Stealing is a crime, no matter how much is stolen.
It does not only mar our own reputation but our honor as a nation as well.
Realizing this, we see our state of helplessness for we have a sinful nature.
We need Christ to rescue us from this.
Signs in our department stores read: "Shoplifter will be prosecuted; Beware of shoplifters and pickpockets."
Shoplifting is a major concern in our retail industry today.
Do you know that a certain percentage of the price you pay for your merchandise is for shoplifting expense?
One department store owner relates the strategy of a group of people suddenly barging in and scattering themselves all over the place causing distraction among the sales personnel. In just a few minutes, an average of thirty pairs of jeans would be missing.
On other instances, "pregnant" women give birth to towels, T-shirts and jeans. Students are caught with their bags full of stolen jewelry and clothes. This is the reason why we have to spend more on security measures, thus increasing overhead expenses.
We may say, "That only goes for kleptomaniacs and not for me. Not for a suave, discreet guy like me." But what about cheating on your exams? Or maybe bloating the truth during job interviews? Or taking towels from hotels? Don't you sometimes extend your 15-minute coffee break to 20? Is there some "creative accounting" cooking up in your insurance claims and income tax reports?
Have you heard about an honest letter sent to the BIR? It read: "Dear Sirs, I cannot sleep. Last year when I filed my income tax return, I deliberately misrepresented my income. Now I cannot sleep. Enclosed is a check for Php 3,000. If I still could not sleep, I will send you the rest."
This next story is not funny. My wife and I were in one of the stores in Hongkong when a commotion broke loose. It turned out that an old woman was caught stealing. She was a Filipina. At that instance, it felt good that I was half-Chinese and I wanted to stick to that for the time being. This brings to mind our notoriety for faking documents, illegally extending our stay in a foreign land, and keeping hotel and airline property as travel souvenirs.
I am now used to waiting in long queues at international airports with fellow Filipinos as our passports are double-checked.
When this happens, I always envy the rest who just breeze through Immigration. What do they have against me? My being Filipino.