How good is or was your father?
Jay’s father was a high-level manager in a car manufacturing plant. The father always drove to work on a nice car and wore a necktie with his neatly-pressed shirt. Years later, the plant was shut down for good. His father was too old to be hired by any company. So, he was forced to work as a simple mechanic in his former subordinate’s auto repair shop. One night, Jay saw his once polished-looking dad come home on a tricycle with grease on shirt and his hands. Jay realized that his father would do anything and humble himself just to be able to feed his family.
Romy’s father was a tailor. He did not fulfill his dream of becoming an engineer and he did not become rich. But this was his firm warning to his children: “Never should I hear about you siblings fighting over money now and when you all have your own families.”
Rudy was the tenth in his family. All his siblings didn't go to college because they were so poor. When he graduated from high school, his father begged his landowner boss to lend them money for Rudy's education. In return, he would serve the landowner for as long as he lived. So, Rudy went to college and took up mechanical engineering. When the board exam results came out, Rudy was number 8 top-notcher nationwide. His father advised him "out of gratitude for God's goodness, you should never ignore anyone who comes to you for help."
Mon’s father wanted him to become a soldier. But Mon was not attracted to the idea because his father, a high-ranking officer, never got rich. But his father wouldn’t sell his influence even though it could change the family’s fortune. Mon recalls that one night, his father angrily cocked his rifle to scare away some men who were attempting to bribe him.
George's father worked so hard to support the family. His father fished and even drove a tricycle. The family didn't have a lot of money but he told his children, "Never ever feed your family from dirty money."
My dad, a retired soldier, worked as a top officer in an anti-smuggling agency. He was the most gentle person on the planet. He had a .38 caliber snub-nose Smith & Wesson but he always kept it at home. My brother and I got curious when my dad started tucking the gun on his waist under his shirt when he went to work. We would learn later on that my dad was being threatened by someone involved in smuggling and my father didn’t want to be a part of it.
When Jeff’s son was five years old, the boy asked him to buy a set of two toy guns. Jeff said that one toy gun was enough because two of exactly the same thing was impractical. But his son insisted on getting two. They had a prolonged argument over this until Jeff asked, ”Who would use the other gun? Your siblings are both girls.” Then his son replied, “The other one is for you.” At that point, Jeff realized that his son thought of him as a playmate. This incident changed Jeff’s relationship with his only son.
Good fathers are the best examples for their sons. According to an article in the Children’s Bureau website, children who are close to their father are “80% less likely to spend time in jail.” The website cited the Psychology Today magazine which said that 85% of youth in jail and 90% of runaway children had an absent father.
I have read several books on the history of the world. Most of the evil experienced by mankind were caused by men who were greedy for wealth and power. They sold their own people as slaves, they slaughtered tribes in lands they wanted to seize, they massacred their critics, they polluted rivers, seas and mountains. These wicked kings and dictators were propped in power by cronies who were corrupted with wealth and influence.
If all fathers were as good as the examples I mentioned above, the world can become a much better place.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Robert Labayen spent 22 years in advertising prior to joining ABS-CBN in 2004. He was VP-Creative Director at Saatchi & Saatchi and Executive Creative Director at J. Walter Thompson, two of the country's leading ad agencies. He is currently the Head of Creative Communications Management at ABS-CBN. His job involves inspiring people to be their best. He is a writer, painter and songwriter.
Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp.