Defend the past

By: Editorial May 27,2018 - 09:11 PM

In a note that has been going viral while the movie “Citizen Jake” played in movie houses across the country, multi-awarded theater actor Teroy Guzman warned Filipinos against forgetting their history.

“At the root of our crisis as a nation today are the erosion of memory and the revision of history,” Guzman said.

“Citizen Jake offers a powerful antidote to that. The film captures the complex ambiguities between truth and fiction, between the entangled loyalties we owe to both family and nation, forcing us to confront painful but necessary questions about who and what we are as Filipinos.

“Citizen Jake is important because people forget. This is areminder to those who have survived Martial Law and a wakeup call to those who have not experienced it and dismiss the historical significance of the experience. Martial Law is back. Literally in Mindanao, and de facto everywhere else. The difference between then and now is the slyness of it all. Authoritarian rule is already here without the benefit of a Proclamation 1081. We all know that nothing is done unless approved by the gang leader. That what The Dictator wants, The Dictator gets,” Guzman said.

The note, however, was not all gloom and doom. Guzman called on everyone who is in a position to teach and enlighten others to do their share to battle the revision of history and the erasure of memory along with their invaluable lessons.

The annual celebration of Gabii sa Kabilin (Night of Heritage) across Metro Cebu is one act of resisting the tide of collective amnesia.

The event held Friday was once again a success, with at least 4,000 flocking to Cebu’s museums and historical sites from evening till midnight.

One can imagine a visitor at the Rizal Museum of the University of Southern Philippines recalling the resistance of Rizal towards the cruelties of colonial Spain and being awakened to the need to resist the giveaway of our West Philippine Sea territories to China.

One can imagine a Cebuano gaining new appreciation of the horrors of the Second World War at the Japanese era galleries of the Museo Sugbo such that he values the opposition to the removal at the capital of the memorial to the the “comfort women” who were violated by members of the Japanese Imperial Army.

One can imagine visitors to the Archdiocesan Museum of Cebu experiencing an epiphany about the role of faith and faith leaders in our journey as a nation down through history and finally agreeing with the late Jaime Cardinal Sin that politics is too important to be left to politicians.

The organizers of Gabii sa Kabilin and cultural and heritage advocates deserve much congratulations, but in this time of deliberate distortions of our sacred past, they have much work cut out for them to do. Let us lend them our unqualified support.

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TAGS: CDN, defend, Editorial, past, THE

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