Monday, June 21, 2010

Re-branding EDSA

Before I publish this, let me just say that I have nothing against Mar Roxas. Fact is, I voted for him. Whatever negative things you'll find in this entry are actually connected with one proposition--the re-branding of EDSA.

Its already a foregone conclusion--that between thirty five to forty percent of the present electorate have jaundice in their minds. Yes, they all prefer yellow as their favorite color. Only about 10 to 12% of the electorate probably are Communists--they simply don't vote at all, consistently since 1987. Or, they are Marxists. Marxists dont believe in elections.

Its expected though. Most of the members of this so-called "Yellow Army" were teenagers during Cory's time or they simply joined that great social experiment called EDSA uno. Some, our present generation of "enarians" or senior citizens were probably victims or hate the Marcoses so much, they erased blue from their minds and stuck with yellow. Yellow, they say, represents the color of delivered mail. And you know what retirees always expect at the end of the month. 

More than this though, Kris Aquino also did a lot in bridging the generational gap and kudos to ABS-CBN too. Kris and the bunch of creative writers over ABS-CBN succeeded in re-creating the conditions that justified collective action. Social vigilance was resurrected from its lethargic state during the time of Arroyo to a vanguard position. Its now simply part of Filipino street fashion to be caught wearing Che Guevarra or those Filipino maps plastered in poloshirts.

Behind these published statements and actions though lie a far deeper, even sinister reason--the silent reconditioning of the minds to accept that this social experiment called EDSA is simply owned by just one group--the Liberals.

We all know who really worked very hard in creating that social phenomenon. In the original EDSA, majority of the people there simply wore RED, not yellow. Some activists in the Social Democratic mold, yes, they wore yellow. Yet, the post-mortem analysis was simply stark mad--this was the experiment of socially conscious members of the petty bourgeois and the nationalist bourgeosie who seriouly studied and tinkered Filipino consciousness and conspired to create a more acceptable mode for regime change. And they had pure-blooded rebels as counsels.

Yes, in pre and post-1986, it was vogue to be a dissident, a dissenter, even a rebel. That's why from a mere 67, the NPA ballooned to 23,000. From just one person, the MNLF grew close to a million.

Those who are simply too weak to hold a gun or simply too lazy to go to street demonstrations, made themselves content with just wearing yellow teeshirts or flashing those Laban signs. Behind those pretensions lie a deeper social conscience or a personal yearning to be part of something that would eventually change society. Those whose conscience never went beyond Constantino, satisfied themselves with just watching those rallies on GMA Channel 7 and within the confines of their homes, chanted themselves hoarse. Or simply curse Marcos to death. (That explains why he contracted lupus.:-)

There were no Facebook or Twitter accounts back then nor cellphones with texting capabilities. Engagement was simply too personal more than social. That deeper engagement we find during those times recorded themselves as memories. These memories or experiences are what made those lines longer last May 10. People wanted nothing more than oust Arroyo from power. And since there are no NPA armies in sight, they chose a Yellow Army instead.

EDSA, the original one, is a people's fight. Yes, it was inspired by songs and marches created in mountain bases of the CPP-NPA and most, if not all who worked for the downfall of Marcos at least found time reading Marx's Manifesto and Amado Guerrero's PSR. It was the people who made it happen, never mind if Enrile's Gringos claim all the fame, the fact simply is the People trooped infront of Camps Aguinaldo and Crame just to save their sorry asses from Ver's firepower.

EDSA, to the minds of many simply equates collective action. It is a weapon of the People, a democratic exercise operationalizing several concrete provisions of a Freedom Charter. Never mind if, after the assumption of Cory into power, the only basic operationalizing principles of EDSA was simply an approved mechanism of veto-ing a law passed by Congress. (to be continued. Have to leave. Read more on my book)