Outrage Fad erupts over Cosmetic Joke by British Comedienne

British Canadian comedienne Katherine Ryan is in Filipino crosshairs for yet another episode of misguided Filipino outrage. She recently told a joke which mentions “Filipinos,” which you can see in the accompanying pic, at a cosmetics industry event. It was part of “things unlikely to be heard in a cosmetics factory,” which obviously contains inside jokes. Humor-challenged Filipinos, in their tendency to give up higher order mental faculties to give in to knee-jerk reactions, once again take offense at this, saying their “race” had been slurred and insulted.

And since Adam Carolla’s famous comments about Pacquiao fans, such things have served to demonstrate the schizophrenic insecurity of Filipino society. It’s as if Filipinos have a radar for anything that offends them, including things that they really shouldn’t be offended at – such as a plate number bearing the owner’s name Kiki. And Filipinos who react violently to such only display how pretentiously high-browed and stiff-minded they can be.

I believe that Ryan’s joke should not be a bother at all because of the hint it gives: many Filipino children are regularly used and abused in this country. They may take the form of the putas, who as children are pimped out by their parents to foreigners (or even their neighbors), or those whose parents force them to beg on the streets to get them some money. If you’ve seen the movie, Muro-Ami, you know about the condition of child labor in this country. Foreigners have seen this movie and will likely form their impressions of our country based on it. And there are more. Child labor and trafficking reports in the country remain at an alarming level.

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Sure, it isn’t funny for some. But neither is it a reason for outrage.

Even if it may be interpreted as a slur, it’s still another of those things that tell us, we still have the same problem for years and we seem unable to do anything about it. Perhaps one could say, we are unwilling to do anything about it. This is one of the reasons for my recent article about accepting shame when needed. We know there are problems, but we prefer not to talk about then. We prefer to escape them by focusing on the “bright side” and hiding our problems, because we are trying to be happy. Even if something of urgency is staring us in the eye. No wonder nothing gets done.

Filipinos will be demanding an apology, but the problems that are likely to have contributed to Ryan’s joke are likely to prevail long after.

Three years since Adam Carolla, and we as a people still have learned nothing. Sheesh. When will Filipinos ever learn.


77 Replies to “Outrage Fad erupts over Cosmetic Joke by British Comedienne”

  1. When will the Filipinos learn? When the government finally improves/brings the standard of basic education up to an internationally acceptable level. When the politicians stop keeping the masses ill educated just so that they can be easily won over during elections. When the Filipino people actually start to care and gain the required common sense to actually deserve to be called rational animals.

  2. @StahlNacht,

    you have a top-down approach with your government statement. Its easier to have a bottoms-up approach. Change can only come from within, starting from the people themselves.

    1. you are talking about the flipnose people — the group who believes they are the cut above the rest, the lot who think they are god’s chosen people , the gaggle who believe they are the righteous and holy of holies… you are referring to a damaged race of pygmies.

      1. racist much eh. name calling and other hurtful words doesn’t justify to wake up people in their stupid slumber when it comes to decision making.

        just keep u noted: wish that u never grow old as majoring of health care provider or care giver all over the world as u called flipnose and other name calling are the ones will be by your side until u die.

        1. Haha, eh totoo naman ang sinasabi ni Lucien. There are so many Mayabang na Pinoys. I’ve an article coming on it.

        1. What a very dumb statement. Apparently, you don’t know what you’re talking about. 😛

  3. We need hope, not onion-skinnedness and hypersensitivity. I don’t need Pinoy Pride if I can’t use it to actually help address the situation we’re facing in. Child slavery is one of them.

    There are a multitude of realities that we need to solve, and we are in this really urgent state where things must be resolved simultaneously.

    People may want to change, but don’t have the resources nor access to the help they need to process the change they want to happen. There are NGOs that can support those people who want to change.

    And the eureka moment of wanting to change can’t be found on an empty stomach. There can be no aspirations, moral values, and the desire to be more than who you are right now if all you are focused on is on how to get the next meal, where to lay your head in, and other survival stuff. Remember Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs?

    Sometimes the poor are lucky to find someone who will help them in a most concrete way. Someone who can tell them that there is a way out, to give them hope, give them a path to follow, and resources. Someone to help them every step of the way, not just to give the doleout, but to tell them how to use the resources, monitor their progress, and motivate them.

    We need more of such NGOs, and also we need more people to volunteer for such NGOs. If we want to change this country, some of us will have to put all of this awareness and disgust for the current situation to really do something.

    I hope those of us who are reading and contributing to this blog are actually doing something other than reading and agreeing, or researching and writing. We need to turn this anger into action.

    1. You really think it’s that easy when the people up top who have the power can manipulate these NGO’s as they see fit?

      If there’s an element that will change the status quo against them, you can bet that they’re not going to just sit on their thumbs and let the oppressed have their way.

    2. With 60,000 ngo’s in the philippines the last thing that is needed is more!
      And like haiti the sheer proliferation of ngo’s in the philippines has become part of the problem not the solution, particularly when there is lack of transparency, accountability or the attainment of effective results.

    3. Aside from blogging, which is action by itself, one can report cases of child exploitation or abuse, or perhaps do something about the cases they encounter, like steal the child away and beat up the exploiter themselves (quite risky, I do believe, and movie-inspired).

      Or simply do what my other articles have said – don’t be the bad example.

  4. “Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious”.
    Peter Ustinov

    invariably comedy and satire is based on a modicum of truth, but it also needs a semblance of intellect to understand the message beneath the headline joke, hence humour and filipinos do not go together.

    Those filipinos with heightened sensitivities would do better to focus their ire on the actual child abuse and exploitation nearer to home rather than avoid such issues by a false sense of indignation.

  5. hey ass wipe,yeah I’m calling you that right now not for this but for the Adam crap you just mentioned in this article.I’m not outrage by what Lucy Liu or this Kathy Ryan just said I’m pissed because you don’t think that what Adam Carolla said was offensive,humor has nothing to do with the Carolla incident,you’re a bigger idiot as he is!

    1. Here’s some more reference on the sorts of hollow-heads who are quick to launch into outrage fads when in the face of PERCEIVED slights from this or that person. Check out this monument to Pinoy onion-skinnedness here courtesy of all those bozos who reacted to to the old Adam Carolla incident! 😀

  6. What a waste of space! this article should not even be addressing such a non-issue! it is well-know in S.E.Asia that Filipino’s are the most easily insulted, quick to take offense people on the planet. SO< is that how Filipino's want the rest of the world to think of them? Most people would call getting upset by this non-offensive 'slur'(HA!) as the act of PUSSIES. Re-acting to this statement with anything other than a mild chuckle is just asinine!
    In the immortal words of Keith Moon: "Little girl, why don't you STOP your crying? coz here comes Ivor, the dirty old sooty engine driver…to make you feel alright!"…and if that doesn't do it, and ur still upset…do the world a favor and KILL yourself!

    1. the flipnoses take it from the yellow-bellied idiot they elected to rule them. they are a perfect combination. and then watch those pussy holes react to this statement. that is what they are known for!

  7. Filipino’s seem to have nothing better to do on the international stage than fuckin cry about imaginery insults? SAY IT IS NOT SO!
    Does anyone care that the rest of the world see’s that people crying about this, demanding apologies, becoming indignant etc,etc,etc as a bunch of ‘CRY-BABIES’? Because that is what they think when things like this make news!
    EEH GAD MAN! whoever gets insulted by any of these statements should obviously get a life. (WWWWHHHHAAAAAHHHHHH, only looks good on infants!) AND….
    Little girls!
    OMG, just grow some thicker skin! I mean, C’mon…get upset by this stooped bitch(and the guy who wrote the book? and Gwenny Paltrow? OR, did I leave anyone out(HOLY SHIT!)?
    OMG! who gives a shit about anything that comes out of this dumb bitches mouth to begin with?’and who is Adam Corolla and what did he say?
    N E WAY, lighten up, life’s too short, u kno just like Manny Paquiao!

    (the last sentence is just to see if anyone is going to get upset about nothing! GUARANTEED…someone will,UGH!!!)

  8. Sigh, no need to sensualize over this nonsense. We are on our own the bigger racist over those brits. Not true? Then how come we made jokes over “indays’ and dodongs’ stereotyping our Visayan brothers and sisters as house keepers. If you’re from the Mindanao regions, a terrorist to name a few and there are a lot more. We are our own biggest enemy. Sure they’ve insulted our people but lest we forget that by doing this oversensitive remarks and hateful bashing name calling, we have shown the world how irrational we can become, by stooping down to their level. What we can do since we have a lot of gag shows ourselves..well let them taste a dose of their own racist medicine and laugh ourselves out.

      1. Permit me this to ask this: which society on earth does not practice double standards?

        A quote from Reynald de Chatillon from the movie The Kingdom of Heaven, succinctly puts it, “alert me, Tiberias, when… the Kingdom of Heaven has arrived.”

  9. I also blame the misguided person who edited the video circulating around the net. Emphasizing the “we use Filipino Children” part while repeating that part of the clip a few times makes people forget about the context of the joke.

    1. That’s another thing. Things that get passed around like chain letters are usually edited that you lose the original context. That’s why I barely trust these things that people ask me to “please share” on Facebook.

  10. usual stuff…don’t get mad, get even. We call her bloody Brit unworthy of emulation then stop watching her movies or ignore anything about her. No need for an apology nor outrage….waste of time. Besides, sisikat pa sya.

  11. To put into perspective, there are 5.5 million child laborers within the philippines and it has increased by 30% in the past 10 years, whereas many countries/culprits have achieved between 10 – 25% reduction in the same period.
    In any civilised country that would be a scandal of major proportions and not accepted by society.
    Maybe the increasing use of child labour, and the fact that it is tolerated/ignored by the government, could partly explain the high level of adult unemployment.
    Stop children working, and pay adults to work

  12. Mensa – the brightest 1% in the world
    Densa – 99% filipinos

    Densa – sample test questions

    How many filipinos does it take to change a light bulb?
    A – 2, one to screw it in, and one to screw it up.

    If you have a child with your daughter what is her relation to you?
    A – your future victim

    Why do filipinos wipe their arse with their hands?
    A – it helps to flavour the food

    Name 70 things a filipina is good for?
    A – cleaning and 69

    How do you confuse a filipino?
    A – ask him to fill out a form

    Why are filipino jokes one-liners?
    A – any longer and we would be here until next week

    What do you call a foreigner?
    A – Master

    1. How do you confuse a filipino?
      A – ask him to fill out a form … this is so true!
      Ask any filipino for anything in a hardware store in a mall and they will say ‘out of stock’. Look around for a few minutes and you are bound to find what you are looking for.
      What pissed me off during my visit there is the way they snicker and say ‘nosebleed’ to the simplest english. Goes to show that their brains are too small that blood flows to their noses just because they cannot comprehend a simple english word. Stupid flips.

      1. You’re quite wrong about your comment regarding our knowledge in English.We can speak the language mostly in school but not on a day to day basis hence we feel shy to use it especially to a fellow Filipino and tend to say “nosebleed” when we hear somebody speak in English whether it’s from a foreigner or a friend.The “nosebleed” remark has become more like a joke than a serious one.

        1. Pardon me, but how is it possible that you are capable of speaking English in school, but incapable of carrying a regular conversation with anyone else? What’s the difference? What makes it socially unacceptable to use English as a means of communicating? Race? Gender? Age? Smacks of prejudice. And what happens when you get to the work place? The English skills you learned in school get packed away in the back of your closet? Or thrown away with the rest of your textbooks? I would think English communication is more useful at work. Especially if you correspond with multinationals.

          As it stands, the recent graduates in this country have VERY POOR communication skills. That holds true for BOTH English AND the vernacular. Furthermore, poor language skills persist in EVERY profession, from white collar to low paying, informal jobs.

        2. In this case, this joke functionally means “stop talking in English”.

          There was a time we joked about nosebleeds when highfalutin words are brought into a conversation. I don’t know how or why it’s now mentioned whenever someone around speaks in English.

        3. Since when did rudely showing ignorance become a joke? ‘Nosebleed’ to the English language is never funny.

      2. “I don’t know how or why it’s now mentioned whenever someone around speaks in English.”

        It’s a misguided attempt to be politically correct, i.e. the group (society) doesn’t want to let the morons know exactly how utterly stupid and incapable they are of stringing words together to form sentences that convey a simple idea; an extreme practice that emerged from the desire of not wanting to cause emotional distress to others.

        Or maybe its because the majority have become more intellectually challenged because their brains leaked out their ears watching tele-novelas on ABS-CBN.

  13. Filipinos aside from being too sensitive also have that odd sense of FALSE PRIDE. I remember seeing all these “Proud to be Filipino” comments in every You Tube video of the Bourne Identity just because the film’s location was in Manila. For a simple location! I didn’t hear the Cambodians wave their flag to the high heavens when Tomb Raider was filmed there. I didn’t see the Japs cry out their race in pride when The Fast and the Furious featured Japan. Other nations kept it cool. The Filipinos on the other hand are too keen to shove their pride to your noses. Shows how INSECURE this race is. The country has the most polluted and congested city in Asia but the Filipinos will NEVER acknowledge this and are ready to attack any foreigner who tells the truth. My mates and I are beginning to hate this country next to Pakistan.

    1. LOL, I agree. Every minutiae association of Filipino on the web gets a “PROUD PINOY” tag that dominates the comment section.

    2. You’re right,Kingston.I’ve been seeing that countless of times and it really get on my nerves that sometimes I made a comment to rebuke them.I’m a Filipino but not a bias one,I see both sides of my country and the worst of it.I know what my country is and how religion and politicians ruin it since I was a kid and grew to dislike it and feel the terror of the thought of going back there.

  14. It appears some of the links in this article were not working at first. I have fixed them. Thank you, Filipino Scribe, for the heads up!

  15. Thank you FS for this as well:

    “If you’d watched the whole show instead of reacting to a still shot out of context, you might feel that I was criticizing the EXPLOITATION of children. The joke is never, ever ON children. Watch the show.”

    British comedienne Katherine Ryan, responding to a query from The Filipino Scribe.

    1. Good heavens, some Filipinos actually believe that Ryan actually meant the Filipinos were being used in experiments? Stupid, stupid. The joke meant that using animals in experimentation is bad, using Filipino children is worse! That she used it in this joke means she is actually against child abuse in the Philippines. How stupid that people cannot get it.

      And Filipinos should never believe that they should be exempt from being subjects of jokes. Why, are they royalty that they deserve the utmost respect from the world? That is stupid. We even deserve to be the butt of jokes because of the wrong examples displayed by our people, from the government to the bad behavior of our people.

  16. Someone in another group asked, “Why pick Filipino children? Why not other nationalities?” The answer should be obvious – there’s probably an impression around the world that Filipino children are particularly among the most abused, while both the government and the people are seemingly (or deliberately?) helpless to stop it.

    I also remember someone in our Facebook community said Maria Ressa, while she was at CNN, kept on picking bad news to show to the world, probably to try and say, Philippines during GMA’s time is bad. That probably formed the view of many foreigners towards the Philippines then. Today, she seems to keep on trumpeting the good news under her new outfit, and helps to suppress the bad news, like this one. Makes me go, hmmmmm.

    1. I said the above remark because sometimes, Filipinos refuse to learn good English, because of stubborness, false patriotism, laziness, and all that. The wrong reasons. But for me, there’s no reason for not learning good English. It’s necessary.

      1. I agree with you Chino. The self-deprecating term ‘nosebleed’ seems to be propagated by jejemons who are lazy and stubborn themselves. I also agree with the comments above about this term – It is not a funny.

      2. I personally wouldn’t mind if “nosebleed” is used to refer ones challenges in communicating in English, as long as it’s used among conversing Filipinos (especially in Taglish). When it’s used in communicating using English with non-Filipinos, that’s where the problem starts.

        Languages is meant to communicate ones though to another, and using “nosebleed” with non Filipino in English will simply cause confusion.

        1. Nosebleed is a call center term, I believe. It means, in effect, you’re not good enough for your job.

      3. Okay, Let me explain something to the people who think they refuse to learn english. Filipino schools teach english at an early age. One of the schools I visited even had signs in the hallways that read “Speak english only.” Asking them to speak “good” english is a personal issue. Go tell the Cajuns in Louisiana to speak good english. Next time you visit California, tell the guy to speak better english when you order your food. Racism and bigotry all start with a few simple words. Hers were terrible and your support of her shows yours. If she had said, “we don’t test with animals, we use fags” would you still be supporting her?

        1. “We don’t test our English on animals, we test them on Canadians.” Would that offend you?

          I don’t think Ryan’s joke is racist, it’s merely black humor, which I notice about her lines in this skit.

          Racism seems to have different meanings for different people.

        2. Support of her? I’m just saying the outrage is misguided and stupid. You seem to be out looking for a bone to pick for no reason.

        3. @Greg – Chill pare. Hotheaded agad. Re-reading the thread about using English, parang racist din ang mga pinoy when they joke ‘nosebleed’ to a foreigner as if napaka-alien ng English and out of place. Kaya hindi nakakutuwa. Kasi hindi naman tayo ganun ka-bobo di ba?
          About Katherine Ryan, kitang kita naman na UNLIKELY lines nga eh. Ibig sabihin, ‘ano ang hindi dapat sabihin sa isang commercial’. Ang linaw. So hindi rin ganun ka-bobo ang pinoy para mapikon agad. Mali lang yung nagpalaki nito at naglagay pa ng screen caption pa-ulit-ulit. Chill lang mga kababayan.

  17. I am Canadian and white and her line was offensive, ignorant and racist. She specifically called on a single group of people. I can’t imagine how anyone with enough brains to type an article can’t see that constitutes racism and bigotry. You and a few others like “the-infamous-me” are using false logic to explain this away. Using the topic of “unlikely” doesn’t prove her point that it was a joke. She posted to watch the whole episode. I did. I found her to be the least funny person there. I also did not find any of the other people on stage with her make any comments as insensitive as hers. Even the studio audience gaffed at it. I feel that certain people are going overboard on this issue. Death threat and lynch mobs are irrational responses to this as well. Trying to dismiss this as a simple misunderstanding is ridiculous. She stepped in it hip deep and instead of trying to explaining it away, she needs to just apologize and admit it was an error. How would it have gone over if she said Mexican or Russian children?

    1. 5.5 million child labourers in philippines – UCW
      100,000 child sex workers – UNICEF
      ??? – child soldiers

      The joke – funny or not is hardly the point

      Shame also on mexico et al, but the philippines is one of the worlds worst culprits on child labour, child trafficking, child sex abuse – up 20% in last 3 years so good that somebody shames a country where it is condoned.

      How you treat children is a reflection of the society.

      and being canadian is a reason for ignorance but look at the bigger picture

    2. The Mexicans and Russians wouldn’t even bother with it, that’s how.

      Her line was not funny, but the overreaction was totally unnecessary.

      She could have called on any group of people. Tough luck that it had to be Filipinos as it turns out we’ve got a reputation for such.

      If it’s true, do something about it. If it’s not, ignore it.

      She doesn’t need to apologize for anything. In fact, if I had my way, Pinoys need to apologize for being unnecessarily hypersensitive.

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