Open letter from a Former Trial Lawyer to Kris Aquino: Do not use Ninoy to get attention - The Daily Sentry

Tuesday, June 19, 2018



Open letter from a Former Trial Lawyer to Kris Aquino: Do not use Ninoy to get attention



In a quite unexpected twist, Former Trial Lawyer Cheryl L. Daytec-Yangot, came to the defense of slain senator, Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr., against his own daughter, the Queen of All Media, Kris Aquino.
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Daytec-Yangot created an open letter to Kris Aquino, saying that she is an admirer of her father, Ninoy, as well as her parents. She recounts how she knows a lot of the late senator by the many books she read and interview of him that she viewed.

She says that she knows how much sacrifice the senator made for the Philippines, and that Kris is destroying the wonderful legacy her father left behind.
Cheryl L. Daytec-Yangot / Photo from her Facebook account

Daytec-Yangot says that she knows that Ninoy was genuine about his care and service to the country. She also says that he has always been humble, never asking for anything in return for the sacrifices he made for the Philippines, including dying for it.

However, she adds that all these things that Ninoy did for the country can easily be turned against if Kris continues to “whine about his selfless acts with that complaining tone”.
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Daytec-Yangot accuses Kris for using her father’s passion to draw attention to herself. She says that Kris keeps on bragging about Ninoy’s successes, and saying that the Filipino people owe her family.

Do not brag to us about EDSA. That was not supposed to be about you. It was supposed to be about change. Very sadly, it failed to ease the struggle for revolutionary change so that inequity would be drastically reduced. Although many of those who were on EDSA (and I understand your mother was not there just like many others who benefited from it) were hopeful for social change, it turned out to be merely a ceremony to herald the changing of the guards of oligarchic interests. After EDSA, the oligarchy's control of the economy got even stronger. Change is now more difficult to achieve,” Daytec-Yangot wrote.
(Photo by John Chua) (Photo from People Power: The Philippine Revolution of 1986)

Ending her open letter, Daytec-Yangot asks Kris to be more like her father who joined in the struggles of the masses. She adds that she should not use her father’s heroism to gain attention.

His courage is not your courage. He exhibited courage in fighting a formidable tyrant, and in trying to flatten a well-entrenched structure of injustice. Yours seems to be reserved to fight ASec Mocha ---not in the name of the poor and defenseless but in the name of your drive to put your name on the lips of every Filipino, even if you are already the most popular showbiz personality in this country,” she said.

Read her full post here:

"OPEN LETTER

Dear Ms. Kris Aquino,

I came to admire your father from the stories I heard from my parents who lionized him. When Ninoy Aquino was killed, my older sister Bettina Daytecgot depressed. To this day, she keeps mementos of the 80s' JAJA Campaign. I watched some of Ninoy's interviews accessible from YouTube. One of my favorites is his interview with the 700 Club. He was so articulate, so intelligent, so human, so full of wisdom. I hope you watched that. You could have picked up a lesson or two from him about loving others as you love yourself.

We know that Ninoy sacrificed for Filipinos. And you belittle that sacrifice every time you throw it back to our faces like we owe you. We don't owe you.

When your father came home from exile in the United States, he was fully aware he could die. He was warned not to return to this country where threats to his life were lurking in every corner. He faced that head on. He was shot in the tarmac. Many times, as you painfully remind us. Before that, he fought a tyrant as hard as he could. Others said he had an agenda which was to become President himself. But my parents always believed it was his love for the people that impelled him to resist Marcos. If he wanted to become President, it was to make life less harsh for the poor.

Not once did Ninoy Aquino demand that he be paid back or that we pay you back for what he did for us. That is why it is called sacrifice. That is why he is called a hero. Heroes will step on burning coals, throw their bodies to the railroad tracks to be crushed by a speeding train, or step on landmines. They are ready and willing to die or be killed if that means saving the greater number for the greater good, without expecting anything-not even remembrance - in return.
Photo credit to the owner
Photo credit to the owner

What Ninoy Aquino did was no small thing; it was huge. Ms Aquino, when you whine about his selfless acts with that complaining tone, you trivialize his ultimate expression of love for the Filipino who, to him, was worth dying for.

There were people who were nameless and faceless who trod the same if not more thorny trajectory your father took. Although largely unknown and unrecognized, they were heroes like your father. We do not hear their children--yes, I know some of them - brandish what their parents did with the language of people who seem to think they are entitled just because of their parents' heroism.
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Ninoy Aquino, the father, is yours. Ninoy Aquino, the hero, is ours. We have the right to defend the hero from people like you who invoke his sacrifices for their self-seeking campaigns or their insatiable desire for attention despite their immense popularity.

Ninoy, as far as I read from narratives of the people who co-existed with him, sought to curb the stranglehold of the oligarchy over the destiny of the poor and the marginalized. From his example, I learned that we should not brag about our signature bags and wealth and say since we worked hard, we are entitled to them. In a country of very poor people, bragging about one's opulence is ostentatious. It is a social crime! And it is insensitive to people of the proletariat, some of whom work very hard in your family's Hacienda Luisita , and yet still live below the poverty line. So unlike the landlords whose riches expand from proletarian blood and sweat, even if they themselves do not work hard or do not work at all.
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Ms. Aquino, try to honor your father's heroism by joining the struggle to fight unjust socio-economic structures that concentrate wealth in the hands of a few oligarchs, leaving a large majority of the Filipinos hungry. Do not come back to us with the amount of taxes you pay. Even the poor pay. It is good to remember the story of that widow who may have given to the poor way, way less than what the rich man gave. However, she gave her all while the rich man merely gave a pittance of his wealth. Besides, you should pay your taxes because it is the legal and moral thing to do. Do not expect commendation for it.

Do not boast that in spite of the still-unresolved murder of Ninoy, your family remained in the Philippines. That is not unique to your family, Ms. Aquino. Many others suffered under the Reign of Terror. They stayed and, to this day, remain active in the struggle for social change. They stayed even if the socio-economic system operates against their interest. Your family stayed and two members rose to power to strengthen this system your father, our hero, fiercely fought against. You benefited and are still benefiting from the system, as everyone who is a member of the landed elite is. Needless to express, you became the Ms Kris Aquino because you stayed. In a parallel universe, you might not have achieved your current fame and fortune. Staying for you was never sacrifice.
Photo credit to the owner

Do not brag to us about EDSA. That was not supposed to be about you. It was supposed to be about change. Very sadly, it failed to ease the struggle for revolutionary change so that inequity would be drastically reduced. Although many of those who were on EDSA (and I understand your mother was not there just like many others who benefited from it) were hopeful for social change, it turned out to be merely a ceremony to herald the changing of the guards of oligarchic interests. After EDSA, the oligarchy's control of the economy got even stronger. Change is now more difficult to achieve.
Photo credit to the owner

The path to social change is not as wide as EDSA but is more challenging. You may donate to charity and still not be a contributor to the struggle for change. So be a Ninoy instead. Be like some of the artists of the people who do not have your popularity but are still always ready to lend their causes to the poor and marginalized, who make movies and talk to promote class consciousness.

Do not commercialize Ninoy's heroism. Do not use it to gain attention. Do not invoke his bravery as a weapon in your fight with other personalities. You cheapen it. His courage is not your courage. He exhibited courage in fighting a formidable tyrant, and in trying to flatten a well-entrenched structure of injustice. Yours seems to be reserved to fight ASec Mocha ---not in the name of the poor and defenseless but in the name of your drive to put your name on the lips of every Filipino, even if you are already the most popular showbiz personality in this country.

From an admirer of Ninoy Aquino who is not an admirer of Noynoy Aquino"