My country has never lacked for heroes.
There are the oversees Filipino workers or OFWs who, as a group, has propped up this country’s economy for years.
One can rattle off names from forgotten Philippine history books
… Jose Rizal, Andres Bonifacio, Apolinario Mabini, Gregorio de Pilar, Diego Silang, Macario Sakay
… and the lesser known names that have yet to appear in textbooks … Macling Dulag, Bobby dela Paz, Edgar Jopson, Eman Lacaba …
Why does it seem like, as a definition, being a hero means “to die”?
… and in this country anyway, being a hero, seems to mean “to be forgotten”?
A few days ago, 44 men, Filipino soldiers all, died in a godforsaken place called Mamasapano which is in the south of this country. A place where “peace” is a theoretical concept that is not grounded in reality.
These men were soldiers. They went there to extract a terrorist. And in the course of doing their duty, they died.
Soldiers die. That’s probably a fact. Or an occupational hazard.
But what I can’t get my head around is that yesterday, the bodies of these men arrived in Manila and their President was nowhere to be found.
What the fuck!!!! Not even a “hello, thank you for laying your life for this country” Mr. President?
How unfeeling can you get?
How can you choose going to a factory inauguration over honoring your soldiers? Men who have died for you, and me, all ungrateful bunch of us?
Whose death are now causing me to sob like a baby, emotional nitwit that I am. I do not know these men personally and I cry for them … YOU ARE THEIR EFFING PRESIDENT FOR CHRIST’S SAKE! And all you could muster was to deliver a stilted report about the Maguindanao encounter on national TV?!!
Barack Obama is probably an imperialistic asshole American (I doubt that, though; I love him because he let Michelle wear a nice blue dress and with no head scarf in Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah’s wake), but at least he knew how to honor his soldiers.