Who’s to blame for post-Edsa failures? | Inquirer Opinion
letter to the editor

Who’s to blame for post-Edsa failures?

05:00 AM February 26, 2021

For everything millennials and members of Gen-Z get faulted for, there’s one destructive and inexplicable character trait that “boomers” can never attribute to us: historical revisionism.

It is therefore quite disturbing to see members of previous generations who lived through the harsh realities of the Marcos dictatorship pass the buck, demanding answers from a generation whose members weren’t even born yet as to what’s the point of the Edsa revolution.

In “A boomer’s notes on Edsa” (Lifestyle, 2/22/21), Eric Caruncho appears to wash his hands of the revolution he never quite supported. It smacks of an overwhelming sense of entitlement that questions the value of the movement in a typically bourgeois manner. He even goes on to normalize the idea that Edsa was not a revolution at all, and pontificates from his position of privilege, bemoaning how nothing really changed and we’re fairly back to where we once were.

But Edsa was indeed a revolution, the personalities behind it notwithstanding. It was a popular movement that reset the country from a police state back to a democracy. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it is a duck.


The promise of Edsa never extended beyond the ousting of Marcos. It was meant as a tool to remove what was perceived as the biggest stumbling block to national growth, not to mention the person ultimately responsible for all the human rights abuses perpetrated by an emboldened military. Beyond that, it was up to you and the rest of your generation to build on what was left of our country. It was incumbent on you to pass along the lessons learned, so history would not repeat itself. You have failed as a generation on BOTH counts. You were there and you could have done something about it, but chose to do nothing.

And while it’s true that some things did not improve in the aftermath of the Edsa revolution, the onus of responsibility falls on those who were in a position to change it. I, too, remember post-Edsa as an “elder millennial.” I remember escaping from Manila and hiding in the province amid the turmoil of the revolution itself, as well as during the multiple coup attempts after. I would’ve loved to go to Edsa and protest, eat sausage and drink beer, and be part of the tidal wave of change that swept the Marcoses from power the first time around, but you see… I was four.

It’s ridiculous to expect a generation who were neither there, nor equipped with a comprehensive awareness of the events that transpired, to fully grasp its significance. It is, however, not wholly unreasonable to expect someone who lived through martial law, and the transformative power of the people power revolution, to at least respect it for what it is, flaws and all.

The sad reality is this: We do see what a horrible place this country has become since then, with patronage politics, massive corruption, economic mismanagement, and widespread poverty and misery. But I implore people to remember that the millennials and Gen Z were born into this climate of uncertainty and instability. We didn’t create it, and we certainly didn’t have a hand in shaping it. So perhaps the correct question to pose to boomers about this period of time in our history is not “What’s the point of it all?” but rather “What did you do about it?”


And if you’re going to ask me what I think, my answer is simple and brutally honest: Not much, and you boomers should be ashamed of yourselves. By choosing to neglect your duty to the nation to honor its legacy by stepping up and taking control of this country, it’s you who have made Edsa irrelevant.

Ryan Robert Flores,
[email protected]

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TAGS: dictatorship, EDSA, opinion, People Power

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