For the longest time they waited, these victims of abuses by the Marcos regime.
It wasn’t enough that they’d been flogged, raped, tortured to within an inch of their lives, lost loved ones to the excesses of the Marcos regime.
And it wasn’t enough that as they waited, the Marcoses, architects of abuse in their lives, had not only flown back to the country they betrayed, but had managed marvelous and triumphant reinventions of themselves in the process.
And these kababayan of ours were made to suffer through all these while not getting any acknowledgement of the abuses they had suffered from the Marcoses nor from the governments that followed after the Marcoses.
Didn’t matter one bit that 2 Aquinos had managed to get elected as president of this country. They just presumed, as we did, that Ninoy, having been one of the more prominent victims of the regime, would have made either mother or son a bit more motivated to pursue justice in behalf of the Filipino people.
Well, we all know what happened.
None of that happened. A most thoroughly unmotivated pair, this mother and son team. Ewan. EWAN.
And then quite suddenly, Rodrigo Duterte became president of this land and one of the first things he does (not even a 6 months into office) is give a sizeable portion of our population major grief by burying the despot in what a lot of us regard as hallowed ground.
And this has always been the thorn on my side where the President is concerned: how he views the Marcoses and the heinous part they played in our history. The bitter pill I have had to swallow to see through my slit, grim eyes and get back on board.
Fortunately for me, getting back on board with Digongmylabs has not been hard because he accomplishes great things—stuff that’s never been accomplished and that HAS put us on high ground. Stuff that matters to me–basically, getting the poor the much needed leg up so they get themselves out of the vicious cycle of poverty.
The Marcos burial at the LNMB wasn’t the deal breaker I thought it would be, as it turns out. Imagine that. Big surprise.
And as it turns out, the man who has made himself known from Day One is who he says he is: someone who is for the little guy and someone who will stand with with oppressed and try his best to take them out of this oppression.
(Sure, I’ve heard the usual ‘he is so anti-poor’ and I am not buying it. Not one bit. There is a reason he is beloved by the masa—and it is because he has done amazing things for us and we can see through pretenses and we see that Rodrigo Duterte is no fake. Fakery we’re so good at spotting because we’ve overdosed on it for DECADES.)
And here we are on the 7th month of his presidency and this man who thinks highly of the despot Ferdinand Marcos, is giving the victims of this butcher the biggest leg up any president has ever given its victims by ordering the immediate release of “initial” compensation for around 4,000 martial law victims under the Marcos dictatorship.
More than the money they will be given—which they need so badly as a lot of them are old and sickly, there is this one thing that is more precious to them and why it is they’ve fought this lonely battle for as long as they have:
The ACKNOWLEDGEMENT that injustices were done to them and their loved ones. And for which the President is greatly saddened.
And saddened to the extent that he has put the full weight of his Office into giving them the kind of justice that has eluded them all their lives.
“Yes, all these abuses happened and I am deeply saddened that they did and that you’ve had to wait for so long. Let me see what I can do for you.”
Indeed, the Duterte presidency puts its money where its mouth is. Wala nang endless ngaw ngaw.
They have waited long enough.
In some small but very real measure, today, Justice has been served.
Thank you, Mr. President.