Classes have been suspended today because of a suspected impending coup. Two high ranking officers were relieved of their posts as they expressed their non-support for this government.
As a teen-ager, I remember the times when I would be very happy over the suspension of classes. There were a number of reasons why classes would be suspended during those days. First was the occurence of strong typhoons. We would have no classes for days because of inclement weather and inundation. i even managed to work overnight (my first time to work ever, I was 14 or 15 yrs old then) for a nutribun factory that was contracted by the government to offer relief to those stranded in central luzon. I remember the whole of Pampanga, Bulacan and nearby provinces in a sea of water and classes were suspended for a week at least. This was probably during the first years of martial law. I remember soldiers waiting for sacks and sacks of bread to be delivered. They were slumped on the floor sleeping or inside their 6 X 6 truck.
Earlier on, classes would be suspended for rallies happening in Morayta, Quiapo, the university belt and the University of the Philippines. Again, being a young teen-ager, I dld not know that this would be known as the first quarter storm. Student activists had died during rallies but still more and more people would march on the streets. There was this Carlos Santana song that goes "Jinggoooo, go back. Go back back go back." which rallyists had adapted and changed the lyrics to "Marcooooos, talagang tuta" alluding to Marcos' beng a lapdog to Amnerican imperialism.
Well, this is well-known history so there is no use writing about it. However, to my young mind, I did not care then. I was just happy there would be no Trigonometry class. However, Doc Emer
just texted about the signing of the president of Proclamation 1017 which allows a warrantless arrest of suspected individuals, among others. (I have yet to read the news) This is just like the prelude to martial law when Marcos suspended the writ of habeas corpus. While I was nonchalant about political upheavals during my youth, I am more aware now as an adult. I look at things and try to analyze whatever information I receive. Will we experience another episode of military take over? I have the strong suspicion that we won't. Marcos has planned his moves well. He has wooed every general to his side. He had the full support of the military who at the time was confined inside their barracks awaiting to be called should there be a war. Looking back, I could just imagine how Being involved directly with civilian concerns like the political arena would have been tempting for their officers. That would mean sharing the limelight with the political leaders.
However, Gloria Arroyo does not have this luxury. Not after Edsa when the people has seen the power of civil disobedience. Not after Edsa where the people saw that the military can be swayed to their favor and defy their officers. Not after several failed coup attempts. As it is, the military is no longer the unified institution that it once was. Its leaders began to think on their own after it has seen the events that has happened since Edsa. Some of these young officers have their own agenda which to my mind is can include taking over the reins of government.
If ever martial law takes in effect, it will mean tremendous bloodshed like what happened in Tiananmen Square or worse, the military split to two and civil war ensues. Hope that never happens. At any event, should Gloria or any of her detractors and other players in this recent event fail, that would mean they will only have to heal their battered egos. We, the poor citizens of the Philippines will have to suffer more. Ganda no?