Revisit the resistance of the past.

Source: Esquiremag.ph

By: Miguel Escobar

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 1
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

In the years leading up to Ferdinand Marcos’ declaration of Martial Law, The Philippines Free Press was one among a handful of publications that were unrelenting in their critique of his administration. The Free Press published articles about social, political, and economic issues that helped its readers form a dissenting opinion about Marcos and the path down which he was leading our country—which of course meant that by the fateful evening of September 22, 1972, it was among the publications that were shut down.

Among the ways that the Free Press expressed its views was through editorial cartoons. Today, it’s a somewhat forgotten art that’s been supplanted by political memes, but in a time before the internet, editorial cartoons were a great visual method for expressing a political opinion. The Free Press published many that were highly critical of the Marcos administration, of which some are uploaded in the public Flickr account of the 2010-2016 Presidential Museum and Library. Here are some of the best ones:

Martial law was the white cloth that a heavily-bemedalled Marcos had only to drop to seal democracy’s death by firing squad.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 2
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Many of the Free Press’ editorial cartoons portrayed the Philippines as a woman, seen here descending blindly into chaos, step by step, as the delegates of the 1970 Constitutional Convention—which would eventually draft the 1973 Constitution that would keep Marcos in power—just watched on apathetically.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 3
MAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

The Free Press knew that the Constitutional Convention was going to hand Marcos everything he wanted on a silver platter.

RELATED:  Marcos files bill amending ‘e-martial law’
Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 4
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Like many strongmen before him, Ferdinand Marcos used the looming threat of Communism to wrest power, first by suspending the writ of habeas corpus.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 5
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

In another cartoon that depicts the Philippines as a woman, a power-hungry president who was looking to extend his term is depicted as a rapist.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 6
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Many of the editorial cartoons depicted the delegates of the constitutional convention as dogs: tuta ni Marcos, as they say. It’s almost a cute cartoon—a dog drafting the constitution with some “Special Tuta Food” on the side—until you realize that this effectively made Marcos a dictator.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 7
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Here’s a straightforward one that’s just as true as the rest: military rule was a large hand that pinned people down on their heads.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 8
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

In the years leading up to Ferdinand Marcos’ declaration of Martial Law, The Philippines Free Press was one among a handful of publications that were unrelenting in their critique of his administration. The Free Press published articles about social, political, and economic issues that helped its readers form a dissenting opinion about Marcos and the path down which he was leading our country—which of course meant that by the fateful evening of September 22, 1972, it was among the publications that were shut down.

Among the ways that the Free Press expressed its views was through editorial cartoons. Today, it’s a somewhat forgotten art that’s been supplanted by political memes, but in a time before the internet, editorial cartoons were a great visual method for expressing a political opinion. The Free Press published many that were highly critical of the Marcos administration, of which some are uploaded in the public Flickr account of the 2010-2016 Presidential Museum and Library. Here are some of the best ones: ADVERTISEMENT – CONTINUE READING BELOW

RELATED:  The Kingmaker Documentary Exposes the Unapologetic Opulence of Imelda Marcos

Martial law was the white cloth that a heavily-bemedalled Marcos had only to drop to seal democracy’s death by firing squad.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 9
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Many of the Free Press’ editorial cartoons portrayed the Philippines as a woman, seen here descending blindly into chaos, step by step, as the delegates of the 1970 Constitutional Convention—which would eventually draft the 1973 Constitution that would keep Marcos in power—just watched on apathetically. ADVERTISEMENT – CONTINUE READING BELOW

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 10
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

The Free Press knew that the Constitutional Convention was going to hand Marcos everything he wanted on a silver platter.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 11
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Like many strongmen before him, Ferdinand Marcos used the looming threat of Communism to wrest power, first by suspending the writ of habeas corpus.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 12
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

In another cartoon that depicts the Philippines as a woman, a power-hungry president who was looking to extend his term is depicted as a rapist. ADVERTISEMENT – CONTINUE READING BELOW

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 13
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Many of the editorial cartoons depicted the delegates of the constitutional convention as dogs: tuta ni Marcos, as they say. It’s almost a cute cartoon—a dog drafting the constitution with some “Special Tuta Food” on the side—until you realize that this effectively made Marcos a dictator. ADVERTISEMENT – CONTINUE READING BELOW

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 14
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

Here’s a straightforward one that’s just as true as the rest: military rule was a large hand that pinned people down on their heads.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 15
MAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

When the Con-Con delegates weren’t drawn as dogs, they were drawn as buwaya, or crocodiles—still a common animal used to refer to authorities who can be bought off. This particular cartoon shows the luxury that they bought with the freedom of our country.

RELATED:  Eulogy for the dictator
Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 16
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

This cartoon shows how Marcos enacted his tyranny: by targeting the oligarchs who would oppose him, and assembling a new elite who would back him. Meanwhile, someone who looks like Mad Magazine’s Alfred E. Neuman, an American icon, just sits back and watches.

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 17
IMAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library

And this one shows how Marcos earned the allegiance of the military: by filling their pockets with the people’s money, which he would siphon using his “juggling techniques.”

Look Back At The Philippine Free Press’ Marcos-Era Editorial Cartoons 18
MAGE The Philippines Free Press Magazine via The Presidential Museum and Library