We must all be keen students of our history as it is the key to a better future for all of us, Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos, Jr. said.
“Those who do not understand the lessons and mistakes of history are doomed to repeat them—and that is the importance that our history has to our future,” Marcos said in his speech during the National History Week celebration at the Centro Escolar University (CEU).
The senator noted that what we are today “ as a race, as a country, comes from our history” and so it would be the starting point for all that we will do in the future.
If we are to achieve our vision for a better future, Marcos said: “It is essential that we know what it is that we are good at, what it is we are not so good at, where we find ourselves lacking, the areas that we are advanced, and all other elements that have to be considered.”
But Marcos warned that learning history is not an easy thing to do.
“History is written by many people and the accounts that we get from those historians are in their own ways, slightly different,” Marcos said.
To understand what really happened in the past, Marcos said students of history should also try to view it from the unique individual perspective and personal bias of the historians.
Likewise, Marcos also said students should watch out for “revisionism” or efforts to use history as propaganda for selfish political agenda. He cited accounts on newly crowned Pharaohs of ancient Egypt who ordered the destruction of all memories of their predecessors to glorify the new rule.
“We have to study more than just the facts, the events, the places—we must also understand from where that account of history is coming from,” Marcos said.
Marcos advised the students of history to read all available accounts and also try, if possible, to find out from those who have first hand experience of the events in the past.
“Then slowly you will begin to understand what really happened,” Marcos said.
Only when we have a better appreciation of our past can we make intelligent decisions towards carving a better future for our country, Marcos advised.