"Why are we glued to such inane scandals?"
There are some nagging, if not vexing, questions Filipinos ask themselves. Foremost of these is why Senator Christopher “Bong” Go continues to be an “alalay” of President Rodrigo Duterte.
As a senator of the realm elected by the Filipino people to serve them in crafting laws beneficial to the citizenry, Go, according to some observers, should do just that. As it is, Go seems to be still the President’s closest aide, even taking over some of the job of Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo. When the President fell from his motorcycle, it was again Go who was giving out medical bulletins on the condition of the President.
“There’s nothing to worry about the President’s health,” announced Senator Go who accompanied the chief executive in his short sojourn in Tokyo for the enthronement of the new Japanese emperor. So much for Senator Go’s serving as senator if presidential aide is the duty he prefers.
Some of the other questions Filipinos cannot understand is why the television networks dish out inane and mundane topics—like which movie star is dating whom, and who broke up with whom. The spat among the Barretto sisters, which came to the fore during their father’s wake, is the current talk among netizens and other Pinoys who don’t seem to have a life aside from watching TV. That interview of Marjorie Barretto by Karen Davila is still the talk of the town—especially Marjorie’s bombshell confirming sister Gretchen’s dalliance with a powerful gambling lord.
But then, that was Gretchen’s own mistake bringing him to her father’s wake instead of her millionaire partner. Marjorie, for her part, admitted her own imperfection by having a child with a former Caloocan mayor.
Not even the Kardashians of Hollywood can beat the Barrettos in terms of the juiciest scandal.
Then, there is the biggest question of all. Why do Filipinos, both men and women, who often don’t have anything to eat, have money to color their hair blond. In a recent fire in Sta. Cruz, Manila, some of the evacuees interviewed on TV said they were not able to save anything except the clothes on their backs. Yet the evacuees appealing for help have money to color their hair even if it does not match the color of their skin and their station in life.
Don’t get me wrong. I am not a racist or anti-poor. I would be the first to donate old and used clothing including food to these poor people as I have done before.
Is this aberration of wanting to look like Caucasians brought about by watching movies on TV and the big screen? Why do they want to be something they are not? This is the flaw in the Filipino character that some say can be traced to 400 years of Spanish colonial rule and 50 years of deep immersion in the Hollywood culture. This, then, is sadly why we don’t have a national identity and distinctly Filipino culture no matter what the flag-waving jingoists claim.
Watching documentary films on National Geographic and other channels that offer educational TV productions, we can see our neighboring countries like Thailand and Indonesia have so much to show in terms of culture and national heritage.