February 1, 2023

SAID ONE CANDIDATE/politician – after more than once losing in Barangay Elections in Southeastern Itogon: Ayshi noman. No ootek kitan clan, maebbak kita! (“Nothing/None CONCESSION. If we are a small clan, we will lose!”). By Logical Implication, he was saying: “unlike if we were a big clan”; or, “had my clan been bigger, those of smaller clans shall lose logically before I do”; and so forth. But
IS THIS REALLY what – especially in the Southern Cordillera where our speaker (Supra) was speaking from? Let’s peer closer into the venue of the Discourse – in SE Itogon, but maybe true as well in its adjoining locations of the Southern Cordillera: one ‘strongest’ factor for winning in the afore stated locations is the ‘kindred vote’, =int “they’ll vote for you even if you’re not formally or personally introduced to each other;
“PROVIDED YOU KNOW – mutually or not, that you are kindreds” of each other – sometimes even regardless whether the ‘discovered’ kinship is: by blood, by marriage, or simply by repute, isut kuna da, Moreover,
ONE TERM – YES! There is, that does the ‘magic’ of Instant connexion betwixt voter ad candidate. The ‘culprit’ term is Gait (Ga-it); in English, it is supposed to be translated as: ‘chap’, or ‘fellow’, or ‘co-/fellow~’, and so on.
THE MOMENT ONE says he is your Gait, the ‘magic’ begins – and you start musing: ‘I wonder how?’ ‘By blood?, et cetera.
FOR THE SAKE of Clarity, let’s give you some sample applications of Gait or Gait~
Gait ta Ifenget =int “fellow Benguet”, or Gait ta mihtulo =int “a co-teacher”, or “like me – in the Teaching field;” or, Gait nen amak, “relative/kin of my father” (consanguineal); or, gait nan ahawak, “relative/kin of my wife” (affinal); or, gait mi kuno (“our kin”) or relative: they say, some say, it is said, etc.; ergo, ‘putative’ kin. There!
ONCE YOU ARE an identified Gait of theirs, half the hundred percent (or more), they’ll go for you. And sometimes very ‘sweeping’ too – because the ‘magic’ (or ‘fever’) of the Gait term transcends the boundaries of Ethnicity! Yes, it has had happened many times before in our location – and in adjoining locations of the Southern Cordi. So, what we’re saying is that
TRUE! YOU GOT the advantage to be winsome of the Electorate, because of your ‘extended’ family line, or clan population count, etc., who’ll go for you because they’re your blood kin; but suppose now, you’re matched against a rival – who, too, belongs to a big, powerful clan? Then,
THE GAIT TERM ‘magic’ may spell the difference – as you cross beyond the boundaries of the consaguineal; and your rival does these maneuverings too(?); if yes, the Contest becomes very ‘stiff’ – sometimes even ‘widely heard of’, madamdamag. But
TRUTH OF THE matter, neither of you starts with a big family line, an ‘extensive’ clan; it’s just that the on-hands actualization of the established kinship helped yield those overwhelming, devastating vote-counts. So, you may find – surprisingly (or not), a reigning (incumbent) official who actually comes from a ‘small’ clan, or, a ‘non-traditional’ political family; or even an in-law of a small family.
THIS HAPPENS, NOT really seldom and you can immediately sense it by the name – or family-name, of the incumbent one: only he/or she – plus a few others, wield that name thereat. Now,
BUT IS IT equally true that ‘big’ clans in the villages ‘easily’ win? Our answer:
YES, BUT NOT ‘always’; not even ‘usually’; and that’s why we’re trying to explore the reasons: socio-political, or cultural. So,
IF YOU’RE THAT aspiring-to-serve and you find it difficult to win in your present location, why not try to come to the Southern Cordillera: the ‘genealogy phenomenon’ hereat may smile on you! Ayuhh2!