Today we mark the 115th anniversary of our independence as a nation. Our independence came but with a high cost. Our nation’s freedom and independence was redeemed by the blood of our forefathers. Their blood watered the fertile land of this archipelago.
For almost a century, our banner cannot fly freely; it was a foreign banner that fly over this great land.
We are free, finally we are free. For 115 years we are enjoying this freedom. But are we truly free?
We no longer submit to the authority of a foreign power, we have full control of our government.
We are free from foreigners but not from our own people. Local tyrants today occupy the power. They rule according to their whims and caprices. Law and justice is but an arbitrary matter. Public funds are ending into family coffers.
The wealth of the nation is divided into roughly 10 families. Repression and oppression did not leave this land. It was only the people who cause the oppression that changed. Tyranny is now Filipinized.
The gap between the few powerful and the powerless, the rich and the poor is getting wider and wider. People are no longer dying from the guns of enemies, but from hunger, sickness and from the very guns of their fellow Filipino.
We no longer fear the foreign soldiers, but we fear the local police who are known for their brutality and rob out activities. Many Police officers are at the same time goon leaders. We worry no longer of a fiery battle field, but we fear the dark streets in Metro Manila where heartless criminals roam; in the provinces the lawless rebels who claim to be the champion of the poor, but those who refuse to pay revolutionary tax are executed.
Freedom, we call it freedom, but the bondage that our forefathers denounce remained. Even more troublesome is the fact that fellow Filipinos who cause the suffering of their fellow Filipino. The land that our heroes defended to their death, we no longer care. Corrupt politicians are but more than willing to disintegrate the archipelago by creating sub states, who may through simple act may unilaterally declare their independence.
Today, we believe we are free, and indeed we are. But we can enjoy the fullness of this freedom if only we care for each other. We can once again become a great nation if we unite as one Filipino. Let us end this bondage that plague the country. No other country could help us, none but our selves alone. We can erase the brand that we are the sick men of Asia. The cure lies within, not beyond. The struggle is more of internal.
Wake up fellow countryman! Let us not waste the blood of our fallen heroes. We need not fight any war, we need not die, we need not become martyrs for the fatherland, we only have to care. We only have to think as one Filipino, united for one cause, one goal, one dream, a truly free and progressive nation!