This term has become associated with President Ferdinand Marcos since his assumption of the highest position in the land. He has not only preached but he and his family have been practicing it. In what does simple living consist?
In the way of life of the present family, it consists in having daily simple meals consisting of two inexpensive courses and serving tasteful but in-extravagant dinners on special occasions. It is also manifested in the clothing habits of the President. Except on very rare occasions he wears simple short-sleeved shirts or "barongs."
The First Lady has cut down on the maintenance of the Malacañang Palace by dismissing unnecessary household help. She has cut down on entertainment activities in the Palace and initiated entertainments at minimum cost. Her wardrobe as compared with other prominent ladies in Philippine society is simple and inexpensive but chosen with an eye for beauty and dignity.
By practicing simple living our First Family is proving the beauty and joy of that trait for which our forefathers were well known: modesty and simplicity. Unfortunately, many of our youth today look upon simple living beyond their means in order to impress other people with their pretended affluence. For it cannot be denied that riches and comfort have become the goal of living of many in this materialistic age. This is the reason for much of the graft and corruption in our society. This is the reason why dishonest persons are held in high esteem just because they live in imposing mansions, ride in flashy cars, display jewelry, hold extravagant parties and make regular trips to foreign countries.
If Rizal were alive today he would call this love for show among our people as a social cancer. He would call upon the youth to fight it because they are still the "the hope of the Motherland."
How can youth help eradicate this cancer? Simple living, cutting down unnecessary expenses to the minimum, believing in modesty and simplicity as a virtue to be denied, developing simple habits in food, clothing and recreation, - all these are ways by which youth can contribute towards the development of a strong and contented citizenry.