving our problems so we bring ourselves to the true path of progress and prosperity.

II: BODY

It is in this context that I am truly glad that we are launching today the book “Building our Dream Philippines”. This book shows us the way how we can build a better country, on how we can achieve the country we and our children deserve to have.

With contributions from very distinguished people with big hearts and big dreams for our country, this book talks in part of the “intangibles” that build a nation great, the core values that should serve as the anchor or foundation of our national being as a people.

The book also tells us what kind of Filipinos we need to build and realize our Dream Philippines. It will show you that what our country desperately needs today is a Great Generation of Filipinos, those who would dream big and aim high, not only for themselves but also for our country; those who would create wealth not only for themselves but also for the many who have none in our society; those who would truly consider the Filipino people as their family; those who would see a brethren in every Filipino in the street or anywhere in the world; those who would love the Filipino and our country more than their parents and grandparents ever loved our country during their time; those Filipinos who would strive for our people’s happiness as their own happiness.

This is the generation of Filipinos we need today to build our Dream Philippines.

Good Filipinos – these are what our country needs today.

I truly admire the heart and the visionary mind and leadership of our Founder and leader, Dr Jess Estanislao for putting this book together. By his works in ISA, ICD, CEG and many others, Dr Jess is giving all of us so much hope. By putting this book together, he is showing us a way to a better future.

Thank you so much, Dr Jess, from the bottom of my heart. It is my great honor to have joined you and follow you.

III: ENDING 

For us to build and realize our Dream Philippines, we need our people to do his or her part. We need every Filipino to believe that he or she is part of the answer, that he or she is part of the solution and the hope of our motherland.

So today we ask you – – join us in this dream.

By actively promoting our Dream Philippines, beginning with this book, among your friends in the world of social media

Join us.

By encouraging and inviting your relatives, friends and colleagues to be part of our Dream Philippines.

Join us.

By your presence whenever we call on you.

Join us.

By giving us your support whenever we ask for your support.

Join us.

By praying for us whenever you pray for your family.

Join us.

Because the Filipino people, including your children, deserve to have a beautiful country.

Join us.

Because we have the obligation to God to prosper and make beautiful this land where he planted us, the land He gave to us as a people.

Join us.

By way of ending, let me just emphasize this.

We are the answer to our own problem. We are the solution that we have been looking for. We are the hope that we seek.

We have all the essentials we need to succeed as a nation.

And we are a great people. Never ever doubt that. The Filipino is capable of greatness, of supreme sacrifices. The Filipino is not inferior to the Japanese or SKoreans. He is not second class to Singaporeans, or to the Taiwanese or Germans. We are as great as they are, if not even better. 

If they were able to build prosperous countries for themselves, we too can build a prosperous Philippines for ourselves. We too can build a country where there is enough for everyone; a country where every Filipino family lives in comfort and dignity, one that can bring out the best in our people.

But for us to attain all of these, one thing is required of each one of us. We have to deny ourselves, and put the country first. We have to deny ourselves, and put our people first. We have to deny ourselves, and seek the common good first. We have to deny ourselves, and truly serve our people first.

Together, let us pursue our Dream Philippines and make the Filipino truly great and respected in the eyes of the world, but moreso in the eyes of our Lord.

Maraming salamat po.

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