How is it January 30 already? That is insane. For my last post of the month, it’s going to get messy. This post will approach three issues, Miss Universe, the Muslim Ban, and Nazi violence. You have been warned.
It seems trivial to hold a coronation of the Miss Universe beauty pageant on a day when the rest of the world is hanging by a thread. The Philippines is considered one of the biggest supporters of the competition. It was even reinforced when our very own Pia Wurtzbach won for 2015 as the 64th Miss Universe. Personally, I am a fan, because she holds her own very well. She knows her shit, and you can tell she worked hard for it. Now for this year (well, 2016), our Miss Universe is Maxine Medina. I don’t particularly like her. Having said that, I don’t mean to be unpatriotic (btw Patriotism is not interchangeable with Nationalism, will link some sites below), but I don’t believe in blind support. It seems fair to root for her because in that moment, she isn’t Maxine, she’s Miss Philippines, and that’s exactly why I didn’t like her. I didn’t think she was able to properly represent my nation. She had the bare necessities: the looks, the clothes, and the name. But is that as far as a beauty pageant goes?
Unlike most Filipinos, I don’t really go out of my way to know about Miss Universe. As much as they espouse the “empowered woman” ideal, they still have a swimsuit competition. They still have a body size standard, despite the noise they made about Miss Canada this year. It was (is?) connected to Donald Trump. They have a long way to go.
Speaking of Donald Trump, I don’t know how much you follow politics, but I do. Casually. I try to distance myself from it because it’s not good for my mental health and stability, but as a human person, I kind of have a vested interest in humankind. So I make it a habit to know about things, especially considering I majored in History, and I have a responsibility to at least be able to chronicle the things that occurred in the time I existed. And so far, it’s been a pretty shitty existence, thanks to Donald Trump. Granted, I’m safely tucked away in beloved Philippines, and I haven’t (yet) felt the brunt of the cruelty and apathy that is the new US President. Nor do I have every right to complain, since I haven’t ever been to America, and would not know what they need or deserve. But from what I can see here in my little nook of the planet, it’s not at all good.
I have relatives in the US, and some of them support Trump. I know of one uncle, and maybe my aunt and her boyfriend, that don’t like Trump, but was not necessarily for Hillary. Again, from a distance, I kind of liked Bernie Sanders. But I also voted for the late, amazing, Miriam Defensor-Santiago. So I guess I always vie for the good underdogs. Anyway, I’ve been very “vocal” on my Facebook to get the attention of those relatives, just to show them the hypocrisy and the cruelty they have consented to by voting for a man who calls himself a business man, but can’t even justify his savvy. He’s just rich, and you know what rich people are good at? Getting money. Money is not what America needs. It isn’t what the world needs. This is coming from a girl who has had just enough money growing up. I’m sure someone lower than my station will not share my sentiments, but money is not the answer.
Aside from the greed, there’s also the ignorance and the indifference. How can someone such be a president of a nation, a leading nation in the world, no less? And we can argue day in, day out, he did not win with the popular vote. He won the electoral college which is an unfair and archaic practice. We used the same voting system for our History Society in college, and it would have been shitty if there were actually any candidates. But no, unfair and archaic is the theme of the west, the so-called New World. These are the moments that make me wonder why I majored in history, and if it is indeed accurate to say that “history repeats itself”. I don’t believe so, but I guess when ignorance and indifference is in play, it’s inevitable to commit the same damn mistakes. And what we get from all those combined is a Muslim Ban.
It isn’t completely farfetched, considering he’s been spouting hate speech about Pres. Obama being Muslim for a long while, that Trump is xenophobic (and racist). How difficult is it to reach out to the Muslim community, have a conversation, and come up with a better way to address the extremist, terrorist threat, rather than banning Muslims indiscriminately (no pun intended)? He’s rich as fuck, you would think that it would be damned easy to look for the nearest person that practices Islam. Instead he complicates things by barring innocent peoples’ entrance to the country, and to most of them, their country. How can his supporters not realize the ineptitude of their candidate? Are they really that heartless? Or are the ignorant and indifferent as well?
Which then directs me to Nazi violence, by and to. Posts on twitter and tumblr have been talking about people claiming to having been harassed after being called racist, homophobic, xenophobic, and Nazis. They have the audacity to be insulted after their ignorant stances? Has society been lacking in terms of education to the sort of brutality that happened in the past? Need we more reminders? I don’t think Hollywood fails to do at least one film about World War 1/2, the Holocaust, the Civil War, or slavery? They even need to do more films about native Americans. In fact, they should prioritize such movies, because not only do they reinforce the “belief” of America as an immigrant country, but actually tells the story of America. But no, why would they make films that prove the racists wrong? They dare ban people and shun refugees from religious persecution when the majority of white people left England to avoid conversion to the Church of England, and the Jews that were lucky enough to gain passage to America, thereby escaping from the threat of Hitler and his conspirators. Is this too easily forgotten? It happened not a hundred years ago. Are we so forgetful? So you’ll forgive me if I permit, nay encourage, punching Nazis. They deserve it and worse, because I don’t think we’ve deprived the information necessary to let them know better.
Celebrating a new Miss Universe today seemed frivolous when so many people are being deprived of their homes, their citizenship, and their rights. But maybe an intelligent, capable, compassionate, and kind woman like Ms. Iris Mittenaere can help make the world a better, brighter place, no matter how little. You would think that with all the new inventions and developments in technology nowadays, it would be easy to do the logical thing, but sadly corruption still reigns aplenty. We should probably do something about that. Resist, my friends. Shout loud, shout proud.
External links for perusal: