Recent Thoughts

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Train of thoughts 3: Makati Standoff Edition!

I am sure that by now, you all know what Trillanes and friends have done over the dawn of the long weekend. If you wanna know more, click here for the's coverage of the Makati standoff.

But for this post, I just wanna share my thoughts. It will not be an organized essay, because I do not know enough details in Philippine politics to rival the editorial opinion of the major broadsheet columnists in the country today.

*Where was I when I learned of the standoff? It was already 3pm and I just boarded a bus on my way home to Pampanga. The bus TV was on and it screened the ABS-CBN coverage. I was actually surprised because Pampanga commuters like me know that Bataan Transit buses have always been Kapuso, haha!

*My overall thought on the matter as I finished the pizza kariman I bought to serve as my on-the-go lunch: what the hell was Trillanes thinking?! Apparently, other people shared the same thought, so imagine my amusement when an article of the same title (well, sans 'the hell') was featured on the Inquirer front page for December 1.

*I didn't really pay attention to the events that was unfolding during the rest of my trip home. I figured I would read about it on the newspaper the next day anyway. Besides, I didn't really think it was a cause of alarm for me. All I knew was that Trillanes and friends "took over" the Peninsula Manila Hotel (or is it Manila Peninsula?) and (newsflash!) were demanding for PGMA's resignation. I didn't really know who was with him. So when I switched on the TV in the evening and saw Bibeth Orteza boldly declaring that she was proud to be a Filipino right now, I thought she was one of the good guys and that there's more to Trillanes 'stupid gimik'. Only to realize later on, as I continued to watch the news and get more details on the day's events, that Trillanes' staging was what it really was: a stupid one.

*Did Trillanes (and friends) actually think that by holing themselves in a posh Makati hotel would actually encourage the middle class to join him? We all know how pivotal the middle class' participation is on the success of any uprising or mass demonstration, right?

*He even had the gall to invoke his 'duties' and 'powers' as a Senator. Did he actually think a huge percent of his 11 million voters would actually join them at Makati? Did he actually think he was popular enough to lead another People Power Revolution?

*Political analysts say the AFP's approach and handling of the standoff was an overkill and that the treatment of the media after Trillanes surrendered was uncalled for. I agree. Yun lang masasabi ko, haha! Like I said, I am not trying to be a big-time political columnist here.

*By now, you may have received the text joke about the funny lessons learned from Trillanes' recent stunt. Na pwede pala lakarin ang Makati City Hall papunta ng Manila Pen.. Na kasya pala ang tangke sa hotel.. Na nakakatakot si Ces Drilon kapag hindi naayusan, haha! In the end, the recent Makati Standoff was actually a hilarious showcase of misguided patriotism.. albeit with serious implications.

*I am sure, one of the major question for the aftermath is: Why did Trillanes and friends fail? I am sure, most columnists have given their take on this, and I couldn't agree more to most of them. But here is my personal view on the matter.
First of all, hassle na pumunta pa ako na Makati. Pauwi na ako ng Pampanga eh, long weekend pa. Bakit ako magpapagod na lumuwas pabalik ng Makati?
Secondly, I never voted for Trillanes in the last elections. Yes, I agree that PGMA is one of the worst kind of leaders the country has had in the post-Martial Law era. Yes, our country is in dire need of moral revolution, especially in the government leadership. I sympathize with their cause, but I do not agree with their actions.
No matter the desperation or exasperation of the current administration, holing oneself up inside a commercial and public establishment is and never will be justifiable. Mag-rarally ka na lang, mang-iistorbo ka pa ng mga kababayan mo? Tapos biglang isisgaw ni Bibeth Orteza on national television that she was proud to be a Filipino? So being a Filipino is about disrupting peace and order in the country's top commercial district? It's just so wrong on many levels -- economic, err, teka, economic lang pala, haha!
For me, no single person in Philippine politics today has enough moral ascendancy and integrity to lead an unconstitutional change of executive leadership in the country. (If it were Raul Roco, I would've considered joining a rally. Pero patay na siya. *Sad*
So what do we do now? The safest (and legal) bet would be to wait for the 2010 elections. Wala eh, nanalo na ang mga trapong pulitiko (whether or not they were actually voted by many people by virture of stupidity or these trapos just cheated is another issue). For the meantime, we all need to be vigilant, and not run out of hope and sense of country.

Quick Thoughts