Kakie Pangilinan used to be a revered social media star of wokedom. She was a “hero” who championed the “cause” of “victim blaming”. She launched the hashtag “HijaAko” after she felt offended when referred to as hija (Spanish for female child) — a common term used by elder Filipinos when addressing young women.
Pangilinan was flying high on social media; that is, until her mother Sharon Cuneta (a.k.a. The Megastar) proved to be the weakest link in her “fight”. As any seasoned activist already knows, advocacy requires a sizeable audience to be effective. For Pangilinan, famous for being the daughter of The Megastar first before dabbling in woke “activism”, amassing an audience comes easy. One could even say, she likely feels entitled to that audience. That’s through no fault of hers, of course, having been born to a showbiz family. Nonetheless, even the lamest utterance or tweet becomes gospel when one is a celebrity. That’s just how it is.
Unfortunately, Pangilinan failed to realise that with great influence comes a great number of detractors in equal measure. For a girl raised on a daily diet of constant chi chi validation, detractors very likely come across as a shock to the system to her. To be fair, Pangilinan is quite the tough cookie seeing the steely nerves she exhibited going up against geezers like veteran broadcast journalist Ben Tulfo.
The chink in Pangilinan’s armour, as it turns out, is her melodramatic mother. Recall how her mommy Shawie went on a rampage calling on her friends in high places to join in a manhunt for the person she alleges threatened her daughter online. The ensuing brouhaha was seemingly enough to prompt Pangilinan to “take the break” from social media presumably to dissipate the heat she had brought onto her family.
hi my loves, i was initially just going to take the break but i figured i’d lyk first in case my silence is odd. i’ll be keeping my distance from social media as much as possible while still occasionally helping spread awareness for things that matter. hope u understand & ilysm.
— tw: kakie (@kakiep83) July 1, 2020
Considering the wokeness of Pangilinan’s activism, it certainly does not help being in mommy’s shadow. Mommy Megastar has been having a bad couple of weeks, first with that circus surrounding her daughter’s alleged online rape threat and, recently, another one surrounding her bragging about her Rolex watch claiming that “Good people are blessed – and not just with Rolexes!” This is not a good look for a would-be woke activist like Kakie. It raises questions around how the Cunetas came to be rich in the first place considering Cuneta’s dad (Pangilinan’s grandfather) was Mayor of Pasay City supposedly living off a public servant’s salary. Indeed, Pablo Cuneta holds the record for the longest-serving mayor in Philippine history and was one of those quintessential “father figure” politicians (cut from the same mold as Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte himself among others). He loomed large over the city he ruled with a few brief interruptions over four decades and was said to have sired some twenty children by over a dozen mothers (Muthiah Alagappa, Political Legitimacy in Southeast Asia: The Quest for Moral Authority). Cuneta was one of the originals of the Philippines’ fabled “gangster-politicos”.
Why then would a scion of such a dark clan bask in the embrace of the “woke” liberal Opposition crowd while others such as the Marcoses and Singsons of Ilocos, the Revillas and Remullas of Cavite, and, of course, the Dutertes of Davao, among others, be routinely demonised as “tyrants” and “oligarchs”? Well, it helps having the one and only — The Megastar — as your mother. That’s all there is to it. While others work hard to make a name for themselves for their ideas, Kakie Pangilinan is a famous name that suddenly grew some quaint ideas. Unfortunately for her, her name comes with a lot of baggage.
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