Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Black Friday Protest Bulletin #5 - ChiCha Kontra ChaCha: Protest Action for March 31

Designated time and place of flash protest for March 31:
Selected Jollibee Restaurants - 7:00 to 7:30 AM

Plan of action:
1) Wear BLACK, preferably the "Patalsikin Na! NOW NA!" T-shirts. (Visit www.BlackFridayProtest.blogspot.com to see where you can order them)

2) Assemble at any of the following Jollibee restaurants 7:00 to 7:30 AM
2.1) Makati - along Makati Avenue near Jupiter
2.2) Ortigas - St. Francis Square along Julio Vargas
2.3) Quezon City - along Katipunan Road

3) Order breakfast. Try to occupy tables near the window.

4) At 7:30 AM, when the cue is given, everyone in black should rise and step out of the restaurant single file doing the "Patalsikin" sign.

5) When outside the restaurant, everybody should pose beside the Jollibee mascot doing the "Patalsikin" sign. Of course, someone should be taking the picture.

6) On cue, disperse quietly.

Suggested preparations:
1) Invite as many friends, or officemates, as you can.
2) Agree on which Jollibee branch and exact time to meet
3) If you're outside of Metro Manila, and there are enough of you to organize a protest action, just select a Jollibee restaurant where you can meet and have breakfast. Advise your local media to cover your action.

Important reminders:
1) This is a SILENT PROTEST, not a rally. Please do not shout, sing, pass leaflets, or do anything to disturb the regular customers of Jollibee.
2) Bring your cameras. The highlight of the protest action is the picture-taking with the Jollibee mascot while doing the "patalsikin" pose

Forward this message to as many friends, relatives, colleagues, and egroups. I've also included below a brief description of the Black Friday Protest Movement, so those receiving your forwarded mail and hearing this for the first time will understand what we're trying to accomplish.

Let's paint Jollibee Park BLACK on Friday.

God bless,

enteng
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BLACK FRIDAY - A NEW FORM OF PROTEST

The Black Friday Protest Movement was launched by eLagda on March 1 to give professionals, students, businessmen, and other sectors a venue to express their protest against the continuing and escalating acts of repression of the GMA administration as manifested in its series of proclamations – CPR, EO 464, and PP 1017 – all designed to curtail basic rights and oppress the people. Even after PP1017 has been lifted, the repressive measures continue.

Patterned after the flash mob concept, the Black Friday Protest calls on people to gather at a designated time and place every Friday wearing a black attire as a symbol of protest. There will be no programs or speeches. Instead, people will be given specific instructions on what to do, and the whole exercise should last about 30 minutes at most. It’s safe, non-confrontational, and within the bounds of the law, even under a repressive one like PP 1017. The mere “flash” gathering of the people is the expression of protest.

Where will people get instructions?

Details of the Black Friday Protest action for the week will be published at its blogsite – www.BlackFridayProtest.blogspot.com every Wednesday evening. Those who would like to receive instructions directly can also subscribe to the movement’s bulletin service by sending a blank email to BlackFridayProtest-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

More PATALSIKIN Collaterals for Overseas Pinoys

Below is an interesting email sent to me. It allows Overseas Pinoys, especially US residents to get hold of custom "Patalsikin" shirts and other collaterals.

Please visit http://www.cafepress.com/filipino_ako to view materials available. Please note that neither Black and White Movement nor Mylene (who sent the note) are making any profit from this. Mylene takes pain in explaining the mechanics of the site and how she is passing on the actual cost to interested Pinoys.

We simply want the collaterals to be available to as many Pinoys as possible.

God bless,

Enteng

--------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi Enteng,

I've uploaded the Patalsikin Na. Now Na! graphic to cafepress.com. Cafepress is a website that allows you to create your personalized stuff online and either buy them yourself or sell them to others. I made several products with the PNNN logo on them (T-shirts, mugs, caps, tote bag, stickers, buttons and magnets).

These products are available at the base price given by cafepress (shirts sell from $8.99 to $18.99), NO profit goes to me or to anyone else involved in the Black Friday protest. (If you want to check their base price, just go to http://www.cafepress.com/cp/customize/ and choose the product name.)

Maybe this can be of help to your supporters, especially those who aren't based in the Philippines. To check out the items, just visit the following website:
http://www.cafepress.com/filipino_ako

I believe you need a credit card to be able to make a purchase.
God bless all of us in our struggle to create the best Philippines!

Regards,Mylene

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Black Friday Protest in Luneta

We were blessed with a cloudless, sunny day. Enteng and I were in contact early, confirming our plans for later in the afternoon. Both of us were unsure about how many we would ultimately be, as we had sent out the call via our blogs, text, and email and had not requested confirmation. The last three silent protest actions had, at most, twenty two people, and that was last Black Friday. And since our target area was still the City of Manila, we were a little uneasy.

There was a reason as to our choice - we had to defend our rights to free speech and peaceful assembly in the same city wherein these freedoms were assaulted. There was no intent to provoke confrontation, so we made sure our movements would not be misconstrued as aggressive. Everyone had five different assembly points to choose from, would proceed from them in small groups to our final destination, the Rizal Monument, the point from which all our roads extend.

And so we began our short stroll, in twos and threes. When we finally assembled, there were at least 120 of us, dressed mainly in black, many wearing the now famous "Patalsikin Na! Now Na!" tee shirts. Some of the participants were pleasantly surprised to see each other, so there was a lot of greeting and catching up. It took some effort for Enteng to get us to group together for pictures, we were so busy taking our own.

By far, the most pleasant surprise was the absence of any WPD personnel. The Rizal Monument color guard was there, of course, but they ignored us. Park security even obliged us by taking our pictures. This Friday could not have been more different from last Friday.

After the final pictures were taken, the media interviews over, some of us stopped to admire the view and pay our respects to Gat Jose Rizal. A fitting way to end a peaceful day of protest.








Wednesday, March 22, 2006

BLACK FRIDAY PROTEST BULLETIN #4: Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not) Sa Luneta

Designated Time and Place of Flash Protest on March 24:
Luneta Park - 4:00 to 4:30 PM

Plan of action:

1) Wear BLACK

2) Assemble at any of the following locations between 3:30-4:00pm
a) Bayview Starbucks
b) Chow King Restaurant along Roxas Blvd. corner T. M. Kalaw
c) Manila Hotel
d) Parking Area of Harbor View
e) Entrance of Chinese Garden

3) Wait awhile for other people dressed in black. Take a snack, if you wish, while waiting for others.

4) At 4 PM, walk towards the designated location. Important: walk per family, or 2 at a time, so that this is not construed as a march by a group. Give sufficient spacing between families and pairs.

5) When you get to the designated place, mingle with the other people, without any unnecessary commotion.

6) When the signal is given, everyone in black must come together to pose for pictures.

7) Do the "patalsikin" sign during the picture taking.

8) On cue, disperse quietly.

Suggested preparations:

1) Bring your family. This is a non-violent action, after all.
2) Invite as many friends, or officemates to this peaceful event.
3) If you're an employer or a manager, invite all your subordinates to join you.
4) If you're from the same office, arrange for carpooling to your selected assembly point.
5) If you're located outside Metro Manila, and wish to organize a protest action, select an area where you and your friends can assemble peacefully. Advise your local media to cover your action. Document your silent protest by taking pictures and email them to helga1957@gmail.com.

Important reminders:

1) This is a SILENT PROTEST, not a rally. Please DO NOT shout, sing, pass leaflets, bring banners or placards or do anything to disturb the peace.
2) Bring your cameras. The highlight of the protest action is the picture-taking with the "patalsikin" pose.
3) In the unlikely event that there is one in our ranks who may attempt to disturb the peace by shouting or any other unruly behavior, take pictures of that person while trying to peacefully talk him down. We could use those pictures to prove that the rabble rouser is not one of us.
4) If the police block you on your way to the designated area, assert your rights without being confrontational. Get the name of the policeman in charge and ask someone to take pictures of him blocking you. Email to us so we can file the appropriate charges against them.

PATALSIKIN T-shirts and Logo

We have received many inquiries on where to get the "Patalsikin na. Now Na!" t-shirts. Unfortunately, we have run out of supply.

But we have reordered and expect delivery by Friday. You can get them at our Black and White Movement office at P150/shirt.

The address is
2/F Hoffner Bldg., Social Development Complex, Ateneo de Manila University, Loyola Heights, QC.

Please call 4266064 for inquiries and orders.

You may also download the logo design from
http://www.blacknwhite-movement.com/download/shirt.jpg and produce your own t-shirt or other collaterals.

Soon, we will come out with black pins with the same slogan inscribed.

Let's create our own collaterals and wear them at every opportunity to express our convictions. Patalsikin na. Now na!

God bless,

enteng

Sunday, March 19, 2006

The Aborted Walk in the Park

We thought it was going to be a walk in the park. Some of us were even planning to watch “V for Vendetta” after the walk. But it was not to be.

As soon as we stepped out of Aristocrat restaurant, a group of about 50 policemen blocked us demanding that we present a rally permit before they allow us to cross Roxas Blvd. towards Baywalk.

We argued that we were not holding a rally, we had no intentions to hold a program or deliver speeches, we had no placards or streamers, and we had no bullhorns or any sound system to call attention to ourselves. We simply wanted to walk at Baywalk, just as ordinary citizens are allowed to do. We did not need a permit for that. Besides, there were only about 22 of us plus a 3-year old child. How difficult would it be for them to stop us if they thought we were making trouble at the Baywalk?

They argued that they received intelligence report about our planned action for that day. (I wanted to say it didn’t take much intelligence to figure it out; it’s all published at our blog site – www.blackfridayprotest.blogspot.com). They insisted that the presence of media people was proof of the planned action. And that the T-shirts some of us were wearing which emblazoned the slogan: “Patalsikin na. Now na!” showed we were planning for more than just a walk.

Even assuming they had intelligence report of a huge rally-like gathering, the reality on the ground should have alerted the police commanding officer that this was not the rally they were anticipating. 22 people and a child can hardly be called a rally that could disrupt normal activities at the park. But the commanding officer stuck to his script… yes, it was almost like he was reciting his lines in rote, unmindful of whatever arguments we would present.

What about the presence of media? When GMA decided to take a Sunday stroll at Baywalk with her daughter and grandchild to project an image of stability, there was media too. And there were about 25 of them as well, if you count all of their security people. Did they get a permit for that walk? Are they now so paranoid that they fear 22 people and a child strolling along Baywalk and being covered by media would project instability? We have no control over what media decides to cover.

What about the printed slogan in our T-shirts? What about it? Is it now illegal to wear T-shirts proclaiming your convictions, even if it’s a political one? Do they find the slogan “Patalsikin na. Now na!” seditious? If they do, I suggest they ban Nike too. Their slogan, “Just do it!” when directed to the disaffected within the military is more seditious.

We decided to exercise our rights – we will cross Roxas Blvd, even if it meant doing so, one or two at a time.

And then it happened. While Dinky and I were waiting for the light to turn green at the pedestrian crossing, they arrested us. The charge: illegal assembly.

They brought us to the Manila Police headquarters along UN Avenue. It took more than 3 hours for them to prepare their affidavit of arrest. Either they were waiting for instructions from higher authority on how to “handle” the situation, or they were maliciously delaying the process so that the office of the inquest fiscal would be closed by the time the affidavit was ready. This would give them reason to detain us over the weekend.

By 11 pm, we were transported to the fiscal’s office at City Hall for inquest. I could sense that the fiscal found no basis for the charges. But she did not want to embarrass the arresting officers, and did not want to risk being reprimanded for a possible “politically incorrect” decision so she decided to play it safe – recommended “for further investigation”. Meanwhile, SOP dictates we remain in the custody of the police. Our lawyers argued. After consultation with her chief fiscal, she finally decided to release us, pending filing of formal charges.

I am convinced that, aside from the capable skills of our lawyers, what kept us from spending time in jail over the weekend were the presence of friends who staked out at the Police headquarters and at the City Hall and, of course, the presence of President Cory Aquino. She was with us the whole time. She did not need to call anyone or to say anything. Her mere presence exerted moral suasion on people to do what is right, or at least, to desist from doing wrong.

The intentions are clear – intimidate people from participating in even the most benign form of protest. Absolutely no activity critical of GMA will be allowed.

The methods are becoming increasingly more brazen, bereft of any attempt to cloak their actions with civility and some semblance of upholding the law. It’s almost as if the police have been given a blanket license to violate the basic rights of citizens. It’s de facto martial rule – promulgated with such arrogance that they feel they don’t even have to declare it.

And for as long as people who are convinced GMA should go, remain uninvolved, the abuse of our civil liberties will continue to escalate. It is our silence that emboldens them to raise the bar of oppression a notch higher.

It is time to stand up and speak out. Join us in the coming Black Friday silent protests. Invite your friends, too. Send a blank email to BlackFridayProtest-subscribe@yahoogroups.com to receive a regular bulletin of our upcoming actions.

Perhaps, the T-shirt slogan is timely after all. Patalsikin na. Now na!

God bless and save our country!

enteng



Saturday, March 18, 2006

Black Friday #3 Pictures

Enteng will post his take on our experience with the Manila Police later. For now, here are some pictures from last night's barring from Baywalk. We would like to thank all our friends who sent texts of encouragement. Special thanks go to our new and old friends, especially those who joined our action and stayed with us, even waited patiently outside, at the precinct, WPD, and night court. We would also like to thank the legal eagles that came to Enteng and Dinky's aid: Atty. Butch Abad, Atty. Hector Soliman, Atty. Edwin Lacierda, Atty. Marvic Leonen, and Atty. Marlon Manuel. We really appreciate your friendship!








Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Black Friday Bulletin #3 - Baywalk Makapili Protest

Designated time and place of flash protest for March 17:
BAYWALK, Roxas Blvd - 6:30 to 7:15 PM

Plan of action:

1) Wear BLACK. BRING ALSO HAT, SHADES, AND IMPROVISED HOOD similar to the hooded witness of DOJ (see attached photo).
2) Assemble in front of the Aristocrat Restaurant, Roxas Blvd. between 6:15 to 6:30pm
3) Wait awhile for other groups in black. Take a snack, if you wish, while waiting for others to arrive
4) At 6:30pm, cross Roxas Boulevard in single file towards Baywalk.
5) Put on your "Makapili" hooded outfit and mingle with the regular Friday strollers on Baywalk.
6) When the signal is given, line up single file along the road and face the street.
7) Do the "thumbs down" sign to passing vehicles.
8) On cue, disperse quietly.

Suggested preparations:

9) Invite as many friends or officemates as possible
10) If you're an employer or a manager, invite all your subordinates to join you. Offer to "treat" them after the flash protest, if you can afford it. Hey, it's Friday after pay day. So you can have your regular "gimmick" after this.
11) If you're from the same office, arrange for carpooling going to the Aristocrat restaurant.
12) If you're outside of Metro Manila, and there are enough of you to organize a protest action, just select your own area of protest, but follow the "MAKAPILI" theme.

For feedback on last week's MRT flash protest, please visit our blog: www.blackfridayprotest.blogspot.com

We're finalizing details of the International Black Friday Protest that should happen sometime in April. Abangan...

Forward this message to as many friends, relatives, colleagues, and e-groups. I've also included below a brief description of the Black Friday Protest Movement, so those receiving your forwarded mail and hearing this for the first time will understand what we're trying to accomplish.

Let's paint BAYWALK BLACK on Friday.

God bless,

Enteng
http://blacknwhitemovement.blogspot.com
http://www.blacknwhite-movement.com


BLACK FRIDAY - A NEW FORM OF PROTEST

The Black Friday Protest Movement was launched by eLagda on March 1 to give professionals, students, businessmen, and other sectors a venue to express their protest against the continuing and escalating acts of repression of the GMA administration as manifested in its series of proclamations – CPR, EO 464, and PP 1017 – all designed to curtail basic rights and oppress the people. Even after PP1017 has been lifted, the repressive measures continue.

Patterned after the flash mob concept, the Black Friday Protest calls on people to gather at a designated time and place every Friday while wearing black as a symbol of protest. There will be no programs or speeches. Instead, people will be given specific instructions on what to do, and the whole exercise should last about 30 minutes at most. It’s safe, non-confrontational, and within the bounds of the law, even under a repressive one like PP 1017. The mere “flash” gathering of people is an expression of protest.

Where will people get instructions?

Details of the Black Friday Protest action for the week will be published at its blogsite – http://www.BlackFridayProtest.blogspot.com every Wednesday evening. Those who would like to receive instructions directly can also subscribe to the movement’s bulletin service by sending a blank email to BlackFridayProtest-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Train Ride for Truth

We started off from the MRT's Ayala Station, our spirits buoyed by gently smiling faces. It was high volume time, so we were packed like sardines as we made our way to the ADB-Ortigas Station. A Japanese news crew, NHK, joined us for the Php12 ride, and we passed the ten minute trek by speaking to the folks pressed against us.

When we got to Ortigas, it was packed with cops, and we had to smile at the "overkill". There was no trouble, we didn't intend to make any, and so the cops kept their distance as we spoke to the media. They made no move to stop us from thumbing down the Arroyo regime.

The most gratifying part of this Black Friday protest was the presence of a young couple from the Ortigas area that joined us after reading about it on the internet. Peaceful protest does work, after all.



Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Black Friday Bulletin #2 - Details of Flash Protest for March 10

Designated time and place of flash protest for March 10:
MRT Station Ortigas - 6:30 to 7:15 PM

Plan of action:
1) Wear BLACK
1) Assemble at the nearest MRT station near you. Target to be at Ortigas by 6:30 PM
2) Buy a ticket going to Ortigas
3) Wait awhile for other groups in black. Agree to board the MRT at the same time.
4) While on board MRT, do the "thumbs down" sign before disembarking at Ortigas station
5) When you get to Ortigas, buy a ticket back to your origin (or to your final destination)
6) Join the other groups in the boarding area, but don't board yet.
7) Wait for 5 to 7 trains to pass by, each time flashing the "thumbs down" sign when a train arrives.
8) When the cue is given, everybody should board the train and disperse quietly.

Suggested preparations:
1) Invite as many friends, or officemates, as you can
2) If you're an employer or a manager, invite all your subordinates to join you. Offer to "treat" them after the flash protest, if you can afford it.
3) If you're from the same office, arrange for carpooling going to the MRT station or meet in a place near the station.
4) From the meeting place, proceed to MRT station as a group. This will have more impact than just agreeing to meet at the station individually
5) If see other groups in black at the station, link up and agree to go to Ortigas at the same time.

My apologies for those outside Metro Manila, for excluding you from this flash protest. We will try to organize one that will involve you. Even now, we're already planning for an International Black Friday Protest. Abangan...

Let's paint MRT Ortigas BLACK on Friday.

God bless,

enteng

P.S. - Please email me at
enteng@HealourLand.ph to advise us how many in your group are going and at what station you will be assembling. This will help us in tuning our plans.

Domo Arigato Shibuya!

Filipino overseas workers in Japan recently displayed their disgust and dismay over Madame Arroyo's repressive PP1017 by staging a rally in the Shibuya district of Tokyo. Composed of different migrant workers groups, these hardy, freedom-loving Pinoys braved the cold to get their message across the miles. Here are a few pictures sent to us by Yuko:




Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Skirts

It's that time of year again, girls! Please join the International Women's Day March tomorrow, 8 March. We meet up between 2-2:30pm at the Makati Fire Station on Ayala and Buendia Avenues, Makati. We have been asked to wear bright, solid colors, as well as brightly colored scarves for this event. The action will be topped by a program at the end of the march. There will be no speeches, but there will be singing, dancing, a celebration of womanhood.

A word of caution - although the City of Makati is sympathetic to the holding of marches and rallies, there is currently a nationwide ban on these by the fiercely menopausal Gloria Arroyo. Since we believe that this ban is illegal and unconstitutional, we will continue to march anyway, in defiance. Just be aware that there may be a blocking force in place to meet us.

N.B. To those awaiting Bulletin #2 of the Black Friday Protest Movement, please check this blog tomorrow for a posting by Enteng.

Monday, March 06, 2006

The Right to Remain Silent

I am glad that the military incident and the subsequent proclamation of PP 1017 two weeks ago emboldened those of you, who previously stayed on the sidelines, to share your convictions. There are 2 emails making the rounds – “Why we are not out in the streets” and “Galing sa isang Middle-Class Pinoy” that are quite interesting.

I appreciate why people can identify with these email messages. I felt the same way during the days prior to EDSA 1. I was a middle manager at that time, trying to build a career, and when I saw the likes of Cory side by side with the reds pushing the economy to the brink as they began calling for civil disobedience, I was indignant. I told everyone I knew who participated in such exercise that it was sheer foolishness... that it was bringing the economy down. And that if they would only stop, then we can all go about our business of building up our careers, our personal fortunes, and by extension, the economy. Hard work is the key. Politics was just a necessary evil.

I did not know and didn't mind the extent of pillage of our national treasury that Marcos and his cronies committed, nor the extent of human rights violations, including disappearances, happening around me. Really, it did not affect me directly, so I did not care.

And then EDSA 1 happened. People, led mostly by the middle class, came out. I was there, too, for 2 days, celebrating with the rest of the nation the end of a dictatorship, conveniently forgetting that only a few days before, I was all too willing to let Marcos rule forever, a bit embarrassed to be called a hero of EDSA, for simply being there.

EDSA 2 followed a similar path. While a committed few fanned the flames of discontent, the middle class waited on the sidelines until the opportune time to push the envelope proving once again that people power is a middle-class act. EDSA 3 only reinforced the idea. It failed because the middle class was conspicuously absent.

And now you tell us to stop the protests, because you have no intention of coming out to the streets and therefore people power will fail. You may be right – people power could fail. But that should not give you comfort, for it only opens up other forms of revolt – a peasant revolution, a military rebellion, or a communist takeover. When you have more than half of the people living in abject poverty, a restive military, and an oppressive regime – it’s a social volcano just waiting to erupt. And this time, it could be bloody.

You ask us why we can’t just redirect our energies towards building up the economy through productive work, like you do, instead of disruptive protest actions. You might be surprised to know that this is not a full-time job for us. Like you, we have a business to run or a job we try to keep. Beyond work, there are many in our ranks who are involved in civic projects through Rotary, Gawad Kalinga, and NGOs – trying to help in alleviating the conditions of our poor. So, please… you don’t have an exclusive claim to doing good for this nation, much less to patriotism.

You accuse us of being fools for allowing ourselves to be used by the leftists, Erap and Marcos forces, and other unscrupulous politicians to advance their agenda. We are not as naïve as you think. We recognize that it is Erap’s right to dream of one day regaining his lost glory just as it is the leftists’ right to push their ideology within the bounds of law. In the same manner, we recognize it is your right to express your willingness for your basic rights and freedom to be curtailed or to settle for a president who is a cheat, a thief, and an oppressor. We may not agree with any of you, but we do not get angry like you do, when people espouse views different from ours. Such is the way of democracy. It is the same democracy that gives us the right to think of you as the bigger fools, for allowing yourselves to be used by GMA to prop up her repressive regime.

And now that you have finally decided to speak up, you claim to represent the silent majority. Where did you get this idea? The majority could be silent, but they do not necessarily share your sentiments. At least when we claim that 80% of our people believe GMA cheated and 54% wants her out, we have the surveys to back our claims. Whether or not they will act on what they believe in is another story. Soon – when the flurry of mail forwards bottom out - you will discover as we have, that this nation is hopelessly divided. And that is how GMA intends to keep it in order to cling on to power.

How, then, do we move forward?

If you, the middle class, sincerely believe that the future of this nation is in your hands, then I urge you to arise now, be heard, and take the lead. If you believe GMA staying on is the best option for our country today, then I call for leaders to rise among you, and organize yourselves to act on your belief. Lobby your congressmen to ban protests. Tell your president of your unequivocal support, regardless of her alleged cheating and thievery. Go to the streets in thousands, if not millions. But do something. Put your money where your mouth is… because forwarding email messages around and wishing the protests away will not make it happen.

If, on the other hand, you share our convictions that GMA must go, then join us now and be counted. There’s an easy way to do this through our Black Friday Protest Movement. Just visit www.blackfridayprotest.blogspot.com or send a blank email to blackfridayprotest-subscribe@yahoogroups.com to receive a regular bulletin from us. You may also forward this email to friends and colleagues and urge them to join us now.

Whichever side you are on, the important thing is to come out and be counted. The time to act is now. For if you continue exercising your right to remain silent – pretty soon, it will be the only right left for us as citizens.

God bless and God save this country.

Enteng

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for some good men to do nothing.”

- Edmund Burke

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Thank You, Starbucks

Although we never told Starbucks we were coming, they didn't give us any trouble last night. Some people thought it was a PR stunt for the coffee shop franchise, but in reality they had nothing to do with it. Enteng will be posting a new bulletin on Wednesday to tell you all about our new " black target" for next Friday. Meanwhile here are a few choice shots from last night:





Friday, March 03, 2006

Initial Report on our First Black Friday Flash Protest

I'm happy to report that at Starbucks 6750 Ayala where we went, there were about 80 to 100 people in black at its peak, enough to cover the outside seats.

Some of the personalities present included Dinky, Mely Nicolas, Ging Deles of the Hyatt 10; Former Usec Josie Lichauco; Congressmen Gilbert Remulla, Joel Villanueva, Justin Timmy Chipeco, and Florencio Noel; Vergel Santos, Bobby Manzano, and JB Baylon; Patrick Pantaleon, Jun Navarro; and Gloria Diaz. (My apologies to those I failed to mention)

ABS-CBN and some foreign media (print) were there to cover the event. With most of us wearing black t-shirts that read: "PATALSIKIN NA. NOW NA!", it must have been a sight to see on camera as we made our "thumbs down" act.

I heard that Starbucks Alabang was also filled with black patrons. And there was a group of students in black at Starbucks LaSalle, and a group of professionals at the Podium.

Please email me your own experience in the Starbucks outlet where you went and send me photos I can post at our blog site.

Considering that we only started this last Wednesday and most of our communications were through the internet, I think we made a pretty good showing that may just usher in a new form of protest against a repressive regime.

Let's keep the flames burning. Spread the word and see you all next week. Where? Abangan...

I will post a more detailed report on Monday after I have receipt feedback and photos from you.

God bless,

enteng

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Bulletin # 1 - Details of Flash Protest for March 3

Designated time and place of flash protest for March 3:
Any Starbucks Cafe, 6 to 7 PM

Plan of action:
1) Wear black
2) You and your friends proceed to any Starbucks Cafe near you anytime between 6 to 7 pm
3) Buy a drink. Each person should queue up at the counter, instead of just one ordering for the group.
4) After getting your drink, take a seat or just stand up outside the cafe and hang out for about 30 mins.
5) When your group decides it's time to leave, someone should give the cue and everybody should do the "thumbs down" sign
6) Disperse as peacefully as you came in

Suggested preparations:
1) Invite as many friends, or officemates, as you can
2) If you're an employer or a manager, invite all your subordinates to join you. Offer to "treat" them, if you can afford it.
3) Agree to meet in a place (not Starbucks), or if you're from the same office, arrange for carpooling
4) From the meeting place, proceed to Starbucks as a group. This will have more impact than just agreeing to meet at Starbucks individually
5) If you're staying in a city where there is no Starbucks, any other "cafe" or restaurant will do.

Invite as many friends and colleagues.

Let's paint Starbucks BLACK on Friday.

God bless,

enteng

Lawyers and Journalists Weigh In on EO1017

The Black & White Movement is hosting a forum on EO1017. Our special guests are the members of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines:
  • Date: Thursday, 2 March 2006
  • Venue: Manila Room, Metro Club (Estrella St., Makati, across Rockwell)
  • Time: 10:00 am Registration, 10:17 am Start
We hope you take the time to attend. Snacks will be served along with insightful comment.

Black Friday - A Flash Mob Type of Protest vs GMA

Last Friday, February 24 – as the nation was preparing to celebrate the freedom we regained at EDSA two decades ago, Ms. Arroyo issued Proclamation 1017 declaring a state of emergency, in response to a military uprising.

In the hours and days that followed, it became evident how GMA intended to implement this presidential decree. We saw the excessive use of police power in dispersing the crowds. And even after the military threat was decisively contained, we saw the warrantless arrests of known opposition leaders, the closure of newspapers, and the barefaced intimidation of media owners and practitioners.

PD 1017 is eerily similar to PD 1081. And the pattern is unmistakably Marcosian. Crackdown on the reds – the public has no love lost for them, anyway. Control media. And prop up the illusion of a new order after the purging.

I’m glad that many, who have been sitting on the fence all this time, saw through the farce and finally came out to take a stand. I saw prominent businessmen, showbiz personalities, and working professionals go to the streets to defy the proclamation.

Sadly, however, there are those who remain unmoved. Worse, they even embrace the GMA propaganda that this is ultimately for the greater good.

I am reminded of 1972 where many in the middle class and the business community actually welcomed the “New Society” of Marcos. They lauded the arrests of known communists; they deserved it, many thought. They didn’t mind reading and watching government-censored news. They didn’t mind the imposition of curfews and the curtailment of some basic rights. All these were a small price to pay in the interest of stability and prosperity, or so they thought.

Until one day, the government began sequestering their business. Until one day, they began arresting someone close to home and they realized they had very little legal recourse to protect their rights.

It is time for the business community, the middle class, and all other sectors to make a stand.

Today, we launch the Black Friday Protest Movement to give you an opportunity to be counted with low risk and nominal involvement on your part. All you need to do is, every Friday, you and your friends can wear black, go to a designated place and hang around for about 30 minutes and leave.

How will you know the designated time and place?
Register by sending a blank email to BlackFridayProtest-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. When you’re registered, you will receive an announcement every Wednesday evening (Manila Time) of the designated time and location for the coming Friday (example: 5:00 to 5:30 PM at the nearest Jollibee restaurant from your place).

There will be no speeches or programs at the designated place. Just people in black hanging around for a few minutes to be counted. All these are within the bounds of the law, even a repressive one like PD 1017.

The Book of Ecclesiastes teaches us there is a season for everything. I believe this is the season for mourning… the death of democracy and the numbing of our national conscience.

It is time to reawaken. It is time to be counted. It is time to say, “tama na! sobra na!” Please register now by sending blank email to BlackFridayProtest-subscribe@yahoogroups.com and pass this on to all your friends, colleagues, and egroups.

By God’s grace, we may yet see a better Philippines for our children.

God bless,

Enteng - eMandirigma