August 11, 2012

…because they’re not Charice

When it was announced that Charice would be one of the four judges for the singing competition X Factor Philippines, different reactions came out.  Some were excited and welcomed the new project for the singer. Others expressed their disagreement saying she was too young and lacked experience. While some Chasters defended Charice from those who were doubting her qualifications, others did not fully welcome the idea because they could foresee crabs feasting on her every move, every word, every fashion style.  Besides, for them, Charice belonged to the US—to the international scene—and not to the Philippines, not to the local entertainment scene.

About two years ago, I was having a conversation with someone. We talked about a lot of things. One of them was crab mentality. I asked for his opinion on why some Filipinos didn’t like Charice. He answered with a question, “What has Charice done, so far, in the Philippines?” I understood what he meant. Except for a few TV show guestings and interviews, she was out of the Philippine limelight. Because of this, not many had seen her perform and they did not know her well. Those who had heard about her (at that time) regarded her only as the lucky young singer who guested on Ellen and Oprah and sang with Celine Dion. Charice's presence was not felt as much as the local artists’ so they inclined to question her place in the international scene.

Now that Charice is seen every weekend on the X Factor Philippines, a chance for the Filipinos to see her and hopefully know her more, negative reactions are still ever present. There are those who will point out that’s just the way it is in the entertainment world. They may even add the old adage “Bad publicity is still publicity.” I personally don’t agree to this way of thinking. Some comments are shallow and ridiculous.



Take Charice’s new hairstyle, for example. Haven’t we seen other people cut and dye their hair? Why is it alright for Secretary Dinky Soliman to have colorful streaks on her hair but not alright for Charice? Why is it alright for Charlene Gonzales to cut her hair short but not alright for Charice? Will we have the chance to see the real hair of Nicki Minaj again? Wasn’t Marilyn Monroe a natural brunette and not blonde?

Very recently, articles were written about Charice’s change of manager. The writers made an error in saying that her new manager, Courtney Blooding, was a “Canadian.” I wonder where they got that information. If they actually did a research, it was a failed one.

Columnist Ricky Lo needed a nationality description for Courtney Blooding because he wanted to emphasize that Charice favored a foreigner over a Filipina. And he didn’t like Charice’s manner of speaking. He described it as having an “irritating American twang.” Well, I’m not irritated.

I’ve also read comments of some netizens that Charice didn’t like to speak in Tagalog anymore. I guess their ears are very selective—hearing Charice only when she speaks in English. And they don’t mind that the other three X Factor judges speak in English. It seems to me that her detractors are saying, “It’s alright because they’re not Charice.”

Should Charice just stay here in the Philippines, have a local manager, speak in Tagalog and avoid speaking in English? Why is it alright for others to speak in English but not alright for Charice?

Anyone who says Charice is not qualified to be an X Factor Philippines judge and mentor insults ABS-CBN’s decision. He also insults Gary Valenciano who praises her capabilities even at her young age; Martin Nievera’s liking for her abilities to hear a great potential; Ms. Pilita Corales’ nice words about her; and KC Concepcion for defending her in an interview.

Charice is not alone in getting negative treatment by the press and netizens. Other celebrities, politicians, businessmen, and ordinary people are hit with all kinds of words that could hurt even the hardest of stones. I don’t really mind the faceless and thoughtless netizens on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social networking sites. But I do mind the thoughtlessness and baseless write-ups done by some media people. I also mind the use of radio and television programs for spreading intrigues, lies, negative publicity, and crab mentality.

A bill aimed to stop cyber-bullying is still pending in the Philippine Congress. I don’t think this is what we really need. We have existing laws, policies and guidelines that can at least minimize bullying, be it in the cyber-world or real world. What the ordinary youngsters and adults see on TV, hear on the radio, and read in write-ups give them the courage to do the same. If we allow and tolerate some mass media people who think that crab mentality and disrespectful treatment of anyone are okay, then, we have a big problem.

27 comments:

  1. Well said... I couldn't ask for more... :)


    Charice stay what you are... we're here to support you no matter what.. :)

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  2. Thank you for this write-up. Very well said!

    Charice is trailblazing beyond the Philippine borders. That by and of itself is laudable. She's fearless despite the storm of vitriol spewed on her by her own people (which is quite a shame, really!).

    I stumbled on a blog (not related to Charice) about some scientific undertaking. The blogger said, and I quote, "The fear of risk is what leads to mediocrity". Charice came to mind right away. Her fearlessness grates on many of her kababayans because it is a stark contrast to their mediocre lives & less-than-average accomplishments. I like the fact that Charice pushes the envelope despite the bashing from her detractors.

    GOD bless!

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  3. Finally, a sensible article. Thank you for articulating the thoughts and feelings of many Charice supporters and admirers.

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  4. nakakahiya taung mga Filipino...
    i really don't understand why there are people like them who wants to destroy other people lives instead of being proud of what that person had achieved...
    Me,im proud of her really....she's great!

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    1. when i went home for vacation in the philippines, i asked most of my friends in the philippines if they knew charice and whether they like her because i only saw her on youtube videos at dalang-dala na niya ako and at that time she hasn't even changed her image yet. you know what they answered? they said oh yes, she could sing but i don't like her because she is not beautiful. meaning, hindi siya maganda kasi hindi mestisa. how foolish can one be. her beauty is one that outsands other nationality in europe because if you compare the mestisas in the philippines to the real europeans, they are not different. so, they are not really as attractive as we see them than the ones who looks different.

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  5. Finally! may nag salita na!..Been dying to find someone
    to "talk" like this. ..

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  6. This is definitely a good read. I agree with you. Most people have a selective way of thinking, they only see what they want to see and hear want they want to hear. The bad side of it is that most only choose to see and hear the negative stuff. Crab mentality has been present since the day of our ancestors. Everyone is a victim of it.

    About Charice, I used to be a non-believer. Her voice have always WOWed me but yeah, I was one of those who have heard a lot of negative, baseless and thoughtless comments against her long before she became a part of the international scene. But one day, I had the chance to meet and talk to her personally. A friend invited me to watch one of her shows, so I went there, sat in a corner and inquisitively watched her every move. Observing her from afar, I tell you, SHE'S BEAUTIFUL IN AND OUT! She knows how to value and respect people regardless of age, race and social status. Not to mention her talent is overflowing. Her powerful voice would surely give you chills and bring you to your knees. Goosebumps... does that ring a bell?

    I hope one day, people would learn to look beyond what they see. And when people are in their "selective way of thinking mode", i hope and wish they learn to see the good and positive stuff..

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  7. i love this article ... :)
    if only the basher/ haters .... watch and read everything about charice they wouldn't say anything bad about charice. how humble and good person she is... nakaka lungkot na mas madaming nakaka appreciate sa knya abroad than her countryman... if only i can get even and bash them one by one i will... but i rather not too kase they won't stop at i dnt wanna be like them parang hindi nakarga ng mga nanay nila nung baby pa at mga walang happy childhood... yung iba nakikisakay sa trend, ginagawang joke not realizing nakakasakit sila at nakakahiya na talaga... nakaka irita na mga bad comments talaga ...haist !!!

    I just hope many Fellow Filipino's learn to love your OWN...
    God Bless them all...
    I still Love Charice ... whatever haters say :)

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  8. I like your blog.. Galing. Tama ka sa mga nasulat mo.

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  9. I do get the point of the whole article. But don't you think people just misses the old Charice? The humble, cute adorable Charice unlike now that from what i'm seeing is like a trying hard Charice? Trying hard to fit in to everyone, trying hard to be perfect for everyone & trying to like by everyone?

    For me, She doesn't have to try to be something or to prove anything anymore coz she achieved morethan what she's expected for. She has done unbelievable & incredible things despite her young age. And from the image she's portraying now everything seems to be too much for her that most of the people see it in a negative way.

    I guess it's just about the "package" There's nothing wrong about changing the image or the whole package, just for as long as it fits her

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    1. I quote you: "There's nothing wrong about changing the image or the whole package, just for as long as it fits her." You said, "as long as it fits her". By whose standard? Yours? Society's?

      Everyone's perception of "trying hard" varies. I do not believe for one minute that Charice is, as you say, "Trying hard to fit in to everyone, trying hard to be perfect for everyone & trying to like by everyone?" because quite the opposite is happening. She's just being herself & expressing herself. And, that's not a crime.

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    2. ...or just as long as it suits you???

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  10. thanks for this beautiful blog on mycharice,the only brand new pinay singer that awed me since i left the phils to u.s.a 1979 i only adored nora (guy) aunor ever since. i happened to know charice fr viral em nov. 2007 and then when ellen degeneres paged charice on her tv show to come over there,and i waited for that day i wrote in my calendar when cha will come over fr pinas to ellen show-there she goes she really wowed me-that was dec.2007. then 2008 May on Oprah-then again there and then with celine dion. until i decided to get filipino channels that was aug.2009 coz i was hungry about charice news or performance what had happened..but didnt see her on abs-cbn ASAP tv show sundays, until nov. 29,2009 there she was on ASAP- charice singing tagalog song i dont even know that song-but it gave me lots of goosebumps and awed me when she was singing "Lipad ng Pangarap" as i asked my niece about that song title. since then i became crazy fan of charice. so from nora aunor-as noranian now to chaster as charice fan. tho i still support and give my loyalty to nora aunor even she lost her voice fr minor surgery by accident the doc mess up something? even nora aunor will pantomine to a concert i will still watch her. i was hurt upon reading that article fr abs-cbn writer saying that charice unfit to be an xfactor-ph judge? i want to slap that writer,shes the one who made sense there in saying her comments, coz she feels the emotions of those contestants,the same writer who said cha fired her pinay manager and chose this canadian lady courtney- is this writer doing a research b4 writing and posting it online? is he or she really a journalist or just plain person blogging? courtney as i knew is her PA? and what if a celeb or star fired her or his manager? can u do that or not? if u're my employee and not doing a nice job? do u deserve a raise or do u still get that job? only a fool wont do a nice decision to change something. and aoubt this writer saying cha also fired out michael gurfingkel who helped cha travelled to u.s. when ellen wanted cha come over to her show- and millie the wife was there too whohelped cha, but for sure cha really didnt just fired her, the friendship was ther, but coz charice has her own u.s. lawyers who are assisting her-there- as i heard- she has to have her u.s. immigration lawyers to travel all over. thanks for this article nice blog-it really help vent out,some articles u read from haters and crab mentality. whatever they say- that wont change my admiration to charice, she's humble in my eyes,nice, and whatever outfit or styles she wants she has to do it,not to ask for permission from those crabs what she has to wear or about her hairdo. power to u charice!

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  11. I'm sick and tired of the bigotry of some People. Throw in Ignorance of these people which is not an excuse to hate. I blame the Parents for not teaching these kids tolerance and respect for other people. Learning kids' core values should start at home early, otherwise we get showbiz "writers" like Ricky Lo :=)

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  12. Love every aspect of this article, not only does it apply to Charice but to all the others out there who are in the media spotlight and are constantly being attacked as she is.

    People really need to get over the whole image change issue. So what if she has changed her style and got tattoos? Who HASN'T experimented with their looks/style, especially at that age. I've dyed my hair blue, red, blonde, brown etc. and have gone through various changes of personal style in the past. Just because you are accustomed to keeping yourself the same, does not mean anyone who decides to change a part of them is wrong. I come from an Asian background as well (not Filipino) so I do know of how strict certain things can be because everyone worries of reputation and how they appear to others, but there has to come a point where people start to use common sense. Is she harming herself or others with these "changes"? No. So anyone who voices out against these changes are simply being selfish or ignorant - whether it's because they prefer her old look - or simply because they're wanting her to stay within the little fantasy they have within their own minds.

    Let the young girl live. Let her grow. Let her make her own decisions and learn from them. Let her be as she wants to be without the worry of having to be a certain way to please others. You are given that much freedom in your own life. Let her have as much freedom to choose as well. If you simply dislike her that much for whatever reason of your own, move on with your life and let her live hers. Simple as that.

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  13. Thanks for this very insightful and very educated piece. My only hope (and this is definitely wishful thinking on my part) is that the Charice bashers will be able to read this. But as said, these cretins will never be to get it because this is too smart a reading for their limited comprehension. Well done.

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  14. An exemplary statement! Highly recommended for reading exclusively for CHARIcE haters! I shared the same thoughts as you and badly affected from our co Filipinos negative and critical attacks against CHARICE. I have goosebumps each time I read articles against her. I left Philippines since 1989 to pursue my dreams abroad and started family since then. Back in 2008 I heard many of my colleagues Singaporean and Filipinos talking about her, when my boy now 16 asked me whether I like CHARICe as she is my co Filipinos I was taken aback and searched her profiles online further. I had an sleepless night watching Charice every performances all over the world. She has the magic voice, charisma that thousands of the artists doesn't have in today's generation. When Oprah announced CHARICE is the most talented girl in the world many unbelievers become the believers including myself. For me, she is like an Alladin! X Factor has been watched widely nationwide not because of the 3 local icon singers but because of CHARICE if not for Charice I wouldn't waste my energy watching XFactor Ph!

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  15. Poor girl instead of being protected in her own homeland people are thoughtless and cruel against her. Can you imagine that feeling and humiliation being thrown at her into your own country people? What a shame? Charice is just barely 20 years old and she accomplished so so much.

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  16. yeah.. I hope everyone would understand the NEGATIVE WORDS they will say to Charice...
    And those Filipinos who is doing STUPID things to CHARICE,
    I hope God will sent you in heaven.

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  17. Camo says i could not agree more with this artlcle well articulated and eloquently put . Who are we to decide how she should live her life .how dare she change , how dare she speak english , but for me it boils down to one thin eny and thats th bottom line , why her not someone else she is not pretty, so therefore it should not be her .thank whoever wrote thiscarticle at leas some goodsense prevailed.

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  18. Bottom line is respect each others individuality. Whatever she is doing is something because she want to do it. Who are we to judge. Who are we to put shameful words to someone just want to show to everyone what she want as a person. Is it hard to respect someone because we thought what he/she doing is something we cannot accept. Shame on us!

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  19. i believe that if more people pin you down the more good karma and good vives will come along your way God is Good He knows how to reward the good and funishes the bad ones.To charice be always good and rewards will soon come your way. God Bless!!!

    Your Fan,

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  20. I have to say ...this girl Charice is very highly respectable person . She worked as a singer since she was 7 yrs old joined more than 100 singing contest to feed her family..she never have had descent childhood .This time is her time for herself to be who she is ...let her be..Who in this world will judge this girl ? No one.... She deserves all the praises and be proud of her accomplishement. She is filipino pride here in the US. All the people judging her negative ...are just jealous and full of envy of her accomplishment ... That's all I can say. ENVY and JEALOUSY because of her God given GIft

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  21. From my understanding about those crab mentality statement or negative thoughts, etc... There's a simple conclusion to me, which is ' jealousy ' .... Don't you agree that? In fact Charice couldn't please everyone. However, she doesn't need to. God loves her and gave her what she's deserved.
    Honestly, is that anyone perfect in the world? Are you? So, why Charice? Why? Just because she is an international sensation singer? So she must be the perfect one? Is that any regulation that be a singer must be a perfect one? For Charice : powerful voice + ordinary face = CHARICE, a total professional young singer. We are proud of her, be it, whether more or less she has been done in anywhere or not! So, as in above statement, she can't please everyone! In fact, she has done more than she could. In her young age, she's now an international sensation singer. She have achieved so much in the past few years of her's life. She's just like a miracle, she's so great, she sings well. What's had happened in her's life is just like a miracle. Some people say, she's lucky, some people say, she's deserved it. Everyone has their own life, why compare? Why comment? Singer also human, don't you think that we need to respect each other in the world, no?
    Please STOP being childish, negatively & jealousy. Charice difinitely deserves what she have it now. God gave her for a reason.
    Don't be jealous (for those negativity friends), God has gives you all he supposed to gives you already. Don't you think so?
    People like Lady gaga? Her's outlook, fashion sense and etc... No problem? But Charice is a problem? Hmm.... I think, personally think that the problem is just jealousy, everything Charice done all wrong but as an artist, she has to be different, she has to be outstanding. Thus, just enjoy her's music and if you're not okay with it, please find something that you're okay and carry on with your life. But stop comment negatively anymore, please?

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  22. Charice is indeed a superstar despite of all the criticisms bombarded against her she remains poised and gracefully judging XFactorPh. What a Princess! Go go go our sweetheart princess be who you are and let your haters drools more and more. We can't change their minds but Charice is in control of her life. She is our Diva. She is leading the XFactor poll and we from Singapore votedfor her.

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  23. Thank you for defending her.I was really in tears as to why they are putting her down.Jealousy is by far is the most comment trait of the filipino culture that must be changed.God bless you!!!

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