Monday, November 10, 2008


Okay, so he's the wealthiest Chinese-Filipino according to Forbes magazine, with $3.1 billion in total assets and 30 mega-malls all over the country. But in my book, Henry Sy (and Co.) is also the most un-patriotic and the most un-nationalistic among the other taipans and tycoons in the country. Why do I say this? Just look at the posters and billboards displayed all over his SM Malls, and you will see that all if not most of the pictures of models or endorsers of his in-house products are Caucasian people. The products and apparel they are endorsing are locally manufactued but carry imported brands. Is that why their talents are "imported" as well? We are in the Philippines. These malls are not in some western countries like the US and the UK, but come to think of it even western countries use non-Caucasian models like African -Americans and Asian-Americans. So why can't SM stick to some good old home-grown talent? And why am I making a big deal out of this, many have asked? Well, first of all, Henry Sy owes the Philippines big time for granting his ancestors from mainland China Filipino citizenship and recognition. He shouldn't forget his humble beginnings when he started what was originally called Shoe Mart. In short, admirable as he is since his days of selling shoes and slippers, he must never forget that as his malls are spread all over the country, it wouldn't hurt him a bit if he promotes his stores and his products with Filipino values and culture and with our very own heritage, and by doing so, he could start by using Filipino models to appear on his posters and billboards. At 83, the sting of colonial mentality has never left him. Proof of this is the name of an in-house drugstore located in all SM malls called Watson's. Now, how much western can you be more than that? If I were them, I'd use a little Filipino ingenuity and wit and call it 'SM Megamot.' Okay, so it's not him. It's probably his executives who have decided on this. But doesn't he see them? After all, he and his children are known to do the rounds on their malls on a regular basis inspecting every operations and management styles of each. His fellow-taipans and tycoons are not so guilty of this insult on all Filipinos. SM malls are anti-Filipino then, and we must lodge a protest to this. No wonder whitening creams are selling like hotcakes these days, and right in SM malls! They promote a big lie that to be white-skinned is to be beautiful and acceptable and even successful. Look how these creams have now creeped into every kayumangging-Filipina's shopping list. It gives a wrong message that a brown-skinned person is less desirable and less likely to land a good job and promote or sell a product compared to a white-skinned person or persons who just happen to make it as talents and models for Henry Sy's SM products. The US just had its first non-white president. Time to change our false beliefs. If white is beautiful as it connotes cleanliness, black or even brown are too as they connote completeness and presence of all colors. Love your country like it's the only one you've got. After all, its inhabitants have given you so much wealth making you a true SM - Super Mayaman, but Sobrang Maka-dayuhan.


Maria Angela said...

Watson's is a franchise. Just like 7-11, it's all over Asia.

LCB said...

Thanks Maria Angela, it was just a joke. Nice to see you commenting again.