I've written over the past week in various ways, that the organizing against the military buildup on Guam (or the critiquing of it) has helped spur alot of new activity and new creativity. One of the primary outlets that we've seen this energy and this concern expressed is through Youtube.
The uploading of footage or clips of people giving some very insightful and emotional testimony has been the largest presence, but there have been small attempts by others to create short videso to make use of the medium and also get the word out about what is going on.
In the past three weeks, these videos have all together been viewed thousands of times, and for Guam related videos which don't involve nearly naked women or high school children beating each other up, this is a very big deal. Across Youtube, you'll find ways in which people are using it for critical and progressive causes, but Guam and Chamorros have yet to take advantage of this yet (except for a few scattered examples). As someone who regularly uploads videso onto Youtube, and follows closely what goes on in terms of videos about Guam and Chamorros, the recent rush of videos on Youtube is truly something inspiring. It is something which is organic and that has stemmed from people coming together to work on videos together, or working alone to upload vidoes they feel others should see. Although it is a far greater and stronger presence than two months ago, it is still not much. But, este i tinituhon, and therefore it has the potential to grow into something much, much larger.
I've pasted below some of the videos that you should take a look at (that is, if you haven't already watched them).
First off, here is one of the testimonies from the four public hearings on Guam sponsored by JGPO. In this video Senator Ben Pangelinan does not pull out any stops in criticizing both the buildup and the manner in which the prep for the buildup has been conducted by JGPO and DOD. Although, everyone on Guam can feel like they don't know enough about the buildup and what lies ahead for Guam because of it, those in power right now, in particular the Guam Legislature are in a crappy spot right now. The Governor long ago, ha bende i ante-na, for this buildup, he basically (much like George W. Bush), gambled his legacy as a leader on something massive, overblown, and very poorly planned. We will see how it turns out.
But the Legislature can't make any similar claims, as they have constantly been snubbed in the planning for the buildup by both Camacho and JGPO and DOD, as the Feds have made it clear that they will work with the executive branch of Guam's government, and that any interaction with the Legislature is out of the goodness of their hearts.
For years, the political line for the buildup, the way to make use of it effectively was to voice concerns, but not too many concerns. To be worried about it, or have some problems with it, but not too many problems with it. As the political season is just around the corner (or already here and ha uchachani hit taplerun pulitikat siha), and the buildup itself is to start (officially) roaring to life this summer, politicians are started to develop new calculations. The longstanding meekness of Camacho, or the recent round of angry lame duck tactics aren't sitting well with voters and so what people most likely want right now is strength, leadership, un ma'gas ni' para u tachuyi siha. Ben Pangelinan, in his rhetoric in his public comment, might simply be expressing his personal feelings on the buildup (frustration and anger, a feeling that mamfina'gaga' hit as Siha), or could be trying out some new more aggressive rhetoric, which could help (or hurt) his chances at a bid for Governor.
To view the others that can be found online now click on this link to return to an earlier post, "Buildup/Breakdown #2: Mananachu Hit."
Just to warn you, I'm in the video above. Its a mini-documentary made by the director of the DVD Discover Guam. He made the video as a favor to a family which may be forced to lease their land to the United States military to make way for a firing range. The video is very simple, me talking about the buildup, with plenty of images of the lands that might be taken. Despensa yu' kontiempo put i kinalamten-hu siha gi este na mubi. Ai adai, guaha na biahi, annai kumekuentos yu' gof grabu taiguihi, hu na'palapap i kannai-hu kalang un paluma yu'.
This is video made by my cousins Cara and Jason after the We Are Guahan hike to Pagat Cave earlier this month. The hike to this historical, beautiful and sacred site was very inspiring for those who went along, and really helped build a foundation for some people who have now become active members of We Are Guahan.
Although this next video isn't (directed) buildup related, it was shot during the We Are Guahan hike to Pagat. Its of my nephew Dylan jumping off the cliffs near the cave and everyone's reactions when he attempts to do a dive, but instead splats on his side into the water.
This is a poem uploaded as a vlog about the buildup. Fihu annai lumailai yu' giya Youtube, hu diseseha mohon na mas vloggers guini giya Guahan. Pues manhasso yu' na sina Guahu, lao siempre ti manmalago i taotao guihi huyong gi i internet, siempre ti ya-niha umatan este na chatpago na mata-hu.
This was made several months ago, but its still very relevant. If I remember correctly, this video was made by a UOG student who was inspired to do something to try to effect positive change after he watched the film Sway.
Another video that is several months old, but still very relevant. Its a segment from the Working Families show which was made by the Guam Federation of Teachers. The second half of this segment (starting at 1:49) covers the Reclaim Guahan Rally which took place in May of last year. Too often on Guam, things happen and there is little to no record of it, save for in the minds of those who were there. As long as our actions remain at that level, it doesn't change much. It needs to be embedded in the landscape of the island, in different media forms so that others can discover it and connect to it. So that it changes from just being a singular event, but something which remains in the world and one of many points through which a society can be pivoted around, and transformed through.
Finally, here's a video which incorporates the text of Maga'lahi Hurao's 1671 speech against the Spanish, in order to both text and perpetuate the Chamorro language, but also inspire people to rise up against the buildup. The video is made by Jay Quintanilla, who is known for his Chele sitckers and the Chamorro music podcast on Youtube.
But even if the sky is falling, the Marines are landing and the economy is imploding, i mas paire yan i mas sua'nu thing on Youtube is always i hagga-hu Sumahi. Not necessarily the most talented thing on Youtube, lao siempre i mas kinute.