That may be just mere numbers for some, but for me, that numbers are the most important combination in my life. For Filipinos, that means freedom (well, for those who understand the real stories behind). People Power Revolution or EDSA Revolution happened during the time when I was just inside the womb of my mother. I was only one month in my mother’s uterus when Marcos stepped down from Malacanang and Cory Aquino took over the position. A fetus – clueless, ignorant, and just a worthless seed with having nothing yet, not even a heartbeat. Sometimes I would like to believe that I am lucky for not having the need to experience those hardships during the time of Martial Law. I was born in the right time – the time when Filipinos have already won their freedom and done fighting against wrongdoing and monstrosity. But sometimes, I wish I was born earlier. Somehow, I would like to see how it feels like to live during the Marcos’ regime. I am envious of the stories of hardships and success of my fellow Filipinos who were able to live at that time. Some of my friends would say, “I bet you’ll be one of the desaparecidos”. Maybe.
But come to think of it. Has the battle really ended in 1986? Filipinos may have kicked Marcos out of the palace but the monstrosity and greediness in the government continued like a contagious disease. I may not have been born during the time of chaos but I keep seeing the things that our folks have tried to conceal to our generation. The corruption, deception, aggression, and horror of the past years. These things continue to hunt the present generation but the society that this generation lives in has become immune to the wrong political culture and mistaken constructed reality.
Time passed so fast. Yesterday, people were just shouting for their rights and liberty. Today, we are the ones benefiting from it…but not really. In my 25 years of existence in this world, I’ve seen the whole system. I observed, evaluated, and got dismayed by the irrational actions, illogical decisions, and selfishness of the people around me. Martial Law may have ended even before I was born, but that did not hinder me from knowing everything about the past. I felt the need to participate not only because I am a Filipino but because I believed that I am one of the symbolisms of hope for those who were helpless and lost during that time of chaos. When Cory Aquino sat as the president of the Philippines and the Filipinos who walked and fought for our freedom finally went home, I came out from the womb of my mother. The old trees may have suffered the storm but the new seeds have started to grow – that’s my generation.
Today, with all these corruption issues and incompetence of our leaders, I could say that the generation I belong in failed to maintain the success of our folks. After the tough moments in EDSA, Filipinos let the disease spread once more. Now I wonder where the Filipinos get their strength and motivation to celebrate the 25th anniversary of people power revolution. I wonder if they even look around and see that nothing has ever changed… same faces of cheaters, same national issues and same societal problems- minus the extensive military harassment, of course. This is not to say that I am against the EDSA celebration. I am just disheartened by the fact that we keep on looking back at the past and yet we never learn. After February 25, when the students go back to school after a long weekend and employees receive their bonus for going to work during the holiday, our country will pursue the hearing on AFP corruption, wait for the China’s decision on the three or hundreds of convicted drug mules, pray for the Filipinos who are now in risk in Libya, Bahrain, and Yemen while working hard for their families, hope for the RH Bill to be approved during the plenary session, wait for the updates of the Ombudsman impeachment trial, see the Church and government crash right before our eyes, and wish that no terrorist attack or natural calamity will happen because our country cannot just afford the things that may prevent them. Now, tell me, as a concerned citizen of this country, what motivates the Filipinos to celebrate the EDSA Revolution anniversary if we are still suffering from the same dilemmas that our past generation has tried to won over 25 years ago?