The initiatives of memorialization are cited for holding an essential role in the ascendancy of human rights, as the remembrances of the past terrors, fears, and injustices are a powerful tool to counter its re-occurrence today. However, the plight of historical revisionism in our country continuously manipulates the national memory into thinking of the Marcos regime as the Golden Age in Philippine History when it is, in fact, an era of bloodlust, abuse, and theft, where the inalienable value of human life dwelled in a dictator’s negligence which opposes the just and humane society commended in the Philippine Constitution.
“Pira-Pirasong Kwento: A Creative Collage Making Contest” with the theme “Ang malagim na mga kwento sa nakaraan ay hindi na dapat pang maulit muli / The gruesome stories of the past must never happen again,” centers on the use of any printed media to create a collage as the youth’s expression and dissent against the human rights violations during the Martial Law era because it is in these narratives where we can glean the truth from and find the bravery to fight for the oppression that our generation continues to face today.
These pieces of narratives are artistic statements that showcase social artifacts as a collective memory that extends from the struggles of the past to the choices we make for the future— and so, in this Elections 2022, let us heed the call and serve our duty as citizens of the Philippines to elect candidates who respect their countrymen, and who has proven themselves to be leaders of integrity and competence. Our social responsibility is to work towards the goal of #NeverAgain and #NeverForget and to not turn a blind eye to the thousands of people who were killed, tortured, and imprisoned during the Martial Law era. Let us not allow a second rise of the Marcos’ family in the national government, primarily that they are fueled by the billions of pesos stolen from our nation’s taxpayers.
As artists, we believe that silence is a tacit contribution to the acts that repress the people’s freedom, deny the sanctity of their lives, and erase the atrocities left by the Marcos regime. We aim to influence our fellow creatives to be the powerful voice of morality against the transgressions of power and abuse; as we are the storytellers of the society, and there is no greater truth worth telling than the stories taken away by the evil— for the good always triumphs over it.
Text by Anjella Gieneena Cruz | Buklod Sining Board of Regent, Visual Artist, and IDP Rights Advocate
Buklod Sining Student Organization | Buklod Sining Alumni Society
Novice | Office of the UE – Caloocan Central Student Council