An Oblivious Nation

A country without a memory is a country of mad men.

– George Santayana

My heart totally got broken when I have seen the headline of November 8, 2016; SC allowed FM to be buried in LNMB. Tears totally started to fall as I browse my news feeds in Facebook, admired historians, professors, colleagues and classmates started sharing their thoughts of the matter. My mind started to wonder of all the reasons that this has totally happened in the pages of our history, and I cannot keep myself aplomb and remain my heart at its agitating stage because of how fellow citizens view about it.

I cannot comprehend on why do we Filipinos don’t learn from our history, or why are we too blinded by the evidences spread in front of our naked eyes. That we keep on holding on to the lies we once believed in. Lies that keep on controlling the fate of our nationhood. Are we not that deeply rooted in our love for our motherland that we keep on holding on to the stupidity that we did yesterday? Why do our personal desires  more important than those that can totally bind us as a country?

If we think that giving space to Ferdinand Marcos’ remains align with those soldiers who fight for our country’s security and freedom defines national healing, then I want to laugh and cry at the same time. Because that logic seems to be satiric at it’s most serious sense. I’ll repeat the sentence once again; The president who had taken away our freedom and democracy lies with individuals who struggle to attained our country’s freedom. The wicked dictator who’d killed and tortured many Filipinos who tried to returned our democracy. The corrupt leader who had caused billions of our debt in the World Bank, Well, he will be buried in the cemetery of the honored and mighty Filipinos. That makes us a laughing stock of the world, and unloving of our country.

Thirty years ago, we became famous of a peaceful revolution. Nurses and soldiers had a truce, citizens gathered in EDSA, asking for the dictator to leave his throne. After all this time, the government allowed him to be buried in the heroes’ cemetery. Does it mean that the three decades of celebrating that victory doesn’t have strong value to us? Don’t we know the real essence of that bloodless revolution? Since the one we tried to slay back then will be buried in the cemetery of the venerable personalities in our country and we will let the reason why we are still in so much debt today.  What did the 1986 EDSA REVOLUTION means to us now? What does the annual holiday every February 25, for us? Do we just really spend it just to have our sweetest rest day?

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Photo taken from Xiao Chua’s Walking History Lecture

This event is not about the Pro’s and Anti’s, the Aquino loyalists and the Marcos fanatic. This is not about a forgiveness and letting go milieu. This is about you and me, as Filipinos, and how deep our love for Philippines is. This is a talk of freedom and how much we value the people who died fighting for the liberty and democracy you are acquiring today. This is about Us, Filipinos, and how much we learn from our nation’s story. This is about our aim to move forward and progress while turning back to what made us a nation.

I am not encouraging you to align your beliefs in mine. I just want you to reminisce what truly happened back then and reevaluate the things you know and how much those events affects our nation now. I want you to take a look of the concern in our country for a little while, and how much you want everything to be better. I want you to realize what it your role as citizen of this country, and do your part.

The answer to “Why’s?” we are asking about the Philippines is within us, and I am hoping that we can do something that will cure the long-due cancer our motherland is suffering. The national healing that we are looking forward to experience can be attained when we truly know the value of what is written in the pages of History. If we truly learn the lessons and experiences of our country’s past, then that is the only time that we can move on and go forward.

As Rizal once quote, “To foretell the destiny of a nation, on must necessary open the book that tell its past.”

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I remember this lecture four years ago, in my second year as  a student of History. There are too many truths in front of me that was unfold and my heart was truly broken with all those people who’d fight to regain the democracy of our country. That was the time that I now I totally take my stand to never again let a ruler steal our freedom away from us. 

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