The Mistaken Beliefs behind Pinoy Pride

Happy New Year! Many of you know that one of my favorite topics is the problem of Pinoy Pride. It is a source of controversy, since many, including myself, claim that it is a wrong attitude and a source of many of our country’s problems. Others defend it and say that it is needed as a “confidence-booster” by a “downtrodden” nation like ours. However, I believe many defenses of Pinoy Pride are based on mistaken beliefs, and these beliefs thus make pride more harmful than helpful…. or more negative than positive, to use the words of our critics.


Let’s start with one of the most common retorts:”You should have Pinoy Pride and shout that we are the best in the world, because if you don’t, it means you are ashamed of being a Filipino!

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I see this as one of the most mistaken beliefs about Pinoy Pride because it’s based on what is called the false dichotomy. It involves claiming two concepts as opposite, when in fact they are not. For example, saying that one is the best in the world (which is an arrogant act) is considered necessary to avoid shame. Filipinos who believe this would say pride and shame are direct opposites. What a terrible false dichotomy.

Let me use my own working definition of some words for this article. I see pride and self-esteem as very different. I define pride as the belief that one can be superior to other people and the desire to boast. Pride seems to carry belief in an inequality of sorts, or that some people are better than others (which could be a launching point for racist views), leading to self-imposition over others. Self-esteem is the belief in one’s own dignity and human rights, but without the need to impose oneself over others. Humility is being honest about oneself, showing no desire to draw unnecessary attention to oneself (which we may call KSP – kulang sa pansin). Shame is the “painful feeling arising from the consciousness of something dishonorable, improper, ridiculous, etc., done by oneself or another,” which I picked from

In my working definition, the opposite of pride is not shame. The opposite of pride is humility. Another wrong belief of some Filipinos is that humility reduces self-esteem. Very wrong. Humility is actually a result of proper self-esteem. True self-esteem does not lead to boasting or arrogance, or even defensiveness. Self-esteem means you know how to respect yourself, but you know your limits as well.

Another retort heard from Pinoy pridists is:
Eh nakakahiya tayo pag walang maipagyabang o maisumbat (We are shameful if we have nothing to boast or upbraid others with)!”

Having nothing to boast is not shame. Shame has its own separate causes. For example, raping a woman, slapping a helpless elderly disabled patient, or even holding hostage a bus full of foreigners and shooting them dead is a source of shame (And if you don’t feel shame for these, then I would say something is wrong with you). You can have nothing to boast, but also nothing to be shameful about, so there’s no need to feel shame. And you can still be happy.

Also, note that “sumbat” was translated “to upbraid” in the source I quoted. That means to reproach or censure someone. I’ve seen this in many Filipinos; they love to reproach other people, sometimes for no reason, since it is a manifestation of power-tripping. It’s another version of the “pataasan ng ihi” (piss contest) culture in our society.

Why would you want anything to boast? Because you want to prop yourself as superior and ruler over others? Then you would be no different from the politicians you call corrupt. Most wisdom teaches that it is wrong to boast, because most reasons for boasting are wrong. You can’t even claim to be patriotic or a true supporter of our countrymen, all you want is glory for yourself. Thus, it also represents an inflated ego.

And here might be another retort against my views: “accepting shame, even if one actually has a fault, is negative!

Again, another mistaken view, based on the arrogant refusal to accept one’s mistakes. And on a wrong view of what is “negative.” Refusal to accept one’s mistakes is based on an overinflated ego and no desire to see a problem solved. It is based on irrational stubbornness against accepting truth. Or just a plain refusal to do what is right, because the action that is wrong “feels better.”

A basic problem with Filipinos is that they seek to have pride for pride’s sake. They seek to be superior just to “feel good.” Benign0 described it masterfully: “Filipinos are culturally hobbled by a compulsion to assert class dominance over the other.” They believe this is a legitimate way to build self-esteem. But I disagree. It is not.

And this might be another retort from the critics.

Telling us to control our pride is oppression! All these values we’re receiving from the west are not values! We are being taught humility because it is a tool of the oppressors to keep us submissive!

That sounds like a smart-aleck, politically-loaded retort. And real-life experience proves this retort as untrue. Also, it’s another manifestation of victim mentality. That’s why I refuse to believe in theories that Agenda this and that by the United Nations and other countries is a reason for the problems of the Philippines. It’s passing the buck, while trying to downplay admission of one’s own mistakes. It’s arrogance in another form. Anyone who draws attention to themselves through arrogance ends up making lots of enemies.

Look at countries whose success can be considered based on good values. Do Japan and Singapore cry “Japan pride,” or “Singapore Pride” the way we do? Do they blame other countries for their problems? So far, the only “country” I’ve heard shouting pride loudly is gay pride. Perhaps that’s what Filipinos believe, they’re the “oppressed” people and thus deserve their pride to be catered to. I also wonder, are people suddenly shouting that they’re victims only to draw attention to themselves? Gogs is right: KSP is the root of all evil. And pride is not a solution against oppression. Pride may even increase it.

Thus, one major reason why we have a problematic society, why we’re so onion-skinned and so dependent on riding on other’s fame, is because we have the wrong concept of pride. Perhaps we have the wrong concept on many things. We are a society that values the wrong things. We value form over substance, appearances over truths, and thus we engage in wrong practices to try and maintain these appearances. And then these appearances are torn from us, we play the victim card, when the truth is that we victimized ourselves through falsehoods and delusions.

I repeat, having no pride is not shame. Having humility is not shame either. It is having a controlled ego – which is the right kind of pride. With the proper self-esteem, the right kind of pride, we can avoid the things that make us the subject of scorn and satire by other people, and we can earn more respect as a people. I hope more Filipinos learn this lesson in 2014.

39 Replies to “The Mistaken Beliefs behind Pinoy Pride”

  1. It appears “Proud Pinoy” has hurt more than a few here, and now they write a dissertation in his honour.

    Did his words of truth really cut that deep? Haha!

    You say proud pinoy is deluded in his faith in the government, but the government has given him much land and wealth for his years of faith and service of the peoples.

    What rewards do you writers reap? Satisfaction from “truths”? Or delusions?! Haha!

    The answer is not important, it cannot feed or prosper oneself, which is why no one will truly accept the nonsense here because it pays no bills and has no rewards, unlike civil servants like PP, which are rewarded well.

    Keep complaining conyos! May things not change for another 100 years so we can enjoy our wonderful country! Hohoho

    1. This Pinoy KSP chiffon pride has been around longer than your “elite” black ops operation has. When your idol is impeached for defrauding the taxpayers we will see who will laugh last.

    2. It won’t change if people like you don’t want it to change, especially when wallowing in your delusions… but anyway, our job is to make people like you irrelevant. Hopefully, you’ll be wrong 100 years from now.

      1. Totally, agree with you. We have same problem over here with many Filipinos in America, they have to write Pinoy Pride on EVERYTHING and show it off. ANNOYING!

        1. Say, how it is one year later? I’ve just gotten back to this article and noticed, heck, the problem is stubborn. Because people are stubborn.

    3. Your precious president is still going down since your trolling is ineffective.

      His popularity is going down the crapper and all you do is sit in an internet shop trying to attack this site fruitlessly.

      You’ll definitely be eating your words once your president is kicked out of office.

      You already claim victory but the thing is, your attacks are hardly effective.

      Enjoy your blunder troll.

    4. Hahaha. You’re obviously stupid enough not to do your homework about this site that you troll in. And you’ve got a face not even your own mother could love.

      That’s ad hominem. I can do it better than you, whether or not you’re paid to do it. I would gladly call you stupid for free.

      One, this site has been writing long. about Pinoy cultural dysfunction long before you could even string a coherent sentence together. (You still can’t, by the way.)

      Two, what makes you think that the writers here are motivated by money? Blogging is a reward in and of itself. But then again, you’re a typical Pinoy, and I don’t expect you to be able to appreciate that; there always has to be some sort of financial motivation for you.

      Three, as long as this country doesn’t make strides to change its dysfunction, GRP will continue to be a thorn in the side of the hypersensitive, stupid, dense, prideful Pinoys like you.

      Eat that, birdbrain.

    5. @pagpag

      The quality of the yellow food that you eat reflects its toxic effects on your yellow zombie mind. Still into deception trolling? What “Proud Pinoy” are you talking about? Are you blind to the massive corruption (PDAF/DAP) that is prevailing in the government of the yellow dictator BS Aquino? I see nothing to be proud of! What about the rising cost of living and the poor getting poorer? Where are jobs generation and livelihood projects and programs? What about ethics, morals and values that stimulates genuine discipline and pride? Damn you yellow zombies! You are blind and deaf to what is happening to our people and our country! Down with the yellow dictator BS Aquino! Down with the yellow zombies who spread false pride!

    6. And now the paid hack has his own pic, huh? I know who PP is. He’s not a civil servant but he’s a TROLL. And you fell from his bait. BTW, that pic of yours fit well since that is REALLY who you are. šŸ˜€

      Too bad that you’re also a TROLL but can’t admit it. Actually, what you have is PURE TROLLING, not ‘truth’.

      Keep spilling Yellow Propaganda, trollfags! May things change so we can REALLY enjoy our TRULY wonderful country! LMFAO šŸ˜€

    7. The troll thinks he can be credible because he has a picture of some poor shmuck on his profile.
      Whoever that person is, I pity him because his face is being used by a stupid sack of shit to be used for trolling ineffectively on this website.

        1. Their behavior is already considered as insanity since they’re doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results.
          Too bad that their days of trolling are numbered

  2. GRP, not to be off-topic, but some of your stuff got featured for approximately five seconds in TV Patrol minutes ago. Specifically, your articles on MMFF. Special mention goes to Johnny Derp’s comments.

    Just sounding off, GRP.

    1. MMFF?

      Now that I have time to think about it, isn’t that a kind of porn? Oh wait, I’m thinking dirty thoughts again. Sorry.

      Anyway, I love this site and whatever that overblown presskit of a channel has to say about it is nothing more than crap. Everything is tinged with some form of self-righteous connotations and pinoy pride on that channel anyway. Even their so-called educational programs are tainted.

  3. As for the crux of this blog. Pinoys think:
    Pride = boasting = superiority = entitlement= everyone else inferior for not being Pinoy . You see it all the time.

  4. Just hate the artificial false pride that comes from the deception of mindless yellow propagandists and zombies… What is happening to this country and its people is tragic and the yellows just do not see the fact that the Filipino people are aware of what is being done to them by the yellow dictator BS Aquino. The events in this country are nothing to be proud of. Massive corruption, rising criminality, government incompetence, rising cost of living and poverty are just the tip of the iceberg. A yellow dictatorship trying to control the entire government is nothing to be proud of! Damn your false “Pinoy Pride”! Your yellow version of “Pinoy Pride” is plain falsehood and hypocrisy. You yellow zombies are blind, deaf and dumb as you continue to kneel to the yellow dictator!

  5. Chino F….Interesting thought provoking blog. I wish that the mindless chauvinism that you describe was unique to the Philippines. Unfortunately it is not. Growing up in the United States, meant being exposed to ignorant, flag waving zealots continuously. Most of these people are from the South and most are fundamentalist, white Christians. Their response to protestors during the Vietnam War were bumper stickers emblazoned with the catchy phrase: “My country right or wrong!”

    1. I mentioned in my article with the downed Pacquiao picture that we probably got our idea of national pride from the Americans. All a part of racist zealotry, I would agree.

    2. I agree…I even find my fellow Canadians who are hockey fans over in Europe now at the World Junior Hockey tournament ridiculous with their huge Canadian flags all over the place. Canadians are far less boastful in general about Canada than the US is, but it appears at nationalism does catch on sometimes and it is almost repulsive. My father used to tell me: Never judge a man’s wealth by the type of car he drives. Show-offs and braggards anywhere are offensive.

  6. Yet another form of inflated and toxic nationalism. As the great mind Albert Einstein aptly put it, “Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind.”

    This “Pinoy Pride” concept is very similar to the “Aryan Master Race” that Nazi Germany spouted, but the difference between these ideologies are the latter asserted itself even though it was through means of a horrible war. The former on the other hand is no more than a little dog yelping tied to a tree.

    1. Nationalism is intolerance and xenophobia disguised as patriotism. It is a manifestation of EGOCENTRISM: If it is like me, it is good; If it is unlike me, it is bad. That is the way a child thinks.

  7. People who have overinflated EGO (Edge God Out), will see themselves as superior to others. And will use pride to erase their lack of accomplishments. You don’t advertise your accomplishments. People will notice, if you are doing good.

    It is shame that we are in this situation. We are the Servants of the world. We are OFW slaves.
    We float our economy, by these OFW slaves. If we look a deep overview of ourselves; we will be miserable.

    Shouting PINOY PRIDE is one way to compensate our present miseries. We ride on the fames of: beauty contest winners; of our boxing champions, etc…because these people are successful. We indulge in watching stupid Soap Operas, to educate ourselves.

    We hitch ourselves, for a free ride ; and be a part of their good accomplishments. It is easier to do that, than working hard for it.

    If this is not Delusion. I don’t know what it is. Aquino is trying to invigorate his lack of accomplishments of his administration. By making it up with the slogan :”PINOY PRIDE”. It is also one way to cover our eyes from realities, that we are in such a mess. It is a Coping Mechanism for most of the Filipinos. Because they cannot do anything , anymore, to improve their situations.

  8. I’m awaiting those people here who are still defending this “Pinoy Pride” crap.

    Seriously…would you still be proud to be a Pinoy with a president who’s dumb as a bucket of nails, rampant corruption in the country even in SK levels, twisted morals and no hope and signs of progression whatsoever?

    I’m sure these same people would prefer not to accept positive changes for this country.

  9. Pride seems to be the only thing they hold on to. That’s just sad because it doesn’t help you strive to be better. They just say they have pride and that’s enough for them.

  10. I feel you! In addition, pinoys tend to pass on or obliged their friends and family with their problem. They borrow money and expects you to understand them why they can’t pay you back. The cycle goes on and on. Pero sa gimick and gadgets may pang gastos.

  11. @ ChinoF

    I think this so-called subject “Pinoy pride” is something that is overblown and given so much coverage on this site without fact-checking its significance on Filipinos as a whole.

    I happen to have used the word “pinoy pride” during a vacation in Alabang Metro-Manila last April 2013 nobody knew what I was talking about it was embarrassing I had to explain. This term is more common with FOB’s and the low lifers.

  12. IDK but my partner doesn’t like to even say she is from the Philippines, she is ashamed of the country.

    Filipino’s are judged outside their country pretty harshly, and undeservedly so. It is because of the acts of the few that the stereo-types are tagged on all Filipino’s. A few rotten apples, like they say, spoil it for all.

    1. Which is why whenever people ask me where i come from, i simply tell them :” i belong to no nation, i owe no allegiance to no government “

  13. I just wanted to say thank you for your website and articles like these that are TRUE — not just factual, but from seeing it via my own filipino experience… i knew there was something wrong with this culture.. i couldn’t quite put my finger to it for a long time, but this entire site has given the perspective that a lot of filipinos DO feel, but for some reason still choose to hide that they DO think it as well… it is extremely frustrating to watch these so-called filipinos who have “pinoy pride” but really have NO idea what having pride in your culture really means — i.e. I just came back from the Philippines in May 2013 and seeing the way the culture is, a LOT of what is good in our culture is eternally lost… no one cares anymore about just being ETHICALLY good to one another, the name of the game over there is — “how do i take advantage of this person/situation?” ALL the freaking time… no one trusts anyone, no one cares about their surroundings, yet they have the nerve to call someone like me “unfilipino” because I grew up here in the U.S. and don’t participate in interactions where I’m supposed to just give my hard-earned money to relatives that expect me to just give it because i’m supposed to understand that “it’s easier to earn in the U.S. and they don’t have the same opportunity”???? ummmm…. yea…. there’s something ridiculously wrong with the Philippines and it saddens me because there IS a lot of Filipino values and customs/traditions to be proud of but in reality, even the Filipino people who live in the motherland don’t care to practice them at all…

  14. Now, this is the kind of write ups I always like to read. It is very relevant because it tackles about the inner core of us, the soul. There is nothing good about pride remember it is included to seven mortal sins. If someone really understand what he/she reads, then the conclusion would be in explicit that pride is a sin. That is why sometimes, I cannot help to ask myself – why the Philippines is one of the most visited places of catastrophic force of nature? Ah, this is might be the effect of having too much pride that has nothing to do with us but the opposite of true economic progress, political maturity, and people with values and integrity.

    1. A late thank you for your comment. And even now, more than before, understanding the soul of Filipino character is ultimately relevant for addressing the country’s problems.

  15. I don’t see much pride in the Philippines. The most popular T-shirt is ” USA” . During karaoke contests on TV, you see people with orgasmic expressions on their faces sing old, old American songs. At clubs– one American request after another.

    Then, there are dances on TV where they dance to all these American oldies that most Americans have never even heard of.

    I went to a birthday party at Shakey’s and during the celebration, not one- as in zero– Filipino songs was sung.

    On the radio, it’s mostly American music.

    Some pride it is.

    Your neighboring Asian countries don’t do such nonsense. A Vietnamese doesn’t walk around with a giant French flag on his T- shirt. An Indonesian does not play Dutch songs all day, especially not on national TV.

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