It’s sad to note that people look down on idealism. Moreover, it is crushing when people look down on activists, putting them down as idealists and a malignant force disturbing the status quo.

Activists, however, are not idealists. On the contrary, activists are realists asking for what is due and doing things that should be done.

The reality is that we, as a people, have been dehumanized. Everyday, we are being misled by a government that would readily sell its people for the officials’ personal gains. We are ruled over by politicians without souls.

Our president stole the presidency twice. The first time, she was helped by the people and the second time, she swindled her way into power. She is not worthy of the people’s trust.

Now, amidst the deafening clamor for her to step down and pave the way for a transition council which would try to cure some of our nation’s ills, she has declared a “State of Emergency”, effectively removing our rights as citizens and our freedom as individuals.

Martial law under a different name is what it is. It is digging her claws and biting into the people just to keep from being washed away by the tide of complaints and demands for justice.

We cannot simply accept these things and say the things we have been saying since forever to make us feel better. Things like “Pilipinas nga naman, o,” or “E wala e, bulok talaga yung sistema,” or the famous “It’s none of my business. I’ve got a good job and I’m making money and that’s all that matters,” do not help. It desensitizes us to the wrongs being done to us and we learn to accept the evils perpetrated upon the people as things that “just happen”.

It’s funny to note how the statements above would sound like the idealistic ramblings of an activist, but those statements are concrete realities that we, as a people, must face.
We just can’t keep running away or hiding from a corrupt system. We can’t keep on seeing the people demanding the correction of the wrong things going on as dreamers.

And it is not true that we cannot do anything about it. Open your eyes and look around you. Believe that we should, and we can.

Oliver, 20, is a fourth year English Studies student at the University of the Philippines-Diliman.

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