The second Million People March took place yesterday in Makati, the business district of the metro. My work’s just a couple of blocks away from the gathering center, and it’ll be foolish to skip it. I failed to attend the first one in Luneta, and there was no way I’d miss yesterday’s protest.
Before I went to college, my relatives and high school classmates thought I’d definitely be joining rallies since I tend to be outspoken and don’t care much about authorities. After all, I enrolled in UPLB so there was no way I’d escape being an activist. But I graduated from UPLB without joining a single rally. It’s not because I’m apathetic (okay, maybe a little), but sometimes, it’s just hard for me to understand why they were protesting at all. It won’t feel good to be part of a protest if I only know very little about the issue. And I tried to know, but I rarely get answers.
That’s also the reason why I don’t talk much about politics. There are so many things I don’t understand, and to give my opinion is like embarrassing myself. One must not talk about things one doesn’t understand.
When the news of the pork barrel scam exploded, I was enraged along with everyone else. I’m part of the working middle-class who gets more than 10% deducted from my salary. Of course I am enraged. Of course I want to be one with the people. I want corruption to stop, and I want those who abuse their power and steal from the country to stop what they’re doing and pay for their crimes.
The #ScrapPork protest yesterday was the first protest I joined, because it’s one that I understand. I got a little confused though because I didn’t particularly think that the people would also be calling for PNoy’s resignation and his alleged involvement in it. I know he’s not a saint and I’m pretty sure he’s not always threading a “daang matuwid.” But I don’t exactly want him to step down. Because if he did, Binay would definitely step up and that poses graver threats to the country. I must also not that it was ironic how all that the even took place right in front of Ninoy’s statue.
Overall, joining the rally was a pretty good experience, even a bit hypnotizing. It was also an eye-opener. I may be complaining about the amount they deduct from my salary that goes straight to the pockets of politician, but I realized that they take more from the laborers who work everyday, with very little rest, to just receive a meager salary. And for the first time, I start to understand how some of my college schoolmates attend rallies about issues not entirely related to them, but they still seemed so passionate about it. Because you see, some sectors really need help from other sectors in making sure their concerns reach the right ears.
I don’t have the heart of an activist. Sometimes, I just don’t care, and sometimes, I try to comprehend but simply couldn’t. Right now, I can’t think of a valid solution to the current crisis the country is facing. To say that every corrupt officials should step down is like saying that 90% of the current government officials must resign. What will remain then? Who will run this country?
There’s a feeling of hopelessness that I’m pretty sure occurs in every Filipino from time to time (or all the time, of course). But there are those who are still hopeful, and sometimes, I still am. However, I am realistic, and I’m pretty sure that if our government will truly be clean, it will take a few more generations before that happens.