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Oct 02nd
Home Columns Unsolicited Advice Many ABER Filipinos Don't Trust First-generation Filipino Americans
Many ABER Filipinos Don't Trust First-generation Filipino Americans PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - Unsolicited Advice
Written by Bobby M. Reyes   
Monday, 19 October 2009 20:50

Part IV of the series, “It Is Time for Filipino Americans to Stop Playing ‘Mr. Nice Guys’”


You don’t choose your family. They are God’s gift to you, as you are to them – Archbishop Desmond Tutu


Y es, the Most Reverend Tutu is right when he said that we cannot choose our relatives – even if they are God’s presents to us. But many second-generation American citizens of Filipino descent (with exceptions, of course) apparently do not trust quite a few of their community’s elders and leaders, even if they happen to be their kin. Proofs? Very few second-generation Filipino Americans bother to join their parents’ community organizations or even attend their ubiquitous dinner-and-dance Galas. Even Filipino-American journalism graduates refuse to write for Fil-Am publications.


Here’s why many of the so-called ABER (American-born, -educated and/or –raised) Filipinos perceptibly do not have faith in their Philippine-born elders . . .


Editor’s Notes: Among the few ABER Filipinos who became the head of community organizations are Ms. Anafe Elegino and Gil Mislang. Ms. Elegino was sworn into office as the president of the Asinganians of California last Oct. 10th. Mr. Mislang was elected the president of the Pangasinan Brotherhood of America in the early 2000s. Both of them are Pangasinense-American scions of past presidents of their respective entities.


Almost all of the ABER Filipinos seemingly hate the so-called “culture of corruption” that they see as prevalent in their elders’ homeland. And they despise it more when their first-generation elders act as if they have never left the Philippines. This is the reason for the hesitancy of many ABER Filipinos to join for instance the National Federation of Filipino-American Associations (NaFFAA), as many of its national executive officers (NEOs) have been documented to have brought with them to the United States the much-ballyhooed “culture of corruption.”

Several writers like Romeo P. Marquez of San Diego and Tito Cortez of San Jose, California, and this writer have documented the financial scams in the NaFFAA in the NaFFAAgate section of this website,


A View from


C hicago-based journalist and columnist Joseph G. Lariosa mentioned the necessity of Filipino-American associations being able to attract younger Filipinos. He is an award-winning professional journalist and the dean of Filipino correspondents in the
United States
. To read Mr. Lariosa’s entire piece, please click on this hyperlink, The NaFFAA Needs New Blood


The celebration of the 111th Philippine Independence last week has opened my eyes that sooner or later the second generation of Filipinos in America might fast become endangered species. – Joseph G. Lariosa


Mr. Lariosa stated his apprehension about second-generation Filipinos in his article, Lost Generation of Filipinos in America, and he confirmed what this writer has stated in the beginning of this article. Mr. Lariosa wrote, “It was not only me, who noticed it. Chicago-based contemporary artist Willi Buhay was fuming and dismayed that the children of Filipino immigrants are nowhere to be found in Philippine cultural events.”


Yes, many second- or third-generation ABER Filipinos apparently do not carry the “Mr. Nice Guy” genes that seemingly run in their parents’, and certainly to a greater degree, their grandparents’ veins. ABER Filipinos are often brutally frank and nobody can force them to attend Filipino functions in the United States if they do not want to.


Most of the ABER Filipinos refuse also to watch Filipino Pay-TV channels that that their first-generation parents or grandparents subscribe to. Why? They find most of its canned programs – beamed from Manila parent stations – irrelevant to their lives and their future. They don’t laugh at the funny stories told in the Filipino channels, as often times they cannot understand the jokes, especially if Tagalog idioms are used in cracking the humor. Many of the ABER Filipinos are not conversant with their parents’ Filipino languages.


The fact is that most of the ABER Filipinos are losing their cultural ties with, and even family linkages in, the homeland. This will be the biggest problem of the Philippine economy, as the remittances from the second- and/or third-generation Overseas Filipinos are bound to decrease, as per the forecast of Ms. Yolanda Ortega-Stern, stated in an earlier article: The Need for a Filipino Version of "The Manhattan Project" and End of the OFW Remittances (Part2)

Ms. Stern is the founding president of the Federation of Philippine-American Chambers of Commerce. She is now the federation's chairperson emeritus. 



E ditor’s Notes: To view the earlier parts of this occasional series, please go to:



It Is Time for Filipino Americans to Stop Playing “Mr. Nice Guy”


Filipino Americans Are No Longer “Misters Nice Guys” (Part II)


Why Many First-generation Filipino Immigrants Are Failing Badly as American Citizens

(To be continued . . .)

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Last Updated on Monday, 19 October 2009 22:59

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