Apparently, Filipino boxing champ Manny Pacquiao does not think too highly of immigrants. In an interview he implied that naturalised citizens cannot claim to be considered to be a true national of their adopted country…
In a press conference after his return to General Santos City, Pacquiao fired back when the press asked him about his less-than-stellar performance. He quipped: “‘Yung isyu na ‘yan ay nagsimula kay Ronnie Nathanielsz. (That issue started with Ronnie Nathanielsz.) We know naman Ronnie Nathanielsz is not a real Filipino, adopted lang siya (We know Ronnie Nathanielsz is not a real Filipino, he’s just adopted.”
Pacquiao was referring to the fact that Nathanielsz was born in Sri Lanka and is a naturalized Filipino. Pacquiao added, “Wala siyang dugong Pilipino, hindi natin masisisi siya kung anong paniniwala niya (He has no Filipino blood, so we can’t blame him for thinking that way).”
I wonder then what he would think of the millions of Filipinos who call the United States their home. Would Pacquiao consider them to be “not real” Americans?
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Perhaps he is right, as many Filipino Americans seem to harbour a sense of “binary nationalism” despite many of them being born and growing up in the United States…
An example of this â€œbinary nationalismâ€ was on display on July 8 when hundreds of Filipino-Americans â€“ members of US Pinoys for Good Governance (USP4GG) â€“ demonstrated in front of the six China consulates in the US to protest Chinaâ€™s incursion in the Philippine-owned islands of the Spratlys where China seeks to extract $50 billion worth of oil annually.
Even Filipino Americans who were born in the US ardently participated in the protest actions as they identified with their parentsâ€™ homeland, joining the chants of â€œOur soil! Our oil!â€ as they waved US and Philippine flags. They too are part of the Filipino diaspora.
Maybe someone should ask Ronnie Nathanielsz what he thinks.
benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.