Wrong Ideas about Filipino Nationalism

Being nationalistic is about what’s in the heart and what you do for the country.

The following are wrong factors in determining of how a Filipino is really Filipino.

1. Should speak tagalog. Did you know that Filipino-foreigners in the Philippine Football Team are more passionate and willing to sacrifice more than their team mates who were born in the Philippines? Some don’t speak a single tagalog word.

I could not speak straight and flowing tagalog, but i have done more good for the Philippines than you who is good in tagalog.

2. Should patronize Filipino products. I practically don’t like Filipino movies. The only Filipino movie worth every penny is Confessional, it’s an indie.  I worked hard for my money, so I should look for quality.

3. Should work and live only in the Philippines. Don’t condemn others who work their butts off abroad to send money at home.

4. Should have a dark brown skin. There was a discussion in a famous Philippine online forum about urging Jaime Zobel Ayala to run for president in the 2010 Philippine election. A few “true Filipinos” retorted that the Ayalas does not look like Filipinos because they are “white” and JAZA is not fit to run for president. Those ignorant Filipinos have no idea about the Ayalas’ philanthropy works in the Philippines.

I quote Beatriz Ayala:

“Anything that will be good for the Philippines I will be interested in. Like an opportunity like this, you will see me in it.”


  1. This is actually a very interesting topic. I agree with all three, but I think you can expound on it a little bit more. I can think of a couple more wrong ideas to add to that, but I think I’m inspired to write something like this on my own blog.

  2. Hi Gerry,

    I agree with you as well, i could add more ideas and more explanations. It’s just that i wrote them at 1am, just out of the blue, i need to burst out what i feel for a long time.

  3. i tried my best to speak tagalog, i can’t even put po or ho in the right order. people from luzon laughed at me, mad fun at me. but i don’t give a rat’s ass about them now. they were only there to make me feel horrible about myself. oh i speak fluent english, so they might want to condemn me to death too.

  4. I live abroad and I speak both english and cebuano to my family. When we met up with a filipino community they were made up mostly of people who are tagalog speakers. Now, I don’t like to discriminate or judge them, but when my mum mentioned to this one family that we were visayans one of them looked at us as if we’re different weird or something.
    Then when they ask me how come I’m always saying things in english and not tagalog and then I replied I just can’t express to them conversationally that way even if I understand the dialect, and then one of them started lecturing me that I should never forget my filipino tongue or my filipinoness. Well, there you go, there are proud people like that even among our own kind.
    I remember even this famous guy, Carlos P. Romulo, who even declared in his book that the Igorots are not filipinos, even if now, they assimiliated well with the rest of us lot. I’m sick of these particular people who have this misplaced sense of pride. Hello, Manny Pacquiao is not even a native tagalog speaker, and yet even people parade him proudly and loudly that he’s a true filipino. I would also like to add to that list that just because one of us isn’t catholic or belonging to any christian denomination doesn’t make us less filipino ie. muslim filipinos. Sometimes, guiltily, I’d rather say to people around me that I’m a proud visayan than a filipino, because everytime we met up with this community, they’re always emphasising me ideas that to be a filipino you got to speak tagalog and even yes, say things ‘po’ or ‘opo’, which to me are just characteristic of them as people of luzon. I don’t remember any visayan saying those words even among our own elders. They need to recognise that we are a multiethnic nation with hundreds of dialects and subcultures and even have our own little histories, and the only uniting tongue among us I believe, is not tagalog, but english and I am frustrated that such people even try to lump the rest of us as just from the ‘provinces’ like we’re backward or something. Well, I’m filipino and that’s it, and I don’t have to elaborate whatever bullshit is there to become a ‘true blue’ pinoy.

    1. winona, thanks for sharing your experience here. Though, let’s try to control ourselves by not stereotyping those from Luzon.

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