At the recent FOCAP meeting, Pres. Noynoy Aquino stated his decision not to give the former dictator president Ferdinand Marcos, state funeral on the Libingan ng mga Bayani or any military honors. This came after long debates and consultations whether or not to give the late president state honors. On the part of the Aquino government, they said the president considered “Justice as the reason” for denying military honors and state funeral for Marcos.
On the other side, the family of the revered Ilocono president claimed that President Aquino has no word of honor. They said the consultations and debates are just “theatrical acts” since there have been final decision from the very start. Sen. Bongbong Marcos (the only son of the late dictator) even said “It is very hard to deal in good faith with somebody who does not have one word on the subject”. He also said that this issue causes division among the people which is not good for the country.
As for my take, this issue is long overdue. In my humble opinion this could have been settled long ago, should only the Marcos family let go of their wish to have their patriarch given a state honor. If they want to give Ferdie the peace that they longed, why didn’t they buried him in his hometown in Ilocos. What will be the difference (for them) if he will be buried on an ordinary cemetery? Is it that, they still want to be famous up to the grave? If they want to have unification isn’t the more logical thing to do is to let the dictator be laid to rest so that the issue will no longer haunt our society.
I cannot say and I would not say that Marcos didn’t do anything good for our country, but in weighing his mark in our history, the abuses and injustice that he caused during the martial rule was enough reason not to give him the honor that is supposed due to him. If Bongbong is crying divisiveness, what will the martial law victims feel, if FM will be given the state honor they want? Will it unify the country at all? And up until now they still not recognize those abuses during his presidency. How can people forgive and forget when apology and acceptance of the mistakes are not shown?
In any sides, this issue will keep on dividing the country. Because the family will always call for the state burial but the anti-Marcos society will always dissent. So if they really love their father and Imelda loves her husband, they should give him the burial that is long due to him. If they really think he deserves the honor, then give it to him by laying him to rest. On the part of the government on the other hand or on the President at the very least, he should have already said NO, since it will be understandable because Noynoy’s father the late Sen. Ninoy Aquino was one of the victims of the martial law. But instead they hanged the nation into these consultation efforts which at the end boiled down to the decision that should be expected from the very start.
Filipinos are forgiving but forgetting those events that curtailed our democracy is far beyond I can imagine. The victims may all die, but their generations will live on and forever will contradict any move to give the former dictator any Heroic or State Burial.
“An honor given by the state can be sweet, but it’s people’s honor given to you that matters”