Standing at the Edge of Daybreak

Here are my two cents on the issue of Duterte’s declaration of Martial Law. I don’t always do things like this, so aye.

Disclaimer: People who read / will read this are not inclined to agree. We all have our opinions and sentiments and I simply wish to share mine. You, my dear readers, are not inclined to share mine if you view things differently. We are our own person and we are entitled to individual thoughts that are solely unique to us.

I think the problem with people these days is that they are too hung up on the past. Negative and traumatic events tend to shackle people inside a cage of doubt and restlessness, preventing them to move on from the experience. And this is normal. I cannot blame anyone for feeling such a thing. Being mentally and emotionally scarred is not an easy feeling to deal with. I understand this.

But I do believe that in order to overcome the problem, we have to look forward with our eyes focused on the present without our sights being marred by the past. It is by no means easy, but it is not impossible either.

History is a good teacher. In my honest opinion, I believe that history is there to remind us of what we have to do in order to survive and become successful. A blue print for future generations, and a treasure chest of ideas. Emperors and Generals from antiquity look upon the deeds of their predecessors, strategies and tactics, that can be adapted into their time in order for their campaigns to be more effective and efficient. If they find something faulty yet workable at the same time, they make improvisations because they know that if a good plan was thwarted during a campaign, something must have gone wrong (obviously), or that the other side had a better card up their sleeve. In this regard, the crafty will find what is wrong, and work around the problem in order to make an otherwise faulty plan work. They don’t simply let a past defeat stay that way. Instead, they come up with a way to overcome the adversity, overcome the pang and trauma of loss in order to survive.

I think those times are not so different from what we’re experiencing now.

I do believe that for most people, Martial Law or anything related to it drives people over the edge. If not, there would not be protests for it. A lot of people back then during Marcos’ time died and spent most of their days in fear and terror due to the oppression that they felt.

But I think that in this day and age, we should remember that Marcos and Duterte are not the same person. And that the declaration of Martial Law this time around differs in nature and severity from when it was declared by the previous president.

A friend of mine who lives in Mindanao says that they feel safer because of the declaration made by Duterte. This is her own sentiment, and might even be shared by those who are ACTUALLY in the affected region.

I’m just a little disappointed that those who aren’t even directly affected are causing a fuss as if they are directly caught in the crossfire. IF for example having Martial Law declared in the said area gives the people living there a sense of peace and safety, what right do those who are unaffected have to take away that sense of security for the affected party? I think that it’s unfair that just because of it’s called “Martial Law” people are unwilling to cooperate. Again, let us remember that these two presidents are not the same person; that the reason of the declaration are different.

As I’ve told a friend earlier I am neither pro nor anti Duterte, but I do trust that he is doing what he can in order to give solution to the problem. He can’t snap his fingers and “poof” terrorism automatically gone. I am not speaking for him, but I’m merely speculating that he may think this is the quickest solution to get the job done because his country is being thrown into chaos by terrorists.

At this point in time, he declared Martial Law not because he wants to stay in power, but because he wants to put an end to the terrorists. And I think there’s nothing wrong with that.

I mean…I am no expert in past events, I do not know how the people of Marcos’ time felt about it. History books often said that it was a traumatic and terrible time and yet I have met people who felt the exact opposite of it…and even supported it.

And as myself who did not even exist during that time, I would like to give the new declaration the benefit of the doubt that it might be different this time around. If it can save people’s lives, then I think that it’s not that bad a move. The fact that someone already feels safe because of it should be a wake up call that today may not be the same as yesterday.

Let’s veer away from our prejudice. Not everyone whose rallying about it has experienced Marcos’ version of Martial Law. Some (not all) may have just been swayed by their emotions and passions, using that as their stance for “understanding” and “empathizing” with the pain of the past.

But will you really keep that up if the lives of those who are living TODAY will be jeopardized? Neither me nor you can say that it will turn out the same as before; but neither I or you as well can say that it won’t. Time will run its course. And only with time can we tell if we’ve actually allowed lightning to strike twice or if we actually contributed to making a difference.

Right now, assuming that having declared Martial Law already sets everything in stone is not beneficial for anyone other than selfish people who couldn’t wake up from the nightmare.

I would rather gamble with the current turn of events rather than staying in a stand still just because I don’t want history to repeat itself.

There’s an old saying that I really like and it goes like this: “In peace prepare for war, in war prepare for peace.”

At the very least I would like to believe that the longest night will come to pass if we open our eyes to a new day. Tomorrow may not always be perfect. It may not even be fitting of our ideals but at least there is strength knowing that we can face the brunt of day instead of coddling and letting our nightmares fester in the depths of our slumber.