Thursday, February 14, 2008

Sumilao Farmers Visited Our Class Last Night...


When you hear the earnest pleas of the Sumilao farmers to be heard and understood, you can't help but see their sincerity and the call for justice that they stand for.

I've been mulling over what's been said. Last night, we spent the first half of our three-hour class talking to two of the farmers, and they were very affable and funny, although the seriousness of their call to action was clear.

San Miguel has successfully wagged the dog by insisting that they are the current owners of the land, and then calling into question the legality of the supposed legal owners of the land (The farmers.). What is even more ludicrous is that they insist that other lands be instead distributed, which goes against the principle of the issue. This land was taken from the Higaonon farmers, so it should be this land that they get back. Any attempt to sidetrack the issue by saying "But oh, the Jesuits own so-and-so land, so they should give *that* up instead!"

Who the Hades are they kidding? The land the San Miguel piggery currently stands on is precisely the land that is being disputed. Way to push the genuine issue aside by looking elsewhere. We see this technique all the time, and I haven't even started talking about the whole Jun Lozada issue yet!

This is the indignation of the indigenous. San Miguel, you are on notice.

1 comment:

spliceanddice said...

The case of the Sumilao farmers goes beyond the case of reclaiming a land they rightfully own' although we hear strong echoes of it, too. And it goes down well below the basic premises of having to till one's land with one's sweat and blood. It goes exactly where the basic foundations of the democracy lay bare: the rights of people in a democracy.