Philippine Independence Day: A celebration of freedom and unity


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Freedom. This is something everyone cherishes. 

This is why celebrating the country’s Independence Day is something to behold and continues to be relevant, especially in today’s geopolitical landscape.

Today, we celebrate the country’s 126th Independence Day with the theme, “Kalayaan. Kinabukasan. Kasaysayan (Freedom. Future. History).”  The theme is apt for the occasion as this year’s celebration comes at a time when the country faces heightened challenges to its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

This year’s celebration is imperative as it is crucial to reminisce the triumph of our valiant forebears against colonial rule and serves as a powerful reminder for every Filipino of this hard-won freedom. 

Our ancestors’ sacrifices allow us to honor the courage of our heroes—those who fought valiantly for our motherland. From Emilio Aguinaldo’s leadership during the Spanish colonization to the struggles against American rule, their unwavering dedication paved the way for our sovereignty. By remembering their heroic acts, we pay homage to their legacy and inspire future generations to cherish our nation’s independence.

Dr. Jose Rizal once said, “Death does not matter if one dies for those one loves—for his country and for others dear to him.” Celebrating Independence Day is an opportunity to demonstrate our love for the Philippines. Whether through small acts like keeping our surroundings clean or contributing to society, each gesture reflects our commitment to the nation. On this day, we also recognize the sacrifices of front-liners and essential workers who serve our country selflessly.

In the present time, the role of security forces—including the token military contingent assigned to BRP Sierra Madre in the Ayungin Shoal—cannot be overstated. These brave men and women protect our territorial integrity, ensuring that our sovereignty remains intact. Whether patrolling the seas, monitoring borders, or defending against external threats, they embody the spirit of service and sacrifice. Their unwavering commitment allows us to celebrate Independence Day with pride, knowing that our nation’s security is in capable hands.

In President Marcos’ Independence Day message released on June 9, he said: “In the past 126 years until now, we continue to fight for freedom. Freedom in various aspects of being a Filipino. More than this is our freedom in our territory and our sovereignty.”

That stated, the observance of Independence Day plays a pivotal role in shaping our collective identity. It instills values of resilience, adaptability, and community engagement. As we face challenges, this celebration reminds us that unity remains our greatest strength—the same quality our forebears possessed to overcome adversity . Our shared history binds us together, reinforcing the Filipino spirit even amid global complexities.

In a world marked by geopolitical shifts, Philippine Independence Day continues to be relevant—it is a beacon of pride, unity, and freedom for every Filipino. Let us reminisce about the past, express our love for the country, and continue shaping a resilient and united Philippines for today’s generation and the generations to come.

Let us stand up against anyone that tramples upon the freedom our forebears gallantly fought for.