Love means fighting back

An open letter by FRENCHIE MAE CUMPIO
Feb. 9, 2020

This could have been the caption of my grad pic but I opted and chose to quit school three years ago even if I had dreams of becoming a botanist. This could have been my “med student rant” but I chose to be the doctor of this ill state instead. And so today, I am writing to all our colleagues, friends and families who are probably having sleepless nights searching for every piece of support, days ago, we were just activists doing our normal work. I just wrote an article “Love Means Fighting Back”, Mira just had a forum in STEFTI, my roommate Maye just had a forum with Philbert scholars and we were just both preparing for a journalism training regionwide, Marissa just had a dialogue with Department of Social Welfare and Development and Department of Agriculture, and Chakoy just went to the Commission of Human Rights the day before our arrest to request CHR to search the office.

At 2:00 a.m. of Feb. 7, we immediately became members of the New People’s Army and I, a high-ranking member of Communist Party of the Philippines. Our friends, colleagues and families know the truth.

Yes, we could have a better life like what people would say but remembering the demolition threats among several barangays in Tacloban, the land grabbing cases in Tacloban and Leyte, the illegal arrests of farmers and other activists, the strong Junk STS (socialized tuition scheme) and free education campaign, WE’D STILL MAKE THE CHOICE WE MADE YEARS AGO. Life behind bars is still better than not showing our love for this country.

To our friends and families, our activism was our way of helping you. Our education (w/c we learned both inside and outside school) taught us that only through fighting and struggling for our rights can we assure that our younger siblings and your future grandchildren can have a better life-free of oppression.

Your unity and strong support keeps us going. Mabuhay kamo! Whatever happens, remember us like Plumbago Auriculata.”

– Frenchie


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