Quantcast

Gut Feel

‘Tagalugin ’nyo,’ please

By |

I fretted much when I learned that Sen. Lito Lapid agonized and hesitated over interpellating pro-birth control bill (RH) senators because his poor English might result in his disastrous performance. He’d rather, methinks, shoot bandits in his cowboy movies.

Harboring an inferiority complex in using one’s own native tongue in a public forum is totally absurd and baseless.

I’m a hard-boiled apostle of using Tagalog when talking to our kapwa masang Pilipino. While still creating advertising in my former job, all our ad campaigns conceived in Filipino and spoken in Filipino were sure-fire home runs in the market place. The best example was Jollibee’s Langhap-Sarap.

How thrilled I was, then, when finally Senator Lapid summoned the nerve, at lakas-loob siyang nakipag-debate tungkol sa kontrobersya ng birth contol (RH) bill.

Tinagalog niya! Sa maliwanag at tumataginting na Tagalog ay naisiwalat ni Senador Lapid ang panganib sa kalusugan na naranasan ng kanyang asawa’t sanggol nang dapuan ang mga ito ng sakit at sakuna dahil sa side effects ng contraceptive pills. Ang dating haka-hakang harmful side effects ay totoo pala sa karanasan ni Senator Lapid. Nagkaanak siya ng isang blue baby at ito’y namatay. The senator was visceral!

Good instinct

The other male macho na anti-birth control bill ay si Representative at boksingerong kampeon, Manny Pacquiao. Maliwanag rin siyang nagpahayag ng kanyang paninindigan. Tinagalog din niya! Ang contraception pill at abortifacient ay mali. Ayon kay Manny, ipinagbabawal ng Diyos ang pumatay at inutos rin nito ang magparami ng lahi.  Mali ang birth control bill kasi labag sa utos ng Diyos. Ito’y maliwanag kay Manny. The pugilist got good instinct.

Last month, this newspaper (Sept. 11 issue, p. A15) ran a discussion on the value of Filipino language usage. The big headline asked: “Is Filipino for stupid people?” This inutile topic was triggered by an article by an Ateneo student who claimed that Filipino is the language of the street (useful only for talking to drivers, maids, vendors and promdi cousins), while English is the language of learning and privilege.

What hogwash! This sophomoric Jesuit-bred kiddo misses the whole point of Filipino bilingualism, an acquired Filipino skill unique in Asia.

In the same page and issue, Benjamin Pimentel, a journalist expat in California, wrote an article entitled “How my sons lost their Tagalog,” which told the story of how his sons lost their Tagalog while growing up in California, but were trying to recover it urgently. When they visited the Philippines, the desire to speak in Filipino became a primordial need.

The power of language lies in its sound, its intimacy, and its immediacy. It’s those sounds that come from the vocal cords that concretize thoughts and feelings. The creation of words springs forth from the inborn creativity of our prehistoric ancestors living in caves thousands of years ago. They started emitting grunts and growls, then they formed syllables, combined syllables into words, then words into sentences.

Then they systematized their language with grammar. Style followed later, allowing them to create poems and write stories.

Every race and nation evolve their own language, which becomes the trademark of their distinctiveness, their unity, and their pride as a people.

Language is never used as a bias for class or status. Its main function is to express thoughts and feelings from person to person, assembly to assembly, citizen to citizen.

Language has its own originality, its own spirituality, its own graciousness, its own passion, its own sanctity, its own madness.

Sweet longings

William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet,” and Francisco Balagtas’ “Florante at Laura,” project the same vivacious imagery, echoing the same sweet longings.

Nonoy Gallardo’s “Tuliro,” and Elton John’s “Candle in the Wind,” elicit the same love metaphors that can melt the coldest of hearts.

There’s absolutely no racial distinction, when any language is spoken, when it comes to raising hopes, chasing dreams, pursuing truths.

Kaya, Lapid and  Pacquiao, Tagalugin ’nyo pa. Snob them ingliseras at ingliseros. ’Pag Tagalog ang salita ’nyo, you are in your element.

Pag nagta-Tagalog kayo, I’m seized with nostalgia. Nagugunita ko tuloy ang mga yumao nating mambabatas whose eloquence in Filipino resonated through the halls of congress, the way Cicero’s orations in the Roman senate mesmerized the entire gallery.

I remember Sen. Francisco “Soc” Rodrigo, with his impeccable Bulakeño discourses; Sen. Wenceslao Lagumbay’s Tagalog talumpati, makata-style, complete with rhyming couplet; and Gov. Felicing San Luis of Laguna, a brilliant Tagalista whose choice of words, clarity and logic was incredibly Aristotelian.

And of course, the guru of ward politics, the inscrutable party boss, senate president, Eugelio “Amang” Rodriguez, who made American jaws drop as he mangled proper American English, by talking with impunity, in his hilarious Carabao English.

That’s Pinoy hubris, my friend.

E-mail hgordonez@gmail.com.


Follow Us




Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_CPRRJALG4QBEIWABVXAVSY4QRU kirsty m

    ANG AKING MASASABI LAMANG AY SI SEN. LAPID AT MANNY P. AY MISGUIDED SA MGA FACTS NA KANILANG NA-GATHER DAHIL WALANG KINALAMAN ANG BIRTH CONTROL PILLS SA DEVELOPMENT NG FETUS. DISCUSSIONS LIKE THIS ONE IS MAINLY ENTERTAINED IN 3RD WORLD COUNTRIES WHERE THE LEADER THEMSELVES LACK THE KNOWLEDGE OR HAVE NOT RESEARCHED PUBLISHED MEDICAL ARTICLES TO SUPPORT THEIR CLAIM. NAPAKALUNGKOT ISIPIN NA MASYADONG MABABA ANG PINAG-ARALAN NG MGA LEADERS SA PILIPINAS NGAYUN KAHIT NA PO ANG PRESIDENTE NA WALANG EXPERIENCE SA PAGPAPATAKBO NG GOBYERNO. SALAMAT NA LANG S MGA ADVISERS NA ME NATAPOS. SULIT ANG BAYAD SA INYO.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NPGULSQTUEHUOXBIJ64I5WF2EU Lawrence_ Patola

      Alam mo, Kirsty M, dito sa aming 3rd World na bansang Pilipinas, iginagalang namin ang opinyon ng bawat isa. Ako, pro-RH ako, pero pinapakinggan ko ang mga sinasabi ng mga anti-RH. Kahit na mababa, halimbawa, ang kanilang pinag-aralan di malayong may punto rin silang dapat igalang. Tingnan mo si Steve Jobs dyan sa bansa nyo, one semester lang sa college pero ang tindi ng kontribusyon sa lipunan. Para sa aming mga Filipino, malaki ang nai-ambag ni Pacquiao sa larangan ng palakasan, at ni Lito Lapid sa larangan ng entertainment at pelikula. Kaya dapat ding pahalagahan ng paggalang ang kanilang kontribusyon sa lipunan. Eh, ikaw? Ano ang nagawa mo para alipustain kami pati na ang aming presidente? Nagtapos ka ba ng kolehiyo?  Si Noynoy sa Ateneo, ikaw saan? Anong trabaho mo dyan sa Amerika? Senador ka ba? Hindi pala, eh bakit ang yabang mo?!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_CPRRJALG4QBEIWABVXAVSY4QRU kirsty m

    TO TITO SOTO, LITO LAPID AND MANNY P…STOP DISAGREEING WITH THE PROPOSED BILL. DI NYO NAMAN KAYANG PAKAININ ANG BUONG PILIPINAS KAYA WAG NA KAYONG UMENTRA DAHIL PAMPAHABA LANG NG GASTOS ANG MGA DRAMA NYO. MAG-ARAL MUNA KAYO AT MAG-RESEARCH DAHIL NAKAKATAWA TALAGA ANG MGA ARGUMENTS NYO AGAINTS THE RH BILL. SA TOTOO LANG, NAKAKAHIYA TALAGA AND VERY EMBARRASSING KAYO SA ABROAD. PINAGTATAWANAN TULOY ANG MGA PINOY D2 SA AMERICA DAHIL SA MGA LIDER NA KATULAD NYO.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FGYQJQNYHCOAIHTHR4ZDRWTB6M ROLITO CUPINO

      Siguro ang nagtatawa sa mga Pinoy na kagaya nina Sen. Lito Lapid at Congressman Manny Pacquiao ay mga kapwa Pinoy din na nariyan sa Amerika, not the Americans themselves. Ang ibang Pinoy na nakarating at namuhay ng matagal diyan sa Amerika, pag umuwi dito Amerikanong Amerikano na sa kilos at pananalita but the color of their skin cannot deny the race they belong to: pango ang ilong pa rin. Mas nakakahiya kayo.

  • Anonymous

    Pacquiao actually is not a Tagalog speaker, he’s Visasyan

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LYF57PK2VCSWY2FI7BSQZTUABA lola basyang

    kirsty, iha: medyo off-topic ka yata. parang wala sa timing ang pasok at pagsingit mo sa discussion. medyo hindi magandang halimbawa sa kung anong uri ng mga tagasuporta meron ang RH Bill.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PVEBGA4OHWDHFFQ2H6W7QVENBQ owenkenobi

    ok lang sana yung interpellation ba yun na ginawa ni Sen. Lapid….kaya lang siguro, we need facts, data & evidences, not the rumblings of one man, na dun agad in-a-attribute yung pagkakaroon ng blue baby ng anak n’ya. Facts & data are what is needed to make a meaningful debate…wala akong pakialam kung Tagalog man o Ingles ang gamitin n’ya, basta maayos, may direksyon at may punto yung debate n’ya. Eh parang wala eh. Sabi nga ng Japanese boss ko dati, sa mga meeting: “If you don’t have data, shut-up!”

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_O6ZCMBI4NXYLOZBE2C2FROV4J4 Solar W

    Tama itong sanaysay

    Isa sa pagkakakilanlan(identity) ng pilipino ay yun kina ugatan wika kasi pano ka paniniwalaan at makaka lutas ng mabigat na problema kung ikaw mismo hindi mo alam o pagtanggi kung saan ka galing at sino kausap mo.

    Ang wika ay nag dudulot ng pagkalito pag hindi ginagamit ng ma ayos o sa dapat na madla, maliwanag na ito sa ng yayari sa mga politician ng pilipinas at karamihan sa pinoy. Nakaka lito sila kasi hindi nila alam kung sino madla nila.

    Hinahanap ng tao ang katapatan, hindi pano mag pa sikat. Pinupuna ko na mga kakilala ko simula sa pamilya ko tungkol dito. Para sakin at kung ako sa inyo mas paniniwalaan ko ang isang pilipino na alam nya ang sarili niyang wika isa sa mga senyas ito ng katapatan.

    —————————–

    This is my statement about english: It is not my language, It is not who I am,  and I am not proud in knowing english. Doing the opposite above will result in alienation and foreign things that says you dont belong.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_A5UYAQT4KXTWWTV6DMXMZRPIMA Thomas Tandan

    ‘tagalogin’ this word is right instead of ‘filipinohin’ Be informed that Florante at Laura was originally written in Spanish and why are you praising ‘tagalog’ in English?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_O6ZCMBI4NXYLOZBE2C2FROV4J4 Solar W

      “‘tagalogin’ this word is right instead of ‘filipinohin’ Be informed that Florante at Laura was originally written in Spanish and why are you praising ‘tagalog’ in English?”  <——— Siguraduhin mo muna to sa kano para alam namin original tong english mo.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_4VU7IP3E3XT3KGCQVNFNSE5Y3A blas j

    Kailan kaya tayo muling makapaghahalal ng isang katulad ni Sen. Soc Rodrigo sa Senado? Mukhang malabo na…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_BNA6FLOA3ZJAH6IFP2KGLUDCXE bcon

    How can we turn our backs on English when sending Filipinos abroad is our biggest dollar earner. As a matter of fact, this is the biggest advantage pinoys have over other asian migrant workers – our working knowledge of the English language. Siguro ‘pag hindi na kailangang mag abroad ng pinoy to have better salaries, when it is no longer the dream of every student to go abroad to be able to help his/her family, then we can leave English to the snobbish, but right now, I think it is a necessity for the youth.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_O6ZCMBI4NXYLOZBE2C2FROV4J4 Solar W

      Sino maniniwala sayo?

      “advantage pinoys have over other asian migrant workers” <— Bakit ka gusto mag abroad kung advance ang pilipinas, sarili mo nga hindi na niniwala sa iyo.



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
Marketplace