copied this from my notes February 6, 2010. Valerie was 12 years old
MY FAMILY’S VIEW OF PHILIPPINE HISTORY
What is your view on our history?
Our history of the Philippines with its geographical profile and diversity can be likened to “chopsuey”, with everything tossed together to complete a tasty meal. Chinese influence in our culture is present from Batanes to Jolo. They are the first traders to set foot on our land long before Magellan discovered the Philippines (for history record only since we already have a thriving silk and spices trade with China).
The coming of the Spaniard breed laziness among the Filipinos who learned “siesta” and the different vices from them, very much unlike the Chinese who are hardworking and business-minded. From the Spaniards we became Christians, but like Padre Damaso and Dona Victoria in Noli Me Tangere of Rizal, we became split-level Christians demonized by wrong conception of virtues and putting our fate in the hands of God instead of working hard for success. We also became sinners and corrupt with the notion that Jesus died for us and all our sins will be forgiven, which is the reason why we are now in this state of poverty and corruption with leaders of loose morals.
The Americans brought education to the Philippines along with consumerism and materialism and later, turning to everything instant. Discipline and delayed gratification when we were enslaved by the Spaniards were forgotten, no more Angelus and kissing of hands of the elders. Even after the Japanese occupation and until now, we are still harboring the great American dream. However, thanks to globalization we are now the Global Filipino with different cultures breed into our history and experiences. We are still chopsuey but now with side dish and McDo or Jollibee fast foods.
I was the only Filipino representative.
SISTER (VALERIE, 12 years old)
– Our history is like a pure white cloth that has a huge red mark like Japan’s flag. This mark is caused by the Filipinos that risked their own lives for their mother land. Our history is made out of threads that pull our country stronger, for our country to survive from everything that happened, happens, and will finally happen. Even though a lot of lives were risked just to protect our mother land. Just like Jose Rizal, Andres Bonifacio and our other Philippine heroes, they all helped and reached out their hands to help and protect. We all are lucky that there are still heroes nowadays, these heroes who helped last Ondoy and the last tragedies that happened here inside and there outside the Philippines. And the CNN Hero of the year Efren Penaflorida who helped the street children by teaching them how to read, write and count with the help of his “kariton classroom” and with some friends’ help.
My view on the Philippine History (Ate Ets -cousin)
Global Pinoy that is what we are! This is literally true primarily because we are greatly influenced by foreigners in terms of culture, lifestyle, language, religion, beliefs and behavior. Our first ancestors are the Negritos who came in the Philippines by foot then Indonesians and Malays followed using their boats (balangay). Even before Magellan (Spaniard navigator) discovered the Philippines, we have government & laws headed by Datus for each barangay, language, education, religion, arts, etc. Pinoys are already good in business such as trading gold, pearls, fruits and others to Chinese, Indians and Arabs for goods such as clothing, dining sets etc.
Spaniards then came in the 16th century. They brought Christian belief, barong & saya, Spanish language and they conquered us for 333 years. Americans then fought with Spaniards along with Filipinos and introduced us to English language, commonwealth government, democracy, education, wearing of jeans, french fries, hamburgers, etc. and we are under the Americans for 40 years. Japanese invaded and conquered us from 1942 to 1945 and we learned discipline, Niponggo language, sashimis and others. The Americans and allies won World War II against Japanese and others. The country has been restored under the leadership of a Filipino until in September 21, 1972 President Ferdinand Marcos imposed martial law in the entire Philippines.
In the past heroes emerged and died in war for the love of country. In 1986, bloodless “People Power” arised after the murder of NINOY when he stepped out of the airplane and ousted President Marcos from power. Nowadays, there are heroes in different ways such as the OFWS, CNN Hero awardee, Efren Peñaflorida for his ‘Kariton Klasrum’ programme and pinoys who voluntarily helped (bayanihan) during typhoons, ‘Ondoy’ and ‘Pepeng’, which struck the country consecutively leaving massive destruction to the lives and livings of most Filipinos. History tells us why we have a rich culture and why we are good call center agents because of our fluency in communicating in English, our adaptability and easiness to learn other languages aside from the fact there are a lot of inter-racial marriages. Our distinct traits are love of family, being religious, friendly, hospitable, strong despite of poverty & problems and love for arts, movies, tele-seryes and music. Global Pinoys are artistic, creative, strong-willed, determined, persevere, intelligent, patient, competitive, talented, dedicated, hardworking and God fearing. We are Proud Filipinos! There are many things that we can do. Let us help one another to alleviate poverty, end corruption and restore our environment!