WHEN Filipinos make it big in the international realm, we say that we are proud Filipinos! When it’s everything about greatness, we go out and say, “I am a Filipino.” Most people would utter the words “Pinoy Ako” without really understanding the word Filipino.
It’s funny how people I know who say that they are all about being a Filipino are the same people I know shopping around high-end malls buying imported brands: Zara, Topshop, Mango, H&M, Forever 21, Old Navy and other go-to brands in the metro.
It’s funny how I invite people to watch Tagalog movies and all they say is “Jologs, unsa man na?” or “Yuck, ga’watch ug Pinoy movies?”
It’s funny how I ask about OPM and local indie bands and all they know are songs on Billboard and the indie band from I don’t know where.
It’s funny how people would go crazy over buying luxury bags online or in actual mall stores even to the point of buying class A versions but are not able to patronize cheap Marikina bags.
It’s funny, how most of the time, we don’t really walk the talk. Well, in a lot of cases actually. The instance of being Filipino is one.
While a number of tourists go to various destinations for the local feel and the heritage the place brings, we are all about westernizing, bringing and adapting a lot of different culture in the country. While it is good to amuse ourselves with diversity, it is best to nurture our very core and uphold our values first. It is like loving and appreciating ourselves first, before loving other people.
We often try to learn foreign languages without even first polishing our own dialect. I believe we must hone first the Filipino ways before taking things into international streets.
Support Filipino brands. Endorse local tourism. Travel the Philippines. Interact with the locals. Feel and understand what it is to be Filipino.