“Teach” Martial Law?
We don’t “teach” Martial Law. It is already one significant episode in Philippine history. Philippine history written by some Filipino authors is biased. That is understandable and accepted like some undeniably facts like they say we already had a “nation” albeit fragmented with the emphasis on datus ruling “balangays” long before the Spaniards “discovered” the Philippines.
The Philippine revolution against Spanish rule depicted and gave more weight on the nationalistic fervor that influenced the minds of our revolutionary heroes like Rizal, Mabini, Bonifacio, et al, again giving emphasis to Spanish “misrule”. The same treatment was written about other “foreign invaders” like the Americans and the Japanese Imperial administrations.
We can not deny the fact that these entire regime has largely and in a good measure contributed to develop our country. But the role of dissenting Filipino heroes occupied the Philippine historical pages. Again this is understandable and accepted.
How should Martial Law therefore be written and taught’?
State the facts. Period! Let it be laced with incontrovertible incidents and historical facts. No more, no less. It is unfortunate that after 40 years since the declaration of Martial Law in Sept. 21, 1972 there raises a cacophony of sounds coming from all over for Martial Law to be “taught” in our classrooms and these come from some biased interests.
Some of those who aired their views would want to depict the total ugliness of that regime. They mostly come from the anti-Marcos political forces, alleged victims of atrocities, veteran street parliamentarians, some biased religious leaders and those who love to hate Imelda with her jewels, costly wardrobes and fantabulous lifestyle. That is not fair.
In the same vein blind followers of the 20-year Ferdie-Meldy Conjugal Dictatorship believe that Martial and the much ballyhooed New Society regime was the best things that ever happened to this blighted nation. Again that’s not accurate.
Both groups should have no say and participation in rewriting our curricular offerings in schools. In this regard we recommend that government thru DepEd should organize a Rewriting Curricular Task Force to be composed of “real” Filipino historians, scholars from the academe, highly respected citizens and some selected business groups both during Marcos and past Martial Law era, yes even biography writers of Marcos and some respected media practitioners.
The top officials of this task force should as much as possible watch out for biases in their arguments while writing the story of Martial Law. There and then we will be having real and unbiased story of the Marcosian Martial Law regime.
By: Alvin Gz. Arpon
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