Memo to Lacierda: Diverse does not mean divided
What is it about the “EDSA Tayo” Sept. 11 event that has certain people in Malacanang so hot and bothered?
Actually, what is it about the “EDSA Tayo” Sept. 11 event that anti-PNOY groups and pro-GMA groups are also out in force attacking the organizers?
To discuss that, we need to go back to the Million People March, the mammoth event sparked by a single individual’s post. Musician Ito Rapadas’ musings on Facebook, picked up by friends, transformed into a call that, in turn, touched a chord in the psyches of so many Filipinos.
The MPM had a face, one of the initiators, Peachy Bretana. It did not have A Leader.
Instead, Peachy and friends, in the course of conversations on the MPM Facebook events page, reached out to individuals who could help them. They were, after all, not used to mobilizing, much less mobilizing hundreds of thousands of people. They cared about those who responded to their call. But they knew what they wanted — a horizontal mass of people respectful of each other’s limits and united on a few main issues.
Most of the individuals who responded to the MPM call knew a thing or two about organizing. They also came from different shades of the political spectrum, from yellow and green and pink and red.
It was a rare opportunity to see in planning meetings some groups have spent so much energy sniping at each other.
Those who helped saw that many characters, real or “trolls”, were flooding the MPM page with provocative remarks about people who should stay away — the organized. And other characters were falling for the provocations and busy sniping at the MPM initiators.
TRUST THE CROWD
But you gotta trust the crowd. In a few days, it had gelled. A motley group of individuals and groups negotiated the numerous faultlines of an event meant to be inclusive, at a very fragile time when all sides were just getting to know each other.
People decided to focus on urgent tasks. Since they were involved in MPM, they knew better than respond to the provocations. Word was discreetly sent out to followers and friends — do not allow them to shift the discourse.
It wasn’t a love fest. But it was the start of people trying to see where the other sides were coming from.
Everyone has praised the conduct of the Luneta rally. That was as much a testament to the discipline of the organized forces as the openness and courage of the unaffiliated.
And that, I suppose, scares some people. Especially given that anger against pork isn’t going away. Especially since a growing number of people are realizing the problem isn’t just confined to Congress. Especially since people are saying… drop the colors, drop the partisan warfare; the Bosses want everyone accountable.
Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp.