Rizal and the Valley Golf fiasco

The discussion has toned down a little but the mainstream media is still echoing the uproar of the local blogosphere on the Valley Golf fiasco and about how bloggers have rallied to the side of the dela Paz family after learning that they have been beaten to a pulp by the DAR secretary and his son the Mayor of Masui.

However, like in any democracy, the move is not without critics whom have argued that the bloggers’ act, has a bit of hypocrisy because when a middle-class family became the victims of abusive government officials, we were quick to cry wolf, grab torches, pitchforks and prepared for battle, so to speak.

However, the same crowd were silent, back when activists were being kidnapped and liquidated, farmers who have lost their lands and are starving to death walked hundreds of miles to get their voices heard and the country’s top official stole the ballot twice and continues to lie, steal and kill for her own ambitions.

Or as BrianB has commented in Filipino Voices:

To all our clueless middle class. Welcome to the Philippines.

When the politicos were going after the poor, their lands and their rights, what did the middle class do? Nothing. When the politicos went after the press, what did the middle class do? Nothing. Now they are starting to come at you and your previous apathy has made you as weak as puking baby.

As Butch aka Warrior Lawyer puts its, BrianB has a valid point but he begs to differ:

the reaction of the upper-middle class is wholly understandable as what happened to the De La Paz family hits close to home. It could have been us, one would immediately think. Not that I can afford a membership to Valley Golf (both the De La Pazes and Pagandamans are members) but I certainly have a few close buddies who are members and have been invited many times to drop by the place. And access to the internet platform that is the blogosphere, at least as far as creating compelling content is concerned, remains, like golf, to be a largely elite undertaking. Note that it was Bambee’s blog that alerted fellow bloggers and stirred up their passionate response.

And I agree entirely. This apathy (or hypocrisy ?) cannot be helped because the middle class is in the middle (duh!) of the social order/pyramid/pecking order in our society. They just go with the flow, especially if it will serve their own class interests, of which they are not always consciously aware of doing.

Again, this is not something new. It has happened before. In fact, it happened 112 years and two days ago.

The execution of the most famous member of the Filipino middle-class, which back then were called the principalia, in our history, the illustrado, Jose Rizal.

In their book, The History of the Burgis, authors Mariel N. Francisco and Maria C. Arriola in a comment on the execution of Jose Rizal shares the same way view as BrianB puts forward:

Rizal was not just another martyr. He was an ilustrado. His execution marked a transgression into their illustrious ranks. Thus did the ilustrados (finally!) shift their considerable social weight to the side of the revolutionary masses. Much as the burgis did after Ninoy Aquino’s assassination.

I’m not saying the dela Pazes are the modern day Rizals nor Ninoys but this little anecdote in our history reminds us of who we are as a people and why we are still in this God-forsaken third world-status.

5 Replies to “Rizal and the Valley Golf fiasco”

  1. In my humble opinion, the pinoy blogosphere needs to see both sides of the story though. I have come across one blog post that vicisity (or whatever her name is) did hit the body guards with an umbrella before that happened.

    1. True, both sides of the story must be heard and given ample space and attention in the local blogosphere.

      However, it will still be best if both sides are given the opportunity to be heard in court. I for one, am not saying that the dela Paz family are saints. I can't remember nor have come across a blog post that says they are, if what you say is true, then all will be revealed in court. If the case does reach the trial stage.

  2. I have not been as active as I used to do. After learning what happened, seeing the clips. I felt sad. This was done upon someone from the middle-class, yes, we should still be outraged. If this has happened from some well-off family, how much more someone who has less. We would have ignored them, most of them have no means to speak out the way the De La Pazes did.

    Regardless of who it happened to, I still think that people should take a look at people who abuse power.

    My brother was detained recently in a province and almost bigger mess if not for speedy action from people we know, this was after they got into trouble with one mayor's henchmen. It's really sad.

  3. I just hope that there would be credible witnesses and a fair trial. In fair I mean that decisions wont be made by the perception of the people of who was the bad guy or the good guy but by what really is the truth.

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