On the Filipino Dignity and Self-Respect


By Apolinario Villalobos



President Rodrigo Duterte, with animated emotion, declared that he does not want his country to be trampled on just like a doormat by America. His declaration is very timely as, since the Spanish colonization, the Filipinos have been treated like slaves. And, when the Americans took over, they did the same – treating the Philippine archipelago as their “garden” where they can reap the produce anytime they want for their dinner table. During the Spanish regime, vast areas of the country, except Mindanao, were divided among the friars and the Spanish immigrants as “encomiendas”. When America took over, and in time, supposedly gave the long-overdue liberty to the Filipinos, they tainted their act with deceit by inserting the disgusting “parity rights” in the Philippine Constitution. In short, while the Spanish colonization was grossly masked with religion, that of the Americans was with “freedom and rights”.


Ever since, the Philippines became “independent”, nobody among the presidents until the time of Benigno Aquino III, ever noticed that the Filipinos have been suffering from the trauma that resulted from trampled dignity which practically shattered their self-respect. Unfortunately, SOME of those who enjoy the “blessings” via US visa and Green Card cannot accept this fact. The enforced influence is so ingrained in the consciousness of the Filipinos that it has brought forth the word, “stateside”, which means “nice things from America”…which further means, that nothing is better than “stateside”.


I have nothing against America and anything American. What I am disgusted at is how the leadership of America and even many Americans, themselves, continue to have a negative impression about the Philippines and her people who, for them are overly- dependent on their “big white brothers”. I am also disgusted at SOME Filipinos who suddenly became “American” upon setting foot on American soil. SOME of them pretend to have forgotten their dialect, the taste of saluyot, alugbate, ginamos, tuyo, etc. SOME even ask, “why is YOUR president (Duterte) like that?”, as if their skin is not brown or that it transformed into a sickly paleness only after quaffing skin whitening drugs. There is nothing wrong with those of course, FOR AS LONG AS THEY DO NOT FORGET THAT THEY ARE FILIPINOS DESPITE THEIR U.S. VISA AND GREEN CARD, AND MOST ESPECIALLY, THEY DO NOT DESPISE THE COUNTRY OF THEIR BIRTH, JUST BECAUSE THE NEW PRESIDENT CUSSES!


Those who deny their being a Filipino are losing their dignity and self-respect. THE U.S. VISA AND THE GREEN CARD CANNOT SUPPLANT THE FILIPINO BLOOD THAT FLOWS IN THEIR VEINS….THEY SHOULD REMEMBER THAT, IF THEY ARE WISE ENOUGH. They forgot that foremost among their plans when they went to America was to earn dollars to be sent back home to their family, for which they toil hard night and day by maintaining many jobs, and losing sleep in the process. The problem with SOME of them is that they deny this fact. How can those back home, understand their sacrifice if they keep this information from them which results to their family’s assuming that they are just picking up dollars in America, as if they are picking up shells on the seashore?


The impressive diligence and dependability of the Filipinos in America have not totally erased the bad impression about the country as demeaning comments can still be found in the internet, especially, with the emergence of Rodrigo Duterte as the new President…and all because of his cussing and brashness. His guts did not spare the American president, Obama, and the European Union because they dipped their fingers into what Duterte is doing to eradicate the illegal drug problem in the country. All of a sudden, Filipinos in America became apprehensive because they might be affected which shows their lack of self-confidence. The two governments are involved in the issue, and not the business sector, although, the bosses of Filipinos who may be dishonest and not diligent enough in their job will now have a reason to kick them out.


Duterte should be admired for his courage and aggressive desire to restore the dignity of the Filipinos that has long been trampled by their colonizers. Instead of lambasting him with unfair judgments, his detractors should wake up and face the reality that what the country needs today is a paramount cooperation among the Filipinos, for which the detractors should extend their hand. If they cannot do it…the big question is WHY?

Ang Addiction, Harakiri, at Dangal

Ang Addiction,  Harakiri, at Dangal

Ni Apolinario Villalobos


Ang addiction ay hindi limitado lang sa alak, sigarilyo at droga. Sa Pilipinas, may mga maidadagdag pa sa listahan: addiction sa pera, addiction sa pagsinungaling, at addiction sa cellphone.


Ang mga sintomas ng addiction sa pera ay ang hindi makontrol na paggalaw ng mga hinlalaki (thumb) at hintuturo (thumb) sa pagkiskisan na animo ay nagbibilang ng pera, pagkataranta kapag nakarinig na kalansing ng baryang nahulog, panlalaki ng mga mata kapag pinag-uusapan ang pera, at madalas na pagkadulas sa pagsabi ng “how much are you”, sa halip na “how are you”. Talamak itong sakit sa Kongreso at Senado at iba pang mga ahensiya ng gobyerno na palaging may project (na pinagkikitaan).


Ang mga sintomas naman ng addiction sa pagsisinungaling ay ang hindi nawawalang ngiti sa mga labi upang ipakita sa iba na malinis ang kanyang budhi at isip, pagsambit ng pangalan ng Diyos na idinudugtong sa mga pangako, pagbanggit ng kidlat, kulog, malusaw, mamatay, at iba pang kahindik-hindik na mga salita upang idiin ang katotohanan kuno ng mga sinabi niya at yong iba ay binebetsinan pa ng “peks man” at “cross my heart”, at ang pinakamalinaw na palatandaan ay ang walang kabuhay-buhay at hindi kumukurap na mga matang nandidilat habang nagsasalita sa harap ng camera dahil nag-aalala na baka madulas ang kanyang dila.


At, ang addiction naman sa cellphone ay may mga sintomas na paggalaw-galaw ng hinlalaki na animo ay may pinipindot. Napapansin din ang hindi mapalagay na pagkilos ng addict kapag ang katabi ay may kausap sa cellphone dahil parang may nag-uutos sa kanyang agawin ang cellphone upang siya naman ang makipag-usap. Napapakislot din itong uri ng addict kapag may naririnig na tunog ng cellphone, na sinasabayan pa ng pagdidila ng mga labi na para bang natatakam sa pagkain. At sa isang tahanan, malalaman kung may mga addict sa cellphone kapag may nagbabangayan na maririnig hanggang kalye dahil sa pagwawala ng mga anak na gustong magkaroon ng mga bagong cellphone.


Kung dangal naman ang pag-uusapan, matindi ang mga Hapon sa pag-alaga nito. Nagpapakamatay sila kapag nadungisan ang kanilang dangal. Yong mga nasa gobyerno ng Japan, na nabigla o hindi sinasadyang nakagawa ng masama ay nagpapatiwakal agad kahit hindi pa nasisimulan ang imbestigasyon.


Kung sa Pilipinas mangyayari ang pagpapatiwalak o pagharakiri ng mga nagkasalang government officials, siguradong walang matitira….mula sa pinakamataas na puwesto hanggang sa ibaba. Pero hindi nangyayari, dahil sinanay ang mga Pilipino ng mga prayle o Spanish friars noong panahon ng mga Kastila sa paniniwalang kahit sangkaterba ang kasalanan, lusaw ang mga ito sa paulit-ulit na pagdasal ng Our Father, Hail Mary, at I Believe in God,  na ipinapataw sa nagkumpisal. Kaya ngayon, tingnan ninyong mabuti kung sino ang mga mahilig gumawa ng mga kasalanan na nakaluklok sa kawawang gobyerno ng Pilipinas!…hindi ba silang mga nananalig sa kumpisal?…dahil pagkatapos ng mga penance ay gagawa uli sila ng mga kasalanan!

More on Sharing…

More on Sharing…
By Apolinario Villalobos

There is more in sharing than what most of us know about it. The heavenly bodies in the universe share ample space. Without the fair sharing in the seemingly infinite space in the universe, the heavenly bodies including earth would have been bumping with each other. Humanity shares the air to be able to survive and so are the lesser creatures. Sharing is not limited to food. The Designer is wise, indeed, and that is what He expects His intelligent creatures to be.

Unfortunately, because of pride and greed among humans, even the road space is not shared fairly, resulting to altercation among greedy motorists. They want to get more than what is provided by going against the flow of traffic or by overtaking the long queue of vehicles as they come to a standstill. This greed sometimes results to violence, and worse, death.

The disgusting land grabbing of government officials and moneyed entrepreneurs show their blatant greed that borders on exploitation of the ignorant. Add to these their robbing of government coffer. These greedy people are not satisfied with what they already have. If only they let the bounties be shared by all, poverty could, at least, be minimized.

Some of us refuse to share honors with others who deserve them by robbing them of such opportunity. In school, students who are desirous to be on top of the honor list, do all possible to garner high grades even to the extent of submitting plagiarized reports and thesis. Unsuspecting artists are also robbed of their rightful opportunity to achieve honor, when their works are plagiarized by fellow artists who make sure that they alone shall get the honor.

On the positive side, there are so many things that we can share with others, such as happiness, knowledge, prayer, and of course, blessings. The righteous sharing is what’s expected of us to do. But if we do otherwise, we should be prepared for the consequence in what the Golden Rule says….do not do to others, what you do not want others, would do to you.

Painful Ironies of Life

Painful Ironies of Life
By Celso Dapo

What cruel irony do Circumstances play,
On land and people, before Thanksgiving Day?
When men claiming Honor can feast sans shame
Having sold the Nation’s Soul, like it was just a game.
I grit my teeth at the undeserved defeat,
Compelled to take the hurt and strain in pain.
In shame the head perched flaccid and downbeat,
Because I cannot dare to express disdain.
Looking to other shores where Pilgrims landed,
Envying enlightened folks engulfed in pride redeemed.
How lucky for America to have Barrack Obama.
While we, still the Indio –
…can only have Arroyo!