Atty. Luke Espiritu
Philippine Union for Nationalist Liberation (PUNYAL)
However, is the truth that elusive at this point that "communal action" simply means discovering it under the intricate lies and deceit woven by the monstrous evil in Malacañang? Or, is the truth already evident that it should lead to no other conclusion than to remove and cut off completely that which destroys our moral fiber as a nation?
Our beloved bishops, we your people are not ignorant. Nay, we your people are not as stupid as the sycophants of Ms. Gloria Arroyo treat us through Malacañang's outrageous and absurd falsehoods. The search for truth is not only about to begin. The truth has long been found.
It has been there since Ms. Arroyo's distinctive voice was heard calling "Hello Garci" and when she made a vague apology afterwards that fooled nobody. The truth stared at our faces when our protests were muffled through the Calibrated Pre-Emptive Response, when whistle-blowers were harassed and threatened with harm while criminals in public office were protected through E.O. 464 and when farmers' funds disappeared into thin air. The truth is heard from the grieving mothers of Sherlyn Cadapan, Karen Empeño and Jonas Burgos. Truth is not some distant hope but is as real and tangible as the warm blood shed by the victims of extra-judicial killings. No, the search for truth did not begin when Jun Lozada re-surfaced from an apparent captivity.
WE HAVE LONG KNOWN THE TRUTH that straining to "search" for it even when truth is already in our hands is like goading ourselves to first pretend that we are blind. This is, therefore, the time to ACT on the basis of what we already know rather than to backtrack and delude ourselves that we know nothing yet.
Hence, contrary to your February 26, 2008 Pastoral Statement, we cannot simply beseech Malacañang to aid in investigating itself through the abolition of E.O. 464 or to take the lead in combating corruption. We can neither entrust the search for truth upon those who stifle it nor place the burden of change upon those who resist it. In other words, our freedom cannot come from the very hands of our oppressors. We have to win it for ourselves.
Finally, the beholders of truth cannot take a neutral position for they must side against the forces of deceit, nay, of evil. Hence, we cannot understand how anyone can take the middle course or how it must be perceived that your role during these troubled times is to desist from taking sides.
During World War II, the Vatican under Pope Pius XII remained neutral in the face of mounting evidence of the Holocaust. The apology came more than fifty (50) years later when the Vatican became contrite for its less than active role in preventing the slaughter of the Jews. By then, 6 million Jews had already lost their lives inside the Nazi concentration camps.
Our dear bishops, should we suffer the same fate? Should more of our youth disappear? Should more of our journalists and activists be killed? Should more of our poor die slowly of hunger as rapacious officials suck dry the nation's resources? Then, we may no longer be there to accept an apology.