We must never assume it thinks like the rest of us. Of public opinion Randy David writes in his latest Inquirer piece, “Awkward commemoration, missed opportunity” where he goes at length to elucidate the cringe surrounding this year’s EDSA people power commemoration activities. Interestingly, David proceeds to criticize Marcos again for not extending the hand of unity. He observes how, on this occasion, President Bongbong Marcos “opted to be silent about the event, preferring to delegate an official duty to his executive secretary, who issues on his behalf a perfunctory advisory adjusting the date of the nonworking public holiday as homage to the benefits of a long weekend” and then writes;
[…] the President could have used the Edsa commemoration to acknowledge the lingering sensitivities that continue to divide us — and call for national healing. He could have sealed such a call with a directive to the secretary of justice, mandating him to immediately review the cases against detained former senator Leila de Lima with a view to withdrawing them and releasing her at once if the evidence is lacking.
But then Marcos actually did just that in the statement he issued. David must’ve missed it. For the life of me, I don’t understand what remaining significance EDSA still holds. What I didn’t write down yesterday was the false hope it gave me that change had come. The feeling was similar to the what I felt going on a peace retreat before my high school graduation. I felt closer to God. I wanted to change after seeing the error of my ways. But reality crept back in and made me realize that you can’t be a good person where there are plenty of evil ones who are out to get you. This is what former President Cory Aquino sold to the Filipinos in 1986. As we will note from the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) count then, it was a close one. I thought then that most Filipinos thought a lot like myself but I realized how wrong I was about this when I finally had the opportunity to travel the length and breadth of the Visayas and Mindanao regions.
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Ninoy, Cory and Noynoy are all dead. There were no more Aquinos left to carry on their narrative. On the other hand, there are a lot of Marcoses left. There is Imee, Sandro, Matthew, and Vinny who can carry the torch in the future. The Opposition still does not see the writing on the wall. They even went to the extent of remixing Handog ng Pilipino sa Mundo, the iconic song composed by Jim Paredes long before his unfortunate “scandal” video of him playing with himself. The song tugs at heartstrings but that’s all it’s good for. The rap segment on the bridge actually contradicts the message of the song because it implies that we are in another dark period in our history.
The fact is, EDSA wasn’t a revolution of the people. It was a poetic grab by an opposing power bloc favored by the Americans. Martial Law was the consequence of former Senator Ninoy Aquino flirting with the left by waking it from its slumber and tasking Joma Sison to lead it. Now Sison is also dead and in an urn in Utrecht. Leni Robredo, still the titular head of the Opposition, notably did not make an appearance in any of the rallies organized yesterday. Why? We have no clue. We have three movies competing amongst the public for validation this week; Oras De Peligro, Ako si Ninoy, and Martyr or Murderer. The debate seemingly continues without the people realizing it has been resolved with Marcos winning the Presidency.
Our political dysfunction is our downfall and this is why we aren’t as progressive as our ASEAN neighbors. It is also a mindset problem, evidently. Filipinos are wired differently. This stems from the Spanish and American influence over our society. It is always a game of one-upmanship among Pinoys which promotes crab mentality. There always needs to be alipins who will serve the rich. Contrast this with China whose Great Leap Forward has resulted in a society that sees Pinoys going to the mainland to work as domestic helpers. Before that, Filipinos sought work mainly in Hong Kong and Singapore. Even this wasn’t enough to motivate us to pressure government for reforms. It is actually a monumental indignity.
The future does not look bright because the premier university in the country is a hotbed of misguided activism. The University of the Philippines (UP) should be supplying government with the talent needed for nation-building. Instead we have activists who take advantage of the system by either entering the academe or government where they are corrupted by the system. They have no measurable impact and are not change agents. They, instead, end up being the problem instead of being the solution. It’s a vicious cycle.
I was 20 years old when Marcos was ousted. I’m 57 now and nothing has changed. Actually, it has gotten worse. I don’t expect change to come in the time I have left on this earth. I’m wary of the younger generation because they are more obsessed with fame and personal validation, do not have the courage to back their principles, and are emotional and psychological weaklings. Our susceptibility and beholdenness to Western liberal ideas is what caused this. We have become a nation of manlets and feminists who have no clue of what it takes to build a strong nation.
Cook wide reader political crackpot music afficionado old soul out-of-the box thinker aspiring writer tech geek gearhead