I have forgotten all about this issue that has created another stir among majority of the Filipinos led supposedly by our nationalistic and caring brethren here and abroad. But just as I was about stretching my yet sleepy self out of bed I heard it from the news again.
This is about the discrimination issue being raised when a comedy show somewhere in Europe featured a helper being made to perform an indecent act in front of her British master. This short scene once again made it to our national news — both print and broadcast — and everyone jumped into the bandwagon like ants smelling an open sugar container. Everyone called foul. And once again, as always, everyone called for an apology from the ‘racist’ party — this time, the Brits.
This news is not new. The recent one that I can recall was when actress Teri Hatcher’s character made a remark questioning the credentials of Filipino doctors during one of the Desperate Housewife episodes. This one too angered all Filipinos. Some even rallied behind to have the show and Teri Hatcher banned here in the Philippines. Of course, do I need to mention that an apology was demanded from Teri Hatcher?
News such as this is like an irritating itch. I hate it but I’m amused with it as well. Why? Because most of us are quick to point out discrimination coming from foreigners but have totally forgotten that it has been actually happening here in our country. We’ve stereotyped people coming from the provinces and treated some with less respect.
Case in point. If someone speaks with a thick Visayan accent, most would call them dong. I learned from a friend that this is an insult especially if used in Cebu–also a Visayan province. And not only that, most shows portray their household drivers, maids or sidekicks as Bisaya. We enjoy seeing them being slapped in both comedy and the dreaded telenovela shows. For most, having a thick Visayan accent is synonymous to being illiterate or ignorant. How rude.
So what are we going to do about it? I’m from Bacolod where most will immediately call one coming from there as Bisaya. Should I demand then an apology from the rest of the fair skinned, fluent Tagalog-speaking Filipinos? Should I waste my time and effort to get my message across? Unfortunately, I just did but frankly, I don’t give a damn. However, unless we get our acts together here in treating the rest of our countrymen fairly, let’s not be surprised and stop feeling discriminated if foreign shows brand us as cooks, janitors, gasoline attendants, dog-eaters, fake doctors, fake nurses and illiterate sexy maids. Live with it.
Here’s what I read from yesterday’s Francis J. Kong article that made me relate it to my subject matter:
From the Albany Journal, 1890 comes this material…A true Christian never looks down on anybody, and yet this habit of looking down on the less fortunate acquaintances is common enough to make the following advice given by the Albany Journal to its young readers, very timely:
“Don’t look down on a boy because he wears shabby clothes; when Edison, the inventor first entered Boston, he wore a pair of yellow breeches in the depth of winter.
“Don’t look down on a boy because his home is plain and unpretending; Abraham Lincoln’s early home was a log cabin.
“Don’t look down on a boy because of the ignorance of his parents; Shakespeare, the world’s poet, was the son of a man who was unable to write his own name.
“Don’t look down on anyone; not just because some day they may outstrip you in the race of life, but because it is neither kind, nor right, nor Christian.”
Did you know that?
Recently I discovered some fascinating facts:
*There’s a book in the bible called Job. (From my mother who sent me a personal message for my Playing With God post.)
*A man named Expeditus did exist. And guess what, he is the now the saint for people with urgent cases. (Saw this one among the statues inside the humid Dasmarinas church.)