Sunday, December 14, 2008

Anti-ChaCha Rally

Friday started early for me as I prepared for the rally in Makati. Fetched Manolo Quezon and then we met up with Leah Navarro and Enteng Romano. We were joined by Mike Cohen formerly with ANC and now a reported for Fox News. He was to cover our march from Greenbelt to the Ninoy Aquino monument. As we prepared our banners, members of the Black & White movement from Nueva Ecija arrived. We soon learned that others from provinces in the north and from the south were held in various checkpoints by elements of the PNP. Their contingent was the only one who made it through.

Our companions from Nueva Ecija were prevented by Greenbelt security guards from entering the mall. To be honest, they were well-dressed. This prompted Leah to make a few calls and soon they were allowed into the mall. I did not know that Ayala malls had a policy of discriminating against people from the province. The incident drew too much attention from passersby which made the guards uneasy coupled with a riled up Leah. My feisty sister berated the stunned guards into submission.

We marched in rows of four abreast. In my row were Atty; Edwin Lacierda and former SCAP chair, Bianca Lapuz. Despite being in a wheelchair, Bianca marched with us. What I thought was a fairly sized crowd soon swelled as people started coming in fro different points in Makati. The PNP had a huge force which really didn't bother us. After the prayers, personalities took turn in lambasting the administration. But the highlight and the most controversial is the speech by Mar Roxas who verbalized the sentiments of the people by saying "putang ina". There was no other way to describe the disdain we felt and Mar Roxas got it spot on.

I had the privilege of meeting Mae Paner, the Juana Change sensation. Arbet Bernardo joined us in the evening and took photos of the rally. The rally was peacefully and merry as artists performed on the small stage. The heavens cooperated as dark clouds shielded us form the sun. Not a single drop of rain fell and we were all dry but cool. Judging by the diversity of the crowd, one could feel the real sentiments of the people. I don't give a rat's ass what Alex Magno prefers to call us, the important thing is that we sent the message across. This was just a test run for an even bigger event soon. The next time, Gloria and her gang might not like what they hear.

*Thanks to Edwin Lacierda for a delicious merienda and to Manolo Quezon for a wonderful dinner.