By ABIGAIL B. ANONGOS
In Baguio City, there is a public invitation to attend the Black Friday Protest (BFP) on July 6, 13 and 20. The BFP is organised by Tongtongan ti Umili-Cordillera Peoples Alliance and Anakbayan Metro Baguio. The event intends to shed light on the worsening plight of human rights, with the unabated facsist attacks of the regime against the people. I believe the expected outcome is to motivate the public into action against the many injustices in the present: economically, politically—and the most striking is the state of human rights.
Black Friday Protest kasi you are invited to be in such attire as you protest or otherwise get alternative education from the streets, if you are not outraged enough by the national political and economic crisis. So there are two more BFPs upcoming, on July 13 and July 20. And I will give you 5 good reasons to go:
1. Get educated on the national situation and how it manifests in the Cordillera region. Understand more the peace talks and its importance to the people, the impact of TRAIN law and looming fare hike, the criminalisation of dissent to the extent of a DOJ terrorist listing and trumped-up charges that includes our own Cordillera activists; martial law in Mindanao and defacto martial law all over the country; charter change. Bring two to three of your best buddies so you don’t feel awkward if you don’t know (yet) the organisers. Take down notes. It is worthy to deepen and broaden one’s understanding to make an informed opinion or position.
If the speakers don’t talk about an issue you are expecting to be discussed, it is okay to approach them after and ask.
2. Hone your journalistic aptitude if you are one who likes to write and take photos. Protests are interesting sites for certain subjects. Cover the event in your social media platform.
3. Meet the Cordillera activists in the terror list and understand why they are not terrorists. That activism is not terrorism. They are real people you can talk to, and they will be more than glad to talk to you about this. Meet writer-activist Sherwin de Vera if he is around covering and joining the protest.
4. Level up your fashion sense to protest-fashion. The protest calls for attire in black. You can both be fashionable and politically aware.
5. Be part of a national undertaking. All over the country, we understand that there will be a series of protests leading up to the president’s state of the nation address come July 23. What we would like is to speak of the real state of the nation and the real change urgently needed by the people. There is no better time to take collective action as Filipino people and as Igorots than now when peace and democracy are highly threatened. Be part of this moment in history.
There are added values or add-ons. Your pamasahe going to the venue of protest action will not be sayang:
1. If attending with friends it will be an interestingly different way to bond, and I assure you, you will make new friends.
2. Attending the protest will be an interesting unexpected outcome in your daily route. You can join the protest before proceeding to the jeepney terminal or marketing for supper. You will go home with additional information you can process in your thoughts along the way. By the time you get home you have arrived at a position and hopefully it will be on being critical towards the regime.
3. First time mo sumama sa protesta? There is always a first time.
On top of it all, it matters that you make a stand. So don’t fret so much if you are interested to attend but lack an outfit in black. Just go forth, be fashionable and rage against the injustice. See you in the coming Fridays. # nordis.net