PHOTOS | One Billion Rising PH: A clarion call for ‘revolution’

February 18, 2015

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It was a sunny Saturday morning in the city of Manila on V-Day. Erecting a stage in front of a shrine named in honor of the first Philippine revolution’s leader, organizers led by Gabriela, Gabriela Women’s Party and New Voice Company were determined to stage a “main rising” befitting the “Revolution” theme. Yes, as with most One Billion Rising events, there was wild, mass dancing. Underneath the celebratory performances, however, was a dead-serious political message, not just to end sexual violence (although that is an important message, indeed), but to demand for the country’s leaders to be made to reveal the truth and be accountable for serious wrongdoing, from the Yolanda tragedy to the pork barrel scam to the Mamasapano bloodbath. This message informed every performance, every dance number, every political speech, that by the time the indefatigable artist/activist Monique Wilson took to the stage to sing the bittersweet “I Am Rising”, just about everybody in the crowd were ready to respond positively to her clarion call: “Be ready for the revolution!”