All posts filed under: The Lily Pad

All Hail To the Goddess Ostara

Or Eastre – from which the words Easter and estrogen spring, and from whose rites –started sometime in 500 BC — comes the egg, the ultimate fertility symbol. Nanny used to wake me early Easter Sunday as the church bells rang and make me jump up and down on the bed so I’d grow really tall. I think she had dreams of raising a basketball star. Huge disappointment. I didn’t even get to tall. Lent seems to grow bloodier and bloodier in the Philippines which spewed out gory images of flagellants shredding their backs to ribbons with thorny whips, of 25 people, including one woman, who had themselves crucified. Government issued an edict banning foreigners from crucifying themselves – and why not? – thus tacitly saying that only the local lower classes may do so. STGdess, the idea that those who already suffer on a daily basis should corporeally punish themselves more and terribly one day of each year just does not compute to my mind. I don’t see the rich self-flagellating or nailing themselves …

A Traditional Election Spread

Been getting emails asking what I thought of the coming (May) presidential elections. I sort of dithered, asking do I have to? (think about it, that is), one of the main reasons being that though there were so many candidates (99 who wanted to be president), 99% were uninteresting. If you’ve been born bored as I was, there’s no greater bane than uninteresting. So finally, this week, when the inquiring emails reached a ridiculous 350, I took a look. And decided I like the platform of Sen. Jamby Madrigal. Access it and read at her website – www.jambymadrigal.com. She seems to be engaged in a wide spectrum of concerns – from LRT long-lines to fisherfolks, to the Visiting Forces Agreement (she’s against it) and the Magna Carta of Women. Many women politician get to power by (re)molding themselves to symbolize the male traditional view of how a woman should be (as in non-controversial and malleable) and thus de-genderize themselves in the process, becoming a conduit for conservatism. Sen. Madrigal seems to have escaped this; seems, …

Déjà Vu All Over Again

April is the cruelest month, especially way back in 1973, the 4th of the month to be precise, when Liliosa Hilao was murdered in the makeshift detention quarters of the (Philippine) Constabulary Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU). In the wake of Presidential Proclamation 1081, which imposed martial rule on the Philippines, CANU had abruptly given dope dealers, dope pushers and narcotics traffickers a unilateral truce, electing instead to go after activists, “leftists,” dissenters and a vast array of people who did not want Mr. Marcos to change the Constitution so he, his clan and cronies could rule forever. Liliosa was 23 years old, a scholar at the City University of Manila and editor of Hasik, the school’s student newspaper. Later testimonies revealed she had been tortured, gang-raped, injected with truth serum. Then, because she wouldn’t be cowed and vowed to go after her brutalizers, they poured muriatic acid down her throat and killed her. Hers was the first death in the urban detention centers of the Marcos regime. When her family tried to obtain justice, the military …