Archive for philippine independence day

the flag to its nation

Posted in artifacts, events, locales, people with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2008 by mijodo
Author’s note: I am featuring an article I had done for the new website, brownheritage.com (http://brownheritage.com/index.html).  I hope the readers here enjoy my other articles and the other articles written by my fellow writers in the said site.
                     
The flag was just not cooperating. I was about to take this supposedly great picture for Philippine Independence Day, but the flag was too lifeless to create a searing picture that could stir up one’s patriotic fervor. Alas the wind  was not helping.
 
As it has been told, ours is the only National Flag that can convey that the nation is at war. Once the flag is hoisted having the red horizontal band as its upper part, then war is declared with another state such as when the Commonwealth was against the Axis Nations, like Japan during World War II (1941-1944). The red is known to mean courage while the blue section – peace and unity.
 
But in relatively calmer times, it has been a rallying point to many Filipinos, most specially in international sports and competitions. The victorious boxer drapes himself  in a cloth that had been  created originally by Marcella Agoncillo for Emilio Aguinaldo’s Declaration of Independence from Spain (1898). The Filipino audience sees the blue and the red, and claps for the new hero that has just made the whole islands of  Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao proud as symbolized by the three stars in the white triangle part of the Flag.
 
In modern history, the flag has been used to bear witness in creating social changes either made in peaceful revolutions or tempestuous conflicts. The need for reforms is made more consequential, once the National Hymn or even Bayan Ko is performed in public gatherings such as in EDSA or secret hideaways in the boondocks and hills of the provincial areas . Afterall, the flags eight rays of the sun represent the first eight provinces that revolted for independence in 1896. These were Nueva Ecija, Tarlac, Pampanga, Bulacan, Cavite , Batangas, Laguna, and Manila .
 
 
But to the youngster, it is where they make their solemn pledge of allegiance or “Panatang Makabayan” on a daily basis. After reciting a daily prayer to his Creator, the school kid stands up erect in front of the waving flag and makes the oath to be the good citizen that is expected of him by his family, his school, and his government.  And the flag’s emblematic sun shows how the Filipinos have shone through to build progress for their nation despite the incredible odds and chaos through the years.
 
And to just instill life to the flag for the photoshoot, I asked my assistants to toss the flag a little bit. Let their hands be the propeller of action to the almost motionless nation flag. Lo and behold, with the help too of nature’s wind, the flag started to undulate and reveal its glory.  The flag was able to make its own dance – carefree and confident. The Philippine flag was already ready for its own close-up.
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creating the patriot

Posted in artifacts, events with tags , , , , on June 12, 2008 by mijodo

Happy Independence Day.

In a recent visit to Banaue, while my companions and I were at Banuae Hotel, just languidly waiting our time for departure to Manila, in its main hall, there was a curious assembly of public school teachers from many parts of the Philippines. Apparently, the mentors had a one week seminar on how to create national pride in their students, particularly when the students sing the National Anthem and recite the Panatang Makabayan. During that time, the teachers had to sing the anthem properly (and in tune). Also they were tasked to create ways on how to propagate love for country among the young students.

I could not believe it. I was elated.  Yes, it was the teachers themselves who gave much time for this extra work when they were supposed to be enjoying still their own summer vacations. Moreover, the participants themselves even paid for their own accommodation in Banaue’s poshest place. The teachers needed to prepare a big budget for this vacation seminar, I presume.  Thus, it was sadly expected that many other teachers had not been able to come because of the added expense on them.  Just the same, hurray for all the coordinators and teachers for their deep concern about how to encourage patriotism for this nation.

More specially now, that many don’t even get to sing the exact lyrics of our National Anthem. Not even those professional singers who miserably bang up “Bayang Magiliw” just before a special boxing fight, featuring Filipino pugilists-heroes. Thus embarrassingly, the following day, these singers have become side stories themselves in the newspapers’ front pages.