Last Monday, (November 19, 2012) we had our film viewing activity. It was about Batas Militar, commonly known in English as “Martial Law” which was declared by President Ferdinand Marcos with Proclamation 1081 on September 21, 1972. The film we watched was a comprehensive documentary on Martial Law. It clearly showed how the former President Marcos moved his way up to presidency and later on to dictatorship. After watching, I came to understand more how he did it. I was actually impressed by his intelligence and how he managed to deceive the Filipinos and even the Americans. Impressed I may be, I could not help but be mad at him for he brought a lot of misery and problem to the country. No class was spared from his iron hands. Those who leaned onto him benefited from his actions, but still there were only a handful of them. He did it, he said, to save the Republic and to create what he called a “New Society.” A whole generation of Filipinos now exists which only has the faintest recollection – if at all – of the Marcos dictatorship.
By definition, Martial Law is the temporary superimposition of military government over civil government. This military-run government is put into place in the event of war or serious national emergencies. During such times, the military and its accompanying superiors take over the executive, legislative and judicial functions normally delegated to the civil government by virtue of its constitution. As a result, the right of an individual in custody to be brought to court to resolve whether such imprisonment is lawful may be suspended for an indefinite period.
Batas Militar video documentary certainly captured the drama of the era. As I’ve watched it, I felt distressed and it really touched my heart. The events happened brought much struggle to our fellowmen especially the media practitioners at that...