By Roel Buganas, guest writer
Soaked to the skin because of heavy rain, I stood at the doorstep of our house listening to the news of the death of former President Corazon Aquino. I just came from the office that morning, and it was the most unexpected thing I had come across that day. As I watched the coverage of the wake in Greenhills, I saw groups of high-school students lining up at the La Salle gym to pay their final respects to the great woman in yellow: a woman they came to know as an icon of democracy.
It goes without saying that information technology was at full throttle during this momentous event in the lives of Filipinos. It played a significant role in spreading the news around the world. And no less than the young men and women were at the forefront of bringing information and opinions forward by means of texting and blogging.
Their hands were busy as they pressed their phone keypads to send messages to as many people as they could, reminding them how important it was to remember the life of Tita Cory who helped brought back democracy to a country once stripped of it. Meanwhile, several others were extremely absorbed in blogging their inspiring and at times provocative thoughts on how Tita Cory lived her life as close to God as she was to Filipinos. Friendster, Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites were swarmed with heart-warming messages of hope, faith, and love from supporters who immensely loved and respected her. They became a great source of energy, especially to the Aquino children who suffered the most at the time.
Evidently, young people regarded Cory as the truest icon of democracy. Apart from the fact she toppled the Marcos regime through a peaceful People Power revolution in 1986, she also took a stand on major issues involving people in succeeding administrations. She did not entirely go out of the picture the moment she stepped down from power. Rather, she kept a watchful eye on those who had selfish interest. She coupled it with a fervent prayer that we be delivered from the evil lurking in the palace.
The way I see it, such a stance against evil endeared her to us, particularly the youth of today. They saw how genuine her intentions were to rescue our country in the throes of selfishness and greed of the few. They realized how crucial their roles were in defending their rights and those of future generations.
People were shouting her name, yellow confetti were falling from the sky. As tita Cory was laid to rest, so did her supporters take to the streets to say their goodbyes. Not to mention her supporters who are still in school and young professionals and ordinary Filipinos who are ready to pick up where she left off.
Former US President Abraham Lincoln once said: “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” Tita Cory lived a life so fruitful the inquisitive minds of the youth were awakened to a big fight ahead: keeping the flame of peace and democracy.