The Supreme Court decision allowing a hero’s burial for Marcos has sparked restlessness among the youth.
MANILA – They may not have seen the brutality of the Marcos Dictatorship, but these Filipino youths have learned its lessons, well enough to be angered and call for a stop to its legacy of impunity and injustice.
Today, Nov. 11, students from different universities and colleges around the country staged a “National Day of Rage” to protest the Supreme Court decision allowing the burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LNMB) for ousted Dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr., which is said to signal his family’s return to Malacañang.
But the protesters’ rage this time included President Duterte, a Marcos ally whose campaign promise included the LNMB burial for Marcos. In a recent speech, Duterte even echoed the SC decision which said Marcos was never convicted of crimes in any Philippine court.
Einstein Recedes, Anakbayan national secretary general condemned what they called the President’s “whitewashing of the historical crimes of the Marcoses and the brazen trampling on the call for justice of all the victims of the Marcos dictatorship.”
“While Duterte’s enlightened policies like pushing for an independent foreign policy and the peace talks with the NDFP are laudable, his choosing to prioritize repaying political debts with the Marcoses at the expense of historical truth and justice will only invite scorn against his government,” said Recedes in a statement.
“The Marcos legacy of fascist repression and corruption have been forgotten by many among the youth because of the failure of post-Marcos government to decisively punish the Marcoses,” said Recedes.
The “scholars of the people” from the University of the Philippines (UP) in Diliman held their protest at the Palma Hall lobby, while those in Manila went next door to the Supreme Court. Students were joined by the All-UP Workers’ Academic Union-UP Manila. The protesters also hang a 20-foot streamer along the wall between the Supreme Court and the UP Manila campus.
Students from universities along Taft Avenue in Manila also joined others in front of the SC.
Even the much younger “people’s scholars,” students of the Philippine Science High School, their teachers and alumni, dressed in black shirts and marched to the nearby Bantayog ng mga Bayani in Quezon City, where they held a program and lit candles, in tribute to the martyrs of the Marcos Dictatorship, many of whom were PSHS alumni.
Along España avenue, students of the Catholic Church-run University of Sto. Tomas, along with those from the University of the East and the National Teachers’ College lined up and held their placards.
Meanwhile, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) warned Duterte in a statement that he will “reap the whirlwind” for his decision on a “moral and historical issue.”
“Through his words and deeds, he is aiding in the rehabilitation of the Marcoses. He is allowing himself to be an instrument of the revision of history and the return of the dictator’s heirs to the highest seat of power. We cannot and will not allow this.” Bayan said.
Simultaneous protest were also held in UP and other schools in Los Baños in Laguna, Baguio, Cebu, Pampanga, Leyte, Iloilo, and Mindanao. The National Day of Rage was led by progressive youth groups Anakbayan, Kabataan Partylist, League of Filipino Students and the National Union of Students of the Philippines.