If you’re a Filipino, you probably know our national anthem ‘Lupang Hinirang’, the lyrics of which were written by Jose Palma in 1899. Not having grown up here, I was only introduced to our national anthem fairly recently, but I fell in love with it pretty quickly. How couldn’t I what with it being so poetic from start to finish?
Having those feelings intact, imagine how surprised I was when a couple of days ago, I heard that Senate President Vicente Sotto III wanted to make some changes to its lyrics to make the national anthem “more positive”. And he’s actually serious about it. He really wants to file a resolution for his desired change.
The line that Tito Sotto wants to change is the final line of the national anthem, which goes, “Aming ligaya ng ‘pag may mang-aapi ang mamatay nang dahil sayo”. His proposed new verse is as follows: “Aming ligaya na ‘pag may mang-aapi ang ipaglaban kalayaan mo.” According to Tito Sotto, the current national anthem sounds defeatist. “My suggestion is perhaps the proper Senate Committee should study and we can consult the NCCA (National Commission for Culture and the Arts) to look at that possibility,” he says.
Do you agree with him?