WHY are so many Filipinos threatened by the rise of China?
Are they afraid the Chinese will take over the archipelago?
Just look around you. The Chinese are already here. And I’m not talking about mainlanders. I’m referring to the ones who have been here for as long as we can remember. So some of them may have a foreign-sounding last name or they look “different,” but that doesn’t make them less of a Filipino.
They are born here, they grow up here, they study here, they get married here, they raise their children here, they conduct their business here and they die here.
Trust me, we’re all in the same boat. Of course, some may own yachts while others make do with native outriggers, but we all have to weather the storm together.
Come to think of it, they have more to lose since they’ve invested everything they have -- and I’m not just talking about their body and soul -- in this country. That’s why I don’t understand this alarming trend of Sinophobia. Because it just doesn’t make any sense.
The Chinese were here when the Spaniards arrived. Some were traders. Some were dispossessed when the Ming dynasty imposed a series of isolationist policies that banned private maritime travel and coastal settlements.
Here in Cebu, the distinction has all but disappeared since many had intermarried with native women. For the most part, that is.
Some of the newcomers, those who’ve only been here for the last 100 years or so, continue to cling to the tradition of the old country. They were most likely ostracized when they first arrived and found themselves marginalized and disenfranchised. So who can blame them for preferring to socialize with and marry their own kind?
Although, come to think of it, Cebuanos don’t care so much about ethnicity. As long as you speak the language and you profess your love for the local heritage and culture, you’re automatically in. More so if you have mixed parentage, preferably white, because we all know the lighter the skin, the quicker the assimilation.
But isn’t that racist? Of course, it is.
Anyway, China has come a long way from being an agrarian society that shunned outside contact. It is poised to become a world power. And the inevitability of it is making a lot of people nervous.
How else do you explain the furor when it was learned the Chinese were building a runway in the disputed part of the Spartlys? Do you think Filipinos would have reacted the same way if it had been the Americans?
I’m just saying.