In face of the pervasive injurious effects of the prevailing culture to the over-all social life of our people, there is an urgent need for a counter-consciousness to supplant it. This is a call of the first order and necessitates a propaganda movement that shall mobilize the youths in their greatest number. It shall be of a vigor and magnitude that can surpass the Second Propaganda Movement of the 1960s to the70s.
The features of this counter-culture as have been already laid out in the earlier period have not changed, albeit they may yet acquire new forms and processes suitable to present-day conditions. In the first place, the propaganda must continue its promotion of a mass culture —a culture that serves the interests of the great majority of the people. As such it must be a kind of counter-culture that must liberate the people from the culture of enslavement and docility propagated by the endorsers of neo-liberalism in present reality. This presupposes a state of empowerment of the marginalized sectors in having seen the need to stand up and fight for their long term benefit and well being.
Towards this end, it behooves the activists-propagandists to put more vigor in the painstaking work of arousing, mobilizing and organizing the masses of the people. The same time-blest slogans of “Seize the day, seize the hour” and “Serve the people” shall fire up the commitment of the youths in their intersubjective engagement with the masses. The development of a mass culture emanates from a thorough grasp of the conditions of the people culturally, politically and economically. Still, the slogan “from the masses to the masses” holds true in the propagandist’s attitude and conduct vis-à-vis the people.
But apart from unwavering zeal and spirit of sacrifice the cultural activists must equip themselves with theoretical knowledge of society and revolution. The true history of the Filipino people remains a requisite curriculum in the education of the propagandists along with the masses. The true heroes and heroines of the masses should be extolled at the same time that the pseudo-gods and pseudo-heroes, past and present, as proclaimed by the ruling classes for their own advantage and interests need to be re-examined in light of circumstances surrounding their actuations.
The dynamics involved in socio-historical events should be analyzed vis-à-vis the participation of outside forces that figured in the shaping of social reality. For instance, American interventionism is little understood, if at all, by the people in general, such that its oversight, if deliberately schemed, resulted in a distorted view of history. The historical roots of present-day realities should be laid bare in order to enable the people to formulate appropriate strategy and tactics in engaging with these adverse realities.
The second imperative in the conduct of the propaganda movement is intimately related with the first. Activists should strive to propagate a scientific culture—one that develops in the people a world outlook that enables them to combat feudal ways of thought and folk habits and practices attributed to the semi-feudal nature of our society. The shackles of feudalism that promotes subservient attitudes should be removed from the belief system of the people along with superstitions and harmful myths that work to obstruct their struggles for higher republics of human existence. Colonial mentality which is a very pernicious mode of thought should be explicated from a historical perspective, linking it to the educational system and to other cultural offensives during and after American colonial times. It should be understood in relation to the role of American cultural aggression alongside its imperialist objectives of maintaining economic and political domination of Philippine society.
Third, a counter-culture that is progressive and liberative is an indispensable weapon to enable the masses to extricate themselves from age-old bondage of oppression and exploitation. Of course, this feature of the counter-culture works in dialectical relationship with the first and second. Whereas scientific-mindedness as a method of thinking provides equipment for concrete investigation and analysis of concrete conditions, as well as correct strategy and tactics for their struggles, a progressive outlook opens the minds of the people to new ideas, widens their horizons and comprehension of world forces and movements that could affect their own micro situation. Additionally, the masses should be introduced to the foundations of political theories and ideologies that can help their local engagements against the forces of oppression and exploitation. The evils of imperialism and their aggressive intervention in domestic affairs must be well understood by the people — how this relates with the oppressive conditions imposed by local oppressors and exploiters.
Knowing the interconnectedness of external and internal forces of reaction and counter-revolution, the ongoing cultural revolution must take into account the reality of imperialist aggression in our society, economically, politically and culturally. There cannot be genuine people’s struggle in the Philippine context without a serious engagement against US Imperialism. The national democratic revolution spearheaded by the vanguard of the Filipino working class has not been remiss of its responsibility and duty to resist US Imperialism in all fronts, and to carry out the proletarian revolutionary mission towards its victorious conclusion.
Lastly, the cultural revolution should pursue its tasks in conscious solidarity and fraternal relationship with other peoples around the globe who are fighting for their own liberation and or emancipation in their own milieu. The liberation struggle of a people in one corner of the world creates a kind of objective alliance with other people’s struggles against the evils of US Imperialist stranglehold of the world. A victory of such a people’s struggle against US Imperialism is a victory of all oppressed peoples everywhere. It is like having cut a finger or a limb of the common enemy of the world’s peoples.
There’s no doubt the counter-culture that shall combat the prevailing culture in our society will be welcomed by the people., It will find acceptance in the minds and hearts of the masses, because they are victims of the injustice and the oppressive nature of the prevailing culture. The masses objectively want change, objectively need revolution, objectively desire liberation and emancipation from the forces that subject them to unending misery. It remains for the activists-propagandists to arouse, mobilize and organize them. The conditions are ripe for revolution.