“GENTLEMEN: Upon taking the floor I am untroubled by the thought that you might listen to me with indifference, because you are here to join your enthusiasm to ours, which is fired by your youth, and you cannot help but be indulgent. The air is full of emphatic good feeling; currents of brotherhood fly in every direction; generous souls are listening and, therefore, I do not fear for my humble person nor doubt your benevolence. Men of heart, you only seek hearts, and from the heights where noble emotions dwell, you single out nothing that is petty mean-spiritedness. You see the whole, you judge the cause and hold out your hand to one such as myself, who wishes to join you in one single thought, one sole aspiration: the glory of genius, the splendor of the country. (Good, very good; applause.) “In effect, I shall state the reason why we are gathered. In the history of nations there are names that by themselves signify an achievement, that bring to mind affections and greatness. Names which, like magic formulas, evoke pleasant and smiling ideas; names which become something like a pact, a symbol of peace, a bond of love between nations. The names of Luna and Hidalgo belong among them...-their glories illuminate two ends of the globe: The East and the West, Espanya and Filipinas. Upon pronouncing them, gentlemen, I envision two brilliant arches, each rising from the two regions, that entwine above in the heights, impelled by the sympathy of common origin, and from that height they bind two peoples with eternal ties, two people separated in vain by the seas and space, two peoples in which the seeds of disunion do not germinate, BLINDLY SOWN BY MEN AND THEIR TYRANNY. Luna and Hidalgo are as much Spanish glories as they are Filipino. Just as they were born in the Philippines, they could have been born in Spain, because genius has no country, genius blossoms everywhere, genius is like the light, the air, it is the heritage of all- cosmopolitan 2 like space,...
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