(EXPLOSIVE!) Opinion Explosion Part 2 is HERE!!

I apologize for the delay in the construction of what should be a much-awaited sequel (I had things to do and places to go!!) Anyways, here I go 🙂

1. Chi-NAH. 

It took a lot out of me not to voice out my opinion on this. Honestly, I didn’t want to seem like a lot of things– defensive, sensitive, easily offended. I wholeheartedly respect and admire those that did voice out their thoughts, but there came a point when I found myself disagreeing with how they chose to express their counter arguments.

Thus, I give you this verdict: my thoughts.

First of all, this should not even be about Mr. Jose. Yes, I do respect and admire him, as any writer should. But he’s not the star here– and he shouldn’t be the subject of everyone’s counter arguments. Dissect not the man, but his thoughts– and the frightening reality that he’s using his reputation (and column space) in order to perpetuate dated beliefs that just don’t deserve to be heard.

Secondly, what is left for us Filipinos of Chinese descent to prove? Binondo is the oldest Chinatown in the world. Siomai and siopao have assimilated into Filipino cuisine so well that some tend to forget their Chinese origins. There are people like businessman Kenneth Uy, who chose to stay in Tacloban post Yolanda in order to help rebuild the city. We may have our roots, and our heritage… but is there not enough evidence that the Filipino Chinese are Filipino enough? Perhaps one has not heard of the stories behind the Chinese who aided in the Spanish revolution, or those guerillas that fought the Japanese?

I was born here, I grew up here, I live here. My parents did and so did their parents. The same goes for my peers.

I feel as though that’s all that needs to be said.

2. Swan SONA

Last July 27 signaled the beginning of the end for President Aquino’s presidential term, as he delivered his last official State of the Nation Address.

Verdict: 

I honestly found it long and a bit drawling, but found the noteworthy parts laudable. From emotional thank-yous to probably his most respectable sounding gripes ever, P-Noy’s speech was nicely written. Yet, there were a lot of things he missed out on that eventually would cost him PR wise.

  • The exclusion of Mamasapano
  • The woes of the transportation system
  • The gaps surrounding health coverage in the country
  • The passage of the FOI bill (a campaign promise that never came through).

The emotional parts of the SONA felt like an inside joke that the normal Filipino couldn’t relate to (especially the parts where the president thanked his staff), while the beginning, which was meant to provide context, seemed too colored by P-Noy’s tendency to hate on the previous administration. Overall, I give it a C, but add in the + for the gentle gripes.

3. Counter Attack: On The TSONA 

I officially regret waiting for this to happen before composing this entry– honestly, if the SONA had its share of substance issues, this was much, much worse. One of the articles I read included a quote from a spokesperson that claimed the counter-SONA would feature facts and data that would counter the data in the ‘official SONA’.

I tried my best to veer away from the ‘complaining netizen’ framework in previous blog entries, but feel as though I won’t be able to keep that up as I write about Binay’s speech.

First of all, the fact he even had the gall to deliver a counter SONA is just plain… disrespectful. He may have had his reservations about Aquino but to even call it a ‘ Counter SONA’. You resigned from the Cabinet.. ang kapal ng mukha mo. You clearly failed at strong arming your way past political alliances in order to do some real good for the people.

Facts and data? More like mentioning the President’s mistakes and using them against him! There were enough flowery words in that speech for a garden, enough dramatic paragraphs engineered to make the most naive voter believe Binay is the right choice when he’s clearly not!

The saddest part of this argument is… if not Binay, who?

Grace Poe is a political neophyte, but her inexperience may just come as an asset. Mar Roxas’ survey ratings aren’t exactly a positive indicator, and his track record (if such exists) needs to be publicized in order to prove him a worthy candidate over Binay.

Wait, back to thoughts on the ”TSONA”.

Binay ended his speech by reciting the names of the 44 fallen SAF officers that were massacred at Mamasapano. Upon initially reading about this, my first impression– smart PR move! One that tugs at heartstrings and might just win over the unfortunate families left behind by these noble soldiers. Upon further thought, I realized this was… despicable and rather disgusting. Talk about using this incident for his personal political gain! Shame.

The real question is: will the families of the SAF 44 see it that way? They were clearly disappointed P-Noy excluded them from his SONA, and Binay’s perfectly timed PR stunt could have just been the key to winning their political favor.

I’d like to end this entry by informing my good readers (if you do exist, I don’t exactly have the time to look through my WordPress site’s analytics), that I’ve finally registered to vote!

I joined my brother on a morning trip to city hall where we answered a quick form and had our biometrics and photos taken. Honestly, it was a relatively quick experience, but one that had it’s share of harsh realities.

Here’s a lowdown of the process:

  • We lined up to show our valid government IDs (I used my passport) and showed them to a grumpy fellow behind a window. This young guy was serving multiple lines, which was the reason perhaps behind his not-so positive demeanor that morning.
  • After we were validated as first time voters, he handed us forms which we had to answer in triplicate (ever heard of carbon paper?). I was sweating bullets as I answered the forms, which were, in fairness, printed on quality book paper.
  • After finishing the forms, we went back into the appropriate office and handed the form to a sassy middle-aged lady who wrote our names on a logbook and asked us for our contact numbers.
  • Then, we had our biometrics, signature and photo taken on a webcam taped to a CD container.
  • Finally, we stamped our thumbprints on the forms and were provided with the slip that would allow us to get our IDs.

I’m not quite sure whether the process can be this quick in other city hall offices, but this was how it was in QC on a Tuesday morning. My main point here: take the time and take action, friends!

The real power we have lies beyond our social media accounts and our blog sites, and in the legitimate action we can take in order to make the change we want become a reality. So let’s do that… shall we?

(Gotta Get That…) BOOM, BOOM, BOOM! a.k.a. Opinion Explosion Part Uno

The title is a reference to my inability to resist writing down my thoughts on the topics of the day. From politics to pure entertainment, here’s what I’ve been trying [not] to say for the past few weeks. 

1. The Devil in the Dentist

A dentist from Minnesota was recently discovered as the culprit behind the luring, shooting and subsequent beheading of a beloved lion housed in a national park in Zimbabwe.

Verdict: Rest in peace, Cecil.

It’s hard to maintain my ‘I don’t agree with your actions but respect you as a person’ rule when it comes to situations like this, especially because I don’t understand the thrill that comes with hunting animals. WHY???

What kind of psychological/physical satisfaction do you get from killing for sport? Does it have to do with all the possible innuendos that accompany shooting a gun? Is it really THAT HARD to find a way to compensate for your insecure masculinity? Gosh.

The dentist (I’m not googling his name because why even bother!) claims that the appropriate permits were secured in order to hunt legally, but then how is it that he ended up killing a lion that was supposed to be in ‘isolation’???

Let’s stay tuned for updates on this issue– and hope to God he gets his due. SHAME.

2. Tayminaj: The VMA Twitter War

Taylor Swift misread a frustrated tweet from Nicki Minaj regarding not being nominated for a Video of the Year VMA, which resulted in an online misunderstanding that came close to breaking the internet. Kim Kardashian, Katy Perry and Camila Belle also figured in said Twitter strife.

Verdict: Let’s be honest, the tweet did sound pretty incriminating. The real mistake here was the assumption and the decision to post a retort that was very on the fence. I’m sure that we’ve all experienced that at least once in our social media lives: reading a tweet/status that sounds like it’s aimed at you. And rarely do we have the bravado to reply (unless of course, you’re Taylor Swift). It was a very impulsive decision on her part.

I don’t want to say too much about the bigger issue surrounding Minaj’s disappointment considering I haven’t done enough research about it just yet. One thing that I did find distasteful (along with so many other people) was the way media agencies framed the story with regard to photo selection. Was it really necessary to select a photo of Nicki and Taylor together? Of course not. But it seems like people didn’t really think that way– selecting contrasting photos that portrayed Swift in her innocent stage and Minaj in her more.. wild phase.

I’ve had my reservations about Nicki Minaj but even I’m aware she’s been toning down her image and taking much more chic photos in recent months. It sure would have been more impartial to select a photo that doesn’t make her look like she’s crazy.

On Katy Perry’s shade-throwing tweet and Camila Belle’s subsequent affirmation: both ladies clearly have axes to grind. Katy happens to be very much right, and Camila Belle became the unfortunate subject of a very vengeful song.

Feminists argue that Swift shouldn’t have to apologize for a song written in her youth, contending that male artists write about their relationships all the time and aren’t made to apologize for their lyrics. I recall sharing an article about Swift’s interview wherein she mentions this fact and I still agree with her that male artists like Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars have the luxury of not receiving that brand of treatment. But that still doesn’t give her the excuse not to apologize for the song.

Firstly, the relationships of these male singers didn’t garner as much vapid media attention as Swift’s trysts during this point in her career. Secondly, the lyrics weren’t exactly the nicest verses in the world, and were very distasteful.

But then, what about rap? What about those innuendo filled lyrics about ‘getting with bitches’? If one were to demand an apology from Swift, then all those rappers and writers who did write vengeful songs should apologize as well. Is that ever going to happen? No.

It seems only fair that everyone apologizes.

3. Chris Brown and the Iglesia: A Concert Conundrum

Chris Brown was barred from leaving the Philippines for a few days after his Manila concert due to a pending case that stemmed from his no show at a New Years Eve concert. He was eventually allowed to leave after his local promoter was arrested for estafa. Brown, along with his promoter, have been ‘summoned?’ to appear in court to answer for the charges.

Verdict: This was an odd situation, one that was vague in terms of context and conclusion. It does, however, serve as a testament to the power of the Iglesia Ni Cristo. Despite his past legal issues, I’m happy (?) to see Chris not act negatively towards Pinoys… taking the issue with a grain of oddball humor.

I feel pretty bad for his promoter, though. I’d sure like to see some more context care of the media in order to shed light into how things went down with regard to the arrangements, and whether Chris really did forget/lose his passport.

4. Banaterong Binay: A Prequel

This lovely ‘ol entry is a prequel to the next part of this opinion explosion series, and focuses mainly on a brief, vague history of the gripes made by our notable Vice President.

One: Binay preaches the power of experience in selecting a presidential candidate.

Two: Binay questions the legitimacy of Grace Poe’s residency and possible candidacy

Three: Binay resigns from the Cabinet, hating on the administration in the process.

Four: Binay brags that he’s got the presidency in the bag

Five: Binay talks about how nabbing the presidency is ‘99% prayer’

Verdict:

Where do I even begin?

For danger of sounding like the usual ranting netizen, I don’t want to begin talking about how he’s clearly kurakot and probably the world’s most mayabang politician. Instead, let’s try to face the facts.

It seems his family sure has a big problem with that– from Junjun holing himself up in Makati to him decrying ‘selective justice’ instead of following the law and allowing himself to be subjected to due process. If you really were that innocent, Binay, you would have just gone through everything and vindicated yourself through the legal process. Instead, banat ka lang ng banat. Why does your behavior not surprise me at all?

Is respect just not part of a politician’s set of personality traits these days? Apparently not. Pride sure seems to not run in short supply over at the Binay camp.

With enough research, you will eventually discover that those photos people are sharing that argue Makati was progressive even BEFORE Binay are actually true. Ever heard of credit grabbing?

Finally we end with the talk of an overconfident Binay.

So, you’ve got the presidency in the bag, huh? 99% prayer? SERIOUSLY?

There exists no better motivation to register to vote and to NOT vote for Binay than his recent actions. You complain about the current administration and claim you couldn’t do ANYTHING to get your way? If you’re really such a brilliant politician, than why couldn’t do manipulate your way to actually getting you way?

Forgive me, I’m rambling.

The answer here is not to rant or ramble, but to support argument with fact, and inform. Do your research, compile your data, and tell your friends to make the informed choice. Better yet, tell them to use that voice and that choice (if they’re 18 and above) by registering and voting.

NEXT WEEK: Belated SONA Special, Sino Speak, and Saaatisfaaacshuuun ❤