Friday, June 15, 2007
Endless Belief in the Goodness of Humanity
Anger is the easiest emotion to express regarding the case of Musa Dimasidsing. He should have not been dead. Instead, he should have been put under a witness protection program in order for him to continue his fight against electoral fraud. But anger has its limits, indifference is one of them. Honestly, do people even care if he died? More so, do they even know that a certain Musa Dimasidsing, who according to one candidate refused to sign a document affirming that no electoral hoax occurred in Maguindanao, senselessly died?
Indifference is the black hole of national anger.
Days after a grueling campaign, I promised myself that I would take a deserving rest before the start of an even more grueling academic year. I watched all the DVDs that Edu Manzano and the rest of the Optical Media Board do not like. The highlight of which is a Hayao Miyazaki movie marathon. Miyazaki is considered a god by hardcore anime fans like me. Once described as Steven Spielberg and Orson Welles combined, the Japanese genius has been churning out spectacular but most importantly, intellectual anime masterpieces. Philippine elections are dirty and real. Miyazaki films are comforting and pure imagination. Most of his oeuvres are coming-of-age stories of young independent girls faced with a problem that they must overcome through unselfish desire and endless belief in the goodness of humanity.
Can you even describe Philippine politics as the allocation of power through unselfish desire and endless belief in the goodness of humanity?
It is hard to desire without thinking of your personal gains. Thus, it is highly understandable that ‘unselfish desire’ is a concept that resides in the realm of the fiction. However, ‘endless belief in the goodness of humanity’ must never loose its appeal in the real world. It has another and much simpler name. It is called hope.
Before the campaign period began, our nation hoped for clean and peaceful elections that no part of the scandalous 2004 elections would be replicated. With more than a hundred election-related violence reported, the head of the Philippine National Police described it as ‘generally peaceful.’ With the occurrence of ancient electoral problems such as vote-buying, ballot box snatching, and the all-too familiar cheating taking place in all levels – the present administration was elated with a so-called ‘successful election.’ The rest of the Filipinos could only raise an eyebrow.
Yet Musa Dimasidsing raised more than an eyebrow. He raised his voice. Now he is dead. This is the price he paid for being a fine Filipino citizen. This is the price he paid for acting like a civilized person. This is the price he paid for re-establishing the goodness of humanity.
I personally hate this news. I never intended to write a blog entry on the Musa Dimasidsing case if not for the good intentions of The Voice of the Filipino. For two days, I felt good watching well-crafted anime and then the pointless killing of Musa Dimasidsing pierced my consciousness. It was quick and numbing. The reassurance that I experienced watching several Japanese animated films suddenly disappeared faster than the missing certificates of canvass in Maguindanao. The news shattered the rose-colored glasses that I was wearing for a couple of days like a vicious wrecking ball.
It’s back to reality.
The police was quick to warn the public not to relate the case with the Maguindanao electoral fraud in the senatorial race. They said that there is big chance that the death of Musa Dimasidsing is due to a heated local race.
It does not matter whether it was a consequence of a local struggle or a massive national deceit. For crying out loud, the life of a person was forcibly taken through bullets!
One day the perpetrators would be apprehended (or maybe not), but that is not enough. The number of dying and disappearing Filipinos is increasing in such an alarming rate. Had the authorities stamped their – what else – authority and prevented the crimes, then the killers of Musa Dimasidsing would have thought twice before executing him. The same thing with election fraud had the Hello Garci issue ended with a legal and logical closure then there would have been a lesser amount of mistrust in the atmosphere. Legal and logical closure means, the cheaters get punish.
But expecting punishment from a government filled with power-hungry individuals is the same as expecting the Team Unity senatorial slate to perform extremely well in the last elections.
I am pretty sure Musa Dimasidsing will end up as another nameless, faceless Filipino in our non-existent national consciousness. But neither in my case nor with the other bloggers who exerted effort and provided precious space in articulating their sentiments for him.
I still maintain my endless belief in the goodness of humanity.
I hope that I am not alone.