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Legarda Renews Call to Respect Heritage as Nation Commemorates Rizal Day

December 29, 2014

Senator Loren Legarda today renewed her call to respect and preserve the nation’s heritage as Filipinos commemorate Dr. Jose Rizal’s martyrdom on December 30.

Legarda said that the National Hero, who was one of the Filipinos who fought for the country’s independence, is among the country’s heritage.

“Dr. Jose Rizal is an important figure in our history—his ideals, works and actions all form part of our rich heritage which we must all strive to respect, protect and preserve,” she said.

The Senator stressed that Rizal himself had expressed the need for Filipinos to embrace their heritage. While fluent in several foreign languages, Rizal loved his native tongue even saying that, “He who does not love his own language is worse than an animal and smelly fish.”

Many of Rizal’s works also describe the beauty of the Philippines and its people.

Legarda also said that the National Hero was fond of indigenous woven fabrics. Kept at the Berlin Ethnological Museum in Germany is a collection of Philippine textiles and indigenous clothing from Rizal.

“We look forward to the exhibit of Rizal’s textile collection at the National Museum of the Philippines next year and hope that the revelation of his appreciation of textiles would be an encouragement for the general public to view Philippine indigenous textiles in a new light,” she said.

“Like Dr. Rizal, we, too, should take pride in our heritage. We will be more confident of ourselves if we know who we are and if we understand our roots. We must all strive to know about our heritage, appreciate it and preserve it as well,” said Legarda, who proposes a cultural mapping of every town, city and municipality in the country.

“I believe that each locality has its own cultural heritage to showcase and it is important that we identify and document these resources for purposes of appreciation, conservation and development. The fundamental goal of cultural mapping is to educate and help the nation visualize its rich heritage while allowing for reflection of what it stands to lose as a result of its collective apathy,” Legarda concluded.