Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Jaeyoun Kim's Essay About the Philippines

Before I say my opinion about this Korean's essay about Filipinos and the Philippines. I think I should keep a copy of it so everyone who reads my response on Jaeyoun Kim's essay would know the story.  

My response BTW
--Lifted from a forwarded email


...and the email goes ...

"Please pass it to all Filipinos you know.
As you know, we have plenty of Koreans currently studying in the Philippines to take advantage of our cheap tuition fees and learn English at the same time. This is an essay written by a Korean student, (Never mind the grammar; it's the CONTENT that counts). Maybe it is timely to think about this in the midst of all the confusion at present.
Jaeyoun Kim

Filipinos always complain about the corruption in the Philippines . Do you really think the corruption
is the problem of the Philippines ? I do not think so. I strongly believe that the problem is the lack of love for the Philippines .
Let me first talk about my country, Korea . It might help you understand my point. After the Korean War, South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world. Koreans had to start from scratch because
entire country was destroyed after the Korean War, and we had nonatural resources. Koreans used to talk about the Philippines , for Filipinos were very rich in Asia . We envy Filipinos. Koreans really wanted to be well off like Filipinos. Many Koreans died of famine. My father & brother also died because of famine. Korean government was very corrupt and is still very corrupt beyond your imagination, but Korea was able to develop dramatically because Koreans really did their best for the common good with their heart burning with patriotism. Koreans did not work just for themselves but also for their neighborhood and country. Education inspired young men with the spirit of patriotism.
40 years ago, President Park took over the government to reform Korea .. He tried to borrow money from other countries, but it was not possible to get a loan and attract a foreign investment because the economic situation of South Korea was so bad. Korea had only three factories. So, President Park sent many mine workers and nurses to Germany so that they could send money to Korea to build a factory. They had to go through horrible experience.

In 1964, President Park visited Germany to borrow money. Hundred of Koreans in Germany came to the airport to welcome him and cried there as they saw the President Park. They asked to him, "President, when can we be well off?" That was the only question everyone asked to him. President Park cried with them and promised them that Korea would be well off if everyone works hard for Korea, and the President of Germany got the strong impression on them and lent money to Korea . So, President Park was able to build many factories in Korea. He always asked Koreans to love their country from their heart.
Many Korean scientists and engineers in the USA came back to Korea to help developing country because they wanted their country to be well off. Though they received very small salary, they did their best for Korea. They always hoped that their children would live in well off country. My parents always brought me to the places where poor and physically handicapped people live. They wanted me to understand their life and help them. I also worked for Catholic Church when I was in the army. The only thing I learned from Catholic Church was that we have to love our neighborhood. And, I have loved my neighborhood. Have you cried for the Philippines? I have cried for my country several times. I also cried for the Philippines because of so many poor people. I have been to the New Bilibid prison. What made me sad in the prison were the prisoners who do not have any love for their country. They go to mass and work for Church. They pray every day. However, they do not love the Philippines . I talked to two prisoners at the maximum-security compound, and both of them said that they would leave the Philippines right after they are released from the prison. They said that they would start a new life in their countries and never come back to the Philippines
Many Koreans have a great love for Korea so that we were able to share our wealth with our neighborhood. The owners of factory and company were distributed their profit to their employees fairly so that employees could buy what they needed and saved money for the future and their children.

When I was in Korea, I had a very strong faith and wanted to be a priest. However, when I came to the Philippines , I completely lost my faith. I was very confused when I saw many unbelievable situations in the Philippines . Street kids always make me sad, and I see them every day. The Philippines is the only Catholic country in Asia, but there are too many poor people here. People go to church every Sunday to pray, but nothing has been changed.
My parents came to the Philippines last week and saw this situation. They told me that Korea was much poorer than the present Philippines when they were young. They are so sorry that there are so many beggars and street kids.
When we went to Pasangjan, I forced my parents to take a boat because it would fun. However, they were not happy after taking a boat. They said that they would not take the boat again because they were sympathized the boatmen, for the boatmen were very poor and had a small frame. Most of people just took a boat and enjoyed it. But, my parents did not enjoy it because of love for them.

My mother who has been working for Catholic Church since I was very young told me that if we just go to mass without changing ourselves, we are not Catholic indeed. Faith should come with action.
She added that I have to love Filipinos and do good things for them because all of us are same and have received a great love from God. I want Filipinos to love their neighborhood and country as much as they love God so that the Philippines will be well off.
I am sure that love is the keyword, which Filipinos should remember. We cannot change the sinful structure at once. It should start from person. Love must start in everybody, in a small scale and have to grow. A lot of things happen if we open up to love. Let's put away our prejudices and look at our worries with our new eyes.
I discover that every person is worthy to be loved. Trust in love, because it makes changes possible. Love changes you and me. It changes people, contexts and relationships. It changes the world. Please love your neighborhood and country.

Jesus Christ said that whatever we do to others we do to Him. In the Philippines, there is God for people who are abused and abandoned. There is God who is crying for love.
If you have a child, teach them how to love the Philippines. Teach them why they have to love their neighborhood and country. You already know that God also will be very happy if you love others.
That's all I really want to ask you Filipinos. "


Rey said...

To the author of this essay, if well intended, should study Philippines’ history -- specifically People Power Revolution. A peaceful revolution not by mere coincidence but because Filipinos are loving and god fearing Christians.

Sociologist calls this author’s type of behavior ETHNOCENTRISM, he things his culture is better than the host country. Clearly the author has case of culture shock.

However, I agree with the author’s opinion on poverty, poor healthcare system, corruptions but we try to improve these conditions through a peaceful process. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo does not threaten her father, mother, brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters total annihilation unlike what Kim Jong-il proposes (nuke-em) if he does not get his temper tantrum way. Imagine Philippines divided: Luzon a democratic country,
Visaya a DMZ and Mindanao a communist …

Peace and Prosper.

Julius said...

That was one hell of a rebutt...

Anyways, I appreciate the fact that he was concern about the standing of our nation in those aspects he cited.

Surprisingly, the 3rd part of your comment too has an element of ethnocentrism. It's true though...

Peace out!

Jon E. Royeca said...


We Filipinos don’t get progressive because we lack nationalism?

Before anyone makes such an insult against a particular race, he should first undertake the necessary research and some observations, like the following:

1. He should first read Philippine history books to know that we Filipinos have always fought for our freedom and our native land – from the times of Lapu-lapu, Raha Soliman, Sultan Kudarat, Dagohoy, Sumuroy, Palaris, and dozens of other local heroes, to Rizal, Bonifacio, Aguinaldo, Mabini, and Jacinto; to the World War II generation, when a million Filipinos perished; and recently to the 1986 People Power Revolution.

2. He should observe that Filipino farmers, fishermen, professionals, employees,industrial workers, service personnel, and others work hard here and abroad to earn a decent living for themselves, for their loved ones, and for their country.

3. He should also observe that we Filipinos help one another in our works and festivities, and during personal agonies, man-made disasters, or natural calamities.

4. He should also look at those Filipinos who volunteer in social service and humanitarian endeavors like the Red Cross and rescue efforts; those who extend financial assistance to poor patients in the hospitals, to students from poor families, and to other needy people; those who plant trees and care for nature, the environment, and animals; and those many other unsung heroes among our countrymen.

Patriotism and nationalism may not always be tangible in our everyday lives, but when the imperative call for it comes, Filipinos respond enthusiastically.

A humbling example of that is the national and local elections of May 10, 2010, in which 38 out of the 50.7 million registered Filipino voters (that was a 75% voters’ turnout) trooped to the polling precincts, and most endured the 2- to 6-hour long wait, the extreme heat and humidity, the hunger, and the exhaustion, just to be able to cast our votes. We did all those sacrifices because we want change – a good government and good leaders. Why do we want all those? Because we care for our country – that’s how simple it is.

The Philippines is also a defender of the democracy of the free world. It is one of those countries that dispatched soldiers to the Korean Peninsula in 1950-53 to defend the South Koreans against the suicidal invasion by the fanatical communist North Koreans. One of those sent soldiers was Fidel V. Ramos, who became our nation’s president in 1992-98.

I am saddened by the fact that after we helped Korea defend its freedom and democracy in the past, here now comes an irresponsible Korean sporadically spitting on our faces by calling us less patriotic, which is a severe insult to all of our painstaking and hard-earned efforts towards a better country.

The problem with some people is that because they are already prosperous, they feel that they already have the right to lecture other citizens about nationalism.

And why did that Korean single out the Philippines? Of the more than 230 countries in the world, more than half are poorer than ours. Why doesn’t that Korean go to the more than 100 countries poorer than the Philippines and also lecture the peoples there about this thing called patriotism?

For those who want to know the real reasons why the Philippines is a poor country, the following link may help:

Jon E. Royeca said...



For some people, the patriotic deeds of the Filipinos in the past and in the present are all nothing!

The past is past; it doesn't count anymore. And so the gallantry, sacrifices, blood, and tears of our ancestors, of our heroes and heroines, of the Filipinos who staged in 1896-98 the revolution against Spanish, of the Filipinos who fought in 1899-1906 the American forces, of the more than one million Filipinos who perished in the fight for freedom against the Japanese invaders in 1941-45, and of the Filipinos who braved armored tanks and warplanes during the peaceful 1986 People Power Revolution -- all of these are nothing because they are already the past! They don't prove anything at all that we Filipinos had done patriotic deeds in the past and that we could still do them again.

The majority of Filipino voters who demonstrated the spirit of burning patriotism in the May 10, 2010, national and local elections -- they are all nothing!

The majority of Filipinos today who work hard and strive hard, here or abroad, to earn for themselves and for their loved ones, and to become productive and honorable citizens of our country -- they are all nothing!

For some people, the patriotic deeds of the Filipinos in the past and in the present are all nothing! They don't measure up to anything! They don't count!

For those people, the one that counts is that Korean student's essay!

Purihin ang langit! Yepeee!


Those people who obstinately cling to that racist Korean student's essay belong to the breed of individuals who love believing what foreigners say against Filipinos.

Instead of defending their very own race, the race of their ancestors, parents, and children, they rather clap the insults of the foreigners.... See More

They are no different from those canines who betrayed their own countrymen to the Japanese during World War II.

If the Japanese invade again our country today, those canines will be the first to their point fingers at, and betray, their countrymen to the invaders.


The belief that rich nations are rich because their citizens are patriotic and that poor nations are poor because their citizens lack patriotism is no different from such other stupid beliefs as the following:

1. Handsome or good-looking guys cannot commit rape; only the ugly men can.

2. Rich people don't steal; only the poor do.

3. White people don't shoplift; only the blacks do.

Most countries and most citizens of the world are poor. If we would follow that stupid belief on patriotism, it would appear that it is only the wealthy people who are and who know how to be patriotic, while the poor citizens don't know how to love their respective nations.

Jon E. Royeca said...


According to the data of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, in 2009, South Korea is the 15th largest economy and 9th biggest exporter out of the 182 surveyed countries in the world. It manufactures and exports electronics, computers, cameras, household appliances, cars, construction equipment, ships, and other high-tech and industrial products, amounting to more than US$350 billion a year.

Koreans believe that they have achieved all of those economic successes because of discipline, perseverance, and most of all, patriotism, their passionate love for the native land. They do love their country.


Dr. Syngman Rhee was elected as the first president of the Republic of Korea when it was established in 1948. He was reelected thrice, but he suffered unpopularity because of corruption, fraud, and terrorism committed by his political party right under his nose.

The people deplored his third reelection in March 1960 because of widespread electoral fraud. They rioted in the cities, sacked the homes of corrupt government officials, and clashed with the police. The uprising forced Rhee a month later to flee the country and settle in Hawaii with his family and with their loot.

Corruption, terrorism, and fraud tarnished the image of the "Father of Korean Independence" and the country's very first president.

Rhee's successor, John M. Chang, began a four-year term in July 1960, but was overthrown ten months later by a military rebellion led by General Park Chung-hee. Park claimed that the military had to intervene to save the country from further corruption. He led the country until he got assassinated in 1979.

Chun Doo Hwan staged a coup in 1980 and became the nation's 12th president (1981-88). In 1996, he was sentenced to death after having been found guilty of mutiny, treason, and corruption. His successor, Roh Tae Woo, who served from 1988 to 1993, was sentenced to 22 years in prison for the similar offenses. They were soon pardoned by Pres. Kim Young-sam.

The culture of Korean corruption has already made it into the international arena.

In December 2005, the U.S. Department of Justice ordered the South Korea-based Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., the world’s largest maker of memory chips for computers and other gadgets, and its U.S. subsidiary, Samsung Semiconductor Ltd., to pay a US$300 million fine to settle accusations that it secretly conspired with industry rivals to fix prices and cheat customers.

The justice department had earlier also ordered Samsung’s rivals, Hynix (another Korea-based company) and Infineon Technologies AG (of Germany), to pay US$185 million and US$160 million, respectively, for the same offenses (AP, December 16, 2005).

Koreans project to the world that they are prosperous because they do love their country.

They are prosperous, there's nothing to argue about it. But if they really love their country, why is it that graft and corruption has permeated their culture and society? Why is it that it has always been rampant, be it in the government or private sector?

I am not making any accusations that Koreans don't love their country. I am not like many Koreans who get intoxicated when they insult the Filipinos by calling us less patriotic.

I am only asking why graft and corruption has always accompanied the vaunted Korean patriotism.

For a complete text:!/note.php?note_id=117933141576533

Jon E. Royeca said...


Ang sa akin lamang, hindi perpekto tayong mga Pilipino. Marami tayong mga pagkakamali, na dapat nating ayusin at baguhin.

Pero kung mahihiya tayo sa ibang bansa dahil sa mga pagkakamali natin, ano namang klaseng ugali iyon?

Iyon bang Russia at Amerika, nahihiya sa atin dahil sila ang mga bansa na may pinakamaraming mga bilanggo at magnanakaw?

Nahihiya ba ang ibang bansa sa atin kung sila naman ang nagkakamali? At ang kani-kanilang mga baho, nahihiya rin ba sila sa atin?

Iyong ilang tao riyan, jejemon lang, hiyang-hiya na sa ibang bansa.

Tungkol sa sanaysay na ito ng Koreano, uulitin ko ang pananaw ko:

Mahal daw ng mga Koreano ang bansa nila. Pero tadtad sa corruption ang lipunan at kultura nila. Mula pa sa kauna-unahan nilang presidente, hanggang sa kasalukuyan.

Pati sa ibang bansa, nagkakalat ang pangungurakot ng mga Koreano. Napaparusahan ang mga korporasyong Koreano sa ibang bansa. Ang mga parusa ay umaabot sa daan-daang milyong dolyar. Nakakahiya.

Tapos, huhusgahan nila tayo tungkol sa ating pagkamakabayan. Unahin muna nila ang mga sarili nila.

Kung talagang mahal nila ang kanilang bansa, wala sanang korapsyon sa bansa nila, sa pamahalaan man o sa pribadong sektor.

Kaso, lantaran ang pangungurakot nila sa bansa nila mismo o sa ibang lupain man.

Hindi ko tinatanong kung ang mga Koreano ay magaling bang magpatalsik ng isang pangulo na kurakot, kung magaling ba silang magpakulong ng isang pangulo na kurakot, kung magaling ba silang pumatay ng isang pangulo na kurakot, o kung magaling bang magpakamatay ang isa nilang pangulo na kurakot.

Ang punto ko ay ganito:

Sabi ng isang Koreano, kulang tayo sa pagmamahal sa bansa natin. Ang tanong ko naman: Sila ba, may pagmamahal sa bansa nila -- sa gitna ng talamak na pangungurakot nila sa sariling bayan o sa ibang bansa?

Paano nila masasabing mahal nila ang bansa nila kung mga kurakot sila, sa gobyerno o pribadong sektor man?

Ano ang karapatan nilang pangaralan tayo tungkol sa pagmamahal sa bayan kung mga talamak silang kurakot?!/note.php?note_id=117933141576533

ADEE said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ADEE said...

Tingin ko ay walang perpektong bansa. May masasama at meron din mabubuti.
May tapat na ngmamahal at meron din naman sakim.
Ang problema na pilipino sa ngaun ay una;
ang Korupsyon na tila nagiging kultura at kaugalian na sa ating lipunan.
Magmula palang sa Barangay Hall ay may mga korapsyon na.
Kaugalian na ng mga pilipino ang Pakikisama subalit ito ay
nagiging negatibo paminsan o malimit pa na sa tingin ko iyon ay
isa na ring korapsyon. Tulad na lamang ng "Palakasan Sistem".
Dahil kakilala o kamag-anak, napagbibigyan.
Hindi ko na idedetalye kung ano man mga iyon.
Marami tayong kultura at mga kaugalian na nagiging daan para sa korupsyon.
Pakikisama at Pagtanaw ng utang na loob. Hindi masama ang makaisama ngunit wag makikisama(evil).
Ok lang tumanaw ng utang na loob ngunit kung ang hinihinging kapalit ay
iligal ay hwag sana gawin. Hindi lamang ang pagnanakaw sa kaban ng gobyerno ang
pagiging corrupt na sa tingin ko ang maliit na bagay na nabanggit ko ay isang
paraan na rin ng korapsyon at panglalamang sa kapwa kahit sa maliit na aspeto ng lipunan.
May punto rin nmn ang isang essay ng Korean tungkol sa Love, at naniniwala ako na
kung mahal mo ang kapwa mo hindi mo ito gagawan ng masama. Hindi ka magnanakaw sa
kaban ng gobyerno at magiging patas ka sa kapwa mo mahirap man o mayaman.

Kaya panalangin ko nalang sa Diyos na sana may Pag-asa pa,may pagbabago pa.

Cristy said...

not because i as a Filipino accept the truth in his essay, more that i appreciate his family's "love" for my country, i am already a traitor. there was no element of derision for our history. maybe i'm not that bright, but what's striking is he stated the obvious: our country is rich, but how many of us are rich, ourselves? what have we done with our enviable natural resources? we've "sold" most of them,made majority of them extinct or near extinction. frankly, i felt sad realizing these truths, it hurt..a lot..BUT rather than lash out at Jaeyoun Kim, i opted to think deeper..If we've really gone so far why have we achieved so little, compared with our neighbors (fact 1.) we are religious, but are we doing enough for our fellow Filipinos? Are we doing it right? If we are, how come a good number of us are still poor? (fact2). we have a good yearly turnout of college graduates and board passers, but, why is unemployment high? why do many want to work overseas? we have good lineage, awe-inspiring history..what have we done with such? how many more have we added to our roster of "heroes'? WHAT history have we made in OUR time? am i a pessimist? maybe, but this pessimist knows truth from lie. the truth is, there's so much put to waste..and not many are running to recoup the loss. maƱana..tomorrow..yeah. .tomorrow,our history's glory will all be but a memory, because we have not made good of TODAY..tell me, another tita Cory or Francis M is in the offing, please..that would mean tomorrow's not that bleak for a Filipino.

Nats said...

Jaeyoun Kim's comment is of course limited only to his observation.

Hindi naman lahat. Pero karamihan kaya nagtatyagang pumila para makaboto ay dahil sa binigyan sila ng pera ng kandidato not for love of country.

Ilang national eleksyon na rin an napagmasdan ko. Walang pera, walang boto.

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EssayLeaks said...

the blog is amazing. Thanks for enlightening people

Boom San Agustin said...

The letter is actually fake.

This is a revised version of a letter that has been doing the rounds via email in the late 1990s.

To me, what the author tried to do is actually good; but the letter is still a hoax.

Unknown said...

Everyone just needs to shut their mouths, and accept the truth. You try to be humble and accepting of comments and criticism, but you completely destroy any chance of it happening by trying to defend in some way, the Philippines' mistakes. Your ignorance is the reason why this country cares so little about progress.

Patriotism and nationalism are a major part of a country's progress. Without heart and good intentions, you have nothing but greedy minds and corrupt motives. How is it that so many Filipinos are educated but have no will to stand up for REAL change. The most educated ones, leave the country and move on to better and more developed ones because they want to be a part nation with real law, real security, real regulation, real liberty, and real justice, and real freedom.

Yes, you protest, but after all the protests are done with and the streets are clear, what then? You just go home and forget anything ever happened. You guys are cowards to your own presence and country. Either do something about it or just live with it and stfu because talking isn't going to get you there.

It worries me, that maybe the only way Filipinos will learn the value of unity and nationalism is by going through a Civil War. Maybe then, they will understand the value or loving one's own country.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I've shared the essay made by Jaeyoun Kim because I believed in what he is saying to love the people and to love the country as well. If you do love, you will not do things that will hurt people. If you do love, you will not do corruption and if you do love, you fear God.

Anonymous said...

It's not even the issue of reading the Philippine History. What for? I agree on what the Unknown commentator said " Everyone just needs to shut their mouths, and accept the truth"
The issue is that this Korean brother saw with us... nkikita mo ba ang sarili kung hindi ka manalamin or kung hindi nakikita ng ibang tao?

Moises Cogtong said...

Filipinos has variety of good and bad manners inherit from the foreign culture...... If their love for the country doesn't express love through purity. Therefore, it is predestined to Filipinos as a one of the poorest nation. It is a current fact as we see.

Angela Yoriko Figueras said...

Jon E. Royeca: Defensive lang?? C'mon, someone be honest here. Lets put pride out of the way and open our hearts and minds...