The state terror we face today is synonymous with the dictatorial rule of Ferdinand Marcos; only this time, it is more remorseless and deadly. Student activists are being tagged as terrorists or enemies of the state and some even faced expulsion, while continuously being threatened by school administrations, police, and the military. The recently released statement of Holy Angel University at the caucus held at the House of Representatives is the conviction most needed in these dreaded times.
The Angelite fully supports the call of HAU for the government to address the roots of the communist armed rebellion. The conditions that fuel the war between the communist guerrillas against the government continue to exist and in fact, worsen as injustice and impunity in our society prevails. The persisting land-grabbing and land conversion in the countryside continues, while corruption at the bureaucracy and among the ranks of State forces remains.
The insincerity of the government in resolving such contradictions was further exposed when it was revealed that billions of funds that were supposed to be utilized to develop the countryside are actually funneled to Davao City, the hometown of President Rodrigo Duterte.
The tactics of the government and its institutions of militarization, red-tagging, repression, and terror will only fuel the rebellion as long as such conditions exist. These strategies will only legitimize the radical ideas that some choose to follow due to the constraining of democratic spaces through terror-tactics espoused by the government.
The entire Angelite community should continue in exercising academic freedom, and the University must do its part to guarantee the safety of the student body especially the activists from state repression in these extraordinary times.