Monday, October 13, 2008

Macapagals Throughout History

Apologies sa original na sumulat nito na hindi ko alam kung sino. 'Di ko ma-google. At apologies na rin sa original na nag-repost. Natuwa/nainis/nairita/nabuwisit/na-possess lang ako at gusto kong ikalat. Maraming salamat.

What is it in a name that sometimes it provides a consistent measure of character? I am referring to one of the most enduring and ubiquitous names in Philippine history: Macapagal.

One would be amazed at how often some Macapagal from Pampanga would surface periodically at critical points in Philippine history. However, the Macapagal record is not that stellar. For, anywhere and anytime that someone with that name appears, the air would always reek with the stench of treachery.

The first Macapagal in history is a datu from Arayat, Juan Macapagal. A grandson of Lakandula, Don Juan was among the principalia during the early Spanish era. He betrayed his own people by assisting the Spaniards quell the Kapampangan and Pangasinan Revolts of 1660 and Ilocano Revolt of 1661. By his handiwork, many natives died. For his services he was handsomely compensated with an encomienda --- a.k.a. license to steal, cheat and plunder --- and named Maestre Campo General of the natives of Arayat, Candaba and Apalit.

Two centuries later, the murderous tradition lived on to wreak havoc on the Philippine Revolution of 1896. This time, the Macapagal victim was none other than the venerable Supremo of the Katipunan, Andres Bonifacio. On May 10, 1897, Col. Lazaro Makapagal (Filipino derivative of the name) marched a wounded and hogtied Supremo and his brother, Procopio, up the rugged mountains of Maragondon, Cavite and shot them to death.

Indeed, duplicity is the Macapagal trade that many decades latter, another scion of the clan, Diosdado Macapagal, even managed to double-cross a master schemer, Ferdinand Marcos. In the 1960s, Diosdado promised the young (then) Senator Marcos the Liberal Party presidential nomination. In return for Marcos’ support, Diosdado declared that he would not seek re-election in 1965 in order to give way to Marcos’ candidacy. However, he reneged on such assurances later. The scheme backfired, however, when Marcos bolted the Liberal Party, joined the Nacionalista and soundly defeated Diosdado in the presidential elections.

Meanwhile, another Macapagal would have been in a perfect position to salvage the clan’s honor. Felicisimo Macapagal, unlike the rest of his clan, started out as a socialist revolutionary. He eventually rose to become the Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas’ (PKP) Secretary General. However, DNA proved unalterable when this Macapagal ended up as a capitulationist. In 1974 he signed a compromise with Ferdinand Marcos to cooperate with the dictatorial regime.

Then several decades later, the same pattern continued. This time, the country is led by the daughter of Diosdado and a direct descendant of Don Juan. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo became President through electoral fraud. Her administration is steeped in scandals involving plunder of the treasury and murder of innocent activists.

Sometimes some things do not change. It is either the Macapagal name is accursed or the country is accursed by having such treacherous brood appearing and re-appearing throughout the pages of its history.

Click the pix for the source.

1 comment:

  1. I need a date of death of Felicisimo Macapagal.