No to Racism
May 16, 2009 To: Mauricio G. Domogan Representative, Lone District of Baguio City Rm. N-217, House of Representatives, Quezon City Philippines Samuel M. Dangwa Representative, Lone District of Benguet Rm. S-517, House of Representatives, Quezon City Solomon R. Chungalao Representative, Lone District of Ifugao Rm. S-219, House of Representatives, Quezon City Cecilia M. Seares-Luna Representative, Lone District of Abra Rm. S-608, House of Representatives, Quezon City Elias Jr C. Bulut. Representative, Lone District of Apayao Rm. N-111, House of Representatives, Quezon City Manuel S. Agyao Representative, Lone District of Kalinga/ Caretaker-Representative for Mountain Province Rm. N-502, House of Representatives, Quezon City PETITION Respectfully requesting your attention to pass a special law against racism and the accompanying sanctions that go with it with respect to artists, entertainers, movie/TV and station managers, and those in the entertainment industry. On May 9, 2009 during a show at SM Baguio City, actress Candy Pangilinan said, âï¿½ï¿½Tao po ako. Hindi po ako Igorotâï¿½ï¿½ ( I am a human being. I am not an Igorot) =. She said this remark twice. Once, when she walked down the run-way after greeting the audience, and the second time when she appeared on stage. The ethnic slur happened in Baguio City, homeland of a number of Igorot âï¿½ï¿½Ibalois, Igorot âï¿½ï¿½ Kankanaeys, Igorot- i-Montayosa, Igorot âï¿½ï¿½Kalingas, Igorot-Ifugaos, Igorot- Apayaos and Igorot- Tingguians and Igorots i-Abra . Candy Pangilinanâï¿½ï¿½s remark gathered angry and hurt reactions from Igorots and other non-Igorots as well which jammed her blog, http://candiva.multiply.com/, demanding for her public apology. While Ms Pangilinan issued a personal apology in her blog and also a public apology on national TV, SNN, ABS-CBN, and TV Patrol last May 13, we specially forward that the Ms Candy Pangilinanâï¿½ï¿½s act and foregoing consequences, serve as a living reminder for artists to imbibe social responsibility in their chosen career, respect cultural diversities, observe human and collective rights of peoples, sustain the molding of relevant Filipino and sound cultural values while maintaining artistic freedom and expression. The relatively same incident happened in1999 when actress Lucy Torres- Gomez said to another character in an ABS-CBN show, âï¿½ï¿½Ang pangit mo naman, Igorot siguro parents moâï¿½ï¿½ (Youâï¿½ï¿½re so ugly, maybe your parents are Igorots). Pangilinanâï¿½ï¿½s statement was a manifestation of racism where she strongly implied that Igorots are not human beings and that she is human. Similarly, in Torresâï¿½ï¿½ remark, obviously said that Igorots as a people are ugly- looking, thus implying that non-Igorots are good looking. The attitude of superiority is very evident over a tribe which is made inferior. Espousing racial slurs breed hostile and/or uncomfortable environment where one is made to feel inferior while the other is superior. And with this, such would not be a healthy community to live in as it eats away the sense and the right of equality among humans. And while this continues, propagated by some artists in Philippine cinema, ethnic bias will alarmingly disrupt good community relationships between and among anyone regardless of race, ethnicity and color. We, signatories to this petition, members of the Igorot ethnolinguistic tribe who come from different parts of the Cordillera region, are one among a number of Philippine ethno-linguistic tribes, who have distinct and diverse culture which commands respect . We enjoin other non-Cordillerans as well to join this petition. Considering the above, we seek your appropriate action to this petition, particularly in the passage of a special law to curb racism, in your continued role to promote camaraderie among all Filipinos, uphold human rights and peopleâï¿½ï¿½s cultural rights as well, promote good Filipino values, preserve cultural heritage, while upholding freedom of expression.