While watching the movie, I have observed similarities and differences of some scenes from today’s youth. Let’s start discussing about the similarities. First thing I have observed is the harsh treatment given by the colonials to our fellowmen especially to women and children. They, if not physically, were verbally abused by the Spaniards. I compared it to what’s happening in our society today and quite noticed a similarity. It is similar in a way that women and children, even the men too, are still abused by foreign people and sometimes even our own people. They also treat them as slaves.
Child labor – forcing minors to work – has been a big issue. Women slavery – treating women as slaves, sex slaves to be exact – has been an issue too. Nowadays, our people are still abused and these are oftentimes done by those who have the power like politicians and other well-illustrated persons. They think that with their wealth and position they have the right to hurt our fellowmen. Even a small mistake or a suspicion causes the people who have the power to physically abuse our fellowmen because for them that’s how they should be treated after what they have done.
Next thing I have observed is the racial discrimination. As we have discussed in class, it is one of the evils during Rizal’s time. Filipinos who were flat-nosed and brown-skinned were labeled as “Indios” and the Spaniards being pale-complexioned were termed as “Bangus” or milkfish in English. The Filipinos who were called “Indios” had little privileges unlike the “Milkfish” people who had most of the privileges to themselves. The Spaniards look at them like they were as tiny as an ant and they were of no importance to them. Foreign people thought that they were superiors against the Filipinos.
They criticize them based on how they look and they treat them rudely based on how rude their criticism on their looks is. There were different beliefs in anointing officials in where Spaniards have believed that Indios should not be allowed and do not deserve to be given a position in any fields because for them they do not make any contributions that would benefit our country. Fathers Gomez, Burgos and Zamora’s (GomBurZa) execution was an example of how Spaniards hated the fact that Indios are given a chance to serve the country.
For Spaniards, they were the only one who should have all the rights and freedom to do whatever they like and no one should be against them for if there was they would be killed. Third thing I have observed in the film was the greediness of the Spaniards for power. They wanted to be anointed immediately to a position where they have more ability to control the Filipinos. And once they have the power to do things, they start to abuse it. The Spaniards had never been in favor of what the Filipinos like.
Actually, they were in favor of what the Filipinos disliked. Once they hear our fellowmen reacting rudely at their deeds, they start to make their lives miserable to let them know that they are not to be messed with. Spaniards’ greed for power made them abuse their rights. They used their position to access more power which made the control more people. It is the same today. People still use their position to manipulate us. They are superior, they have the power, and they can do anything they like. So, what they do is they treat us rudely.
For example, policemen nowadays use their position to hurt and get money from our fellowmen. They abuse their right to use materials which they should only use for defense. Another example is when a politician uses his position to manipulate people. They start to make people believe that their intentions are good but the truth is at the end of the day it is not. So what happens, people trust them because they appear so nice and tend to do what they’ve been told. Since they trust these politicians, they will not question the things they’ve been told to do.
Then later on, it will turn out that they were used by these politicians for their own gain and not for our fellowmen’s sake. A common example of this is when politicians promise a program to our people. They start trying to gain their trust. Once they have gained our fellowmen’s trust, they start to ask for favors like asking them to some deeds, some which are illegal, and ask them for money. Our fellowmen will willingly oblige to what they have been asked for believing that it would benefit them.
But sometimes, they do what they have been told because they are forced by these men who have the power to do so. Fourth thing I have observed is the maladministration of justice e. In the movie, it was pretty obvious that the trial was just a scene so that our fellowmen would think that the Spaniards would still give Rizal a chance when in fact a decision has been made before the trial. The Spaniards were very firm about their decision which was to execute Rizal. There was no justice there because Rizal was not given a chance to explain and prove to everyone that he was innocent.
The Spaniards looked like they were in the trial listening but actually they turned into deaf the moment Rizal started to explain himself. Comparing to today’s situation, people are not given the chance to explain their selves because the moment a case has been filed against you they automatically make a decision which usually is for you to lose the case. Nowadays, only those who can afford justice can have justice. People who have enough wealth pay the one assigned for their case to win it whether they deserve it or not.