Many of us come from a neighbourhood where people play tough against each other for different reasons and in much different kind of ways. One way this kind of animosity, subtle or not, manifests through how some Filipino families play their music. For some households, they play their sound system so loud to project their dominance to the rest of the people in the community. This is also sometimes coupled with passive-aggressive style of communication, common in many Filipinos, that often leads to more misunderstandings. Well for many cases, another reason is that we Filipinos have somehow accepted this as unwritten rules of tolerance within the community. It has become a culture, so to speak. But of course, still, with the normal notion that for as long as it is being done between the “legal” time, approved and mandated by the government, it is just OK to play your music so loud or pray to your god with whole village being disturbed. People do not come to realized that people has different jobs and schedules.
Another thing is that Filipinos love karaoke. Many of us loves to sing in public but for some, doing this without regards to how good they are at doing the thing, and second is that at how was the current situation of the environment at that moment. It’s OK to sing loud but you should also consider that in doing so, you should not be distracting or disturbing other people’s peace of mind. This is the reason why playing your sound system (in most cases, karaoke) so loud every day is a very worst sin against humanity! There is no problem with doing it every once in a while or let’s say regularly, but of course, in moderation. Also, you should communicate about it properly. As neighbours, we must respect each other and make sure we don’t harm others or force them to do things they really don’t like.
In most cases it is very tempting to talk to the person every time I am put into this kind of situation (where there is someone playing a very loud music during time when you have to work, think, relax, write, etc.) but sometimes, there are situations that you have to consider. Sometimes it might be smarter to bypass it because no matter how valid, ethical and clear your intentions are, no matter if you are right, it happens that some people cannot easily give up their ego and will do anything to not accept defeat in public. However, generally speaking, it is still important to communicate your concerns in an assertive yet respectful ways.
Another problem we have in cities is the music in places that are called “tiangge”. Of course, these kinds of shops has the right to have a business but if these people cannot respect others, there should be regulations that will check and balance them and make sure they don’t add disturbances and stresses to the public that are doing their business as well in the city. But realistically speaking, as of now there are no proper system for this issue. When you go to some places in the city, you will find shops that are highly contributing to the noise pollution at any time of the day. This seems harmless but when you really notice if, music from places like these that are so loud affects the mental and physical aspects of people within that area. It’s important to let them know that by doing this, they are also compromising their fellow’s health. This is not only happening in one or two particular areas of the country but in many places, from Mindanao to Luzon.
When you go to Manila, the noise capital of the country, you will be stunned to learn that for some, such situation is just a normal day to day reality. You can witness this on bus stations, shopping malls, convenience shops, slum neighborhood, etc. You can see people living on the streets and on very noisy highways while also selling candies, cigarettes, hustling, etc., as their ways to earn a living. People coming from quiet places of the provinces surely cannot fathom how a man can live such brutal condition. But no matter what, you cannot totally be worried. You just have to be a strong person. One amazing thing is that we humans are very resilient! When you take a look, there are still many people in Manila that are so spirited enough to continue their battles and win against it. So amidst these violent and unforgiving noises some of us are contributing, mostly by ignorant citizens, we have to find creative ways to counter and change this culture of mindlessness. And lastly, it should not be normal to have a very noisy environment so let’s stop doing it frequently, at least for now.