I know that we runners are privileged. I always do a little self-check whether I am still sympathetic to the plight and causes of my fellow countrymen, or if I’ve grown callous and self-absorbed. There are many more Filipinos who don’t even have calories to spare to get through the day, let alone to run. I am able to run to fulfill my own need for self-actualization — I don’t have to run to earn enough for fare to get home and feed my family. And so whenever I am tempted to whine about getting stuck in traffic or going through long security lines at an airport, or any of the myriad other “inconveniences” I can go through as I pursue my own personal goals, I have to pinch myself and remind myself to be thankful.
At the same time, I am not just a runner. I am a citizen of this country and thus share a common destiny and burden with the Filipino people: to uplift the nation in what we do, to change what is in our power to change, to love and defend this country God placed us in by virtue of birth. Regardless of political color or affiliation, I do believe Filipinos love this country and want to see her rise.
So, last Wednesday, I used the fitness I have painstakingly wrought for myself to walk out onto the streets and cry out for justice for this country that has been plundered, shamed, and left destitute by the architect of Martial Law, the disgraced dictator Ferdinand Marcos. His secret re-burial with full military honors at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (Heroes’ Cemetery) was done without due process and without shame, using taxpayer money. It enraged freedom-loving Filipinos all over the country.
(photo by Monica Macasaet)
Continue reading “Fit to Stand Up”