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At the mention of the word „Philippines“, what do foreigners think of? Chances are, they wouldn‘t know where the country is. They wouldn‘t know that we are friendly, hospitable, musical and great to be with, unless they have been to the country already and have met some fun-loving Filipinos. Most are not aware that we have beautiful beaches, golden sunsets, spectacular corral reefs and delightfully daring cuisine.
Sad, but true, there have been unfavorable pictures about the Philippines being painted in the minds of foreigners. Inspite of such negative headlines about the Philippines, have we tried to manifest national pride in our lives? Some contend, how can we be proud of our country and people, when there is nothing to be proud of?
When are we proud to be Filipinos? Indeed, we feel proud, when a „Pinoy“ excels in the global arena. We are jubilant every time one of our beauty queens wins an international title. We hunger for laurels and look for reasons to be proud of. We enjoy basking in the reflected glory of successful people even if they all have is a distant affiliation with the Philippines.
I have met a lot of of „kababayans“ abroad who claim the nationalities of their host countries. They preferred to be called Austrians. They take almost any nationality except Filipino. The main reason for this is our lack of national pride, the lack of something to be proud of as a country.
As we commemorate our 113th Philippine Independence, let us try to awaken in us this national pride—Dapat ay itaguyod natin and ating pagka-Pilipino! Happy Independence Day to all!
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Mag. Hector Pascua