Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Remembering EDSA Revolution 1986

Where were you during the EDSA Revolution? I was in grade 5 or 9 years old at that time and I remember being glued to the TV watching all the events live with Angelo Castro and June Keithly as anchors. But what impacted me most of the event was my dad's reaction. Dad was quick to gather the whole family and lead all of us to pray for peace and for the country. To this day, I will never forget seeing my dad sob in prayer for his beloved Philippines. Thank you, Tatay for the positive influence!

In commemoration of the 23rd anniversary of the EDSA Revolution, I would like to once again pay tribute to the man who sparked a series of uprising against the former President Marcos that lead to the EDSA Revolution of 1986, Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino.

The video clips here (part 1) and here (part 2) are excepts from the 1997 documentary Batas Militar, which I think is the best Filipino documentary ever produced (I'm so glad I have a copy of it). The clips show how who Ninoy is and how his death sparked the revolution against the Marcos regime.

I also want to post an excerpt from a speech Prison Fellowship founder and my "boss" Chuck Colson made in 1991 at Harvard University entitled The Problems with Ethics where he mentioned his encounter and relationship with Ninoy and his impact to the Filipino people.

...I remember getting on a plane and coming up to Boston to see our first grandson when he was born, back in 1981. A man got up in the aisle of the plane and was all excited to see me. He said, “Chuck Colson!” He was blocking the people coming behind me, so I finally got him into his seat. He was talking so fast that I couldn’t understand him. To make a long story short, he introduced himself as Benigno Aquino.

Aquino told me that when he was in jail for seven years and seven months, as a political prisoner of Marcos, he had read my book "Born Again". He was in a prison cell and had gotten down on his knees and surrendered his life to Jesus Christ. He said after that his entire experience in prison changed. Well, Nino and I became pretty good friends. We did some television programs together, and we visited frequently.

He called me up one day and said, “I’m going back to the Philippines.” I said, “Ninoy, do you think that’s wise?” He said, “I have to. I’m going back because my conscience will not let me do otherwise.” He was safe here in America, he had a fellowship at Harvard, he could lecture anywhere he wanted. He and his wife had everything they could possibly want.

But he knew he had to go back to the Philippines. “My conscience will not let me do otherwise.” He said, “If I go to jail, it’ll be okay, I’ll be president of Prison Fellowship in the Philippines.” He said, “If there are free elections, I’ll be elected president. I know I can beat Marcos. And if I’m killed, I know I’ll be with Jesus Christ.” He went back in total freedom. And he was shot and killed as he got off the airplane.

But an extraordinary thing happened-what’s known as people power. People went out into the streets. The tanks stopped. People went up and put flowers down the muzzles of guns: A tyrant was overthrown. A free government was reasserted because people believed in a power above themselves...

(image from Library Thinkquest)


  1. Thank you for sharing with us this tidbit on Ninoy. I was already in college during the ESDA Revolution and I remember joining every street rally and demo there was in our city prior to that. People like Ninoy makes me proud to be a Filipino!

  2. I feel the same way. Thanks for the comment.