Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Hail to the thief

January 20, 2001. It was the last day of the EDSA Dos "revolution", when the Filipino people overthrew a corrupt, womanizing president and thrust the enormous responsibility of leading our nation on the tiny shoulders of the more intelligent, and presumably more competent, and hopefully more honest, vice president. It was also my birthday, and I turned 20 sitting on top of the highest flyover overlooking the EDSA Shrine with my college friends. Around 2AM we trooped back to and crashed at my house (all 12 of us, guys included), and we woke up to the morning news announcing that Erap had left Malacanang.

It was the happiest and most memorable birthday of my life... but not anymore, for two reasons: one, my 24th birthday bumped it off the top spot, thanks to my students and all their wonderful surprises; and two, I'm not exactly proud anymore that I helped GMA become president in the first place.

Watching the whole "Gloriagate" scandal unfold on the nightly news, it riles me to think that we ousted Erap based on moral principles (at least that was why I was there at EDSA Dos), only to realize that his replacement is just as morally questionable, if not worse. I am not such an idealistic fool as to think any politician, no matter how educated or celebrated, could be absolutely morally upright and squeaky clean, but at the very least I expect my government officials to adhere to basic professional ethics and uphold basic human values. Common decency, is that so much to ask?

One of our friends, Bud, was not with us at EDSA Dos because he was pro-Estrada. We ganged up on him a lot during that time, picking on him and teasing him to death about his political leanings. I wouldn't blame him if he's laughing at us now and saying "I told you so." (Fortunately, Bud's too much of a gentleman to rub it in; I always told him that if he ran for president I'd help run his campaign. Still hoping, Mr. Britanico!)

I do not regret having been part of EDSA Dos, because at the time, it was the morally right thing to do. But I lament that our actions, which had been rooted in principles and motivated by values like justice and patriotism, paved the way for more corruption, more deception, more insult and injury to those very principles and values we stood up for. I do not necessarily believe all the charges against GMA (the opposition isn't exactly a paragon of purity either), but I am inclined to suspect her (and her sleaze of a husband) of having perpetrated a lot of sneaky and scummy things. She has lost her credibility, and my respect, and from this citizen's point of view, that seriously undermines her right to govern this nation.

4 Comments:

At Thursday, July 07, 2005, Anonymous jac said...

My birthday too!!! Whahahahaha :D I spent the anniv of edsa 2 (2004), last year, at a mass in edsa shrine wearing my fatigues (black shirt underneath) to celebrate my 18th bday! Bday treat...seeing gma and fvr. Whahahahahahaha :D

 
At Thursday, July 07, 2005, Blogger Ailee Through the Looking Glass said...

Hmm, not exactly my idea of a birthday treat. ;p You know, I don't even remember much from my 18th birthday. My twenties have been far more memorable than my teens ever were, politically and personally speaking. :)

 
At Friday, July 08, 2005, Anonymous jac said...

NOOOO..i was saying it sarcastically! Whahahahahaha :D Take note..i was wearing black that day. Tsk tsk.

 
At Friday, July 08, 2005, Blogger Ailee Through the Looking Glass said...

Haha, sorry Jac. It's just that I have a hard time imagining you being sarcastic. You're just like Ms. Uy, all sunshine and cheer. ;p

 

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