People Power does not live on today, say social web users

By Justin Jimenez, ANC

Posted at Feb 24 2010 12:12 AM | Updated as of Feb 27 2010 06:46 AM

MANILA, Philippines - This week marks the 24th anniversary of the 1986 People Power Revolution.

From February 22 to February 25, 1986, a series of peaceful protests along Epifanio De Los Santos Avenue led to the deposition of the Marcos regime and the restoration of democracy to the Philippines. The non-violent demonstrations were the first of their kind, with many crediting People Power for sparking similar movements for democracy around the world.

So we asked, given the current political climate, have Filipinos truly lived the lessons of the EDSA Revolution?

Among netizens, the answer was a resounding ‘No’.

Facebook user, Annecy Parumog, blames what she says is the Filipino tendency to easily forget the past. She says, Filipinos must remain vigilant and should not settle into complacency. @PortiaShylock believes that the conditions that spurred the EDSA Revolution still exist in the Philippines today – namely, the abuse of power, lack of accountability, and disunity. @lyleatienza, however, was quick to note that much of the People Power generation has died or migrated overseas, and the new generation does not understand the significance of the movement.

Referring to the country’s level of political maturity, @forg9587 says EDSA Dos, EDSA Tres, and other attempts to replicate the original movement "speak volumes". @iangomez similarly admonishes Filipinos for electing the wrong leaders and "'People Power[-ing]' them out of office." In doing so, he says, Filipinos are misusing collective action.

Meanwhile, one Facebook user, Bert Salon, believes the Philippines was better off during the Marcos administration, and that EDSA replaced a dictator with "a bunch of corrupt politicians".

But amid the generally glum discussion, @carolinian0612 added an optimistic note. She tweeted that while she experienced neither martial law under Marcos nor witnessed the valor of those who gathered on EDSA in 1986, she is thankful to the Filipinos who fought for democracy. @justinecastillo shared these sentiments, noting that "EDSA 1 was about choosing democracy". She added, the fact that we can openly discuss issues is proof of its success.

The 1986 People Power Revolution thrust the Philippines into the global political limelight for showing the world just how far the young country would go for democracy.

And with May's polls looming, Filipinos are again clamoring for change.

Add to the discussion by tweeting us at @ANCALERTS, becoming a fan of our Facebook fan page, ANC 24/7, or posting a video response on our YouTube account, ANCALERTS, and tell us if you think 1986’s struggle for democracy still lives on today.