“Does Rizal deserve to be our national hero?”
This article written by Renato Constantino, is all about Rizal that does he really deserves to be a hero or not? The author compared Rizal to others national heroes in different countries, who is most decisively active in the fight for their freedom and leader of that revolution. Like in US, China, Vietnam and other countries mentioned from the article. But the author said Rizal is not our Revolution leader; in fact he repudiated that revolution. He’s just silent and being martyr for our country. Also he is an American-Sponsored Hero, Rizal chose as a model over other contestants- Aguinaldo too militant, Bonifacio too radical, Mabini unregenerate. We must view Rizal as an evolving personality within historical period. Additional, author’s purpose for this article is to remind us that our history is very important to us because it will serve to demonstrate how our presence has been distorted by a faulty knowledge of our past.
For me, this article was still a question to the author of “Does Rizal deserves to be our National Hero?” There are several factors that Rizal deserves it and some are not. Because Rizal had certain qualities, he was able to serve the pressing social needs of the periods, needs that arose out of general and particular historical forces. As the author said, he is a hero in the sense that he was able to see problems generated by historical forces, discern the new social needs created by the historical development of new social relationships, and take an active part in meeting these needs. But he is not a hero in the sense of he could have stopped and altered the course of events.
Although Rizal was already a revered figure and became more so after his martyrdom, it cannot be denied that his pre-eminence among heroes was partly the result of American sponsorship. Also, he was the first Filipino limited Filipino, the ilustrado Filipino, who fought for national unity but feared the Revolution and loved his mother country, yes, but in his own ilustrado way. Rizal never advocated independence, nor did he advocate armed resistance to the government. He urged from within by publicity, by public education, and appeal to the public conscience.
What if Rizal is not our National hero? Maybe Bonifacio can be our National hero because he fights for our country and he is too revolutionary. When the goals of the people are finally achieved, Rizal the first Filipino will be canceled by the true Filipino by whom he will be remembered as a great catalyst in the transformation of the decolonized indios. But still, there are so many reason that Rizal deserves to be our National Hero. So, I think the author balanced this view of article. The author explained the opinion of both.
Honestly, I am not really interested about this article. There are so many questions in my mind says, “it happened, he’s our national hero, what are these articles complaining or explaining” “why do we need to study about this?” But it’s required to us to read this article and make a reaction paper to this, and then I realized that it is important to us (Filipino) to understand our history. We must understand why Rizal is our national hero. It is also a reflection of our intellectual timidity, our reluctance to expose new causes unless we can find authorize, however remote, in Rizal. The exposure of his weaknesses and limitations will also mean our liberation, for he has, to a certain extent become part of the superstructure that supports present consciousness. That is why a critical evaluation of Rizal cannot but lead to a revision of our understanding of history and the role of the individual in history. I conclude that Rizal deserves to be our National Hero. If I would ask the author, what if Rizal is not our National Hero, who it will be? Why?