The passenger jeepney: ingenuity before, stupidity now?

Philippines
August 1, 2010 8:03pm CST
It is no doubt that the Philippine passenger jeepney has evolved thru the years. From the post-war short AC (auto-calesa)to the long 20-seater modern jeeps plying the route of practically every street in the archipelago. The jeepney has been hailed as a symbol of Filipino ingenuity, that is, making use of old GI surplus jeeps as a form of public transport after the war. Many of us say that the jeepney is already part of our culture. 70 years have passed and we still use the same old reliable jeepney (with great modifications but with little or no quality control at all). Take a look at the jeepney now. Many are dilapidated and dirty. Most of them are smoke-belchers. Is this the culture that we are supposed to be proud of? In my own personal opinion, the jeepney has evolved from a symbol of ingenuity to a symbol of stupidity (sorry for the word)), unless we do something about it.
4 responses
@hotsummer (10077)
• Philippines
2 Aug 10
that's because of poverty. as the nation progress so is our mode of transportation. who knows in the near future all jeepneys will be air conditioned. as some of them in ayala makati are already. maybe in or other places they also have that. i think there is a need to trim down the number of jeepneys in our roads and not allow those smoke belchers to have license to drive.
• Philippines
2 Aug 10
I personally believe that poverty is no excuse for not doing the right thing. If we really want to progress and we are considerate of others specially the riding public, then it is our moral responsibility and obligation to make sure that our jeepneys are safe, clean, and comfortable. Of course I would not want our jeepneys to be called symbol of stupidity but as it is, you have yet to convince me otherwise. Cheers.
@hotsummer (10077)
• Philippines
2 Aug 10
but i know that life of jeepney drivers are difficult and they don't earn much and i think that it will be hard for them to spend money to fix the problem of their jeepneys. but i hope they would save some money so that they could. but i think that we should not really allow those kind of jeeps any more only those who does not emit black or polluted smoke and that are presentable enough should be allowed to get licence to be on public roads. yes it is our responsibility or their responsibility. but i hope that the government could for the jeepney drivers to somehow afford to buy new parts for their jeepneys that need replacement. and also goes to buses, they should not have those buses that emit black smokes, they are really a shame indeed. i want to see at least manila and EDSA to be free from those buses . i want our air clean and safe for people who goes out in the streets and travel.
• Philippines
2 Aug 10
Maybe because there are fewer manufacturers of jeepney nowadays. Most passengers opt to take a bus or fx taxis or take the mrt/lrt to commute. And practically speaking, in some routes, it's more cheaper to take the mrt/lrt than take the jeepney where you sometimes have to take multiple rides to get to your destination especially along EDSA.
• Philippines
2 Aug 10
This is exactly what I am trying to convey. I feel that with the jeepneys, we are somewhat trapped in a time zone where progress stopped and we just try to be satisfied with what is being offered to us in the streets. A better public transport system should be put in place in addition to the MRT/LRT.
@eileenleyva (8599)
• Philippines
3 Aug 10
I used to be a jeepney commuter. But now, not unless it is the last resort, I wouldn't ride one. It is time for the jeepney to take one of these recourses; either get totally overhauled for modern convenience or fade away. That goes with the tricycle, too. But the pedicab remains.
@xtedaxcvg (3191)
• Philippines
2 Aug 10
I agree with the above post. I believe it's because of poverty. Majority of jeepney owners don't have the resources to upgrade their vehicles. Some owners are even their own drivers. Also, I guess it's because of the government's lack of support for Filipino inventors but that's a different topic.