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Pinoy Pride Through Their Eyes, and Ours (UPDATED)

May 21, 2009

FILIPINOS SLURRED MONTAGEYou win some, you lose some.

Manny Pacquiao’s drubbing of Britisher Ricky Hatton, Charice Pempengco’s soaring star in the music world, the critical acclaim for Filipino opus ‘Kinatay’ at Cannes Film festival, Filipino kids topping an international robhotics contest.

The world is toasting Filipino excellence on various fronts but over in Hollywood actor Alec Baldwin jokes about getting a Filipina mail order bride with comedian David Letterman asking Baldwin to get him one, too.

Not too long ago a Hong Kong journalist called the Philippines “a nation of servants” while further in the past Filipino doctors were slurred and even revered Cory Aquino labelled a “slut” in a parody news show surviving America’s readiness to elect a female leader.

I can’t but wonder through what prism foreigners see Filipinos given how widely-scattered we are across the globe and how Filipinos have entered the foreign consciousness, being among the most sought after skilled and blue collar workers.

Should we therefore rage against the latest ill-considered slur.
Nah, it’s just one of those things.

What’s really more important is that wherever we are, Filipinos should continue to strive to be the best we can be and hold our tri-color up high.

Pinoy Pride, Pinoy Dignity is immeasurable.

UPDATE

Actor Alec Baldwin has now made a public apology, as reported by the Huffington Post.

(Thanks to my old friend and colleague Vivian Zalvidea for her heads up.)

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alec-baldwin/an-apology-regarding-my-l_b_205766.html

I’d like to offer an apology and a clarification to remarks I made recently.
While on the David Letterman program, I joked that I might need a “mail-order bride” to achieve the goal of having more children in my life. I believe that most people understood that this was a joke and took it as such. (A dated reference, no doubt, and another sign of my advancing age.) However, I do apologize to anyone who took offense. The comments of some Philippine government officials come as no surprise to me, either. Even the one by a former action film star-turned-Senator who beckoned me to come to the Philippines so he could “beat” me over my comment.
Such anger and frustration about the issue of sex trafficking is understandable. The Philippines has suffered significant problems with the issue of sex trafficking and I would like to turn your attention to the work of an organization called Love146 that my brother Stephen educated me about. Visit their website at http://www.love146.org and learn of the important work that is being done, in various regions of the world, by Rob Morris and his co-founders and staff.
I had met with Rob in New York, some months before the Letterman appearance, in the hopes of helping him raise money for this group. Again, I apologize for the perceived insensitivity of that remark and ask you to visit the Love146 site

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 21, 2009 1:30 pm

    “What’s really more important is that wherever we are, Filipinos should continue to strive to be the best we can be and hold our tri-color up high.” — my thoughts exactly 🙂

  2. May 22, 2009 4:17 am

    Hi RJ.

    Glad we’re absolutely on the same page. Our own self image should never be anchored on what others think of us. 🙂

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