Friday, June 18, 2004

Bangungot ng Mundo-World without the Filipinos

Dear Mouse,

Rey Rojo who is currently a student in the UK typifies that group of Filipinos who according to Michael Tan are pretty good at putting Filipinos down.

He must be a frustrated general. His essay about Patronizing Paisanos was full of generalizations. Take this for example and I quote:

With the US being almost a home turf for transplanting Filipino values in a Western setting, sociologists naively discover the lack of Filipinism in young Filipino-Americans. The multi-cultural diversity and typological youth culture in the modern West is the broad explanation, but these post-modern adventurers practically do not see themselves as owing anything to the land in which their parents were born.

I want him to know that although he is bloody thousand miles away from bloody New York, will it make him proud to know that for two nights the red, blue and yellow colors of the Philippine flag will flicker from the same tower where a crimson heart had ended Tom Hanks’ ardent search for Meg Ryan in “Sleepless in Seattle”?

This was not a project of a scholar like him from the Philippines whose observations about the Filipinos may be isolated to his circle of friends and to some local celebrities never heard of in the USA.

The lighting of Manhattan Building in celebration of the independence of the Philippines earlier was made possible by Esguerra and fellow members of the Collaborative Opportunities for Raising Empowerment, Inc.,an organization of young Filipino professionals.

He looked at the Filipino value of helping one another as kababayans or paisanos as a way of gaining favor or feeling big and better.

I do not think this Filamgroup group, the Philippine Forum is helping the Filipinas forced into slavery in the US in order to earn brownie points from him.

FilAm group unveils drive versus trafficking Rita Villadiego, May 26, 2004 NEW YORK

Two Filipinas – Elma Manliguez and Mary Jane Lorico, were forced into slavery in the U.S. last year. They were brought from the Philippines and made to work without pay in American homes in New York, in violation of the 13th Amendment, or the anti-slavery law. Through the help of Philippine Forum, the two Filipinas sued their employers.

Oo Birhinya, kahit ngayong nagkakasapot sapot na ang world wide web, mayroon pang slavery sa Estet.

According to Rojo:

There are also Filipino friends here who would rather not mention their origins if only to avoid answering questions about the Marcoses or dog-eaters. Why would one like to explain his connection to a Third World country that exports brains and prostitutes, and produces domestic helpers?

If he did not hear about Patricia Evangelista's speech that won the nods of the judges of the snobbish United Kingdom, then it is time for him to read Michael Tan's article, World without Filipinos

I like this one best:

As they converse, Annan and the Pope agree on one thing: the world has become a quieter place since the Filipinos disappeared. It isn't just the silencing of work and office equipment formerly handled by Filipinos; no, it seems there's much less laughter now that the Filipinos aren't around, both the laughter of the Filipinos and those they served.


The CA t


At 5:23 PM, Blogger rolly said...

Ah basta! Ako ay Filipino. And i will declare that anywhere I go. Be it in the States, Canada, Japan or Timbuktu. mas mahirap yung magpanggap to be someone you're not.

At 10:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

papaano nakapasa yan sa British universities kung ganyan ang pagiisip niyan? ang mga kumukuha ng post-grad qualifications as objective at di papadaig sa stereotype.

At 3:25 PM, Blogger paisano said...

I don't think who ever made the comments about my point of view understood my article at all. I have particularly repeated that I am still proud of my Filipino heritage and being a national as well (as I have no other claim of foreign citizenship not even dual like most Fil-Ams want -- as though balimbing) but not in the parochial Filipino mentality.
Certainly the lighting of the Manhattan Building might be significant although I have never heard about the importance of that in terms of alleviating the state of affairs in the Philippines. I also would pose this challenge: I hope that when Filipinos hear and see the flag colours lighting Manhattan, we ask ourselves: What have we all done to our nation? Are we genuinely and truly proud that as years go by, our country is still sinking in utter poverty?
Besides that point, I don't give a damn if the celebrities I know in the UK is not heard of in the US or that the Manhattan was the background of the Meg Ryan's movie? What's with this Filipino way of measuring success using American typologies or perspective? Can't we be successful all on our own and our own standards as a nation of independent mind?
Perhaps this is exactly what parochial and colonial mental slavery is all about? Isn't it time we get out of the little box in which we limit our perspective?
By the way, UK is only accross New York by the Atlantic but who give a damn about New York. We better be concenred more about Manila and the elite that rules our nation.
(reflects....: why am i reacting to this comment. it is certainly this type of discussion that wastes filipino national time because it trivialises the matter but loses the point; the politics of the point is debated but the politics that raised the point in the first place seemed undermined...oh what the heck).
Anyway, it seems all Filipinos associate the UK with the expression 'bloody', can't we be more interesting?

At 3:51 PM, Blogger paisano said...

sorry...i forgot to say that i dont deny my being a filipino if asked. and please people, get the point of my article and read paragraphs in context.
also, post-grads doesn't mean i have no prejudice. but my prejudice is not about the filipinos but some of our peculiar attitude (cat's being a typology) that doesn't help focus towards what's more important.
also, it is not in speeches that we can proclaim how clever we are in the world but in the actions that will improve our nation.
pakikisama and utang na loob are not bad as i wrote in my article but they remain subject to exploitation. try being a balikbayan back home, and even the most distant relatives will attempt to get some financial help. not that one is unwilling if able to. i hope i have elaborated my rhetoric well enough.
final thought: the world without filipinos would be grim just as it would be without africans, arabs, europeans, americans, latins, indians, japanese, etc etc.. and also grim without cheetahs, turtles, monkey-eating eagle, chimps, etc etc.... this is not about putting down my race and heritage, this is about critical thinking in the quest to define, discover, improve, understand, etc etc the filipino identity. all is a process of becoming and being afterall.

At 8:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ang Filipino kahit baliktarin ang mundo, kahit haluan ng ibang dugo , kahit paputiin o paitimin man, kahit turuan ng ibang lengguahe,kahit tumira sa ibang bansa.....FILIPINO PA RIN!!!

At 4:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Try watching Kung Paw 3 on you tube and try understanding what they're saying. It will give you an insight on who we really are.


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