Ironically, I must leave what I know as home for what I know as a battlefield: from Mindanao to Manila. Strange, how years before, my paradigm was in a complete reverse, patterned to common myths of vain consequence. And now, my permanent home will not be the mapped streets and affixed buildings of the known city that I head toward, but the roving mountains and seas, unmarked except by restless feet that follow stars and struggles. Soon enough, I shall be called back home.
This is our time. The fate of the Philippines is in our hands. Let’s do this for our country. Let us redeem its dignity where it lost it—right where we are now. Let us be who we are called to be. Let us not allow anyone to enslave us further. Let’s do this not for hatred of the government, but for the love of our country, our motherland.
Nora Aunor, superstar, multi-awarded actress, source of quotable one-liners, received a “people’s award” last Friday from the groups Gabriela and Peace for Life.
Even the simplest man can be a great philosopher. Datu Mansumuy-at did not graduate with high honors, he did not earn a degree, nor did he study law. In fact, he has not gone to school at all. Yet he knows a lot about governance. This goes to show that even those who are voiceless have a mind.
June 26. I can still remember the feeling of seeing a ‘picket’ for the first time—amazed yet curious. When we passed by them, I heard one shouted, “Hustisya para kay Karen at Sherlyn, at sa lahat ng biktima ng pagdukot!” Another cried, “Surface all desaparecidos!” I got interested, so I peeked on their placards and saw photos of two women smiling with their names below—KAREN EMPEÑO and SHERLYN CADAPAN.
Could art, particularly images, trapped in pictorial protocols, usher in socioeconomic development in a society like the Philippines?
Our songs that serenade us with bravery, our words that speak of honesty, and our history that depicts a culture as rich as our lands, and of people who gave life by dying—are gushing out of our memory like sand poured in an open palm. Our forebears fought wars. They lost and they won. Now the victory they entrusted to our hands has been lost again in another war—one so insidious that it made us adore our conquerors.
In times of disasters, people turn to television and the Internet for information. But ironically in the Philippines, access to life-saving information remains elusive especially for people living below poverty line and in distant areas with no electricity and cell service.
While today is the right time to give comfort to our fellow Filipinos in Visayas, it will also help them if we protest. Let’s push Malacañang to stop its utter neglect. Let’s show them anger the way we do to Napoles because neglect also robbed thousands of Filipinos of the chance to live.