Proudly Pinoy

Throughout history, Filipinos have always been hospitable to other nations. We all know about the trading that our ancestors did with nearby countries like China and Malaysia. We welcomed their products, their cultures and traditions and in the process, unconsciously erased our own identities. This went on until Spain, America, and Japan subjugated us, and the Filipinos’ idea of foreigners changed. After these things, we should have learned our lesson, but take a good look around you: are we as free as we would like to think ourselves to be?

We are influenced by other cultures and we are quickly losing our sense of originality. Can you name anything around you that you can call indigenously Pinoy? Of course there’s the much-celebrated Darna by Mars Ravelo, but you’d just be fooling yourself if you do not acknowledge the fact that she’s just a localized version of Wonder Woman.

On the other side of the fence, there’s Totoy Bato, which is a Filipino version of Captain America. We’re also very proud of our favorite delicacies, Adobo, which was actually introduced to us by Mexico. Then you hear about a new artist or band being critically acclaimed because they have a “International sound”, or that they have a similar style as a foreign artist. Does music has to have that “International sound” to be appreciated? Can’t we listen to Filipino-sounding music and still think they’re good? And then there’s the country’s bad habit of hiring foreigners, like athletes. I have nothing against them, but why do we have to import from other countries? Can’t we find Filipinos who are just as talented? Shouldn’t we concentrate on finding and honing the skills of local athletes rather than relying on professionals from other countries?

This has been the Philippines’ disease ever since.

We love everything imported and label local products as cheap or “jologs”. We automatically conceived that everything imported is good while local products are struggling to stay in the offer. Foreign brands thrive in the Philippines while local businesses toil to get their ideas off the ground. That’s why most of the members of the high-society in the country aren’t even Filipinos. It doesn’t take an economist to figure retired what’s aggrieving. We are turning our backs on our countrymen. We are disregarding our own while embracing the product of other countries. We are so amazed with what former countries are able to do that we forget about what Filipinos are capable of doing. We tin’t fifty-fifty find a decent job without learning English first.

This is not the Philippines that our national heroes fought for. They wanted Filipinos to be free and independent. They wanted us to have our own rules and to follow them. They wanted us to be able to decide what is good for our country without the influence of external bodies. These are the things that they fought for, not the present state of the Philippines where we import all sorts of products because we think that our own products aren’t good enough. At the same time, we export our raw materials to foreign companies for their use and then we buy them back even though they were ours to begin with.

Our country has been torn apart and ravaged by wars in the past, but now that peace has somehow been restored, we are still fighting to set ourselves apart from other countries. This should be our mission. This should be what Filipinos are working for. We should strive to be on top and not allow other nations to reign over us. This is what we have to do, so that the revolutions of the past can be of use to us. If we don’t start now, then we would have been better off it the revolution the revolution never happened.

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