Tag Archives: Ninoy Aquino

Cory Aquino’s Legacy

yellow-ribbonMuch has been said about Maria Corazon Cojuangco Aquino. It’s safe to say that she did not have the perfect administration but because of her and her husband, Ninoy, we are enjoying the freedom we often take for granted. She’s the plain housewife in yellow who stood and fought the authoritarian rule of Ferdinand Marcos and succeeded. And as unassuming as she was, she keeps forgetting that she has privileges as president.

Here are a few tidbits I gathered on the news and tv specials on President Cory:

  • During a visit in a rural area, one was overheard saying, “Yun ulit ang damit niya? (She’s wearing the same dress again?)” It was relayed to her and she merely said, “Yes, I’m the President. But I’m the president of a poor country.”

Pretty much poles apart from this one atrocious first lady who said, “Filipinos want beauty. I have to look beautiful so that the poor Filipinos will have a star to look at from their slums.” Seriously pathetic. Preposterous. Tasteless. Insensitive.

And if that is not enough, another garbage spewed from the dumpster. “Never dress down for the poor. They won’t respect you for it. They want their First Lady to look like a million dollars.”

Don’t ask me where the brain went. I don’t know either.

  • She refused to use the siren (the infamous wangwang) when her convoy passes by. Instead, her Presidential Security Group (or whatever they’re called) would use the megaphone and announce, “Makikiraan lang po. Dadaan po ang Pangulo,” or something to that effect.

Unlike some people who just happen to breathe the same rancid air as the current head of state, they are actually the ones causing traffic because they want all the vehicles in EDSA to make way for them. And their escorts will raise hell if you don’t let them pass.

  • She led the Revolutionary Government in 1986; ratified a new constitution in 1987, which gives her the chance to extend her term but she did not. Instead, she endorsed Fidel Ramos to run for president in the 1992 elections. No trace of greediness there. Unlike what’s the name of that Girl Most Abhorred (at the moment) again???
  • She doesn’t want to be treated differently. In gatherings, she will sit on the same chair as everybody does; she doesn’t need that special ‘high chair’ to let everyone know that she is the most important person in the table.
  • In her last few days, she managed to ask one of her daughters to ensure that the people in their home at Time Street are given their salaries and allowances.
  • She prepares one mean liver pate, according to Mayor Alfredo Lim. And if she ever prepares one for you, that means she’s really thankful for whatever it is that you’ve done.
  • She dyes her own hair.  No fancy salon for Madame President.

As I’ve said, I know she’s not perfect. But who is? All I know is that I am enjoying my freedom because of Ninoy and Cory; something that people in the 70s could only hope for. I can go out in the streets to protest or write just about anything without fearing that I might be taken into custody by the government.

More than two decades has passed and I want to believe that the Filipino is (still) worth dying for.

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Remembering Ninoy

Ninoy Aquino

The 80s is a decade of seriously challenged fashion and hairstyles.  Talk about shoulder-padded shirts and cobra-like hairstyles… duh!

But if there is one thing that truly stands out in this decade, it was the assassination of one of the most prominent personalities that time, Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino, Jr.

I was practically a kid when Ninoy was killed ruthlessly and I can barely recall him then.  Even with the 1986 People Power, I have a vague memory of what it’s like during that time aside from the knowledge that our field trip will be not be held for that year.

I have a fleeting recollection of my family leaving our small business in Quezon City to head on to our home in Marikina for safety. Everyone was anxious; there are scattered images in my head of strangers in the jeepney engaging in conversations of what looms ahead as there are APCs and military contingents scattered in the metropolis.

I grew up with parents and relatives who detest the Marcos regime and I would often times argue with classmates who defend Marcos.  I am not a very political person and I do not know all the facts. Just that his brutal death was deviously masterminded and concocted by power-hungry monsters.  I mean, who can be so powerful enough to carry out an assassination in broad daylight with 1,199 soldiers scattered all over the international airport?  But the bigger question is, will justice be ever served?

Now, the 80s was more than just crazy fashion and bizaare hairstyles. It was the era when no social status existed as people from all walks of life marched the same streets and stood the same ground.

Each time I feel some kind of desperation and frustration at how poor and corrupt our country is, this video makes me proud to be a Filipino…. every time. 

(ABS CBN did a very commendable and moving tv documentary this time, Beyond Conspiracy: 25 Years After the Aquino Assassination, narrated by Tina Monzon-Palma.  This documentary even united the two rival networks because GMA Network News was acknowledged in the closing credits of the documentary.)

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