Why Does Sen. Tito Sotto Want To Change The Lyrics of ‘Lupang Hinirang’?

First, he called it “Bayang Magiliw”, now Sen. Tito Sotto wants to change the last line of Lupang Hinirang.

But before we talk about our Senate President’s plea, let us all recall the history of the 119-year-old National Anthem.

The first President of the Philippines, Emilio Aguinaldo asked Julian Felipe to create a composition that will be used on Philippine Independence Day ceremonies on June 12, 1898. Aguinaldo liked the composition and he called it Marcha Nacional Filipina (Philippine National March).

The National March remained lyrics-less for a year but in August 1899, Jose Palma wrote a Spanish poem entitled Filipinas, which tells of the spirit of the Filipinos in fighting the Spaniards. Later on, Filipinas became the official lyrics of the National March.

In 1934, the Philippine National Anthem in Spanish was translated into English. Finally, in 1956, they translated it into Filipino, thus Lupang Hinirang is born.

Since then, Lupang Hinirang is what we’ve been using. However, amidst all unresolved issues in the Philippines like the economy dropping (ever come across an inflation joke recently?), The Drug War, and Filipinos suffering from natural calamities, Senate President and noon-time show host, Tito Sotto thought that his idea on changing the lyrics of the Philippine National Anthem would be relevant. According to him, the lyrics felt “defeatist.”

The last line of the Lupang Hinirang is:

Aming ligaya, na pag may mang-aapi

Ang mamatay nang dahil sa’yo.

While Sotto wants it changed to:

Aming ligaya, na pag may mang-aapi

Ang ipaglaban kalayaan mo.

Here’s how the Twitterverse reacted to Tito Sotto’s idea:

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