I AM RIGHTs: A Human Rights Awareness Campaign in Celebration of 2011 Human Rights Day

On December 10, we once again join the rest of the world in commemorating the International Human Rights Day. This significant event highlights the traditional calls of various sectors of society to defend and uphold human rights, mainly our political rights. Come election time, meanwhile, people get an equal share of their single right to vote. These circumstances left many contended at how they and the state dispense of their basic human rights. However, this is not ideal the case according to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It opines the rights of every human being to life and other socio-economic services that is the fundamental responsibility of every state.

 

Fifty years after that landmark declaration, Philippine society is still plagued by prevailing poverty, joblessness, hunger, and diminishing social services (housing, health, education) among others. On the other hand, the government continues to sell out our resources to foreign countries and open our country to plunder by foreign corporations thereby destroying livelihood and the environment. In essence, this is in violation of our basic and economic human rights, which the Bill of Rights stipulates in our 1987 Constitution.

 

Alongside, attacks against civil and political human rights prevail, with the human rights group Karapatan reporting that by the end of Macapagal-Arroyo’s term in June 2010, there have been 1,206 documented victims of extra judicial killings, 206 victims of enforced disappearance, and 337 illegally arrested and detained, while innumerable cases of torture, “hamletting”, harassment and intimidation, and other human rights violations were recorded. This pattern of impunity against civilians and progressive groups has extended to the new regime, wherein a total of 48 victims of extra-judicial killings, 5 cases of enforced disappearances, 29 cases of torture, 151 illegal arrests and 3,010 victims of hamletting have been accounted under President Aquino’s first year in office.

 

These glaring facts, however, do not usually get the attention of mainstream media nor is it being discussed at school or any ordinary forum. Worse, these medium of information and education have been badly influenced by vested interests to keep the status quo and thus, paving way for apathy and complacency to rein.

 

Making people aware of their basic human rights guaranteed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Constitution will therefore enable ordinary citizens to fully understand and act upon systematic and arbitrary abuses and violations of our rights by the state or any of its instrumentalities and how it circumvents processes and institutions to cover up its excesses and disregard to our fundamental rights. At a time where people bear the brunt of these in-your-face abuses and systematic violations of our rights, it necessitates an informed and collective action.

 

Karapatan-Southern Tagalog, UPLB ZoomOut Multimedia Collective, Artists’ Arrest and Southern Tagalog Exposure, in collaboration with other cultural and people’s organization in the region aims to refresh, if not sow awareness among citizens in the region of their basic civil, economics and political human rights and how to defend and uphold the same. Realizing these objectives entail holding of various cultural events to entice participation from students and schools, out of schools youth and communities, artists, professionals and the religious sectors. The major components of the campaign include, a Concert (Himigsikan para sa Karapatan at Katarungan), an Essay Writing Competition, Film Screenings, 10,000 Letters for Liberty, Human Rights Quilt and a Cultural Caravan.

 

As a pioneering activity, this is an open and continuing call to the people of Southern Tagalog to defend and uphold human rights. Recognizing the power and reach of culture and the arts, we are optimistic that in one-way or another, we can sow resistance among the public against attempts to curtail their human rights.

 

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Artists’ ARREST statement on the censorship of the Kulô exhibit at the CCP

At his point, any defense or attack of the artwork “Poleteismo” by Mideo Cruz is already moot and academic because it will always be subjective and it runs the danger of keeping our attention away from the more pressing concern at hand. We say this because, as it happens, the debate surrounding the artwork has been focused largely on its artistic and moral merits at the expense of calling our attention to what we think are more disturbing actions: the demand of a certain faction of the Catholic church for the resignation of the CCP officials; the vandalism of the artwork and in effect the CCP gallery in which it is in exhibit; and the decision of the CCP to close the exhibit.

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Pagpupugay kay Kasamang Alex Remollino!

PHOTO BY JO ABAYA-SANTOS

Tuparin Natin ang Banta ng Ating Panahon

Ika nga ng kapwa niya makatang si Romulo Sandoval, “napopoot tayo dahil tayo’y nagmamahal.” Sa eksaktong kundisyong ito maaring sipatin ang isang bahagi ng buhay ni Alex Remollino batay sa panulaang kanyang binaybay. Continue reading

“Lupa ay Laya” Benefit Gig for the Farmers Of Hacienda Yulo!

Visual artists aim to give a clear picture of ‘Morong 43’

By KC Santos, loQal.ph

QUEZON CITY, METRO MANILA– A group of visual artists is seeking to raise awareness on human rights violations through various artworks.

The group Artist’s ARREST has an ongoing exhibit title “FACT SHEET” featuring various paintings, collages, and other artworks centered on human rights violations based on the infamous “Morong 43” case.>

On February 6, 2010, about 43 health workers in Morong, Rizal were abducted and reportedly subjected to torture by the military on suspicion that the workers were New People’s Army (NPA) guerillas.

Rustom Casia, a  member of Artist’s ARREST, shares that some of the artworks they made for the fourth series of the exhibit are based on “factual data.”

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FACT SHEET 43 @ taUmbayan bar

Matapos ang magkasunod na pampublikong eksibit sa Baclaran at Mendiola noong Abril at Mayo,  ang Fact Sheet 43: 43 Artists for the 43 Health Workers ay nakatakdang ilunsad sa Hunyo 24, 2010, ika-7 ng gabi sa
Taumbayan Gallery, K1 cor., T. Gener, Kamuning, Q.C.

Ang Fact Sheet 43 ngayon ay nagtatanong at humahamon sa bagong halal na pangulo…

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Artists from the Philippines and the Bay Area Come Together in Exhibit that Tackles State-Sponsored Human Rights Violations

Traveling Exhibit of Political Posters Makes Its Second U.S. Stop in Oakland

Contact:
T. J. Basa, San Francisco Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines (SF-CHRP)
sfchrp@yahoo.com

OAKLAND, CA – Beginning May 27th, 2010, at the Asian Resource Gallery in Chinatown, East Bay audiences will get their chance to view over 30 posters created by activists from the Philippines and the United States in a traveling exhibit entitled FACT SHEET: Activism is NOT a Crime. The show draws inspiration from the one-sheet fliers circulated by human rights agencies whenever breaches of fundamental civil liberties occur.

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