Greenpeace Southeast Asia

A day after the ride… by Chuck Baclagon
The ride may be over but not the struggle for a nuclear-free Philippines

The ride may be over but not the struggle for a nuclear-free Philippines

“Was it worth it?”

A day after the activity at Congress’ gate, I find myself asking this question.

After two days of traveling, was it worth it?

I find it weird that somehow after stepping out of my routine for the weekend I somehow find myself asking whether what we did made a difference.

Well, I suppose it did.

Because for a week and for the weekend we were able to step out and actually do something, and in some ways it was doing something that most of us are already fond of doing. We pedaled with cyclists who for the who rode bicycles most part of their lives. We had people sign petitions. Some of them decided to forward our appeal to their friends, while some eagerly put the petition on their profile status in Facebook, while some wrote blogs or followed Tweets.

I guess it was worth it for the most part because it enabled people to take action in ways that they are already good at. If you ask me I think its kind of empowering, primarily because it allows activism that is not based on a dogmatic approach to ideals. It promotes creativity and at the same time liberates us from the notion that activism can only be done by highly indoctrinated activists.

A day after the awe inspiring three days of action, I am back where I am: on my desk tapping at my keyboard and pretty sure I am not the only one who’s back to where they were before the three days of action. The cyclists, activists, volunteers etc have their lives to live as I. But it is a good afterthought for all of us that we had spent the weekend for something beyond ourselves.

The names of cyberactivists who signed the petition are attached to the pinwheels

The names of cyberactivists who signed the petition are attached to the pinwheels

A day after yesterday’s activity in Congress, I am still in awe at the fact that I was able to read the name of someone I know who’s from Argentina, in the printed names of those who signed the petition that were attached to the pinwheels that we installed at the gate.  It is with that image in mind that I find it worth it because it has been a while since I felt that signing a petition made a difference because it was actually brought to our targeted audience, both symbolically and in reality as the petition sign ups were included in the resource packet that our lobbying team are giving to individual members of Congress.

Now, as I sit here in my near empty cubicle in the office thinking if the whole ordeal was worth it.  It was worth it because 5,000 people who shared our view, 5,000 people was confronted with the fact that their choice will in the coming days spell the difference between a nuclear disaster and a clean renewable energy future for Filipinos.

It is my sincerest hope that their voice will not go unheard by those in Congress.

Chuck Baclagon

2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

hi chuck,

being bed ridden for 3 days with inflamed tonsils and 39 temperature, i would still say it is definitely worth it!

i was lucky to get a pin wheel with my name on it and to have the actual opportunity to tell congress face-off that i don’t want nuclear energy… i was the one who put up mark’s name in that gate too… not mark c. but mark d…. hahaha!

i want to have my share of lobby work dude, but i have to regain energy to go back to battle…

hope everything is okay in the office…

peace and love,
joan meris

Comment by joan

hi joan,
glad to know that you’re feeling better. 🙂
glad to know that you also felt empowered with the actual opportunity to send the no nukes message to the congressmen in person, and that you also had that feeling of rush when you saw the name of someone you knew in the pinwheels.

as for lobby work i’ve had my share yesterday and after going through the complex security protocols of Congress i somehow realized that it’s easier to do direct actions in the facility that directly engage them on their turf, anyways feel that i should whine more about it at another blog post that i’ll be writing later.

Comment by Chuck Baclagon

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