I’M not joining the debate on whether Ferdinand Marcos, dead these many years (since 1989), deserves to be buried at Libingan ng mga Bayani. The way I see it, the discussion may be compartmentalized into the legal, the political, and the sentimental.
I am not a lawyer, I don’t know enough law. I am not a politician with a populist idea to spread or a crowd to back me up. I am not a sentimentalist, even if I was part of what my pro-Aquino friends and colleagues called the “tuta” press (circa ‘70s -‘80s) as opposed to the noble mosquito press and its ramifications, outgrowths, martyrs, heroes.
But Rodrigo Duterte, the candidate who promised he’d unify the nation by allowing the former President’s interment in the cemetery of heroes, is the boss now and he is a lawyer, and he quotes the law to explain why the FM issue should be buried once and for all. It’s easy for the pro-Marcos faction to say “let’s move on” when on the other side of the fence, wounds have not healed and hurtful memories live.
There’s a suggestion from former President FVR to let the people decide, by which he means through the congressmen and senators who are their representatives. Even so, FVR must realize that such a course of action will take time, knowing the hemming and hawing, the interpellating and the hearings (sometimes without listening) that are expected to go on inside those august chambers. There is wisdom in the suggestion. Is FVR trying to buy time? Could he be actually playing and praying for a delay in the September timetable, hoping emotions will cool down or, to put it more succinctly, is he waiting for fate or destiny or the unexpected to intervene, so that when that something happens, the people on all three sides will see it for what it is, a solution worthy of our compassion, our intelligence, our love of country?
For now, it does not seem likely that Du30 will take a step backward. Then again, he has backtracked before, without skipping a beat or losing face. That’s the charm of this presidency. (Jullie Y. Daza)