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Mark Berkowitz

The Filipino View of ‘Real Americans’

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Filipinos have told me that I’m not a ‘real American,’ especially when I went for my first NBI clearance, where I was first told that I don’t have an American surname (and then they proceeded to question my true nationality).

There seems to be a misperception that ‘real Americans’ are all Anglo-Saxons, like 'John Smith.'

 smith.JPG

The reality of the situation is that the first Americans (or real Americans) are the indigenous people that are now known as Native Americans, such as ‘Sitting Bull.'

 bull.JPG

As far as today, we Americans are a ‘melting pot’ of people from all over the World.  We all have different surnames, cultures, and sometimes we speak in languages other than English, but we are all Americans.

 all.JPG

 

My Pinay wife is very happy to be living in a country where she has the opportunity to become an American.

 

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A couple of time when filling out paperwork in the Philippines I was asked if my mother was Chinese since my middle name is "Lee".

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I think this is a classic example of something I wrote earlier... There is a lot of ignorance about cultures as well as history and geography worldwide. Here in the Philippines - now remember that this is a generality - it seems that a lot, if not most Filipinos do not know much about cultures outside their own country - with the possible exceptions of Singapore, Hong Kong Korea and other places which welcome OFWs... Would that seem fair to say?

My partner only know a bit about Texas because a friend moved there with her American husband. She knows nothing about Canada, Mexico, Europe, Russia. She knows next to nothing about last century at all, except the little bits I try to teach her - two incredible World Wars, Korean War, Vietnam, the Soviet Union and it's demise, the Iron Curtain. I think it's important to learn at least some of these things so we humans don't repeat our silly mistakes made in the past. I try to learn from my own mistakes, but I guess I am a slow learner - but I am making progress.....I hope!

 

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Posted (edited)

Most definitely not what I would consider a very worldly people. Most never leave the borders of their own Country, rarely read the world news unless one of their countrymen are in a sport or beauty competition outside of PH and judging by my GF, they didn’t teach much history, world or otherwise in school. They mostly focus on their own day to day here it would seem. Judging by posts that I’ve seen on yahoo in response to the Spratly Islands and the ramming of the fishing boat last week, people calling for the Ph to attack China, it would seem that they don’t even have a clue as to the size of the own military. Hahahaha

Edited by TimL
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6 minutes ago, TimL said:

They mostly focus on their own day to day here it would seem

:thumbsup: As you know, Tomorrow just does not exist :571c66d400c8c_1(103):

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When paid a weekly salary for the poorest workers in some countries where I have lived, they act and feel like millionaires for a day. Then next day are asking again for loans...

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 Are there any Real us in the World Today, I was surprised at this Map of the US showing what it does, so I guess there are going to be a heck of a lot of family names that are not Smith and Jones;

English ad US Language.png

 

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Very interesting.

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4 hours ago, Tommy T. said:

She knows next to nothing about last century at all, except the little bits I try to teach her - two incredible World Wars, Korean War, Vietnam, the Soviet Union and it's demise, the Iron Curtain. I think it's important to learn at least some of these things so we humans don't repeat our silly mistakes made in the past.

I'm doing the very same thing with my Pinay wife.  While watching the 50 year celebrations (on TV) of the USA's triumph over the USSR with being the first (and the only) nation to safely land men on the moon (and return them to Earth), my wife was surprised that it really ever happened, since it's one of the many things that's not taught (or talked about) in the Philippines.

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Good for you and  for her! Maybe between us we can change and improve life for Filipinas?

Hmmm.... I forgot the Cuban Missile Crisis, the first artificial satellite and first man in space - obviously we can go on forever, but I guess we have to pick our battles! Oddly, my SO is a bit familiar with The Clinton Affair, but not Watergate. And she actually does not know much about the Marcoses except what she sees on FaceBook about the younger ones... If I remember correctly, she also was not aware about how nasty we Americans (not you and I but you know what I mean) treated the "liberated" rebels who fought against the Spanish and didn't honour our pledge to help them after the Spanish defeat. And that includes torture and executions by American officers. She is very aware of that now so there is progress...

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