Wanted: More laws to end communism’s evil
SHOOTING STRAIGHT - Valeriano Avila (The Freeman) - August 14, 2019 - 12:00am

When Cebu City cleaned up the sidewalks of Colon Street last week, I didn’t make any fuss. I didn’t congratulate the city officials because I knew that it won’t be long before those sidewalk vendors return to their old hangouts and that is exactly what happened over the weekend. Suddenly, Colon Street was only clean for a week and today, things have gone back to how they were yesterday.

Of course, the question pundits asked was “How long will the sidewalks of Colon Street be free from sidewalk vendors?” I reckon that the main problem lies upon the reality that the clearing of the sidewalks was a sort of Cebuano response to what Manila Mayor Isko Moreno has done in the major streets in the City of Manila. It was really done without following a program for the economic benefit of the sidewalk vendors.

Indeed, for so many years, those vendors have earned a living by selling in the sidewalks. So when the city ordered the sidewalks cleaned, the vendors merely obeyed and perhaps rested for a few days. But then they had no choice but to return in order to make a living. So unless the city has a doable program beneficial to these vendors then we can never hope to clear our sidewalks. So I guess what is needed is for that program to be created and funded, then perhaps the vendors might see a better way to make a living rather than always selling in the sidewalk.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but at this point I haven’t heard of any programs prepared for the vendors in case they vacate their places along the sidewalk. So either the city comes up with such a program, or they will find that clearing the sidewalks of Colon St. is futile unless such a program is in place.

* * *

The Philippines after December 26, 1968 still has not gotten rid of the threat of communism, even if places like Russia, the birthplace of communism, has already rejected this ideology. Sure, in June 1957, we passed the anti-subversion law or RA 1700 during the presidency of Pres. Carlos P. Garcia. This was the law that outlawed the Hukbalahap movement and the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) for its effort to set up a totalitarian regime in the Philippines. When martial law was declared, RA 1700 was expanded through Presidential Decree 885 in 1976 and PD 1835 in 1981. The decrees made it a subversive criminal act to be affiliated with a group, attend a meeting, or take part in any activity meant to overthrow the government.

However in September 1992, then President Fidel V. Ramos repealed the law that made subversion a criminal offense, but sedition remained a crime. RA 7636 also legalized the CPP amid peace talks with the rebels. Mind you, we didn’t chastise Pres. Ramos for repealing this law in the hope that doing so might put an end to the problem of communism. But at this point in the game, the issue of communism continues to plague our nation and despite all the efforts that the Philippine government has made, communists continues their rebellion or insurgency killing policemen and soldiers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines including the civilian populace who refused to be indoctrinated.

Today, we learned that between 500 to 1,000 youths are indoctrinated annually by communist rebels in many schools and universities and it is due to the fact that the top leadership of the CPP is having a luxurious exile in Utrecht in the Netherlands. Last week we learned about that Senate joint hearing presided by Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs, and Senate Committee on National Defense and of Security at the Senate, heard mothers admitting before the Senators that their children, mostly senior high school and college students, went missing and were believed to be recruited by a leftist group identified as Anakbayan.

Three of the missing were senior high school students of state-run Polytechnic University of the Philippines, while one was a student of the Far Eastern University, and another from the University of the East Manila. So I agree that we should have laws that outlaw communism that only has killed a lot of Filipinos in the last 51 years!


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