Saturday, February 26, 2011

What I Can Do

“On an issue this big, what you can do will never be enough. And if it’s not enough, then it doesn’t matter.”

I tweeted that a few days ago. I don’t remember what exactly it was that prompted me to say that, but I think it was yet another article on the Church’s view on homosexuality. Or was it about the RH bill? I’m really not sure. All I remember is that I felt powerless and insignificant after reading it.

Yesterday, I wanted to go to wherever the celebration of EDSA revolution was. I wanted to be at what was ground zero during that turning point in our history. But, being a corporate slave, the only place I could be was in front of my computer so I contented myself with reading about the event on the Internet. I intended to read news articles but I somehow found myself reading the opinion section. I was hoping, no, expecting to read about hope and empowerment and the revolution’s triumph. Instead, every single article called the revolution a failure. Carlos Celdran even went as far as saying in his tweets that the whole thing was a joke. I felt powerless and insignificant once again.

I was not yet born when EDSA revolution happened so I don’t really know anything about it other than what I read in books and saw in documentaries. I had always seen it as a symbol of hope. It was a time when Filipinos banded together, held hands and stood their ground against a dictator. It was when the Filipinos showed that this country belonged to the people. Or at least that was how I saw it. Or perhaps that was what the books I read then said. The stuff I read yesterday, however, said that the country still belongs to the powerful: the political clans, the rich, the Church, etc, and that made the revolution a failure.

I am well aware that our country is still in bad shape. I know that the pyramid still stands strong. Even the least politically-aware Filipino would know that. But I did not expect that fact to be attributed to EDSA revolution’s failure. And the thought of it being a failure is just plain depressing. In high school and in college, we were constantly challenged to be agents of change, to take part in helping this country rise. But if everyone has been taken over by so much cynicism that they consider something as big as EDSA revolution as a failure, then what the hell can I possibly hope to change?

Of course the right thing to do is to still “do my part”. It’s like Winnie Monsod said: I am only one but I am one, and what I could do, I ought to do. Or something like that. And that’s still what I’m going to do. “What I could do” probably won’t matter, the way none of the things I have done so far have mattered, but at the very least I could say “basta, ginawa ko ang parte ko” when I finally raise my hands in surrender.

As for EDSA revolution, I think I’ll still consider it as a symbol of hope. Sure, our country is still struggling, but we all know that it would take a lot more than a revolution in the streets to fix that. EDSA proved that we are capable of joining hands for a single cause. The country was in dark times then, the Filipinos were able to overcome it through EDSA. We are in dark times now, EDSA reminds us that we can overcome it again if we decide as a nation.

If only to keep that small, unsteady flame from being extinguished.


  1. The trouble with the People Power Revolution is that after that brief moment of Filipino unity, each and everyone has gone to each its own.

    The PPR is the Filipino's gift to the world. With a noble and humble intention and in unity, the Filipino's could do anything.

    The Filipino's behind the PPR has aimed to help their fellow Filipinos. If one fails to understand this, then they are a big joke.

  2. bakit ang ganda mo magsulat...super... as in ganda... kase makes me go lang ng go sa pagbabasa. Anyway.. sorry kung eto wala ako mashashare sa post na ito na relevant.. hindi talaga ako maka-bayan... at gusto ko man ikahiya yun..pero feel ko ngayon na hindi ako nahihiya.. pwede mo na akong isumpa. hehe.

    di ko alam... masyado lang sigurong komplikado ang mga ganitong bagay sa isip ko. Pero kung tatanungin mo ko ilang percent pa ang hope ko para sa atin.. yan pwede ko sagutin... siguro... hmmm... 30%? mas mababa pa sa kalahati. At feeling ko constant yan simula pa nung umpisa...

  3. ladies and gentlemen, i believe that.....

    ayoko mag litanya, baka lumabas pagka Miss U ko dito ahahahahaha

  4. EDSA SCHMEDSA. Fuck that riot. It has lost its meaning and is just now for everybody's entertainment. At least it keeps them from getting bored.

    Muahness from Pasig Citehh!

  5. Another post worth reading Nishi... =)Super! =) To keep the spirit of EDSA burning in our hearts, let us just do things right while we are here in the Philippines.

  6. Ang bata mo pa
    My folks brought me to edsa
    Paslit pa ako non
    Wala muwang
    Akala ko party
    Lahat kasi masaya, eh

  7. I was smiling while reading this.

    I had the same thoughts.