Practically all the issues that contribute to the intractable weakness of the Philippine nation are not one-administration outcomes. They all date back in one form or another to inherent qualities of Philippine society that evolved over several centuries. Indeed, it so happens that the circus of the moment — the brouhaha surrounding an ad by GlutaMAX suggesting that the way to combat an “unfair” deference to people with fairer skin is to use skin whitening products — illustrates the brain-dead way Filipinos deal with reality. In response to a massive stink raised with “activist” snowflakes outraged by the ad, GlutaMAX released a statement asserting that “everyone is entitled to choose what empowers them” citing the inconvenient truth that “biases continue to be held by society and Filipinos experience it firsthand”.
In essence, the technological solution to the problem of skin colour bias in Philippine society is being denied a voice by “activists” who uphold the ascendancy of what they believe society ought to be.
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The snowflakes who are quick to take offense need to decide what to believe in. On one hand they would defend the use of surgical solutions to “empower” people with personal issues surrounding the gender they were born into. And, on another, as we see in this recent circus, they would slam a similar technology that seeks to empower consumers who make a personal choice to employ it. The challenge to Filipino “activists” is to answer the common-denominator question here:
What is the difference between a person who wants to change sex and a person who wants to change skin colour?
For that matter, this challenge extends to the way these same cliques of “activists” now demonise the outcome of the very “democracy” they signed up to in 1987. The numbers continue to point out that Filipinos have made a personal choice to opt for the Duterte Way. In response to that reality the Opposition have gone down the ill-thought-out path of telling their constituents that this choice is wrong.
But, just like the free market, the dynamics of the free political landscape of a democracy makes no judgement as to what is “right” or “wrong”. In much the same way as thinking evolves in a competitive environment, outcomes, too, evolve as the collective will matures. The Opposition, in effect, have failed to compete in the very free landscape they supposedly “fight” to uphold.
The same question could therefore be asked:
What is the difference between voters who choose Duterte and voters who choose, say, the Otso Diretso Opposition coalition?
The Opposition’s flawed answer to that question is what is dooming their bid for control over Congress today.
Less than a month in the lead up to this year’s mid-term elections and beyond the tired old election rhetoric of freedom-vs-tyranny and poor-vs-rich, and, ultimately, good-vs-evil, there is not much that actually addresses the core problem of the Philippines — its being a fundamentally weak nation. This, in reality, has nothing to do with any sort of “good” or “evil” at work and is just an outcome of bad decisions arising from sloppy thinking. As such, the manner with which politicians and partisans have turned national issues into campaign fodder is lame at best. The Opposition, for their part, are hobbled by a stubborn loyalty to obsolete Cold War narratives.
To punctuate the hypocrisy of the Opposition and its cadre of snowflake activists one only need recall their lame attempt at re-branding by changing their partisan colours. It is a clear response to a powerful bias against the Yellow brand of yore that had evolved over several decades of broken promises made following the so-called “revolution” of 1986. Yellow is the colour of a way of life and way of thinking ingrained in all “freedom-loving” Filipinos we were told ad nauseum for almost 40 years. If partisans loyal to this thinking truly believed in it, they would not be ditching the Yellow brand today in much the same way that they preach embracing one’s true skin colour (or one’s “chosen” gender”). A single Tagalog word encapsulates where the Yellowtards failed: panindigan. Small surprise they suffer the untenable crisis of credibility that is, again, losing them an entire nation in this year’s election. A snowflake camp who cannot stay true to their own partisan colours have, in essence, lost all ascendancy to preach the embrace of one’s own natural skin colour.
To be fair, the incumbent administration of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte remains boxed into the successful campaign rhetoric that won him the presidency in 2016. However, this rhetoric is, itself, fraying at the edges. The Yellowtards have evidently failed to capitalise on this opportunity and the numbers are showing it.
Partisans on both sides need to step further back from the lame National “Debate” of their own making and ask the right questions. What do Filipino voters really want? They could start by understanding the excellent marketing campaigns that launch and sustain wildly-successful consumer products as big companies like GlutaMAX demonstrate. Filipinos want to be empowered, and they, as the GlutaMAX assert are entitled to choose what empowers them.
benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.