By CORHEINNE JOYCE B. COLENDRES
All three branches of the government have become terrifying since the beginning of the current president’s rule. It is as if all Filipinos have no one left to trust, because what can the people do when the ones who they have placed in power—people who were supposed to protect them—ended up catering to their own selfish needs?
The administration has countlessly used and abused the name of the Filipino people to their advantage: the drug war was said to be for our safety, the alarming connections that were initiated with China were supposedly for the betterment of the Filipino citizens. We are all being sold, threatened, and violated in our own land, and in both subtle and literal manners by the institutions who have taken an oath to protect us.
We soon learned to take battles into our own hands because no one will fight for us but ourselves. The press has made considerable efforts to uncover the dirt that this government frantically hides, and we have learned to stand together to support workers as they demanded justice from their employers. Recently, we even won a battle in a courtroom: the three cops who killed a 17-year-old boy who they claimed to be a drug courier were convicted of murder and sentenced to reclusion perpetua without bail or parole.
Although powerful and monumental, these achievements are still small steps toward the path of progress and justice. There is still too much to do and accomplish, but it seems like we are all running out of time. Every small win against our perpetrators results to more problems that we cannot handle; it seems as though defeat still prevails despite our small victories.
Regardless, we must understand that the fight continues. The fight does not stop with our activism. The fight does not stop with simply wanting to correct wrongs. The fight does not stop with all of us standing together and working toward a common goal, because as long as we allow the death of random people in the streets for the sake of the drug war, as long as we tolerate the president’s jokes against women, the Catholic Church, minority groups, and other factions that he lambasts in an effort to hide what is truly going on in the country, and finally, as long as we allow people like the late dictator’s wife—who can mock justice because people in power allow her to do so—as long as these injustices transpire before our eyes, our fight continues.