“I was there in the last days of the Ferdinand Marcos Sr. dictatorship.”

I spent six days in Taiwan where my major professor was spending a sabbatical. And that gave me an opportunity to have a wonderful tour of Taipei, as well as the southernmost tip of the island. So, I wanted to mention that my participation in the workshop at the East-West Population Institute introduced me to a very nice lady from the Philippines who was at that time a professor in the sociology department at Saidaya University which is in Cagayan De Oro City, Philippines, on the island of Mindanao. And she facilitated a sabbatical for me to spend in the Philippines. So I lived in the Philippines, the far east from September, 1984 up until May, 1985. It was a difficult sabbatical and I ended up wishing that I had not gone. I was there in the last days of the Ferdinand Marcos Sr. dictatorship, that was masking as a democracy but was not a democracy. And all of the people that I came in contact through the university who were intellectuals had turned against the Marcos regime. They saw it as a dictatorship and not a democracy. I did suffer anti-Americanism because everyone knew that I was from the United States. And the United States was viewed as propping up the Marcos dictatorship, which we certainly were doing. But I was treated poorly because of my American citizenship. But when you handed lemons you make lemonade and I learned from this experience in the Philippines, and I learned things about myself I did not know before. And I emerged a stronger person after having had that hard experience. I’m reminded of the old saying ‘Diamonds are made under pressure.’ And I hope I have become a diamond even if imperfect.

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