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Love in the time of Maguindanáo Massacre

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And now, a tearjerker amidst the massacre.

One of the slain journalists in the infamous Maguindanáo Massacre was wed to his lover in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat, yesterday. It was attended family members and friends. The wedding symbolized that the couple’s love for each other is beyond death.

Not even deadly violence could ever tear their love for each other apart...

Argie Gulipato said that her wedding to 30-year-old journalist John Caniban of Periódico Iní was a “dream come true.” They’ve been live-in partner for years. And Argie just gave birth to a girl eight months ago. They’ve actually been planning to wed this month.

During the wedding, officiated by a Born Again Christian group, tears were rolling down the faces of those in attendance as the white-gowned bride walked down the aisle towards the altar where her groom was waiting for her — inside a coffin.

“During the wedding ceremonies that I presided, we witness vows being made as we pray for the couples. But Argie and John’s case was different. This was my first time,” said Pastor Ed Gabuat. “I was crying. I just can’t look at the couple.”

Gabuat has been a pastor for 20 years. He said it was the first time he performed such kind of a wedding.

After the wedding, there were no more festivities. No merriment. No slicing of cakes and dances and drinking. No honeymoon followed.

John went straight to his final resting place: a cemetery in Isulan town.

At the very least, love never breathed its last…

A complete list of the 30 Media Martyrs of Maguindanáo

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Of the 57 victims of the infamous Maguindanáo Massacre (others report 64), more than half were journalists. Here is the complete list so far (in alphabetical order) of the 30 Media Martyrs of Maguindanáo (compiled by the Freedom Fund for Filipino Journalists):

• Adolfo, Benjie—Gold Star Daily, Koronadal City
• Araneta, Henry—radio dzRH, General Santos City
• Arriola, Mark Gilbert “Mac-Mac”—UNTV, General Santos
• Bataluna, Rubello—Gold Star Daily, Koronadal
• Betia, Arturo—Periódico Iní, General Santos
• Cabillo, Romeo Jimmy—Midland Review, Tacurong City
• Cablitas, Marités—News Focus, General Santos
• Cachuela, Hannibal—Punto News, Koronadal
• Caniban, John—Periódico Iní, General Santos
• Dalmacio, Lea—Socsargen News, General Santos
• Decina, Noel—Periódico Iní, General Santos
• Dela Cruz, Gina—Saksi News, General Santos
• Dohillo, Eugene—UNTV, General Santos
• Duhay, Jhoy—Gold Star Daily, Tacurong
• Gatchalián, Santos—dxGO, Daváo City
• Legarte, Bienvenido Jr.—Prontiera News, Koronadal
• Lupogan, Lindo—Mindanáo Daily Gazette, Daváo City
• Maravilla, Ernesto “Bart”—Bombo Radyo, Koronadal
• Merisco, Rey—Periódico Iní, Koronadal
• Momay, Reynaldo “Bebot”—Midland Review, Tacurong
• Montaño, Marifé “Neneng”—Saksi News, General Santos
• Morales, Rosell—News Focus, General Santos
• Núñez, Victor—UNTV, General Santos
• Perante, Ronnie—Gold Star Daily correspondent, Koronadal
• Parcón, Joel—Prontiera News, Koronadal
• Razón, Fernando “Rani”—Periódico Iní, General Santos
• Reblando, Alejandro “Bong”—Manila Bulletin, General Santos
• Salaysay, Napoleón—Mindanáo Gazette, Cotabato City
• Subang, Ian—Socsargen Today, General Santos
• Teodoro, Andrés “Andy”—Central Mindanáo Inquirer, Tacurong

Remember 11/23/09

More than a hundred journalists have already been killed since Marcos was ousted in 1986. More than half of them –74 to be exact– were executed since 2001, when Arroyo and the military (with the “covert” support of the US government, of course) stole the presidency.

This massacre will never weaken the media. Especially the new mediathe bloggers.

This senseless violence has only strengthened our resolve to uphold the truth no matter what. We shall all continue the mission of The 30 Media Martyrs of Maguindanáo, whether in print or the airwaves or via the net.

So to all you demons in coat and tie (or in terno during SONAs), wallowing in power and bloody wealth inside your respective administrative buildings — BRING IT ON!

There is no way you can stop the Fourth Estate. And you can bet your ugly spouses and goblin-looking children with that.

Man, even his putong is branded: Lacoste!

*******

Special thanks to the Facebook group WE CONDEMN THE MAGUINDANÁO MASSACRE for the photos. Add them up on your Facebook account and show your support against this evil!

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