What Mabini Would Do

If Mabini were alive today he’d be 150 years old. I had to look up what ‘sesquicentennial’ definition is on line to know what it means after reading from my tweeter feed that today marks his sesquicentennial birthday.

As usual, you’ll have the usual politicians giving speeches about Mabini’s heroic virtues and contributions to this nation. Its sad that even these kind of commemorations are highly politicized. I just saw on line the president talking about DAP in what was supposed to be a day remembering how the hero lived. That’s just tasteless and terrible— if Mabini’s still around, he would have criticized this president and this government unmercifully — we’re suppose to be fighting corruption, not creating possibilities for it.

But, you know, we deserve the kind of leaders and government we have. Nobody placed them there but us. So we have to sit and watch them, just like in Aguinaldo’s years in power, divide this already fractured state. In the end, it is us, the common man, the common Filipino, who loses.

Just like in Mabini’s time, the rich families and their members in political positions would enrich and perpetuate themselves in power, while the rest of the country suffers.

When will this change? I don’t know. I don’t think nobody really knows. We’ve been voting the likes of Jinggoy, Bong Revilla into office, so I guess we’re still far from figuring this whole thing out. We’re just not serious enough to fix the whole damn government. We look to be entertained, oddly enough, even in how our nation is being run, and that’s what we’re all having today.

The NCCA’s official twitter site shared a post from this site earlier this morning. It’s an article I wrote after I visited the Mabini shrine in Tanauan where I met some of his relatives.

Happy 150th!


Strange is that the days after the typhoon when there was no electricity I started re-reading Mabini’s letters. I’m not good in remembering dates so I did not know that today’s going to be his 150th birthday. Just last night I was reading his correspondence while incarcerated in Guam. My subconscious mind must have triggered my body to hit the shelves and find that old book compiling all of Mabini’s correspondence.

I want to find the original letters written in Spanish but the NHI only have them in English. Like his contemporary writers, it is said that Mabini’s Spanish was excellent. Unfortunately, most of his writings are of political nature.

Anyway, does anyone even care what Mabini wrote and how he wrote in Spanish when even his heroic story has long been forgotten? Sad reality is that for most of us, Mabini’s a street and if you’re old enough to remember, a balding figure printed on our paper money some decades ago.

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