Progressive solons and party-list groups want the return of Philippine history in the country’s educational curriculum after actress Ella Cruz, who is portraying Irene Marcos in a pro-Marcos film, likened history to gossip.
Representatives Raoul Manuel of Kabataan Party-list and France Castro of ACT Teachers, as well as the women’s rights group Gabriela party-list, highlighted the need for the “explicit inclusion of Philippine history in the K-12 curriculum.
Castro filed House Bill 207 as part of her priority legislation in the 19th Congress and is included in her first 10 priority bills filed last June 30.
This bill was first filed in the 18th Congress as a response to the clamor of various professional organizations and Philippine history advocates.
“We’d like to remind Ms. Ella Cruz that history remains grounded on facts, and that historical denialism has dangerously enabled the continued reign of plunderers in our country . . . Filipinos must know the atrocities and massive corruption committed under the dark reign of the President’s father,” Gabriela said in a statement.
“We also urge critics of Ms. Ella Cruz to devote more time in bringing to the fore the inconvenient historical truths which the Marcos family wants completely obliterated instead of leveraging personal attacks against the actress,” the group added.
The statement also lamented that Cruz’s real name, Gabriela Annjane, is the namesake of revolutionary hero Gabriela Silang.
Cruz came under fire and trended on Twitter after she likened history to mere gossip and hearsay, saying that everyone is entitled to their own opinions and that she respects each view.
The actress is portraying Irene, the youngest of the Marcos children, in director Darryl Yap’s “Maid in Malacañang,” a pro-Marcos film.
Yap is also a known Marcos supporter.
“Pinatunayan lamang muli na kailangang kailangan talaga na ibalik ang Philippine history bilang asignatura sa high school dahil ngayon, tinuturing na lamang itong ‘tsismis’ ng iilan upang baluktutin ang kasaysayan ng ating mamamayan (This only proved that we need to bring back Philippine history as a class in high school because now, this is being considered as gossip by others to twist the history of our people),” Castro said.
She also challenged incoming Education Secretary Sara Duterte and the government to ensure that “the curriculum does not aid historical revisionism and denialism for the sins against the Filipino people.”
Manuel, for his part, reached out to Cruz and asks her for a “friendly chat or dialogue” so they can “reach a common understanding and appreciation of history as a fellow Filipino youth for the future of our nation.”
He asked the actress not to be an “apparatus” to distort the country’s history.