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Filipino Boxer Manny Pacquiao Should Fight Every Day

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Manny Pacquiao, now the undisputed wonder of the boxing world, should start fighting every day. According to this report from USA Today, the crime rate in the Philippines during his fight versus Oscar De La Hoya was virtually nil.

What do you say, Manny? If you really want to make a change, instead of running for Congress or public office, just fight every day. But I'm not sure you'll do that. You'll probably come home to a ticker tape parade, be bestowed with more accolades, record more "Pacman" audio CDs, and enter into more advertising, licensing, and franchising deals, which will no doubt plaster your mug around Manila's crowded city highways on giant, monstrous billboards (by the way, do those painkillers really work?). Which is fine. After all, you deserve it. You won the fight. You made the Filipino nation proud. What's the problem with making a few bucks while uplifting the dignity of one of the poorest third world nations?

I just hope one day when you wake up years from now, after all the Champagne is sipped, all the giant, sprawling advertising billboards in the Philippine metropolis bearing your name and a product are long gone, your CD and DVD sales all spent, and your youthful energy exhausted, you will realize the potential you had to effect real change.

The Filipino nation, tired of hearing bad news of corruption and governmental scandals, is literally at your command. The irony here is not wasted on some like me: with good news of your continuous wins, the newspapers choose to flash you on their front pages instead of any of the grim, real news. Why don't you start speaking about the real truth?

You, of all people, the Filipino people's champion, have the mandate to do this: born into a world of poverty, through hard work, discipline, and divine providence, you have captured a world boxing championship crown and won more respect than any "elected" official of the Filipino nation. These people who afford you this respect are the very people suffering today as a result of the corrupt and unfair practices (which I'm sure you suffered from during your difficult rise to the top) of the Filipino government and commerce — who, oops, also happen to be, by the way, your prime sponsors and backers.

To say that your victory is a victory for the Philippines is a fallacy, borne of flawed logic, allowing government officials to effectively sweep more corruption-related problems and scandals under an already overcrowded and dirty carpet.

This victory is yours, and yours alone. You can offer the victory to the Philippines, but it is not theirs. Cherish it, do not abuse it. Honor your fallen fellow boxer and countryman Rolando Navarette. And while there is still time, use your power wisely. If you are not afraid to step into the ring with deadly prizefighters, at the risk of shedding blood and feeling enormous pain, surely, then you should not be afraid of using your celebrity as a starting point in taking on other deadly fighters (of the economic and political kind).

After all, we've heard more outrageous stories: A housewife with minimal knowledge of her nation's politics, whose husband was murdered by a tyrannical President, led a bloodless revolution and became its first woman President. Her name was Corazon Aquino.

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About Clarence Yu

  • Sharingan

    To say that your victory is a victory for the Philippines is a fallacy, borne of flawed logic, allowing government officials to effectively sweep more corruption related problems and scandals under an already overcrowded and dirty carpet.

    When he says this he means it. He does not fight for his glory but for the glory of his nation. People cannot compredhend this stuff. People who have Baachelor degrees and Masters seemed more concerned about their own achievements. I syndrome me first mentality! At it’s best.

  • Johnny

    Wow buddy relax. Manny isnt superman and his job isnt to fix all of the philippines problems. Manny is an athlete who has an incredible amount of pressure on him. You sound so bitter. Manny earned all of this through an incredible amount of hard work. YOu should watch all his fights and see the incredible amount of punishment this man has taken. Oh and as far this statement “the newspapers choose to flash you on their front pages instead of any of the grim, real new”. Have you ever though that people are tired of having the news show them depressing, horrible stories. Stories of manny are a welcome change for the endless bad news that most people read.

  • Clarence –

    I’ll be retiring in the Philippines someday, hopefully sooner rather than later. Why? Because despite the poverty and the corruption, it’s a happier place than much of America.

    That’s right, I said it’s a happier place than America.

    One day at my house in Manila, I called up my wife’s family and invited them over for a barbecue. Six hours later, there were at least 25 family members at my house…and I couldn’t help but think “What would it take to get 25 family members together in America on six hours’ notice?” It would be almost impossible.

    My family there might be referred to as being in the ‘lower middle class’ – they’re not squatters, but they’re not much better off…so please don’t get the idea that we’re rich. The family’s compound is perhaps 150 linear feet from a railroad track that goes straight as far as the eye can see in either direction…and on both sides of the track is a solid wall of squatter shacks.

    My wife’s grandmother passed away a few years ago in the family compound in Manila. In the few years before she died, she mostly just lay there inside the bottom floor of a ramshackle house in the heat – no aircon, and only sometimes a fan. But every day she got to see and hear her grandchildren and great-grandchildren laughing and playing. Which is a happier life – her final years in poverty, or spending one’s final years in a nursing home with steadily decreasing visits from one’s family?

    YES, there’s corruption there – and it’s not going away. That’s just the way things are there, just as in much of Asia and in other third-world countries. Why be offended at the corruption? I’m not. I won’t add to the corruption, but I will not allow myself to be offended by the Philippine way of getting things done.

    Sure, education in the Philippines leaves much to be desired…but at least education is much more highly valued than it is here in America. Perhaps that’s one reason why Overseas Filipino Workers can be found in almost every country. I recently read an article noting that one-third of ALL crewmen on the world’s merchant marine fleet are Filipino. Here in America, Filipino nurses are so popular that the Philippines recently had to place a moratorium on newly-graduated nurses leaving the country – the Philippines was running low on nurses!

    If you ask mature Filipinos, you’ll find that most of them agree that it’s good to come to America to earn a lot of money…but when it’s time to retire, life is MUCH better in the Philippines.

    There’s a lot of things I’ll miss about America…but giving my family – and especially my children – the experience of having a large and (mostly) happy family is far more valuable than working oneself to death here in America. One can be happy here, but it’s far more difficult. My greatest complaint about life in America are the expectations. “What, you don’t have a car/microwave/computer/HDTV/3BR-3BA-2CarGarage-house? What a loser YOU are!”

    Things. Items. What are these compared to a couple dozen family members sitting down together for a barbecue – not just on special occasions, but just about every day?

    I love America and I’d still give my life to protect her in accordance with the oath I upheld for my twenty years of military service…but America is NOT the best place in the world to raise a family and to grow old.

    So Clarence – perhaps your scorn is misplaced. Instead of thumbing your nose at an entire people, perhaps you should instead try to help FIX the problem. How? Start a business. Run it honestly. Provide good-paying jobs. And watch the lives of your employees bloom.

  • Hi Johnny and Glenn,

    There is a bit of what I’d like to call sarcasm in my article.

    I live here, and put up with the same things you guys complain about. I also am involved in a business that provides livelihood to many, many people, in ways that the government can never provide them.

    Glenn- I am not “scorned.” I couldn’t be happier nor less proud of the Philippines. And yes, I am, in my own little way, helping to fix the problem in more ways than you know.

    Best Regards

  • Clarence –

    Good to hear, and I wish you the very best in your endeavors.

  • Glenn,

    Thanks, and I wish you well in your career, and the best of luck in your retirement. Notwithstanding of course, your insights and commentary on life in general, and your deep oath of commitment to service.

  • Jon R


    There is nothing wrong with sarcasm however, sometimes it is perceived as a joke or even an insult. Please remember, just like any other ethnic group or nationality Pilipino people are proud. Most people use sarcasm/jokes to get there point across. Remember, it is all about perception.

    Manny is a fighter and he is not obligated to do anything for anyone. Because of his kind nature, he has donated money to his people of Mindanao, which created programs such as free health care, educational programs and a couple of boxing gyms. How can you say he should use his fame and power wisely? Please, this is probably more then what anyone can ask for. Give the person a break and let him take care of himself and his family first.

    Its seems like you are active in your community as well. I think as you should spend your time and energy writing to Manny and making him aware of your efforts as oppose to making “sarcastic” articles about him. You never know, he may help you or…he just may knock you out

  • —now that’s a healthy dose of sarcasm…or just conjecture.

    Anyhow, you seem to think that I am part of a community. I guess I’d like to think of myself as part of a whole community, the nation in particular.

    When I write about Manny in particular, I understand how it can be misconstrued as a deadly insult. I understand culture, and I understand when sometimes reason alone cannot control feeling.

    Sometimes, as you mentioned, with the problem of perception, the real problem lies in the perceiver. We are “conditioned,” either by genetics, years of oppression and hardship, by our immediate environment and by our media to react in certain ways we are not even aware of. Would you have ever imagined the billboard industry in Manila say, 10 or 15 years ago? Unimaginable, but now, people don’t think twice about it and accept it for what it is.

    I am not attacking Manny in particular. Make no mistake, Jon—I personally think the man has a good heart, and, as a boxing fan, a terrific fighter. As a Filipino, yes, he makes charitable contributions, and he can only do so much. But granting that he wanted to do more, and I assume that he wants to, since he ran for Congress last year, the question now is, what specifically does he want to do for his district, his hometown and for his country as an elected official. That kind of trust is too precious to be abused.

    Anyhow, these are just thoughts. I appreciate your comments and your insights. Thank you very much.

    Best Regards

  • Jon R


    Hi, I understand what you are talking about however; I would not say it is a “problem” probably ignorance?? It is not their wrong doing if they were place in a situation as oppose of having the luxury to make a choice. Plain and simple, sometimes people just know one thing and without awareness they will not change.

    Per your article you said
    “I just hope one day when you wake up years from now, after all the Champagne is sipped, all the giant, sprawling advertising billboards in the Philippine metropolis bearing your name and a product are long gone, your CD and DVD sales all spent, and your youthful energy exhausted, you will realize the potential you had to effect real change.”

    Why do you hope he realizes it? I am sure he already does. He is providing the motivation for people to do so. It is up to the people of the nation to make it a habit. It just like saying the US should stay in the Middle East and run Iraq. Our brave soldiers did their part, it is time for the Iraq people to do theirs…get my drift? Why don’t you ask Michael Jordan the same thing?

    You also mentioned
    “I understand how it can be misconstrued as a deadly insult”

    Why is it deadly???Did you grow up in a place where people threaten your life? You have a problem with perception as well it seems like.

    I am aware that Manny ran for congress and didn’t win. I agree that trust shouldn’t be abused also. Did you know Manny acknowledges this therefore he decided to go back to school so he can be a better person for this role in 2010..Would someone with the intensions to abuse do that?

    I am glad you are able to perceive other perceptions but please look at it from a bigger picture. As for myself, a proud Pilipino NOT with an F (you said you understand the culture, then act like it), can understand why people adore him. It is very similar to why Barrack Obama got elected as our next president here in the US. He reminds people there is always a way to overcome our hurdles REGARDLESS of our current conditions and our upbringing. It’s all about hope baby, hahaha

    Dam this blogging thing is fun, especially when drinking beers

    Pinoy Pride baby!!!!

  • Hi Jon R,

    If you knew half the things I know about what is really going on (and I’m not trying to engage in a pissing match here) behind the scenes here, you probably would agree on half of what I am trying to convey.

    As for the “deadly insult,” you cannot possibly be serious in questioning “why is it deadly?” because I’ve just said that it “could be misconstrued.” Can be, can’t be.

    Filipino, Pilipino, depende sa wikang ginagamit. Salitang kolokyal yan pare ko. Kung Ingles ang gamit, Filipino. Kung Tagalog ang gamit, Pilipino. Kaya lang, ang pambansang wika natin ay hindi talaga Tagalog bagkus ito ay opisyal na binansagang “Pilipino” ng ating pamahalaan. (Filipino, Pilipino,it depends on the language you are using. It’s a colloquial language in nature, my friend. If we are communicating in English, the right word is Filipino. If we are using Tagalog to communicate, the right word is Pilipino. However, our national language isn’t really called Tagalog, as official is called “Pilipino” by our government.) Kung titignan pa natin ating sistema ng a, ba, ka, da, e, ga, ha, i, la, ma, na, nga, o, pa, ra, sa, ta, u ,wa, ya atbp. noong panahon ni Manuel Quezon na binago noong panahon ni Cory Aquino sa sistemang Ingles na may dagdag na letrang “enye”, c, f, j, v, x, at z, mas naging kolokyal pa ang ating wika. Halimbawa, ang mga salitang “Amerikano” at “Boy” ay pwede nang gawing “Amboy” (Amboy ka ba?). I think you’ve been listening to the Black Eyed Peas too much.

    We know that here in the Philippines, if we can’t settle our agreements amicably, then there is always plan b: a dark room, and a knife. So there’s always a threat that must be considered when you are presumed to launch an insult against someone. 🙂

    But then again, this exchange between us is all just plain fun. Be happy, and say hello to San Miguel for me in your dreams.

    Best Regards

  • Clarence, whilst not wanting to end up in a dark room with a knife, I must remind you that the URL for your own site that you have in the URL box directly above where you type in your comments is incomplete. Please insert the missing http:// at the beginning before making any more comments. Thanks.

    Christopher Rose
    Blogcritics Comments Editor

  • Clarence –

    I’m really enjoying reading your posts. My wife once told me a joke: “What do you call someone who speaks three languages? Trilingual. What do you call someone who speaks two languages? Bilingual. What do you call someone who speaks one language? American.” And she’s right. Nowhere else in the world does a substantial portion of the population seem to think it’s ‘patriotic’ to refuse to at least learn another language.

    Since that day I’ve tried to learn Pilipino and I now have perhaps a 300-word vocabulary – not much, just enough to embarrass myself and my wife (I’m not kidding!).

    I am curious about what you know, if it is really that serious and what is the potential for national chaos there. I didn’t agree with the choice of Cory Aquino and GMA seems to have her own problems too. I remember reading several Manila papers about the corruption charges against the First Gentleman – every paper covered the story except for the Manila Bulletin…and I haven’t bought that paper ever since.

    I do know this about the life of an expatriate, though – when I and my family retire there, discuss religion as little as possible, try my best not to offend anyone, above all stay away from politics, and (the hardest) walk the other way if I see violence such as a man beating his wife – it’s not my country. I’ve become better over the years at the oblique approach, but I still have the ‘Cano tendency to speak my mind too forthrightly when I should be keeping my mouth shut.

    Masyado suwerte ako, kasi for the most part walang problema doon sa puti. Tapos, kung mabait and simplay lang ako, the more I can interact profitably with the Pinoy.

    Stay safe, Clarence – please be careful…and if you can, stay away from politics there – the life expectancy of both politicians and reporters in the Philippines is much shorter than they should be.

  • Dear Christopher,

    Correction noted and done. Thanks for the reminder.

    Best Regards

  • Jon R


    Now you are stereotyping… because I live in the states I listen to Black Eyed Peas. I do not even like Rap music [Personal attack deleted by Comments Editor]! So, because you are an Engineer, can I assume you are a 2 dimensional thinker with no grey area, just simply black and white?

    In addition, please do not talk to me about :

    “We know that here in the Philippines, if we can’t settle our agreements amicably, than there is always plan b: a dark room, and a knife. So there’s always a threat that must be considered when you are presumed to launch an insult against someone. :-)”

    … TRUST me I know, I grew up in Tondo. Yes, I live in the states so I know how it is done here as well. You get it in day light, forget the dark… so please do NOT go there. “Amboy” or not, I am Pinoy at heart.

    Just because you are typing in Tagalog does NOT make you any better than me. When you post things like this, you have to respect other people’s thoughts and opinions. Regardless of how YOU perceive it. Maybe you get questions/comments because you intrigued them somehow and they just like you to explain your thoughts in more detail. People would not ask questions if there is no interest. That is the first rule of conversation!

    How is your current environment? Why do you think I am threatening you? That my friend is why people, regardless of any nation cannot settle their differences. They skip the diplomatic approach and jump straight to “plan B”.

    Like I said, I grew up there and we were fortunate to come here. It does not mean we are ignorant of the things going on over there, such as you people are not here.

    Now, can you understand from my end?

  • Dear Glenn,

    For an man with a 300+ word vocabulary of the Filipino language, you sure have a firm grasp of what is happening here. Yes, certain publications do not publish things that ought to be published, and yes, most of the things you mentioned as “protocol” are true. But the best way to survive here is to pick a good set of friends you can really trust, and whom are absolutely loyal to you, as you are to them. Loyalty is one of the Filipino’s greatest traits. It can be abused, but I’d much rather see the good results from its virtue. This process is not done easily (selecting a group of friends), and your wife and family probably know this very well. It is a long, life long drawn out process where almost every aspect of your being will be tested. I think you should know this, as you are in the military, which I highly admire about you. Aside from that, I believe you to be a good and naturally talented writer as well. So thank you for your compliments and insights, and, trust me, I’ll watch my back always. I look forward to perhaps meeting you one day. Who knows?

    Best Regards

  • Dear Jon,

    We must be at opposite ends of a spectrum, but will probably have to meet halfway.

    I was born in Illinois, and my parents decided to come back home when I was four. I grew up in Tondo and Sampaloc, among other places. My father worked hard to get me a decent education and to pass on good family values to me. I visit the U.S. from time to time, and worked there for a time in the 90’s as an Engineer in a plastics company, married and divorced there as well. So, while I’m not there every day, I can fairly say tht I have a good understanding of life there.

    That being said, I apologize if I offended you in any way. Kindly remember that all my comments were not written in a declarative manner. I also punctuate my comments with “perhaps” or “maybe.”

    The most disturbing things you mention is your belief that you are threatening me, and that I think I am better than you. How can I even start to measure myself with a person I do not even know? I respond based on stimuli, which, in this case, is the context in which you posted your comments.

    The problem with these types of “conversations,” as we put it, are two fold: we do not know each other, and yet, through the technology of the Internet, we speak our minds, sometimes irresponsibly, and most of the time, insensitive to many a reader’s sensibilities. All people have different tolerance levels. You just can’t make everyone happy, just like you can’t always agree with everyone. And the worst thing about these protracted conversations is that we do not “hear” the intonations, inflections and tones of the voices we actually use when we actually talk. That is probably one of the most important rules in real conversation, in my opinion.

    And again, I mentioned that you just cannot agree with everyone, but there is always that option to agree to disagree, with no hard feelings.

    I can’t say that I totally understand your end, but somehow, you’ve been able to give me more of an impression of your personality than from I previously thought of from your first few comments, and that, I think, is progress.

    Again, I apologize if I had offended you in any way. That was never my intention, and is never part of my way of life when dealing with other people. Writing for me, is a way to express my thoughts, but I can’t always articulate what I have in my head exactly in the written word (I’m a 2 dimensional Engineer, remember? That’s a joke). No offense meant, and no offense taken.

    Best Regards

    When I write about things, I try to

  • Marcia Neil

    How weird, a Topix.net website story from CA des-cribed how a Filipina-American in her early 20s was swept out to sea and drowned while a man in his 40s proposed marriage to her on a ‘Proposal Rock’. There is a widespread network of people operating through the telephone to make such suggestions, who should all be routed out and their phones taken away to reduce crime without trying to make fools of an Pacific-Islander ethnic group with demand-queries about “national loyalty”.

  • Marcia Neil

    The actual website story is published from http://www.telegraph.co.uk.

  • Clarence –

    Sampaloc? Small world –

  • It sounds like a simple accident to me. I’m not sure I understand what the crime is, or what the network is trying to do via telephone though.

  • Marcia Neil

    Will the scenario change? Will there now be more crime in the Philippines during scheduled matches with U. S. A. fighters? What is the purpose of that kind of Filipina loss in that particular way?

  • CesarE

    Manny P. is a superstar in the boxing arena, respected and adored as a great pugilist. I love Manny, and I am a great fan of his. However, the moment you throw him in into the mix in the political arena- with those clowns- he’s just going to be, without question, one of them- a clown! Who treats a clown seriously, anyway? Although, Manny at the moment, is a very public sports figure, in my opinion, he can do more public good as a private citizen. So, please don’t throw him in the den of thieves!

  • @Cesar E.

    Thanks, I appreciate the comments. You note that the moment I throw him in the mix—but he’s already done that. Whether or not he has the heart in him to do some good is all up to him. Let’s hope for the best!