There is a question that’s baffled me over the last several weeks now:
What do the Yellowtards stand for and who do they look to for leadership?
On first glance, the answer to this question seems obvious. Of course they stand for all the good things delivered by the 1986 people power “revolution”; freedom, democracy, yadda yadda. They also revere — and even pray to — the founder of modern Philippine democracy, the late former president Cory Aquino. They venerate her son, outgoing President Benigno Simeon ‘BS’ Aquino III as an incarnate of that leadership. They express their devotion to this branded advocacy by flashing the “L” hand gesture which symbolises the laban (fight) for that freedom and wearing yellow-coloured attire whenever possible, specially when attending yellow-branded rallies. Their oft-chanted mantra is Daang Matuwid (straight path) which, they believe, is the key underlying principle and philosophy of the Yellow brand. They also extend this devotion to people who are endorsed under that yellow brand — specifically “vice president-elect” Leni Robredo: who precariously stands as the last bastion of Yellow power in the Philippines’ Executive branch of government.
So then perhaps, in light of recent developments, the Yellowtards might want to consider that a stock-take of this belief system has come due.
Here are some guide questions that could be used for this evaluation:
(1) Does the Liberal Party of the Philippines still exist in the form the Yellowtards had originally come to adore?
Unfortunately, the Liberal Party, like any other political “party” in the Philippines was just an election winning machine back in 2010 and a power brokerage house over the course of BS Aquino’s six-year term. Today it has all but disintegrated. The “vice president-elect” Leni Robredo no longer seems to associate herself with the LP. Indeed there are signs that Robredo who now faces the real possibility that she will lose the vice presidency she supposedly “won” was, herself, double-crossed by the LP. Mar Roxas — the LP’s losing presidential candidate — has gone back to wearing blue shirts. Congress saw a raft of mass defections from the LP and into the PDP Laban Party of president-elect Rodrigo Duterte.
(2) Does the colour Yellow still stand for all the right stuff?
Apparently it no longer does (assuming it ever did). Under the watch of the Liberal Party and outgoing President BS Aquino, massive pork barrel thievery and pork barrel-funded bribery was perpetrated. Under the Daang Matuwid doctrine, laws were baldly ignored, rights were trampled upon, belligerent foreign governments were conspired with, alliances with deadly terrorist groups were entered into, and massive electoral fraud implemented. There was nothing straight about Daang Matuwid. Even simple rules issued by the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) to govern the conduct of this year’s elections were outright and shamelessly violated by the Liberal Party.
(3) Is there still a Laban to fight?
There is none such. The idea that Yellowtards are supposed to be “fighting” for something has long gone past its use-by date. The Philippines enjoys a moderately mature democracy. This is evident in the relatively orderly and peaceful transition of power currently transpiring before Filipinos’ (and the world’s) eyes. The irony that escapes Yellowtards is that the only battle left worth fighting is right under their noses. The last vestiges of a bygone chaotic past when Philippine elections were known for the “guns, goons, and gold” that fuelled it still remains. Allegations of massive electoral fraud and astoundingly vast sums of money spent on campaigns persist. It is quite remarkable that Yellowtards do not see these two big and current affronts to Philippine democracy as issues worth highlighting.
The answers to the above three guide questions are quite confronting. Yellowtards, in short, seem to now lack any underlying principles upon which to base the rather quaint movements in their ranks we observe today. The way they defend and apologise for the personalities they revere is marked by an absolute lack of modern logic and sound argument. They have no coherent position on any issue. They only have their undying devotion to keep them going.
The Yellowtards now also lack a god-like leader. Why is godliness in Yellowtard leadership important? Simple. Because Yellowtards base their actions on blind belief rather than on sound thinking. You can see this in the way they continue to foolishly grasp at their increasingly nebulous political brand, one whose representation in the real world — an organised party, consistent political leaders, and an intelligent guiding philosophy — have become mere shells if not totally non-existent.
Perhaps the best thing the Yellowtards could do is retire their brand and disband their “advocacies”. Theirs is but a mere relic of an era that has now closed. More importantly, Yellowtardism is practically inextricably interwoven into the fabric of Imperial Manila politics. Unfortunately the powerbase has shifted. The new president is a Mindanaoan. President-elect Duterte is an outsider to inbred Imperial Manila politics and will, for the first time in Philippine history, more strongly represent the interests of the long-neglected southern regions of the country.
There are no significant EDSA “shrines” or monuments to Yellowtardism in Mindanao. And that is a strong indicator of a reality that Yellowtards need to come to terms with. Perhaps it is high time the Yellowtards extricate themselves from the dark blanket of Yellowtardism and open their eyes to the dawn of a new era.
[Photo courtesy Inquirer.net.]