Thursday, May 29, 2008


Republic Act 9492 allows the transfer and observance of (some) holidays to the nearest Monday. Last year, the heirs of General Emilio Aguinaldo denounced the controversial proclamation of President Gloria Arroyo as she declared June 12 a working holiday, saying it was sheer disrespect to all Filipinos - and the great general must have turned in his grave with a clenched fist pointing toward Malacanang. This year, GMA has "changed" the observance of our Independence Day date again - from June 12 to June 9. So it shall come to pass that we have a president who carelessly changes important dates in the name of 'long weekends.' In an interview last year, Emilio Aguinaldo Suntay III, a great grandson of the hero said he was "aghast over such travesty, and what if we declare Christmas as a working holiday, making 95% of Christian Filipinos feel disrespected?" Suntay had written a letter of protest against Proclamation 1211 which declared June 11 last year a non-working holiday and June 12 a working day. And only recently, Malacanang has announced that the same shall be done again this June. The proclamation was effected to create a 3-day long weekend and possibly encourage domestic travel for local tourism to boom. The irony of the matter is that it was President Arroyo's very own father, the late but not great President Diosdado Macapagal who moved heaven and earth to make June 12 the date for our Independence Day, and making July 4 Philippine-American Day. And because of this, President Diosdado Macapagal must have turned in his grave as well. It really doesn't seem right to many people to be commemorating historic events on the wrong day. It's a "mockery of commemoration." For no other right-minded head of state in the world would dare make his or her national day movable. England has no independence day but has St. George's Day, while Ireland has St. Patrick's Day. These days are NEVER movable. So, the idea of moving our freedom day was and continue to be done in bad taste. Thus, it would be silly for President Arroyo since moving our special day again this year by means of another proclamation. GMA, during one of her inebriated nights probably thought that General Emilio Aguinaldo was looking at some old calendar and declared our Independence Day on June 12, 1898 which was a Sunday, maybe because it was his wish for the anniversary of I-Day to fall on a Monday so that Pinoys would enjoy their very first long weekend in malls in 300 years. Bataan was given up on purpose by the Amerikanos on April 9, 1942 which was a Thursday, thinking that they just simply had too much of this thing called war and wanted to have a 3-day long weekend beginning on a Friday. The Japanese had the same thing in mind and since 'karaoke' was still a thing of the future, off they went to their 'comfort women' instead. Dr. Jose Rizal was executed by 'mousqueterie' on December 30, 1896. That was a Wednesday. That infuriated the citizens because the next day was a Thursday, a regular working day. Collectively they muttered, "We'll have to wait two long years before we can make a long weekend out of this. Let's start a revolution instead!"

No comments: