For this Independence Day where we are still quite clearly dependent on everyone but ourselves, allow me to air our dirty laundry.
The problem with Filipinos is we get a boner for anything Pinoy. Filipino contestant in X talent show abroad? Yes! Hollywood celebrity with .000018% Filipino ethnicity? Double yes! We’ll sniff out the tiniest drop of Filipino blood, but only, only if you get recognized internationally. “Filipinos mixed with another race always gives a good result!” As if these are the only things we excel in, as if breeding is all we’re ever good for because we have too much pride, and not as much to be proud about.
The problem with Filipinos is we’re overprotective. Not of our culture, of our identity, of our resources – but of our pride. We have so much pride, too much pride, we even made a tagline out of it #PinoyPride. We’ve become overly sensitive, easily offended at the slightest of jokes, the slightest of criticisms that we end up refusing not to better ourselves because we’d rather be right and win an argument, than admit to be wrong and improve.
The problem with Filipinos is we cannot say sorry. We’d rather say,“You’re wrong, it’s your fault, you’re stupid. BANNED!” Alec Baldwin is banned. Claire Danes is banned. The Beatles were banned. The people writing the Filipino-doctor joke on Desperate Housewives are probably banned. As if white people cared enough to stress about you after they raped your Lolas and your Lola’s Lola.
The problem with Filipinos is we can’t take a joke. Joke harmlessly about the country and “Fuck you racist American pigs! Filipinos are hardworking! Do not come to our beautiful shores!” Joke about Filipino stereotypes and we will literally want to kill you. The problem with Filipinos is we make everything a joke. A politician jokes about raping a woman, and “It’s okay, fucking calm down where’s your sense of humor?” A University student calls the new actress for Hermione “Ugly nigger, was she stuck in the toaster?” and you’re supposed to take it lightly. Which is it? Which is it?
The problem with Filipinos is you can’t make a joke about us, but we can about you.
The problem with Filipinos is Manny Pacquiao sitting in the senate. Is condemning “CORRUPTION!” with one hand and accepting vote buying with the other. Is tweeting about the beauty of our lands with one hand and littering with the other. Is us talking more about Taylor Swift than about being blacklisted from Foreign Aid by France due to our own negligence.
The problem with Filipinos is we are quick to hate and quicker to forget. Forget the dictator and his family for violating our rights. Forget the white men and their destructive colonization because guapo, guapo, guapo! Marry a white man because he will save you from poverty; heroically take you from this wasteland of a country.
The problem with Filipinos is we kiss white people’s feet. We lick it with such gusto we allow every fair-skinned person to walk over our farm-broken backs. Because everything American is “better.” Because everything white is “beautiful.” Because putang ina ang corny mag-tagalog, kaluod mag bisaya! Do you not understand your fear? Have you not analyzed the instinctive shyness and submission that overcomes your brown body whenever you’re in the presence of someone white? Have you not dissected the veneration you so readily give Westerners, and so readily deny your Lumad brothers, Muslim sisters? The problem with Filipinos is we value perfect English grammar over hungry Filipino lives.
The problem with Filipinos is we go to Church, but do not listen. We pray, but do not practice. We leave all responsibility with God and take none for ourselves.
The problem with Filipinos is we value word-sparring on Facebook more than the fight for freedom our ancestors bled for. Because conspiracy theories are more interesting than facts. Because our soap-operas have taught us drama is easy.
The problem with Filipinos is it took a movie for us to see the folly of our history. The problem was nobody cared enough to look in the first place.
The problem with Filipinos is we’re too nice. The problem with Filipinos is we’re not nice enough.
The problem with Filipinos is we don’t know who we are.
The problem with Filipinos is you. Is me. Is the fact we both know no matter what I say or what you say, it’s all pointless because
The problem with Filipinos is you’ll probably be more pissed at this article, than you ever were about racial injustice, police brutality, sexism, poverty, littering, hopelessness.
The problem with Filipinos is the wrong things offend us.
The problem with Filipinos is we rarely stand up for the right.
The problem with Filipinos is you. Is me. The problem with Filipinos is ourselves.