I’m Filipino, so why should I care about Trump?

It’s official, after having a black president for eight years, the United States is going backwards by voting a racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamophobic Oompa-Loompa as his successor.

Damn, USA, what is this about?

That being said, I am an ocean away from that country, and I could tell them they could have their orange dude be president, I couldn’t care less. But the thing is, I could care less… but I won’t. The POTUS is not just the leader of their country, he is the leader of the free world, because for all intents and purposes, most of the world seems to believe that the US is the greatest country there is.

I get this question from a lot of apathetic people:

You’re not even in the United States, so why should you care about Trump being President?

If you’re asking this with condescension, then take a seat and ask yourself if you’re being a little shit.

First,

We have a lot of OFWs in the US. Many of them undocumented. What will happen to them and their families who are relying on them for survival here in the Philippines? Nevermind the ones already there, what about the ones who are still in the process of seeking greener pastures (ie nurses and caretakers, etc)?

Second,

The USA is a major player in the global economy. While Clinton, as a Democrat, have relatively the same trade and foreign policies as Obama, Trump’s agenda, which is fueled by hatred, homophobia, Islamophobia, racism, and sexism, among others, will paint a vastly different landscape.

Third,

At this point in time, we still rely heavily on the US to help build up our economy: therefore the millions of Filipinos getting their livelihood from US-owned call centers and companies. Return to my second point.

Fourth,

Filipinos may want to take what’s theirs, but come on, let us be honest, the things we have are thanks to the relationship we have with the US, and that includes your iPhone and iPad that you can’t seem to go without, to begin with.

Fifth,

The Paris Agreement. The United States is among the biggest contributors of carbon emissions, and in a world that is fighting for our planet’s survival, we need all governments in all countries around the planet to work. Trump believes Climate Change is a hoax and will do nothing to help protect the environment unless it works to his advantage.

Should I go on or are these points enough to start rethinking your apathy?

Today, I am Ashamed of My Country

On November 8, 2016, the Supreme Court of the Philippines allowed the burial of Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani — our Heroes’ Cemetery.

Today, the Supreme Court announced that they are allowing a thief and dictator to have his remains moved to a sacred place for our heroes. This man, who ordered to torture thousands. Who took violation of human rights to great heights. Whose greed caused unspeakable suffering to the citizens he has sworn to lead.

This man, who was comparable to Hitler in the crimes he committed against his fellowmen, is most likely going to be buried with the heroes who fought with blood, sweat, and tears, to protect the same people he abused and tortured.

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Today, I am ashamed of the decision of the Supreme Court. Marcos is no hero. Yes, he was a member of the Armed Forces. He was a soldier. A legislator. A president. But he died a thief. He died a human rights violator. He died a man banished from his own country because of the crimes he committed against it — and he wasn’t even sorry for his actions.

Our Supreme Court failed us. But let us never forget the pages in our history that this man stained. Today, the Philippines lost a battle, but we can still win this war by not allowing his atrocities to be erased from our books. Let us tell our children and grandchildren about the atrocities that this so-called “hero” committed. We should never forget.

Ferdinand Marcos is NOT a hero. He never was. He never will be.

To the victims of the Martial Law, and the families that suffered with them, I am very sorry for this political circus. You deserve more than this. I will stand by you when we say Never Again. #MarcosNOTaHero

 

Now, If That IG Feature Could Get Worldwide Faster…

Now that my blog has quieted down after that Karaoke fiasco last week, I can go back to blogging things that I do care about: as it has always been with this blog, my main cause is to support mental health awareness and hopefully, find ways to lessen that stigma associated with it.

Fact: The World Health Organization estimates that 350 million people of all ages suffer from depression at any given time, so it’s likely that anyone from your own circle of friends and family could be suffering from it.

Fact: Depression is a leading cause of disability worldwide — and contributes to a lot of global burdens.

Fact: More women are affected by this disease than men, but it is equally jarring for both genders. At its worst, depression can lead to death and suicide.

Enter Instagram

As it is one of the biggest social media platforms in the world, Instagram is doing its share to lessen the stigma and help those who are dealing not only with depression, but with mental illness in general.

A new feature from the app allows users to flag a photo when they think tht someone needs help. Once a photo is flagged, the person who posted it will receive a message that reads:

Someone saw one of your posts and thinks you might be going through a difficult time. If you need support, we’d like to help.

The list is followed by a list of available resources, along with a helpline as a way for the company to make a difference for those struggling with mental illnesses.

Instagram

Instagram is also working with other organizations to create helpful, non-invasive messages for those who are suffering from mental illness. Chief Operating Officer Marne Levine told Seventeen magazine, “We listen to mental health experts when they tell us that outreach from a loved one can make a real difference for those who may be in distress. At the same time, we understand friends and family often want to offer support but don’t know how best to reach out.”

Levine also added that the tools are designed to let people know that they are surrounded by a community that cares about them, especially when they need reminders the most.

Safe Space

The latest feature is the latest that the app released to keep the platform safe in the otherwise toxic cyberspace. Users are also able to filter comments or turn them off, and images that involves self-injury in any way has no room in the app. Even search terms like “self-harm” and “thigh gap” and “thinspiration” have been banned in an effort to keep Instagram as safe as possible.

The new safety feature is currently rolling and right now, it’s only available in the United States. However, multiple reports say that it will expand globally soon. I hope soon is soon enough.

Innocent Souls

We are at war, telling ourselves
“It’s for the greater good.”
So we leave children orphaned
Calloused and broken.
We continue fighting these wars
Saying it’s for a better world

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But we rob these little hearts
Of their starry eyes
Curious minds
And innocent souls.
Still, we tell ourselves it’s okay.
A war is a war, let’s deal with it.

Funny, because we never were
In their little shoes.
But it’s okay, it is a war
Let’s let these children grow up
Way too much before their time.
Because a war is a war.

And they’re collateral damage
Let’s just win against the terrorists
And communists and opposing opinions.
Let’s worry about these children
Some other time – tomorrow, maybe.
What monsters have we become?