Apathy? Students indifferent to school mate acting as a Martial Law victim

  • A student receives tasteless response from his school mates when he portrayed a Martial Law victim around campus
  • The response of the students seemingly showed apathy for victims of human rights violations
  • The performance was rendered on September 21, the anniversary of Martial Law declaration

A student from Ateneo de Manila University rendered a unique performance on September 21, the anniversary of the Martial Law declaration in the Philippines.

Adrian Ramos toured the school grounds while dressed in a white polo smeared with blood. He was portraying a victim of human rights violation during the dictatorship who is looking for his missing son.

But however laudable his performance was, he received tasteless reception from his school mates.

On Facebook, Ramos said he was told the following responses to his interactive act:

“Wala akong pake.” [I don’t care.]

“Alis ka na.” [Move away.]

“Nasa pwet ko” [In my butt.]

“Mag-C2 ka nalang” [Have a C2.]

“I f***ed him last night”

Ramos was taken aback with the last response.

“In our own institution, apathy rules,” he wrote on Facebook.

“Yes, this is all acting. But this portrayal presented a truth about our nation’s past. Statements like ‘I f***ed him last night’ followed by a quick laugh makes me wonder if we are really ” men and women for others,” he followed up.

Together with his fellow performers on that day, Ramos felt disappointed over how little the students gave significance on what he was trying to portray. He said that this represented the thousands of human rights violations victims during the iron fist rule of the late President Ferdinand Marcos.

Amnesty International has reported that there are more than 100,000 Martial Law victims. The Human Rights Victims Claims Board (HRVCB), meanwhile, said that more than 75,000 Filipinos have applied for reparations for being victims of the martial rule.

At the end of his post, Ramos called on his fellow students to be more emphatic not only with what happened during the Martial Law but also with what is happening now.

“What defines us as a student body is that we are those who do with empathy. As such, our decisions must be appropriately informed about our nation’s history and present,” he wrote.

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