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Jun 29th
Home Sections Sports The Pacquiao-Cotto Championship Bout Is Like a Fight Between “Cousins”
The Pacquiao-Cotto Championship Bout Is Like a Fight Between “Cousins” PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Bobby M. Reyes   
Thursday, 05 November 2009 13:43

T he World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight championship bout between Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines and Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Nov. 14, 2009, is like a fight between “cousins.” Let me explain why it is so, from the historical viewpoints.

Both the Philippines and Puerto Rico were Spanish colonies that the United States invaded as a result of the Spanish-American War of 1898. Guam and Cuba were the other Spanish-held territories involved in the conflict.

Spain and the United States ended the war with a peace treaty signed in Paris, France, Cuba became an independent country. Guam, Puerto Rico and the Philippines became American colonies. The Philippines was set free as an independent country on July 4, 1946, by the United States.


American colonial authorities exiled thousands of Puerto-Rican nationalist leaders to Guam, the Philippines and to Hawaii, which by 1898 also became a possession of the United States. This was similar to how the United States sent to Guam some Filipino leaders who refused to swear allegiance to the new colonial power. This writer mentioned the Puerto-Rican exiles in this article, Rediscovering the “Missing Latinos in America”: The HispanoAsians and the ñ-Filipinos


Eventually, many of the Puerto Rican exiles settled in the Philippines, Guam and Hawaii, where many of them got married to local beauties. Both Guam and Hawaii have huge Filipino presence.


One descendant of a Puerto-Rican exile to the Philippines was Trinidad Arteche Ramo (now deceased) who migrated to Los Angeles, California, in the 1990s. She and her husband, World-War II veteran Bonifacio Ramo (now also deceased) were very active in the Filipino-American community and they served as pillars of organizations like the Media Breakfast Club (MBC) of Los Angeles and the Equity Village Foundation.


About 27% of the people in Guam is of Filipino descent. You can read more of the Filipino-Guamenian population in this article,

The Filipinos’ Unfinished and Coming Agenda in Guam


Almost 17% of the people in Hawaii is of Filipino descent.


Both the percentages of the population of Filipino descent in Guam and Hawaii include those born out of Puerto Rican-Filipino marriages in the said islands and/or the Philippine archipelago who eventually settled in Guam or Hawaii.


This writer has called many Filipinos in the United States as the ñ-Filipinos, details of which can be read in the said article, Rediscovering the “Missing Latinos in America”: The HispanoAsians and the ñ-Filipinos


ERAP-Speak and Erap Jokes


P uerto Rico became part of the jokes about deposed Philippine President Joseph “Erap” Ejercito Estrada. An MBC member started the jest that Mr. Estrada, who was then under house arrest while being tried for plunder, would only accept exile to Puerto Rico and nowhere else. Why? Erap Estrada would be at home in San Juan, Puerto Rico, as he comes also from the City of San Juan, Philippines. And besides, the Puerto-Rican city has casinos and Mr. Estrada likes to frequent gambling places.


Editor’s Notes: To read more about the Erap jokes in the Humor-and-Satire Section of the, simply type in “Erap" in the site’s Search Box at the top-right corner of every page.


So, on November 14th at the MGM Grand Hotel, both protagonists in the WBO-sanctioned championship bout will simply represent the historical linkages between their homelands. No matter who loses, both the Philippines and Puerto Rico will be winners insofar as tourism promotion is concerned. May, therefore, the best man – between the two “cousins” – win. # # #




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Last Updated on Thursday, 05 November 2009 14:20
Comments (2)
1 Thursday, 05 November 2009 16:13

As a journalist and a historian, you are second to none.

Don Azarias
2 Friday, 06 November 2009 07:49
Lolo Bobby,

Very enjoyable reading ... especially the quip about Erap. You're an excellent writer.


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