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Monthly Archives: June 2013

Happy 442nd birthday, Filipinas!

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Today we should celebrate not only Manila’s foundation date; today is also the 442nd birthday of our country! Because Manila was founded as the CAPITAL city on 24 June 1571.

Take note that I put emphasis on the word CAPITAL.

Remember that Manila was founded and established as the CAPITAL CITY on this date 442 years ago. Because it is a fact that the Filipino State (el Estado Filipino) was simultaneously founded with the establishment of Manila as capital city on 24 June 1571. Think about this: why in the world should there be a CAPITAL CITY —the seat of a central government with laws— WITHOUT a corresponding State to govern in the first place?

Our history teachers and books often teach us that Manila was founded on 24 June 1571 as the capital city. And just that. Nothing else follows. The question now is: the capital city of WHAT?! Logic dictates that if there is a capital city, naturally there should be a state that it has to govern, and it doesn’t even matter if this state is a colony or and independent one. These history teachers and books always fail to teach us that with the establishment of Manila as the city capital, the founding of the Filipino State was also established.

And it is wrong to say that 12 June 1898 is the birth of our country. The existence of our country did not happen overnight. It had to evolve from something else. Here is an analogy: my alma mater, Adamson University, is now 81 years old. But it did not immediately start as a university. It was first founded in 1932 as the Adamson School of Industrial Chemistry. It only achieved university status in 1941. Should we now say that there was no Adamson before 1941? In the same vein, should we say that there was no Filipinas before 1898?

Happy 44nd birthday, Filipinas!!! 😀

Father’s Day today?

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They say it’s Father’s Day today. I say, “no way”.

For us Filipinos, the real Father’s Day (Día del Padre) should be commemorated every March 19th. Our forefathers knew this. It was the US neocolonialist pigs who subtly imposed the modern-day commemoration of Father’s Day every 3rd Sunday of June for commercial purposes: to sell greeting cards, items that fathers’ love (such as tools, electronics, and other similar gadgets), special promos in restaurants, discounts in resorts, and the like. In short, today’s celebration of Father’s Day (and Mother’s Day) is BASED ON PROFITEERING whereas the real Filipino celebration of Father’s Day is SPIRITUAL (feast of Saint Joseph, the adoptive father of Our Lord Jesus Christ and the patron saint of fathers).

The Father’s Day that Filipinos celebrate today has its origins from the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) in Spokane, Washington. Sonora Smart Dodd, daughter of a US Civil War veteran, was inspired by a sermon from Anna Jarvis who was promoting Mother’s Day the year before, in 1909. Dodd then thought of a noble idea to honor fathers as well. And she was doubly inspired because her dad was a single parent who raised six children on his own. She then suggested to a pastor in the YMCA to organize a Father’s Day celebration that will complement Jarvis’s Mother’s Day. Dodd initially suggested to hold the very first Father’s Day celebration on June 5, on her father’s birthday. However, YMCA pastors did not have enough time to prepare their sermons, so it was decided that they celebrate Father’s Day two Sundays later: on June 19, 1910. That date was the third Sunday of the month. Since then, it has become a tradition to hold Father’s Day every third Sunday of June.

Unlike Jarvis’s Mother’s Day, Dodd’s concept did not become a huge hit on its first few years. She even stopped promoting it to pursue further studies in Chicago, Illinois during the 1920s. A decade later, she returned to Spokane and revived Father’s Day, with the motive of raising awareness at a national level. Interestingly, she received help from trade groups who were thinking of other opportunities: profit. These trade groups had interests in the manufacturing of ties, tobacco pipes, and other typical items that would be of interest for fathers. Hungry for profit, they worked hard in order to make Father’s Day the “Second Christmas’ for all the men’s gift-oriented industries” (See Leigh Eric Schmidt’s CONSUMER RITES The Buying and Selling of American Holidays. NJ, USA: Princeton University Press, 1995, pp. 256-292).

Both Jarvis and Dodd’s objectives were simple and noble: to honor parents. But their noble vision was buried by commercialization which still pervades to this very day. All in the name of US imperialism. So why do we Filipinos have to identify ourselves with something that is not ours, that is not us? That is why I told my Facebook friends yesterday that they may greet me a “Happy Father’s Day” every third week of June only when I have lost my self-respect and dignity as a Filipino. And they will immediately know that once I have cheered for any NBA team or other similar US-centric inanities.

I am a Filipino. Soy filipino. Not a little brown Kanô.

Remembering the Mount Pinatubo explosion of 1991

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Today we commemorate the 22nd anniversary of Mount Pinatubo’s Plinian / Ultra-Plinian eruption.

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