#PrayForMarawi? The folly in Manilenos’ calls for solidarity with Mindanao Muslims

Chi-chi Manilenos have made waxing liberal poetic about being in “solidarity” with their “Muslim brothers” in Mindanao the current fashion trend. Social media timelines are filled with flowery euphemisms and platitudes on the subject fit for Hallmark greeting cards all punctuated by hashtags such as the multi-day trending hit #PrayForMarawi.

All nice and peachy, of course, for those who spend heady afternoons sipping lattes in the local Starbucks in Imperial Manila while tapping out political tweets on their iPads. But here’s one to think about: Has anyone considered how the other side — the inhabitants of the Manilan Empire’s outer rim — sees things?

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Here’s a clue: Remember the Bangsamoro.

Marawi City, the most recent focus of all these social media “prayers” is a city in Lanao del Sur which, we might need to remind ourselves, is a part of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). The key idea that defines the primary aspiration embodied in that political entity is evident in its very name — it is an autonomous region. It is just shy of secession. Indeed, the people of that region (let’s call them ARMMalites) fought fiercely for independence. The ARMM they got for that trouble was sort of a pale compromise of a deal made while ARMMalites stared up the business ends of the superior gunnery of Imperial Manila’s “Armed Forces of the Philippines”.

How has the ARMM fared as an “autonomous” region? Poorly. ARMMalites are among (if not the) most impoverished of Filipinos. The region, despite given power to levy taxes and develop its own sources of revenue still relies heavily on the national government to fund its internal workings.

Yet, even today, Muslim leaders continue to regard their centuries-long resistance to domination by both colonial powers and the officialdom of Imperial Manila with pride. Therefore it is not much of a stretch of the imagination to assume that, to the average ARMMalite, any show of “solidarity” coming from Manilenos can only be regarded as patronising token gestures.

Perhaps, then, social media “influencers” in Luzon should be a bit more circumspect in the well-meaning but ultimately self-serving feel-good social media diarrhea they spew in between sips off their macchiatos. Even the whole Martial Law Cryababy act that Manilenos seem to want Mindanaoans to embrace is but a mere modern-day attempt to force Mindanao political discourse into the paralysing mold of Manila’s. The EDSA “revolution” itself was a Manila thing — not something Mindanaoans readily related with and certainly not specially now when Yellowtardism has been all but discredited.

[Photo courtesy Daily Mail UK.]

7 Replies to “#PrayForMarawi? The folly in Manilenos’ calls for solidarity with Mindanao Muslims”

  1. In the light of what we knew then and what’s happening now, it also comes to mind, make us wonder, where will the advocates and proponents of Federalism lead us to?! We know the intentions are good but results are not realized by good intentions alone!

  2. I don’t know, if prayers and miracles can help the people of Marawi.

    They are under attack by ISIS, to establish , its version of an ISIS Caliphate in the area. I don’t see any Muslim armed group, helping them. So, they cry out to Imperial Manila to help them…

    The regions has been in armed struggle from different armed groups, for many years…the problem has been ignored by political leaders. Now, the problem has worsened….

  3. We must pray to our Lord, Jesus Christ, who said “Only through me can you enter the kingdom of heaven.”

    So I will pray. I will keep on praying. Because it is my duty to save as many souls as possible from the fires of hell.

    God Bless.

    P.S. Benign0, I have not given up on you. I have been praying for your soul every evening. Kahit ano pa ang sabihin mo, responsibilidad ko na ligtasin ka.

  4. From what I know, Mindanao Muslims mostly want their own separate country. So if you want solidarity with them, does that mean you support their separatism? I wonder if those calling for solidarity thought that through.

    1. Pastor Ernie: seems to me Filipinos treat God the way they treat their families: they only speak to Him when they want a favor. God, give me a new cellphone. God, fix my self-inflicted diabetes. God, solve my country’s problems because I’m too busy breaking every commandment You gave us to fix them myself.

      I suppose God is more charitable than I am, but I’d be really, really embarrassed to pray to Him on behalf of the godless flock you preside over.

  5. What can you say to a man who tells you he prefers obeying God rather than men, and that as a result he’s certain he’ll go to heaven if he cuts your throat?

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