“I am the voice of the voiceless; I am the Equalizer,” Larry Henares starts this 18th book of his Make My Day series. In previous books, he writes that his column Make My Day is a morality play where nationalists and liberals championing the poor are the heroes; and colonial lackeys of foreigners, especially of the CIA and American monopolists, and the exploiters of the great unwashed are the villains. In the essay, “The intellectual art of giving insult,” Henares bares one of the weapons of his crusade, the others being “…to enlighten, to inspire, to educate, to astound, to delight, to amuse, to imbue with a sense of wonder….” He says that while his friend Ninoy Aquino wrote at the beginning of his career to open doors of opportunity in politics, and his friend Max Soliven wrote from the beginning to the end of his career as a vocation, he, Larry Henares, chose to write at the end of his career, when he has accumulated enough resources to sustain him against political pressure, and when he has accumulated enough experience, knowledge and wisdom to impart to his countrymen. Then again he observes that some columnists take the role of a judge, or a witness, or an advocate, or an apologist – but he himself assumes the role of a protagonist who “promotes, protects and defends the interest of the Filipino people against the interests of other nations.” To dream the impossible dream, to right the unrightable wrong, to bear the unbearable sorrow, to reach the unreachable star – is his quest.
And those define the parameters of Larry Henares’ Nationalist Crusade. And it is in this role in this volume that he takes on President Cory Aquino and her “Council of Trent,” the Army and the Americans, as well as the Holy Mafia that is the Opus Dei, and the American invasion of Panama. And thus he writes informative and amusing essays on the Elizaldes, Father Shay Cullen and Flash Gordon, the genius of Sixto Roxas, Kris Aquino and People Power, , and other personalities – Amang Rodriguez, Marcos Soliman, Lee Aguinaldo, Juan Luna, Telly Zulueta, Platt’s Japanese Uncle, and Abraham Lincoln. And thus he writes of the Destiny of Man, porque aprender español, a poignant prayer Glory Be to America, the dilemma of the man in the middle, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, ham radio and the Patriotism of Humanity.