Fluency in Regional Languages Can Improve the So-Called “Filipino Language”

One thing I learned in language education is that, given time, geography and human development, a language would eventually change to suit the needs of communication. That is why I have ultimately very little problems with Tagalog speakers embellishing English into the former, creating a (current) form of portmanteau popularly known as “Taglish.”

tagalog_languageThe premise that Filipino should be a national language is implicitly more of a political construct and less of an organic construct, as explained here. In fact, linguists would even go further to say that “Filipino” is a legitimate language because it’s imposed by the Constitution. As anyone in the Philippines would most likely already be aware of, Filipino is basically what people know as Tagalog. The 1987 Constitution further states that “regional languages” such as Iloko and Bisaya are “auxiliary” implying that they carry less weight than “Filipino” because they’re spoken in certain regions.

(For purposes of this essay, I’ll consider Tagalog as a “regional language,” despite its widespread use in and around Luzon.)

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A former university dean would perhaps contradict what I just said, but the fact of the matter is that the development of the “Filipino language” is motivated by the Constitution itself, and that “Filipino” is basically Tagalog with a smattering of words from other languages. To be fair, however, the Constitution leaves the development of “Filipino” open, given a committee that would shepherd its improvement.

I’ll keep my mind open: can a “Filipino language” eventually come into fruition, given that the Constitution says that it already exists? Perhaps, but only if the Constitution itself would be more specific about what the “Filipino language” is. If the academics themselves think that “Filipino” and “Tagalog” are two different animals, what exactly do we as Filipinos have to adhere to? As an example, I consider myself as fluent in three languages (English, Tagalog and Iloko). However, based on what the 1987 Constitution implies, I might actually be fluent in just two (English and “Filipino,” since Tagalog and Iloko could probably be Constitutionally incorporated as one language), or maybe even four (English, Filipino, Tagalog, Iloko). So what is it, really? (Or in Tagalog, ano ba talaga?)

The widespread use of English also sets to make this situation a little bit more complex; the Constitution acknowledges it as an official language along with “Filipino.” Here I now delve more into culture than legal ramifications: now I understand if a lot of Filipinos today do not have a good grasp of English; that’s fine with me, they can always use whatever language they’re comfortable with, provided I can understand that language as well. What saddens me more is that based on scientific studies a lot of young people today don’t even have adequate proficiency in their OWN regional language as well as English. When a society has a less-than-thorough grasp of two languages which they still use anyway, the development of what’s called a “creole” happens: it becomes a whole new language that is in many ways different from its “parent” languages. Chavacano is a perfect example of a Philippine creole, which mixes Spanish and other local languages. I personally fear the day when Taglish becomes the supposed “Filipino language” inscribed in the Constitution, because it implies that only the most rudimentary forms of English and Tagalog have survived, the rest having to disappear or become forgotten. The constant bombardment of Taglish use in the media today serves only to strengthen my fears, and without a proper educational system to teach both English and the regional languages I further fear that the essence of both these language groups would be lost. Are we to eventually inherit a Constitutionally-imposed national language predominantly made up of a deficiency-based code-switched lexicon?

To enrich “Filipino” as a language, I would like to suggest that we as Filipinos learn as much as possible about the languages we use: the intricacies, the nuances and the applications, not just the day-to-day practicalities. I believe that Tagalog is a beautiful language, but its full beauty is hidden underneath the barrage of “Taglish” that comes to us everyday. The local languages can culturally connect us to each other, while English can connect us to the rest of the world.

46 Replies to “Fluency in Regional Languages Can Improve the So-Called “Filipino Language””

  1. as An Eglish Speaking Person Who Loves To
    Visit Your Country yes It Is Good To Know More Than
    On Language; But I Feel More Obligation To Speak
    That Countries Language:

  2. Are all languages equal? The purpose of language is to communicate. Therefore, the languages that are most widely spoken would be considered superior to dialects that are only understood by one particular tribe. If that were the case, Mandarin and Spanish would be considered the best languages in the world to learn. That, however, does not seem to be the case. Why?

  3. There is a linguistic prejudice in this article: the idea of bastardizing Tagalog with English words. Languages are tools. That’s it. English is “infected” with thousands of French words: however, it is not Frenchglish, but English. Spanish was a “bastardization” of Latin, etc.
    The idea of languages being superior or inferior are also false from a linguistic point f view.
    Filipino does not exist as a language. The very fact that the Constitution mentions it does not create a language and, despite the quotation, for most scholars in the area of Linguistics Filipino does not exist: just Tagalog.
    Finally, the problem with all languages in the Philippines, English included, is that, given the poor reading habits of Filipinos, people in the Philippines usually do not acquire a very high proficiency in any language: just at a standard coloquial useful level.
    Taglish is more common in Metromanila, however, as Kris Aquino shows frequently in her abherrant programs.

    1. There is nothing in the article that mentions the superiority of a language over another.

      Also, with regards to Filipinos existing (or not) as a language according to the Constitution, only the references I linked to made by academics would support the claim; perhaps it would be much better to confront them, since they have a more solid basis on this.

    2. You can look at it from the perspective of a linguist: disinterestedly, and marveling at the changes going on within a language. Then you can look at it from the perspective of an educator and communications expert: where proper speech and language is necessary.

    3. The French words in English were absorbed centuries ago and form part of approved lexis. They are in dictionaries and are included by Webster’s, Longman, etc.
      Newspapers and Radio/ TV stations in NY and London must use English that is approved by such dictionaries. They cannot indiscriminately and arbitrarily start inserting new foreign words any time they wish.

      Spanish descended from Latin, true just like a human descended from a monkey. It does not mean that a human can now hoot like a monkey any time he wants. Now, there is an approved Spanish lexis and vocabulary as stated by the universities in Madrid and Ministeries of culture. You cannot just start writing any foreign word you want or use it on TV and the radio.

      In France, they have **some** English words which they use, but again, they were approved by proper educational authorities. You can’t just start peppering your broadcast in French with any English word you want. But in the PH, they have no such language authorities. So, they just put any English words they want any time they want. It sounds chaotic and ugly, too

  4. The Mother Tongue Based Education that DepEd is currently trying to implement is actually a good idea. It means that the child is taught in the local dialect in the first grades before English and Filipino is taught. The rationale being that the student can acquire fluency faster if he is taught in the local dialect first and it would be easier to teach him Filipino and English later.

    I very much agree with this Mother Tongue Based education. I envy students who were taught this way, since educators were still imposing a “no dialect” policy on us.

    Personal bias aside, this is a brilliant policy. We’ll definitely need to keep employing the local dialect for early grades. Not only will fluency in the local dialects be maintained, the mental faculties of the students can be develop more fully this way.

    1. Mother Tongue Based Education is based on the premise that a child is reared by educated parents, regardless of the dialect. It also allows the child to continue strengthening the basic knowledge already gained from infanthood to age 7 to 10. Learning a second language, if it is the required language imposed on all the regions of the Philippines, like Tagalog, it will augment the child’s awareness that she or he is growing up as a Filipino and thus equipped to appreciate it’s
      history and literatures, patriotic songs, lives of the Filipino heroes and it’s struggles against foreigners that colonized the country. He or she is more likely to love the country and will desire to help and improve the lives of his/her countrymen. Compare this child who was not taught Tagalog, skipped it, and learn Enlish instead. That child is likely to have a conflicting sense of who she or he is as an adult. His/her ambition earlier on is to leave the country for greener pasture, get married to a non-Filipina girl and won’t mind if he or she raised a child who will never know about his/her father or mother’s country of birth. Ang hindi marunong magmahal sa sariling wika ay malansa pa sa pinakamalansang isda sa Canal de le Reyna ng Tayuman. Sorry, But Filipinos who are raised in poverty cannot hope for any better language skill and thus, for any jobs better than isang kahig isang tuka. The quality of education is determined by the presence of good teachers and good teachers are the product of a society that knows how to value its own, including a national language, a country of its own, a pride for ones self as a member of a nation with its own unique history and culture.

      1. But your premise still points to the “national language” being Tagalog, which as I mentioned should not be the case.

      2. @imus..You Are WRONG, UNEDUCATED and BIAS and CONFUSED!! You State That if a Child Is Taught Tagalog They Will Have a True Sense of Being a Real Filipino?…From Where or What…The Fantastic (Government Controlled) Programing of GMA?….Is That Where You Got Your Education?. Personally I Can Verify and Stand Beside One Filipino Who Is 9 Years Old and Speaks, Reads and Writes With college Level fluency Tagalog, Visayan, Spanish and English.

        WHY ?, Because Her Parents Have Guided Her To Be Better Then They are, Arise above the IGNORANCE that Surrounds Her And Strive To Be Better.

        That Girl Is My Daughter. It Is Not The “TRIBE”, The “TEACHERS”, The “PREIST” or The “NATION”/”COUNTRY”/”GOVERNMENT” Who Is Responsible For Her Education or Upbringing. IT IS THE RESPONSIBITLE OF THE PARENTS—PERIOD.

  5. maybe the philippines should be broken up into federal states based on dominant regional languages.

    we could have an ilocano state, tagalog state, bisaya state…etc. all official state level documents would be in the state’s language and in english. the national official language/lingua franca should be english. languages of instruction should be the state/regional dialect and english.

    what to do with filipino though? which really is just tagalog? and has been pushed as the national language? maybe we just get real and realize that this is an imaginary language created by the 1987 constitution?

    do more people in the country speak bisaya rather than tagalog? maybe national official documents should be in three languanges? english, filipino(tagalog) and bisaya?

    1. The framers of the 1973 Constitution almost had the idea right: just take out any mention of a “national language” altogether. It would be better than to federalize a country based on linguistic groups (do we really need for example an Agta republic, just because that language is spoken there?).

    2. There was a time in the history of the Philippines when Bulaklak, Liwayway, Hiwaga, and Pilipino Komics could not keep up with the demand of Filipino readers from all over the country. Movies will have to be in Tagalog so that Filipinos from any of the regions watch them and laugh at the funny comedians known nationwide. The idea of a nation was given birth by the presence of strong demand for a national language to serve the country’s commerce and industries, locally or nationally, a common literature that strengthened the country’s self-identity as a nation. Local people from the islands struggle to learn Tagalog for economic reason, to go where the job was and that was Luzon and Manila. That has changed. Cebuanos can go by without learning Tagalog unless they want to go to Luzon to run for national political office or become an actor or an actress. And unless a Filipino, in their present sense of identity as a member of a Filipino nation, gets in trouble in another country, does he gets to appreciate that they have a country that can probably help them to go back home. “Home?” Where is home?

  6. I think we disagree with, correct me if I’m wrong, purifying Tagalog to be Taglish-zied. For me, in general, I don’t really mind if Tagalog evolves to Taglish because that’s how all languages in general evolves and adapts. Tagalog itself was influenced by various languages, like spanish, chinese (fukien?), etc. For me, a language is a tool to communicate ones thought and if Taglish does it better, why not?

    Nonetheless, I said “in general” because one thing I didn’t like with Taglish is that English words are not “tagalized” (e.g. computer -> kompyuter or kompiyuter). Why? Spelling. Problem with English’s spelling mainly comes from loan words from French which has the same spelling problem. Adopting English words without tagalizing them will make Taglish less spelling friendly.

  7. Languages are forms of communication…words, slang, lingo, etc…evolve from generation to generation…wordsmithing is the work of good writers…

  8. Sadly I gotta say it: The Flipino language sounds as if it were made up by a four year old and is one of the more ‘childish’ sounding languages ever uttered.Vowel consonant, vowel consonant, huh? WTF does ‘UMMA LAY-LAY’ mean? So, really, come off it…throw that shit in the garbage and get another language.

    1. Tagalog is an “Abugida” language, meaning it has roots in Southeast Asian languages which use the same “consonant-vowel” pattern (such as Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Malay, Javanese, etc.)

      By what measure/evidence do you think is Tagalog a “childish language,” beyond the Abugida pattern?

      1. Abugida refers to the WRITING system. Baybayin is an abugida or alphasyllabic writing system. The consonant-vowel pattern is how ANY language can be WRITTEN. You can use baybayin to write English words, for example. Please get your facts right. And there is nothing childish in writing in this manner. What a strange remark.

    2. Sadly I gotta say it: The Flipino language sounds as if it were made up by a four year old and is one of the more ‘childish’ sounding languages ever uttered.Vowel consonant, vowel consonant, huh? WTF does ‘UMMA LAY-LAY’ mean? So, really, come off it…throw that shit in the garbage and get another language.
      And I got to say that is not a good way to start a conversation.

      Anyway, we have people here who are capable to go down on that level. I’m sure they will respond to you at any moment from now. 🙂

      1. @ Jameboy, it is not conversation ,it is a comment. Where are the people you said will respond ? 10 hours later?

        The ‘ROMANCE’ languages,derived from the word ‘ROMAN’ (not an emotion) are much more pleasing to the ear.French,for example, is a wonderful language to just listen to even though I do not speak it.Tagalog or Cebuano are not the ugliest languages to the ear, there is ‘Yiddish’ or ‘Hebrew’ with the sounds like the clearing of the throat,HOCH PUH!
        Which ,IMO,is the grossest language to the ear.I know many who agree.

        Could it be that Filipino’s are not going to be insulted by my comment and not get their legendary panties in a knot at the slightest of perceived indignation, because it could be considered a valid point?Somehow I doubt it, but not everyone gives a shit what I think.I certainly do not lose sleep over it.

        1. Fred, when you put up a post you don’t only converse with your self. You expect people to react to it and conduct conversation (argue, debate, etc.). Blogs are not one-way traffic. You know that. I may have mention people responding to you (ex. me and MidwayHaven) which is natural but my emphasis really is on the level of invitation your post imparted.

          I see you discriminate on languages, fine. It’s just not my cup of tea simply because languages are not mere language. They represent people’s identity,origin, roots, culture and tradition. I respect ALL languages, pleasing or not to the ear or ugly or otherwise, for they are truly one of a kind in representing people with each other.

          And I don’t see any sense in discriminating something you don’t actually understand. You base it on sense (hearing and vision) when what is required is understanding. Also, when you judge a language based on intepreting them through senses (hear, ugly, etc.) it tends to reflect on how you judge people.

          When I was young, children made fun of the Chinese language because it sounded funny to them. But they are children. 🙂

        2. Remember, Fred: you’re the one who’s implying that we should throw away these “ugly” languages and replace them with what you perceive as “pleasing.”

          By that statement, you already manifest a sign of cultural superiorism over another, which is no different from what the Colonial Spanish did to Philippine cultures in the 1500’s.

        3. @ Midway,I am not implying you throw away anything. WOW, you are out of your mind pal.I said no such thing nor did I ‘imply’ it.

          @jameboy, who said I do not understand it? the purpose of a language,believe me…I understand it.and I expect nothing when I post here.not all languages represent what you think they do either.Your post is too full of prejudgemental BS,I swear IDK where to start…so I’ll just pass.

        4. Your words, Fred:

          FRED MERT says:
          January 9, 2015 at 10:55 pm
          Sadly I gotta say it: The Flipino language sounds as if it were made up by a four year old and is one of the more ‘childish’ sounding languages ever uttered.Vowel consonant, vowel consonant, huh? WTF does ‘UMMA LAY-LAY’ mean? So, really, come off it…throw that shit in the garbage and get another language.

        5. Fred, me, full of prejudgmental BS? 🙂 🙂 🙂

          You’re the one who discriminate and you blame me for pointing it out to you? You’re something, man! 🙂

          Good you pass. 🙂

        6. @jameboy, who said I do not understand it?
          the purpose of a language,believe me…I understand it. – Fred
          You thought you understood it. I just cannot believe without proof, Fred.

          and I expect nothing when I post here.
          That is why, next time be prepared so that you will not be caught flat-footed.

          not all languages represent what you think they do either.
          There you go again.

        7. @ Jameboy,OK you need an intellectual ass kicking…UR assertion I do not understand Cebauano is incorrect, I SPEAK IT. My original post assaulted the way it sounds to my ears, it is as if I do not like the sound of a song I hear too much….and just like the CD, I would throw it in the garbage.You keep getting your panties in a bunch,WHY? if I do not like the way something sounds I am discriminating if I want to turn it off? OR throw it in the garbage? Just because YOU may like something doesn’t mean I have too… BUT you seem to speak English,NO? Why is that? Could it be because Tagalog or Cebuano are not international enough? Why could that be?
          AND MIDWAY? I said throw ONE language in the GARBAGE,ONE and IDGAF what language you replace it with and IDGAF if you like the way it sounds or not BUT I STATED NEITHER.. ARE YOU RETARDED? where did I state that the more pleasing languages to MY ears means you should do anything ?

          @ MIDWAY, u got one thing right, I do feel superior to you, not because of any cultural differnces but because you are clearly hearing what you want to hear (seeing actually) and I am not delusional, LIKE YOU !!!

          Believe this: I could keep going but it is a waste of my time. You two guys make assumptions based on something that YOU THINK and attribute it to me and then judge ME,according to what YOU think,WTF? typical FLIP TARD behavior. EE GAD MON, I am so glad I am not either of you idiots….and I say FLIP TARD instead or RETARD because it is a peculiar type of retardation that I have only experienced when dealing with native Filipino’s.NEVER anywhere else except MAYBE, No, nowhere else.

        8. @ Jameboy,OK you need an intellectual ass kicking…UR assertion I do not understand Cebauano is incorrect, I SPEAK IT.
          I don’t think your assertion is intellectual. I never specifically talk about ‘Cebuano’. I refer to languange in general.

          Let’s avoid the use of the word ‘intellectual’ to save us from embarrassment. 🙂

        9. @FRED:

          I don’t make assumptions based on what I think; I make assumptions based on what you write. You write something, deny it, then label me as mentally challenged while feeling superior about it. Therefore, I can make the assumption that you haven’t really read the article at all.

          Now if you think that the Filipino language doesn’t sound pleasing to you, then the best thing that you can do is to thoroughly explain why as a counterpoint without letting your ego take over. Otherwise, you’re no better than us “Fliptards” you seem to love to label us as.

  9. I would rather prefer to identify a particular language NOT superior to others but one that connects the majority of our people to better the communication process. For me, no such thing as superior/inferior or a language that carry more or less weight than others. That gives impression of competition.

    All languages are important because it identifies us, where we came from, our roots. Tagalog is not superior with other languages/dialects. But if it will enable the majority of us to communicate and understand each other better, I don’t see any problem with that. 🙂

    1. @ jameboy,I’ll do you one better: I will even list the languages I find pleasing to my ear,in order of preference:

      Classical MUSIC, French,English,Spanish,Sioux(American Indian Dialect).

      in order of displeasing to the ear? SAME :

      Hebrew,Yiddish,Arabic,Eskimo(IDK remember
      what its called but its insufferable to listen to),Portuguese.

        1. NO ITS NOT , it is called personal preference.do you know what that is or are you too busy untying the knot in your panties?

        2. Ya know, I almost forgot about this thread, and I came back to it…and I got a really good laugh out of you two guys, really I did…..at first I got a li’l irritated, then realized what I am dealing with. HA !

      1. I believe you. You got irritated because you painted your self in the corner with those statements. And since there is no way out, you have to convert the irritation to ‘laugher’ even when there is no point in laugh. That’s better than getting personal and call names and insult left and right. .

        1. No no no, flip tard, you got the intellectual ass kicking you asked for, and it was too easy.That is why I laughed at you.

        2. No, no, no…. – Fred.
          Oh yes, you are out of topic already. 🙂

          When you paint your self in the corner, there’s no way out but insult and bullying and harassment.

          Go back on the language issue and be careful painting your self in the corner. 🙂

  10. As mentioned Tagalog is institutionalized as our national language as Filipino! Me being a Tagalog (born and raised in Manila) find it a bit unfair for the Bisya, Ilocano etc.I commend DECS for its mother tongue program used in our schools nowadays! Kids in other regions will be fluent to speak their own regional dialects and English! Lets drop the Taglish idea of becoming a language please…

    1. Language comes natural to humans, and it will, and SHOULD, develop NATURALLY. Since it is the medium by which what is in the mind is concretized, it should aim for something that is true, personal, beautiful and good, something ethereal, if it is to be the servant of the mind. Because today, the world is dominated by business, science and technology, languages have tended towards preciseness, brevity, efficiency, utility, bluntness and blandness. Thus, romantic language could be corny, something classical is being weird, something poetical is a waste of time, etc. But, it doesn’t mean that humans no longer aim for something ethereal; bestseller books, which seem to combine the exigencies of today with that which is true, beautiful and good, are still big business; pop music, with beautiful lyrics that fit well with the beat, are still the ones that top the charts, ..and so on. Humans will always aim for something aesthetically pleasing, something ethereal. A mind that looks for upliftment will always seek the best language, as a good master will always seek the best servant.

      Language is a consumer driven product. You cannot push this product; worse if it is a product concocted by a snobbish academic circle who think they are more Filipino than other Filipinos, and worst if this circle is supported by a political clique who have no interest in being Filipino if it does not support their foreign left leaning ideology, or their pocket. So, only in PH do you find Filipino textbbooks that is totally disjoined from how Filipinos talk. (Other countries pick up catchy colloquial words so that business and technical communications reach a wider audience and wider understanding; PHL does the reverse) We find media personalities like Kris Aquino, who is comfortable with English, but trying to be “baduy” so the massa would love her, bastardizing both English and Tagalog. So, we now have a generation of young girls in K12 and college, tremendously influenced by the supposedly uppity Kris, always talking as if they just came out of a beauty salon, populated by the gay circle of Kris. Oh yes, we also have many macho looking guys who would prefer talking now like gays because that is how to be in or metro. Nothing wrong with gays (if it is natural, same sex attraction is not a sin, the act is the sin), but let us clarify this once and for all, do we want textbooks that is understandable and not just a reflection of an exclusive academic circle, or a language that is developing in the street that seems to be driving a wedge between every class strata in our society?

      And, that is what is wrong with interferring with something that is NATURAL. We had guys that said we need to enforce Pilipino so that the nation could have something we could call our own, as well as having “security” from intelligence snoops on our national secrets. FIne, but calling ‘Central Bank’ “Bangko Sentral” is making something our own; oh my, a snoop would lose his intelligence trying to figure that out, won’t he? Calling a chair “salung-puwet” — well, that is not only our own, but do we have to sacrifice brevity and efficiency to be anatomically descriptive with our words. If that is the direction we take, it might naturally evolve into saluhan ng utot; that would be nice, won’t it? (Already the Tagalog Bible is 60% longer than the English, and so it is a pain in the neck to read it, not to mention what is lost in the translation — is it any wonder why we have a half-baked Catholicism in a country that prides itself as the only Catholic country in Asia. What hubris, but what vacuousness, borrowing Benign0’s favorite word.) But, if you, Pinoy academics, insist, please stop all these guys who count by uno, dos, tres, quatro, cinco….

      Filipino, or Tagalog, as Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Malaysia, are branches of a Malay language. They have not developed because PHL became a colony of Spain and then USA, as Indonesia, of Holland and Malaysia, of UK. But, Tagalog could not have been ancient for in written form it uses the English alphabets, which is also a borrowed one from the North Germanic, Anglo-Saxon, Latin ones. (Thailand which never became a colony ,thus, developed their own written form. China, of course, is very ancient, and thus developed their own with their characters. Japan took up Chinese, and as usual, simplified it to make it accessible to the masses. Korea too simplified Chinese, but came out with a mathematical way of writing that represented sounds.) Spanish (and English) immediately became Lingua Franca in PHL because Tagalog, Waray, Cebuano, Ilonggo, Pampangueño, Ilocano, and what have you, lacked foundations because they were more verbal than written by the time colonizers came. I doubt if it was Pinoy’s adaptability more than a natural process evolving that made us speak the language of our colonizers.

      But, if there was something developing NATURALLY, which had the side benefit of us being the envy of Asia because of our proficiency in English and Spanish, we suddenly found ourselves with academics and lawmakers in the 80s and 90s who dared to interfere with a natural process. Today, we still have people adamant about a national language when they could not even finish their debate whether it should be Filipino or Pikipino.. English, which is also a borrowed language, didn’t evolve by law — it even took centuries to see old English become modern English, and yet, you could have Kiwi, Ozzie, Sing, Nigga, South African, North & South US, Wales, Irish, etc variations to even the modern English. Were our academics afraid that Carabao English would be our national language? Or, would that have been better because that was natural, also funny, than the one evolving now, gay Taglish common among beauty parlor employees. (Maybe, we would have had much more dollars with stand-ups with Carabao English than with OFWs with their irritating beauty salon talk)

      How could one undo a process that came from Lapu-lapu, and then 400 years of Spanish influence (350yr in actual plus 50+ residual effect) and 100+ yrs US influence (with residual effect up to today)?? You are looking at history and centuries, and you want something to come out in 10, or 100, years???. If left alone, some kind of a national language would still evolve because that is nature, but you don’t migrate to a language by immediate change for that cut-offs a good section of the populace from knowledge, which are mostly found in English, Spanish, etc books, literature, etc, and not in Tagalog. I agree with ChinoF in another article that anti-English is anti-Filipino. I say bring back English and Spanish to our schools and media.

      But that is PHL. We have the Lina Law that modified land ownership, which is something natural, and thus, you have the tyranny of squatters. We have the RH Law that was passed because of the MDG US$400 million, and if one has been monitoring the preparation for implementation, you know it is already bound to fail (DOH more interested in tongpats on condom) — I knew there was something unnatural re this law. We have the Epira Law, which had made PHL costliest in energy — it is unnatural for govt to have no stake in a vital industry. We have the CARP Law, that only needs now to be declared officially a failure — all is over in this, but the shouting because there was so ething unnatural about it. We have a seat belt law that can’t be implemented on jeepneys. ……..we have many, many laws that are unimplementable. So, were our academics more interested in the multi-billion profit from Tagalog textbooks –no profit on UN-donated English textbook, eh? Please don’t cover your profit oriented mindset with nationalistic rhetorics for even if we only understand beauty parlor talk, we still know what is corrupt, and what is not, whether in Carabao, or Irish, English.

  11. I don’t think the Spaniards struggled with their issues on language identification the way Filipinos do. Spain has Spanish or Castilian as the nations official language used in education, official communication, commerce and legal transactions. They also have three regional dialects: the Basque, the Catalan and the Galician which are used regionally by natives in those regions.

    In the Philippines, there are three major local dialects used in the islands of Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao and other minor dialects as well. “Tagalog” or a re-branded “Filipino” is the accepted language spoken and written in the five major metro Manila area and nationally like Spanish is to Spain.

    “Official Tagalog” or “Filipino” is not the same as “Regional Tagalog” which is a local dialect native to people in the provinces of Rizal, Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, Laguna and Quezon. I think the confusion is more from a regional standpoint than it is an issue in the language itself.

    Here are examples of “Official Tagalog” vs “Regional Tagalog” in written and spoken form:
    Official Tagalog:
    A. Saan ka “pupunta”? (written – textbook)
    B. Sa’n ka pupunta? (spoken: old school)or
    C. Sa’n lakad? (spoken)
    Notice the difference in the word “saan” in the written and spoken form.

    Regional Tagalog:
    A. Saan ka “paroroon”? (written and spoken)
    Regional Tagalog is not “formal Tagalog”. It is “poetic or matalinhaga”. I noticed that in Philippine media outlets they use
    a mixture of “official Tagalog, regional Tagalog” spiced by a “combo of English and Tagalog”. This however, does not make the English-Tagalog combo a “Taglish” and let me explain why without going back to the history of “Taglish” or the “Sunspeak”.

    Taglish is not a language or a dialect. It is a “lifestyle speak” born out of exclusivity by some wealthy kids from Makati’s private girls school. Taglish spoken by a real “sosyal” is a sound to behold. Spoken by a wannabe, it is annoying. Who ever knew Taglish will survive the test of time.

  12. The “Filipino Language” does not exist materially but only exists in the Philippine Constitution. People who say they can speak Filipino does not know what they are talking about.

    1. Tagalog is beautiful and divisive, and creates barriers among the people who uses it and those who don’t.

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