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1 April 15, 2013
April 15, 2013

Vol. XXII, No. 11

Online: www.

April 15, 2013

Vol. XXII, No. 11 Online: www. April 15, 2013 Carlos Bulosan. Bulosan’s poem theme of

Carlos Bulosan.

Bulosan’s poem theme of Asian Heritage Month

For the 2013 Asian Ameri- can and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month in May, the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Island- ers announced that the theme of this year’s observance is “I Want the Wide American Earth.” The Smithsonian’s Asian Pacific American Center selected it to

highlight the poem by acclaimed Filipino American writer Carlos Bulosan. This year’s AAPI Heritage Month celebrates the contribu- tions of millions of AAPIs to the American story and reminds us of the unique and emerging challenges facing AAPIs as they continue to embrace the Ameri-

can dream. Like Bulosan’s poem, the AAPI community is aspira- tional, unwavering in its belief in the promise of America for all. As Bulosan so eloquently writes:

Before the brave, before the proud builders and workers, I say I want the wide American earth

For all the free.

I want the wide American earth for my people.

I want my beautiful land.

I want it with my rippling strength and tenderness Of love and light and truth For all the free.

Continued on page 23

and light and truth For all the free. Continued on page 23 FilAms proudly carry the

FilAms proudly carry the Philippine flag at the rally (Photo by M.C. Branigin).

the Philippine flag at the rally (Photo by M.C. Branigin). WASHINGTON D.C. - Hundreds of Filipino

WASHINGTON D.C. - Hundreds of Filipino and Asian Americans joined the massive demonstration in front of Capitol Hill April 10 to demand reten- tion of family-based visas and quick passage of an immigration reform bill. Asian and Filipino Ameri- cans joined the demonstration to urge the retention of the family- based visas in the bill that is now being deliberated in Congress. TV stations estimated the predominantly Hispanic crowd at more than 70,000. Simultane- ous demonstrations have been held in California, New York, Georgia and other cities.

Continued on page 22

PH duns US $1.4-M for damages to reefs

MANILA - The Philippines will ask the United States to pay P58 million ($1.4 million) in com- pensation for damage caused by a US minesweeper to the Tub- bataha Reef, the manager of the protected reef said. The amount is based on studies by Philippine agen- cies, including the coast guard, that found the USS Guardian damaged at least 2,345 square meters (25,240 square feet) of the reef, said park superintendent

Angelique Songco. Two weeks after the salvage of the US ship, a Chinese fish- ing vessel ran aground also at the World Heritage Site-listed Tubbataha Reef. The 12 Chinese fishermen, including what Phil- ippine navy officials said were Chinese intelligence officers, were arrested. They reportedly offered $2500 to the arresting officers to release them. Philippine Secretary of For-

Continued on page 22

Presidential hug for Jessica

Presidential hug for Jessica President Obama gives Filam singer Jessica Sanchez a hug after she sang

President Obama gives Filam singer Jessica Sanchez a hug after she sang the US national anthem opening the White House Easter Egg Roll April. 2. Looking on are First Lady Michelle, children and others.

Kerry backs arbitration P4

Kerry backs arbitration P4

Pinay transgender ghts P6

Pinay transgender fi ghts P6

Teach for Philippines P8

Teach for Philippines P8

WSF in Palawan


WSF in Palawan P10
fi ghts P6 Teach for Philippines P8 WSF in Palawan P10 Foreign Sec. Albert del Rosario

Foreign Sec. Albert del Rosario

Manila hits China anew

MANILA - Foreign Secre- tary Albert del Rosario used the launching of the 12-day Balika- tan manoeuvres to accuse China of destabilising the region with aggressive and illegal actions in the South China Sea. He said China’s “excessive

Continued on page 23

OAVs start mid-term polls

MANILA - The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has urged more than 988,384 regis- tered Filipino voters overseas to exercise their right and par- ticipate in the overseas absentee voting (OAV) for the mid-term Philippine elections that started Saturday April 13 and ends May 13, 2013. They will be joining some 20 million voters in the Philippines who will cast their ballots on

Continued on page 23

Viloria loses title P12

Viloria loses title P12


April 15, 2013

22 April 15, 2013 USMPH presses drive for Medicare portability The Washington D.C.-based US Medicare Philippines

USMPH presses drive for Medicare portability

The Washington D.C.-based US Medicare Philippines advo- cates are continuing to push for the passage of a law by the US Congress to allow Americans

by the Commission on Filipinos Overseas in Manila late in Febru- ary, 2013. “Our goal is to promote and expand the current policy of

“Our goal is to promote and expand the current policy of US Medicare Philippines officers meet

US Medicare Philippines officers meet with Manila hospital officials. Among those in photo are Daisy Tucay, Dr. Bambi Lamoglia, Rodel Rodis and Eric Lachica.

and Filipino American retiring in the Philippines to avail of their Medicare benefits. These advocates have also expanded their base in Manila by renewing partnerships and alliances with Philippine health officials and local accredited hospitals when they attended the Diaspora summit sponsored

temporary ‘emergency/urgent care’ coverage in the Philippines under the Medicare Advantage or Part C plans of major US health insurance companies,” said Eric Lachica, organizer and incorporator of US Medicare PH. He said the group’s plan is to “encourage US health insur- ance companies to directly reim-

burse, to guarantee payments and to partner with Philippine hospitals for eligible Medicare patients visiting there.” One of the topics during the Diaspora summit was Medicare portability -- a favorite topic among Americans and Filipino Americans who plan and hope to retire in the Philippines. Currently, Medicare prohib- its coverage for Americans resid- ing, retiring or traveling outside of the US. And the cost per ben- eficiary over the years has risen --significantly doubling, from an average of $6,000 in 2005 to $12,000 per beneficiary in 2010. “The nearly half-million

retired Americans living over- seas and the millions more who travel extensively abroad must either go without care until they return to the United States or pay out-of-pocket for the care they need,” wrote Matthew J. Downs, founder and president of the Center for Medicare Portability, based in Washington, D.C. “We see this as a fundamen- tally unfair situation for retired Americans who have paid into Medicare their entire working lives. This restriction on Medi- care coverage is also unfair to American taxpayers because it ignores the potentially huge cost savings to Medicare offered by

lower-cost healthcare options abroad,” added Downs. But the US Congress will have to first amend the Medi- care law to allow Americans to use their benefits in case they get sick abroad where medical care is cheaper. While the system will save money, the main stumbling block is how to manage medical reimbursements. Previous cases of fraud allegedly committed by doctors in claiming reimbursements for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about the system.

for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about
for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about
for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about
for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about
for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about
for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about
for medical care for American war veterans living in the Philippines have cast some doubts about
April 15, 2013 3 Pinoy convicted for fleecing elderly of $10-M FLORIDA - Decades ago,

April 15, 2013


Pinoy convicted for fleecing elderly of $10-M

FLORIDA - Decades ago, a savvy woman bought stock in a little company called Apple. That move, plus some skillful margin trading, made her a millionaire. Now, age 94 and suffering severe dementia, she has noth- ing ‘duped’, say authorities, by

a pair of South Florida con artists into signing over her $10 mil- lion estate and disinheriting her family. Cynthia Franke and Tyrone Javellana, of Hollywood, were convicted March 26 of financial exploitation of an elderly person,

a first-degree felony that could

result in up to 30 years in prison. Sentencing is set for April 10. The defendants, fully aware of her mental condition, knew that the victim lacked the ability

to consent at the time she signed

the ocuments, said Ron Ishoy, a spokesperson for the State Attor- ney’s Office of Broward County. “The victim thought it was 1990, did not remember her mom’s name, could not draw the face of a clock, could not tell an APS (Adult Protective Ser- vices) investigator what she had for breakfast, lunch or dinner,”

Ishoy told the Daily News. “She could not name all of her siblings, she did not know the value of a dime or a nickel,

she could not recall if she had a hysterectomy, and she did not

an’s mental condition to their attorney when she signed the

mental condition to their attorney when she signed the Cynthia Franke and Tyrone Javellana know where

Cynthia Franke and Tyrone Javellana

know where her sons lived.” Franke and Javellana, a stockbroker and financial plan- ner,

respectively, had a business and personal relationship with the victim that spanned 30 years. “However, the victim never gave the defendants anything until she began showing signs of dementia,” said Ishoy. Neither Franke nor Javel- lana disclosed the elderly wom-

amendment that would leave everything to them” rather than the victim’s family” Ishoy explained. Adult Protective Services launched an investigation after someone submitted an anony- mous tip to the group’s hotline. “Within 24 hours of a com- plaint, APS sends out an inves- tigator to follow up,” Ishoy explained. Javellana is also charged

with exploiting the elderly wom- an’s now-deceased sister, the Attorney’s Office said. “Elderly abuse is a serious problem in this community and it will become even more seri- ous as the population ages,” said

Richard Sherman, a prosecutor in office’s Elderly Exploitation Unit. “We will continue to aggres- sively prosecute elderly exploita- tion in our community to protect our seniors.”

Unit. “We will continue to aggres- sively prosecute elderly exploita- tion in our community to protect
Unit. “We will continue to aggres- sively prosecute elderly exploita- tion in our community to protect


April 15, 2013

44 April 15, 2013 Kerry supports Manila’s decision on UN arbitration WASHINGTON D.C. - US Secretary

Kerry supports Manila’s decision on UN arbitration

WASHINGTON D.C. - US Secretary of State John Kerry says the Philippines’ decision to elevate the conflicting claims in the West Philippine Sea to the United Nations’ arbitral court has the full support of the United States. He gave this assurance when he met with Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Albert del Rosario to underscore the common history and shared values between the Philippines and the United States at the State Department on April 2. It was their first meeting since Kerry assumed his post as sectary of state. Kerry said the case lodged by the Philippines through the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) was a “step in the right direction. China, however, has rejected the Philippine move.

to settle the disputes peacefully and in accordance with the rule of law.” Del Rosario said he also updated Kerry on our arbitra- tion initiative. “I emphasized its importance to the future stability of our region in particular and to the future efficacy of interna- tional law in general.” “We agreed that as strategic partners, it is important for both our nations to further deepen our relations on all levels. We agreed that our long shared history and profound common values serve as a firm basis for this,” Secretary Del Rosario said after his meeting with his American counter- part at the Depart- ment of State here this morning. With Secretary Del Rosario during

provocation is an important part of this cooperation. In this context, we discussed our joint efforts to build the capacity of the Philippines to defend its territory and people. We also exchanged views on the imple- mentation of our agreed policy of increased rotational presence and enhanced exercises,” Secre- tary Del Rosario stated. “We also reiterated our agreement that our defense and security cooperation extends to facing other threats in the region, including natural disasters. We

will continue to cooperate in the areas of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief,” the Secretary emphasized. On regional coopera- tion, both officials agreed to work together to build stron- ger ASEAN-US relations. “We agreed on the importance of working together in ASEAN to promote our mutual interests as well as regional cooperation,” the Secretary said. Del Rosario was accompa- nied by Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Cuisia Jr., For-

eign Affairs Assistant Secretary Carlos Sorreta, Deputy Chief of Mission Maria Austria, and Executive Director Rosalita Pros- pero of the Office of American Affairs. “I stressed that we are com- mitted to seeing this arbitration through. There should be no confu- sion or any doubts about our resolve,” del Rosario added. He said Kerry also commit- ted to work with Brunei, the cur- rent chairman of Asean, on the West Philippine Sea issue.

rent chairman of Asean, on the West Philippine Sea issue. US Secretary of State John Kerry
rent chairman of Asean, on the West Philippine Sea issue. US Secretary of State John Kerry

US Secretary of State John Kerry meets Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario in Washington D.C.

Instead, China said in a statement issued at the 19th China-ASEAN Senior Officials Consultation on April 3 in Bei- jing that it agrees with the Asean to set up a binding code of con- duct in the disputed seas. Senior officials of Asean-China have committed to fully implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and work toward a binding code of conduct. In their meeting, Kerry said after meeting Del Rosario: “The Philippines is one of our five Asia-Pacific allies and a very, very important relationship at this point in time when there are tensions over the South China Sea, where we support a code of conduct.” “We are deeply concerned about some of these tensions and would like to see it worked out through a process of arbitra- tion,” he added. Del Rosario said “Secretary Kerry emphasized the impor- tance the United States gives to maintaining peace and stability in the area. More importantly, Secretary Kerry assured me that the US is committed to support- ing the efforts of the Philippines

his first meeting with his American counterpart were Ambassador Jose L. Cuisia, Jr., Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Carlos D. Sorreta; Deputy Chief of Mission Maria Andrelita S. Austria; and Execu- tive Director Rosal- ita S. Prospero of the Office of American Affairs. In a statement, the Department of Foreign Affairs said both officials acknowledged that there are current challenges to the peace and stabil- ity of East Asia and that it was in the common interest of both countries to work together to prevent conflict and resolve mat- ters peacefully and in accordance with international law. “Our ability to deter threats or

April 15, 2013 5 Sen. Ried to ask Obama to pay WWII vets LAS VEGAS

April 15, 2013


Sen. Ried to ask Obama to pay WWII vets

LAS VEGAS - Senate Major- ity Leader Harry Reid says he will ask President Obama to reconsider compensation claims by Filipino Veterans of World War II who have been denied the benefits because of faulty records. Sen. Ried (D-Nevada) made this assurance in an interview with the Asian Journal news- paper. He said he will write a letter to the President to issue an immediate order. A White House order will direct government agencies to start

accepting records from Fili- pinos who have authenticated proof of US military service is the quickest solution to the problem of World War II veter- ans, most of whom are frail and in their advanced ages, a Las Vegas-based advocacy group had noted. Since the Obama admin- istration set aside $198 million in 2008 for benefits of Filipino veterans who fought in World War II, thousands of claims were turned down because their names were not on a prescribed list. This is even if the soldiers

were not on a prescribed list. This is even if the soldiers Senator Harry Reid showed

Senator Harry Reid

showed proof of US military ser-

vice authenticated by the Philip-

pine government.

It was more than six decades ago when President Franklin Roosevelt promised military benefits to Filipinos who fought with the American military against the Japanese in World War II. But in 1946, the US Con- gress passed the Rescission Act which stripped Filipinos of the benefits they were promised. Since then, several bills have been introduced in Congress in an attempt to give full equity to these Filipino war veterans. It was only through the 2008 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that Filipinos

were finally recognized. The huge number of claim denials, however, has left many veterans uncompensated. “An executive order from the president will get the Fili- pino veterans out of 66 years of not getting recognition,” Cesar Elpidio had told a Nevada senate hearing last year. Elpidio is adviser to advocacy group Filipino-American Veterans and Families of Nevada (FAVFA) which works to help WWII vet- erans in Las Vegas.

advocacy group Filipino-American Veterans and Families of Nevada (FAVFA) which works to help WWII vet- erans
advocacy group Filipino-American Veterans and Families of Nevada (FAVFA) which works to help WWII vet- erans
advocacy group Filipino-American Veterans and Families of Nevada (FAVFA) which works to help WWII vet- erans
advocacy group Filipino-American Veterans and Families of Nevada (FAVFA) which works to help WWII vet- erans


April 15, 2013

66 April 15, 2013 Unlawfully expelled Pinay transgender sues school RIVERSIDE, California - California Baptist University

Unlawfully expelled Pinay transgender sues school

RIVERSIDE, California - California Baptist University (CBU) expelled a Filipino stu- dent when it learned she’s a transgender after appearing and discussing “the stigma of being transgender” on MTV show “True Life.” Domainlor Javier Cabading sued the university, its dean of students David Anthony Lam- mons, and its vice president for student services Lowell Kent Dacus, in Riverside County Superior Court. Cabading, whom the com- plaint refers to as ‘Ms. Javier,’ claims the school unlawfully expelled her “only weeks before she was to begin pursuing her degree in nursing’ because it found out she is transgender. Cabading, who is 26 and a native of the Philippines, says she came to the United States in 2007 to earn a college education and a find a job so she could take care of her mom. “Although Ms. Javier was born male, she has viewed her- self as female for as long as she can remember and as presented

herself as female since she was a child,” the complaint states. California Baptist Univer- sity is an accredited university founded in 1950. It is affiliated with the California Southern Baptist Convention and is the “only Southern Baptist college or university on the West Coast,’ according to its website. The college has more than 6,000 students “from 37 states and 30 foreign countries,” and 508 faculty members at four Cal- ifornia campuses, according to the complaint. The school says on its web- site that its mission is to pro- vide a Christ-centered educa- tional experience that integrates academics with spiritual and social development opportuni- ties. Graduates are challenged to become individuals whose skills, integrity and sense of pur- pose glorify God and distinguish them in the workplace and in the world.” Cabading says she submit- ted an online application to CBU around Feb. 28, 2011, while she was a student at Riverside City






at Riverside City College. ‘On the application, she Domainlor Javier Cabading indicated that her academic goal

Domainlor Javier Cabading

indicated that her academic goal was to graduate from CBU with

a Bachelor of Science in Nurs-

ing,” the complaint states. In response to questions about her religious beliefs, she wrote that she is Catholic and goes to a Catholic church in Riv- erside, Cabading says. When the application asked her to identify her gender, she

Filam con linked to slay of correctional officer

WAYNE COUNTY, Penn- sylvania - Filipino American Jessie Con-ui, who is described by the media as a cold-blooded killer, has been identified as the suspect in the Feb. 25 murder of

a correctional officer at the US

Penitentiary at Canaan in Wayne County. Con-ui, already jailed for life for killing a gang rival in

Arizona, is said to be the alleged killer of correctional officer Eric Williams. That killing could carry a death sentence, Chief U.S. Dis- trict Judge Yvette Kane said as she assigned a pre-eminent death penalty-certified attorney

to represent him throughout the

investigation and potential pros- ecution. Mr. Con-ui, an enforcer for the violent New Mexican Mafia gang, was jailed at Canaan at the time of Mr. Williams’ death on an 11-year sentence for his role in the gang’s Arizona drug-traf- ficking operation. Mr. Con-ui, 36, was sched- uled to complete the federal sen- tence in September and would have immediately been returned to Arizona to begin serving his life term for the 2002 murder. After Mr. Williams’ death, prison officials swiftly trans- ferred Mr. Con-ui to a high-secu- rity prison in Allenwood, Union County, according to the federal Bureau of Prisons and correc-

according to the federal Bureau of Prisons and correc- Jessie Con-ui tional officers with knowledge of

Jessie Con-ui

tional officers with knowledge of the investigation. He could remain there

indefinitely. Mr. Williams died after an inmate blindsided and attacked him as he made his rounds for nightly lockdown between 9:45 and 10 p.m. The attacking inmate hurled the 34-year-old Nanticoke native down a set of steps and pounced, beating him and repeatedly stab- bing him with a crude, knife-like weapon known as a “shank.” Mr. Williams’ parents, Donald and Jean, said they had read online news reports that identified Mr. Con-ui as the attacking inmate and detailed his criminal history. Court records in Arizona and federal courts showed Mr. Con-ui as a climber in the New Mexican Mafia, using violence

and other means to win favor with other gang members while they trafficked marijuana, meth- amphetamines and cocaine throughout the southwest. Mr. Con-ui and two other gang members fatally shot Carlos Garcia outside a laundry facility in East Phoenix, Ariz., in August 2002 to “further or assist” the gang’s criminal con- duct, according to state prosecu- tors and Maricopa County, Ariz., court records. Fourteen months later, federal investigators charged Mr. Con-ui and six other gang members in a widespread drug- trafficking scheme. Mr. Con-ui pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine and was sen- tenced to the 11-year term that eventually led him to Canaan. A presentence report for a

co-defendant in the drug traffick- ing case described Mr. Con-ui as possessing a weapon and said the New Mexican Mafia’s role

in the operation “was to provide

security during the delivery of the drugs.” During the investigation, federal prosecutor Glenn B. McCormick wrote in a court filing, members of the gang were observed sending heroin to incarcerated members, talk- ing about drug deals, taking part in drug deals and talking about people they need to murder - including police officers.

says she checked the box marked ‘female.’ To complete the application, Cabading says, she had to click ‘I agree’ in response to a state- ment of agreement that outlined CBU’s policies for student con- duct. Among other things, the agreement banned smoking, drinking, and tobacco, requires students to attend weekly church services, and tells them to ‘respect the personal integ- rity of every member of the

campus community


ing from profanity, harassment, [and] physical or verbal abuse,’ according to the complaint. Cabading claims: “Neither the application, nor the state- ment of agreement, nor any of the documents referenced

therein, address gender identity, gender expression, or transgen- der persons.” Cabading says CBU


accepted her as an honors stu- dent in a June 10, 2011 accep- tance letter, which said she was eligible for financial aid. She says she applied for an academic scholarship and was awarded $3,500, and received $2,000 more after she auditioned for the CBU’s women’s choir and impressed them with her “skills as a female singer.” But a little over a month later, Cabading says, she received a letter from defen- dant Dean Anthony Lammons, stating that CBU was ‘suspend- ing her registration eligibility” because she had lied about her identify. ‘In response, Ms. Javier acknowledged being transgen- der but denied committing fraud or concealment of identity, and explained how selecting female for her gender on the application was consistent with her gender identity.

2 nature fotogs to record PH barrier reef

WASHINGTON D.C. - Two of the world’s top nature photog- raphers are mounting a 2-week expedition in April to help draw international attention on the unique but endangered Danajon Bank in the Philippines. Tyler Stiem, a spokesman for Project Seahorse, a marine conservation organization based at the University of British Columbia in Canada, emailed this writer about the upcoming mission. Photographers Thomas Peschak and Luciano Candisani join Project Seahorse scientists studying the country’s only double barrier reef April 5-15. The scientific team report- edly includes Dr. Amanda Vin- cent and Dr. Heather Koldeway of Project Seahorse and the Zoo- logical Society of London. The 135-kilometer-long Danajon Bank stretches north of Bohol, between Cebu and Samar islands in the Visayas. It’s home to more than 200 species of coral reefs, over 500 fish species and hectares upon hectares of eco- logically important sea grass and mangroves. It is only one of three double barrier reefs in the Indo- Pacific region (from the Red Sea to the Indian Ocean and onto the

Pacific) and one of only six in the world. Various species roaming the vastness of the Pacific Ocean are believed to have evolved at Danajon Bank. It is home to at least 200 threatened animals, including the elusive tiger-tail seahorse. “The photos will be turned into a series of photo exhib- its that will travel around the world,” Stiem wrote, “to pro- mote conservation of this ecolog-

ically important region of central Philippines.” Peschak is a retired marine biologist who’s now a contrib- uting photographer to National Geographic Magazine. He was recently named one of the 40 most influential nature photog- raphers in the world, produc- ing three books â “ Currents of Contrast, Great White Shark and Wild Seas Secret Shores. He describes himself as a nomad, spending most of the year on assignments. Candisani has been taking pictures of wildlife since 1996. The Brazilian photojournalist has decided to devote his life to promoting biodiversity and conservation, his works often featured in National Geographic, GEO and BBC Wildlife. He has worked with primates in Brazil- ian rain forests to the Rocas Atoll in the Atlantic. He has produced at least 5 photographic books, including the latest ‘Jubarte” about humpback whales released in 2010. They hope to show the photographs in public exhibits at aquariums in Chicago, Hon- gkong, Manila and London by June. Project Seahorse also plans to publish them in a new book about conservation efforts at Danajon Bank. The expedition is a col- laboration of Project Seahorse and the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP) to help raise awareness of the threats against the Danajon Bank. They are hoping the Phil- ippine government will improve protection of the threatened reefs.

April 15, 2013 7 Jose Vargas locks horns with columnist Malkin By Joseph Pimentel Two

April 15, 2013


Jose Vargas locks horns with columnist Malkin

By Joseph Pimentel

Two prominent Filipino writers on the opposite side of the immigration and political spectrum battled it out on Twit- ter on April 4, trading tweets over what the US government should do to undocu-

tweets over what the US government should do to undocu- A. Vargas. mented immigrants. Fil-Am conservative


Vargas. mented immigrants. Fil-Am conservative columnist and TV personality Michelle Malkin and undocumented Filipino journalist and Pulitzer Prize winner Jose Antonio Vargas battled it out on the social media site, providing an insightful look at the






polarizing issue as the Gang of Eight Sen- ators in Washington continue to work on

a bi-partisan comprehensive immigration

reform bill. What sparked the Twitter feud? Vargas sent an invitation to Malkin to discuss immigration matters over ‘adobo’,

a traditional Filipino dish which he volun- teered to prepare. Thanks, Malkin tweets. “I like my ‘adobo’ with an extra- heavy dose of vinegar.”

Earlier, the 40-year-old Malkin, whose parents legally immigrated from the Philippines to the US on an employer visa, wrote a piece criticizing the Associ- ated Press for dropping its use of ‘illegal immigrant’ when referring to the undocu- mented. Malkin rebukes ABC’s coverage and writer Christina Constantini, who in the story and later tweet credits Vargas as one of the people for spearheading the change. Malkin was not pleased. Jose Antonio Vargas, the former Washington Post reporter who spear- headed the whitewashing of our language and our laws on behalf of illegal aliens,” Malkin wrote on Twitchy, a site she founded. ‘In 2011, with great fanfare and elite media sympathy, Vargas publicly declared himself an ˜undocumented immigrant.”Except, as he himself con- fessed, Vargas had documents coming out of his ears”, including a fake passport with a fake name, a fake green card and a Social Security card his grandfather doc- tored for him at a Kinko’s. This led to the “adobo’ dinner response by Vargas on Twitter. Michellemalkin, I can cook it w/ more vinegar. I can make pork ‘adobo’ or chicken-and-pork ‘adobo’. Name a time, place, I’m there, he tweeted. Because of her ethnicity, Malkin (who was born Michelle Maglalang) was expected by many to sympathize with the plight of undocumented immigrants. However, she does not.

Michelle Maglalang) was expected by many to sympathize with the plight of undocumented immigrants. However, she
Michelle Maglalang) was expected by many to sympathize with the plight of undocumented immigrants. However, she


April 15, 2013

88 April 15, 2013 5 Filams are ‘Teach for the Philippines’ fellows By Joseph Pimentel and

5 Filams are ‘Teach for the Philippines’ fellows

By Joseph Pimentel and Mico Letargo

SAN FRANCISCO - Five Filams have chosen to take part in Teach for the Philippine’s pro- gram that trains high achieving Filipinos to teach in struggling public elementary schools in the country. They are committing the next two years of their lives to teaching, for the betterment of public education in the country. One is continuing a legacy. Another one is taking a leap of faith. The rest plan are in it to connect with their Filipino roots. For the next two years, these Filipino-Americans will embark on a bold journey and a once-in- a-lifetime experience -- as part of the inaugural class of TFP. Filams Adam Crayne of San Jose, Lesley De Leon of Chicago, Leslie Espinosa of New York, John Navarra of San Francisco, and Leah Villanueva of Flor- ida will join 49 other Filipinos (including Christophe Henares- Chuidian, who studied in Boston but was recruited in the Philip- pines), as part of this historic corps in the TFP. Their success would impact the lives of 22 million elementary school students in the country. Among the other 49, four are based abroad (Australia and

Japan, to name a few). The rest are young professionals and gradu- ates from some of the top schools

Vea, co-director of US Strategy:

Recruitment and Selection at Teach for the Philippines.

Recruitment and Selection at Teach for the Philippines. Leah Villanueva, Adam Crayne, Leslie Espinosa and Lesley

Leah Villanueva, Adam Crayne, Leslie Espinosa and Lesley de Leon

in the Philippines, including De La Salle University,University of the Philippines and Ateneo De Manila University, among others. “These are the trailblazers who will set forth the path for all future enrollees,” said Michael

“These people are the future leaders and have joined, to make a difference in the country.” As an organization, TFP traces its roots from the Sa Aklat Sisikat Foundation, which advo- cated for functional literacy and better training for teachers and

school administrators from 1999, until it transitioned into TFP in August 2012. The mission remains the same: remove the educational disparity that plagues the coun- try.

“Every child, no matter where you are should have access to a high quality of educa- tion. But the reality is, sadly, that is not the case,” said Vea. The launch of the TFP pro- gram comes at a crucial time when the country is revamp- ing its educational format, and trying to retain teachers and keep them from going abroad. The educational inequality is too substantial. Philippine national hero Jose Rizal once said: ‘Ang kabataan ang pag-asa ng bayan’ (The youth is the hope of a nation.”) However, looking at the shocking numbers of the youth in the Philippines today reveals that every year, two million Fili- pino school-aged children drop out.

700,000 children do not com- plete elementary school; about 1.36 million will not finish sec- ondary school. Another million school children will be unable to enroll, due to poverty. During ‘The State of Basic Education: Gaining Ground” presentation last year, officials found that from 2001 to 2010,

only 51 of 100 school children enrolled in the first grade gradu- ate from high school. Adding to that is a dearth of teachers, who either find jobs abroad or change professions, in order to work elsewhere. The innovative and new pro- gram Teach for the Philippines (TFP) aims to bridge the achieve- ment gap between children from low-income backgrounds and their wealthier peers. “At the end of it all, only 14 percent graduate from college,’ said Stanly Sy, public relations and emerging media officer for TFP.

As a way to compete with other countries around the world, the Philippines revamped its old system where students attend 10 years of schooling (grades 1 to 6 elementary level and first year to fourth year for high school level), to a K-12 system (primary educa- tion to Grades 1 to 10 plus two years of senior high school). Department of Education officials hope with this new model (which takes effect on 2016), by making primary educa- tion compulsory, it would lead to less drop outs and higher-edu- cated Filipinos. “The new K-12 system will produce graduates who are more prepared for college education,” wrote Erica Delos Santos for ‘IConnect’ newsletter.

produce graduates who are more prepared for college education,” wrote Erica Delos Santos for ‘IConnect’ newsletter.
produce graduates who are more prepared for college education,” wrote Erica Delos Santos for ‘IConnect’ newsletter.
April 15, 2013 9 Kristel’s death ‘not in vain’ as UP eases rule QUEZON CITY

April 15, 2013


Kristel’s death ‘not in vain’ as UP eases rule

QUEZON CITY - In a direc- tive released to all Chancellors and UP Cebu Dean, Dr. Alfredo Pascual, president of the Univer- sity of the Philippines, urged all chancellors to allow a reasonable amount of time for registration and payment of (tuition) fees by students. This latest development was among the major changes that have resulted from the suicide of student Kristel Tejada because she was suspended because she failed to pay her tuition fees. ‘’It’s a welcome develop- ment. At least Kristel’s death was not in vain because the very policy that deprived her of edu- cation and cost her life was now lifted. It’s an admission that the said policy does not cater to the interest of the students. I just hope that it will lead to more meaningful changes such as the complete revocation of this policy,’’ says UP Prof. Andres Martinez. Kristel’s death has sparked outrage from the UP community, youth and militant groups, as well as netizens who condemned the institution’s alleged repres- sive policies. UPM student council vice chair Adrian Sampang stressed that the bracketting classification of students is flawed. To rxpress their indignation, UP students in Diliman, Manila

walked out of their classes and held daily vigils, protests, and other mass actions to demand

UPM Department of Behavioral Sciences last Monday in a Mass held in her honor. Her father

Sciences last Monday in a Mass held in her honor. Her father The Oblation in UP

The Oblation in UP is covered in black tarpaulin.

the scrapping of the policies, the junking of the STFAP and its ongoing review, a big-time roll- back in tuition in UP, a tuition moratorium for all state colleges and universities, and the resig- nation of top UP officials. The Oblation was wrapped in black until the burial of Kristel late last month. The much-cherished I.D. of UP-Manila freshman Kris- tel Tejada was returned to her family by the officials of the

Christopher Tejada was touched by this unexpected gift which does not have any use now. The Manila City government also gage him a job. For his daughter, the UP ID was the only proof of her associ- ation with the country’s premier state university and symbolized her education which was her only way out of poverty. Kristel poisoned herself to death by drinking a bottle of silver jewelry cleaner in her

home in Manila. The eldest of four children, she had high hopes for herself and family. She wanted to be a doctor for the poor and eventu- ally help support her other sib- lings. A consistent honor student since elementary, she graduated salutatorian at the Rizal Elemen- tary School in Tayuman, Manila. In high school, Kristel studied at the Manila Cathedral School as a full scholar from first to fourth year. So even if the tuition there was worth P33,000, Christopher says, he did not pay a single cen- tavo. dream. He said his daughter would go to school mostly without any allowance. One time, he gave her a ‘’baon’’ of R70. She used it to buy R20 worth of candies and gave two pieces to her dad. When he asked her what were all those candies for, she said that it will be her lunch in school that

day. Her teacher in General Psy- chology, Behavioral Sciences, according to Prof. Martinez, said Kristel usually went to school with no transportation money. Sometimes, she would shell out some cash from her own pocket and give to Kristel just so she could be able to go home. The STFAP, according to UPM Chancellor Dr. Manuel Agulto, was designed to ease

the financial burden of under-

privileged students by studying

in UP without having to pay the

full tuition fee. Students even receive monthly stipend depend- ing on their bracket. The STFAP brackets are based on the annual family income and have corre- sponding fees or benefits. Kristel was classified under Bracket D was required to pay

only R300 per unit (R7,500 per semester), equivalent to a 70 percent discount on base tuition fees, full miscellaneous and labo- ratory fees. Under this bracket, the annual family income ranges from R135,000 to R250,000, which Kristel’s father strongly contests. ‘’Paano kami naging Bracket

D eh wala akong trabaho nung

nag-apply ng STFAP? Nung nag- katrabaho naman ako one month palang natanggal ako. Ang sahod ko nun R426 a day lang. kahit icompute mo yun hindi aabot ng R135,000 sa isang taon. Naging truthful naman kami, at nung nagkatrabaho ako dine- clare namin, pero dapat talaga nasa Bracket E kami,’’ laments Christopher. Under Bracket E1 and E2, students from families with an annual income of R80,000 and less, enjoy free tuition, miscella- neous and laboratory fees, and receive monthly stipend.

annual income of R80,000 and less, enjoy free tuition, miscella- neous and laboratory fees, and receive


April 15, 2013

1010 April 15, 2013 WSF brings surgical, medical aid to Coron WASHINGTON D.C. - Vol- unteers

WSF brings surgical, medical aid to Coron


unteers of the Pennsylvania- based World Surgical Founda- tion (WSF) have undertaken

a five-day medical mission in

Coron, Palawan late in February,


Unlike other medical mis- sions, they also brought medi-

cal and surgical supplies to the Coron District Hospital which they used in their mission. The Coron mission is part of WSF’s adopt a hospital program. WSF was founded in 1977 by Filipino American doctor, Domingo T. Alvear, a graduate

of Santo Tomas University.

Besides treating patients and bringing surgical and medi- cal supplies good for six months, the WSF missioners also taught the small staff of the hospital about the latest techniques in surgery and medical care. The Coron hospital is headed by Dr. Edgar Flores. In cooperation with the Philippine College of Surgeons, WSF per- formed 224 procedures includ- ing 110 minor surgeries, 50 OB/

GYN, 41 general, 16 plastic and 7 pediatric. The 5-day mission in Coron that started Feb. 24 proves the model of collaboration works successfully with equal numbers

of WSF doctors and local Philip-

pine counterparts, WSF said. Before the missioners

arrived, a 40-foot container van sent to the hospital earlier arrived in several in truckloads. The crates contained heavy

medical equipment that were unloaded and assembled by doc- tors, nurses and volunteers along with local help.

by doc- tors, nurses and volunteers along with local help. Dr. Domingo T. Alvear, Coron District

Dr. Domingo T. Alvear,

Coron District Hospital is the first hospital in the Philip- pines to be adopted by a for- eign organization. WSF said it is using this hospital as a model for future adoptions to come. It promised to be different from other drive-by missions to never return. Palawan Governor Kahlil B. Mitra attended the first day of

the mission thanking the WSF for its generous donation, adopt- ing the hospital and promising to

continue providing needed help in the future. Dr. Flores said that because of the equipment that a modern hospital needs, Coron District Hospital can now serve as a base for future missions not only by WSF but also by local Philippine doctors who can return with reg-

describe their time at the hospital and our mission trip this week. What an honor for our work to be thought of at the same level as theirs. Outside of the operating room, Sister Margaret and some recent nurse graduates volun- teering from the local Rural

recent nurse graduates volun- teering from the local Rural The Coron, Palawan District hospital. ularity and

The Coron, Palawan District hospital.

ularity and sustainable health- care is achieved. “Everything is so organized, and everyone is so helpful,” said Mayette, the chief nurse of Coron District Hospital and one who has worked here for 32 years. “I was so touched to see Dr. Jason cleaning the tables, and doctors/ nurses moving patients from OR beds to recovery room,” said Judith, head OR nurse and staff member of 22 years. ‘Service’ was the word they both used to

Health Unit (RHU) discussed the practice of inserting an IV into patients and the cultural norms surrounding it. Inside the operation room, doctors showed unique techniques of their own specialty in how they perform surgery. There’s a strong com- mitment to educate and learn on these mission trips. Dr. Alvear is the recipient of the 2005 American College of Surgeon Surgical Volunteerism Award sponsored by Pfizer

Medical Humanities Initiative. Dr. Alvear has conducted his first surgical volunteer trip to his native Philippines as a medical student in 1963, and has passion- ately continued the practice for the past 39 years. WSF’s surgical teams have improved the quality of life for thousands of patients in the Phil- ippines and around the world by performing a wide range of surgical procedures, including thyroidectomies, hernia repairs, cleft palette repairs, and hys- terectomies. During his many international medical trips, he is known as a teacher who takes time to work with local physi- cians in sharing ideas and teach- ing new concepts and techniques. Back in the states, he serves as an enthusiastic advocate for surgi- cal volunteerism. Medical missions are common in rural hospitals of the Philippines. One unique element to WSF, however, is its commit- ment to providing needed items and recycled equipment for hos- pitals to continue doing good work. Dr. Flores said that before, the Coron hospital has been doing minor surgeries and orthopedics but major surgical cases are referred to Manila and Culion.

Coron hospital has been doing minor surgeries and orthopedics but major surgical cases are referred to
April 15, 2013 11 ‘It’s more fun in the Philippines’ by Jocelyn Porteria MANILA “Mangyari

April 15, 2013


‘It’s more fun in the Philippines’

by Jocelyn Porteria

MANILA “Mangyari po lamang na isuot ang inyong sinturong pan- gkalikasan at tayo po ay lala- pag na sa Ninoy International Airport” Aaahhhh, the sweet- est words most of our kababay- ans are so excited to hear after months of preparation, shopping for pasalubongs, sleepless nights and the struggle to fit all the stuff in two 50 pounds box or luggage. To top it all, enduring the 24 hours flight including lay overs.

Passengers are getting loud look- ing at the plane window getting a glimpse of the Philippines from the air and the traditional clap- ping once the plane landed. I’m writing through the mercy of Wi-Fi my sons carry with them all the time. I called it portable internet café; it is a small gadget same size as the cell phone and function like a router where they can have Wi-Fi all the time but same as cell phone that they have to buy loads. Hmmnn, IT’S MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES!! I’m all

excited to share my latest expe- riences in one of my usual four times trip to the Philippines each year. Yes, I’ve been here in the U.S. for 18 years but I’m always excited to go home; my Philippines dear Philippines!! I came home in time for the AZKALS 2014 Challenge Cup as their springboard to the AFC Asian Cup that will take place in Sydney, Australia 2 years from now. The ambiance and the spirit of being a Filipino to the Rizal Memorial Stadium gave me goosebumps.

Filipinos cheered not just

every time AZKALS scored goals but whenever they touched the ball. It is a non-stop cheer- ing until you have no voice at


mother is when people cheered for your son and chanting his name when he is being called to get in the game. He is being tagged as “The Filipino Messi” and “The Future of Philippine Football”. My heart was swollen with pride and memories flashed as I remember him as a 5 year old boy starting to learn soccer. Our

The greatest feeling as a

boy starting to learn soccer. Our The greatest feeling as a flag waved in victory and

flag waved in victory and thank you to these young men coming from different parts of the globe to share their skills and uplift Philippine Football. I know they were being bashed as “not Filipinos” but who cares; these boys are more Filipino with their spirit to help the country raise the bar and until the grassroots program will become a reality. Their bashers just to realize, it takes time. IT’S MORE FUN IN THE PHILIPPINES!! I also meet some condo builders to get update on what’s new in Philippine Real Estate. I found myself enthralled with “The Fort” in Taguig where Emperador Stadium is located in nearby Fort Bonifacio. Lucky are those investors and home owners who were able to purchased properties here when it was still developing around four to five years ago. The area is amazingly beautiful!! It is not the usual crowded city but although it is a busy place, it is so relaxing and you can find almost all amenities you can wish for in walking distance. You can also find American Stores and Restaurants just in case you are craving for one. These are a little bit pricey compared to local com- mercial establishments but still reasonable. There were always lines to get into Starbucks, the latest one IHOP, and PF Chang.

establishments but still reasonable. There were always lines to get into Starbucks, the latest one IHOP,
establishments but still reasonable. There were always lines to get into Starbucks, the latest one IHOP,


April 15, 2013

1212 April 15, 2013 PNoy orders deeper probe of Burgos disappearance MANILA - The Department of

PNoy orders deeper probe of Burgos disappearance

MANILA - The Department of Justice, upon orders of Presi- dent Aquino III, is conducting a deeper probe of the disappear- ance of activist Jonas Burgos. The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said it was also in favor of solving the issue as soon as possible. Meanwhile, Editha Burgos, the mother of the missing activist,os has asked the Court of Appeals to reopen the case after receiving documents from an anonymous source that strength- ened links between the abduc- tion of Burgos and the suspected in-volvement of certain elements of the Armed Forces of the Philip-pines (AFP). Included in the newly obtained documents, Mrs. Burgos said, is the picture of Jonas inside what appears to be a detention cell which was taken a

few days after he was abducted. In the said picture, she said Jonas wore a white T-shirt and a fabric used in blindfolding him was seen hanging from his neck. Burgos hopes her motion will be included in the agenda of the scheduled en banc session of the SC justices. In the ruling of the CA on March 18, 2013, it said the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP) were involved in the forced disappearance of Jonas in 2007. The CA particularly identi- fied Army Maj. Harry Baliaga as responsible for the disappear- ance of the activist. It added the Burgos case can be considered a case of enforced disappearance and is covered by the rules in the Writ of Amparo. Reelectionist Sen. Francis

the rules in the Writ of Amparo. Reelectionist Sen. Francis Jonas Burgos Escudero urged both the

Jonas Burgos

Escudero urged both the Depart- ment of Justice (DoJ) and the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) to immediately take hold of the alleged new evidence. In view of the latest claims of Mrs. Burgos on the supposed new evidence, the government now holds the ball in ensuring

the speedy resolution of the case which had bothered the national conscience for more than five years over the likelihood that the crime had been state-sponsored, the senator said. Jonas, son of a journalist Jose Burgos and a farmer-activist, dis- appeared after being abducted by suspected state agents on April 28, 2007 at the Ever Gotesco Mall, Commonwealth Avenue, Quezon City. The Court of Appeals (CA) ruled last March 27, after a three- year review of the Burgos case, that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philip- pine National Police (PNP) were accountable for the enforced dis- appearance of Burgos. Escudero said the law pri- marily mandates command responsibility on military and police officials on the acts of

their personnel who may be held accountable on enforced disap- pearance cases. The law also prohibits the issuances of “orders of battle” by the military, police or any law enforcement agency as justifica- tion for an enforced or involun- tary disappearance. The law seeks to make enforced disappearances a thing of the dark past of the nation and it is the first law that guarantees the rights of the family of vic- tims in seeking redress with the courts. The CPP pointed out that the principal military official who was responsible for the actual act of Burgos’ abduction then 1st Lt. Harry Balliaga, Jr. has since been promoted by the Philippine Army to his current position as army major.

Viloria wants rematch with Marquez

MACAU - His swollen faced laced with plasters after losing to younger Mexican figthter Juan Estrada, Filipino American

boxer Brian Viloria said he wants

a rematch. But Viloria, now the former WBO and WBA flyweight cham-

pion, will have to wait a while because it looks like Estrada has already agreed to face Filipino Milan Melindo in August. “I want a rematch. I gave you this chance so you give me

a chance. You can reciprocate,”

Viloria, bruised and battered, said during the post-fight press conference at The Venetian “I’m not finished yet. Tonight was just a little bump on the road. I’m going to come back, said Viloria, 32, who apologized to his Fili- pino fans for “letting you down.” Estrada, who was waiting

for his turn to be called up the stage, seemed to have agreed instantly, and Viloria gave him the thumbs-up sign while saying,

and Viloria gave him the thumbs-up sign while saying, Brian Viloria “Okay? Let’s do it again.”

Brian Viloria

“Okay? Let’s do it again.” Fight promoter Bob Arum cut the impromptu negotiations short by saying Estrada will take

on Melindo next, and maybe the 32-year-old Viloria can face the winner. The Filipino-American fought Estrada hard for 12 rounds and dropped a split deci- sion. He felt he could have won the fight while others thought he blew it. Neither fighter went down although at times in the closing rounds, Viloria looked ready to go. But he managed to hang on, ducking and throwing punches until the end. One judge had it 115-113 for Viloria while the two others had it 117-111and 116-111 for Estrada. Viloria walked into the con- ference room with a swollen face and plasters above his eyes due to cuts that needed a couple of stitches to close.

Another PBA import faces deportation

MANILA - Jamelle Cornley has won the Philippine Basket- aball Associations’s 37th Season Governors Cup Best Import. But he may not play any- more if it is proven that he allegedly assaulted a Quezon City police officer for creating a ruckus in a local hotel. PBA Commissioner Chito Salud said in a statement that Cornley, who was rrested after allegedly assaulting a police officer March 27 will have “zero chance of playing in the PBA again” if the charges pressed against the six-foot-five forward are ‘proven to be true.’ ‘I understand that this is now a police matter where facts will continue to be established. Mr. Cornley is not currently associated with the PBA in any manner whatsoever.” Salud added: “Be that as it

in any manner whatsoever.” Salud added: “Be that as it Jamelle Comley is shown being restrained

Jamelle Comley is shown being restrained by PC police.

may, I’d perhaps take the occa- sion to remind our players that playing in the PBA is imbued with public interest and they are thus subject to close public scru- tiny within the context of higher standards and expectations.” Cornley, who led Rain or Shine to its first-ever PBA cham- pionship during the 2012 PBA

Governors’ Cup where he also bagged the best import award, will be facing alarm and scandal, malicious mischief, direct assault and resisting arrest charges filed at the Quezon City Police District Station 10. The 25-year-old Cornley allegedly punched Polcie Offi- cer 2 Armando Lazatin, who

Pacman’s next fight in September

MANILA - Philippine boxing hero Manny Pacquiao plans to fight again in Septem- ber, with the bout likely to be staged outside the United States to avoid high taxes, his spokes- woman said April 3. Negotiations are ongoing for a rematch with Mexican Juan Manuel Marquez, who knocked Pacquiao out in his last fight in December, although the oppo- nent and the venue are yet to be finalised, Rose Tamayo told Agence France-Presse. “The fight is definitely in September. We will talk about the opponent and the place after the May 13 elections,” Tamayo said.

Pacquiao, 34, is running for re-election as a congressman in next month’s poll.

Tamayo said Pacquiao wanted his next fight to be out- side the United States, where he has traditionally fought in front of huge crowds and for enor- mous pay-per-view television revenues, to avoid high taxes. ‘Manny wants to fight out- side the United States because

is one of

of the taxes

the top places for consideration.

There is also Macau and Dubai,’ Tamayo told Agence France- Presse. Pacquiao has won an unprecedented eight world titles


in different weight divisions, and was until recently regarded by many as the best pound-for- pound boxer. But Pacquiao lost his World Boxing Organization welter- weight crown in June last year

in a controversial points decision to US fighter Timothy Bradley, then suffered his shock knockout defeat to Marquez. His losses prompted calls for him to retire, but Pacquiao has consistently signalled his intention to keep on fighting. Pacquiao’s sporting achievements lifted him and his family out of deep poverty, as he became one of the highest paid sportsmen in the world and an endorser of a myriad of products in the Philippines. He translated his boxing success into the political ring, winning a seat in the nation’s lower house of parliament in


Pacquiao is running for re- election unopposed in the May polls, while seeking to build a power base for his family. Pac- quiao’s wife and brother are also running for political posts in the May elections. Many Philippine politicians draft in relatives to stand for other elective positions to spread their influence and strengthen their power networks.

responded to the call from Sir William’s Hotel where the former Penn State star report- edly damaged some properties including computers after claim- ing that three women stole his money amounting to P60,000. “If the allegations and charges in this incident are proven to be true, I see Mr. Corn- ley as having zero chance of playing in the PBA again, at least not under my watch.’

This marked the third time in less than a month where the PBA’s image took a hit involving imports “starting with former Petron Blaze reinforcement Renaldo Balkmanâ’s choking incident which caused him a life- time league ban and a P250,000 fine followed by ousted Glo- balPortimport Walter Sharpe’s alleged drunken photo which circulated on the Internet.

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April 15, 2013

1414 April 15, 2013 VA teen recounts escape from Abu Sayyaf LYNCHBURG, Virginia- Kevin Lunsmann has

VA teen recounts escape from Abu Sayyaf

LYNCHBURG, Virginia- Kevin Lunsmann has recounted how he escaped from the terror- ists Abu Sayyafs in the moun- tains of Basilan island in the Philippines after 5 months in captivity. Kevin told the Washington Post about his ordeal. He said that 15 months after his escape he still has nightmares he’s back in Philippines hungry, afraid and alone. He is now back in school and getting used to life in the US. Kevin who was then 14, and his Filipino mom Gerfa, 42, were visiting Tictabon island near Zamboanga city when on July 11, 2011 they were taken hostage along with his cousin, Romnik Jakaria, 21, by the Abu Sayyafs. They were held for two

and a half months mostly in a 5-feet-by-6-feet wooden cage when Gerfa was freed. The kid- nappers demanded $10 million in ransom. (Manila reports said ransom was paid but authorities denied it.) Her husband, Heiko Lunsmann, 50, a nursing home care worker, sought the assis- tance of their congressman and the state department. He said he was in contact with the kidnap- pers and told them he had no money to pay them. After Gerfa was freed, it took another two and a half months before Kevin made his daring escape. Heiko believed they would release their son too but it wasn’t to be. But soon his cousin was released as well.

it wasn’t to be. But soon his cousin was released as well. Gerfa and Kevin Lunsmann.

Gerfa and Kevin Lunsmann.

Gerfa stayed in Manila to negotiate with the terrorists for the life of her only child while Kevin remained in the camp. One night, Kevin managed

to sneak past the guards and fled to the coast overnight. He came across farmers on the way but wasn’t sure he could trust them until one approached him and asked him who he was in Eng- lish.

He told him he would con- tact the military and then the helicopters arrived. Kevin was fine - except for bruises on his legs and arms - and his courage was remarked upon by many. U.S. ambassador Harry Thomas said at the time: ‘In this holiday season nothing makes me happier than knowing that an innocent victim is returned to his family in time for holiday celebrations,’ ‘I also want to acknowledge

the courage of Kevin himself, and his family, throughout this long ordeal.’ ‘It felt so good,’ Heiko said. ‘It felt good, good, good.’ ‘This is home. Good people, good community. This is where Kevin learned how we respect each other, how we value each other,’ Gerfa, who is a lab techni- cian, said. ‘This country appreciates its people — and they will do any- thing to protect their people.’ Now Kevin is adapting to life back at Brookville High - skateboarding with his older half-brother, Josh Driskill and playing soccer with friends. ‘I just feel grateful,’ he said.

soccer with friends. ‘I just feel grateful,’ he said. Metrorail Silver Line Metrorail’s Silver Line is

Metrorail Silver Line

Metrorail’s Silver Line is expected to open the Vienna- Reston route later this year, according to the Washington Post. It said the third rails along the tracks in the middle of the Dulles highway are now being energized. Over the next few months, drivers may spot train cars testing new systems. Work-

ers are putting up windscreens on pedestrian bridges and pre- paring elevators and escalators to carry passengers into new sta- tions. The first phase of the Silver Line should begin carrying pas- sengers through Tysons Corner to Reston later this year.

The first phase of the Silver Line should begin carrying pas- sengers through Tysons Corner to
April 15, 2013 15 If you would like to include your organization’s event in this

April 15, 2013


April 15, 2013 15 If you would like to include your organization’s event in this calendar,

If you would like to include your organization’s event in this calendar, kindly send your informa- tion to Maurese Oteyza Owens at April 20, 27 (Saturday) 8:00pm-12:00mn Philippine Multi-Cultural Center Fund- raiser with Julian Oteyza and his Tutubi Band, 7500 Livingston Rd, MD. Guest bands and enter- tainers are welcome. Public is free. Visual artist create artwork to the music of the band. Help sustain the Center -- donations

encouraged for its support. Con- tact: Grace Villanueva – 301-567-


April 20 (Saturday) 7:30pm Filipino Mass at St. Bernadette Catholic Church, 7600 Old Keene Mill Road, Springfield, VA 22152. Sponsored by Filipino Ministry of St. Bernadette. Con- tact 703-569-1054. April 25 (Thursday) 6:30- 8:30pm PAFC Planning Meeting for Philippine Festival and Asian Festival. Philippine Multicul- tural Center Ladies Night, 7500

Livingston Rd., Oxon Hill, MD 20745. Contact: Aylene Mafnas 703 868 5660 April 27 (Saturday) Filipino American Basketball Associa- tion (FABA) FundraisingTrip to Atlantic City. Meeting Places :

ippine Festival and Asian Festi-

val. 12700 Fair Lakes Circle, Suite 120, Fairfax, VA 22033 Contact:

Aylene Mafnas 703 868 5660

May 4 (Saturday) OLGC

Atlantic City Bus Trip. $45.

Details TBA.

8:30pm. PAFC Planning Meeting for Philippine Festival and Asian

Festival. 12700 Fair Lakes Circle,

Suite 120, Fairfax, VA 22033

Contact: Aylene Mafnas 703 868 5660 June 6 and 13 (Thursdays) 6:30-8:30pm. PAFC Planning Meeting for Philippine Festival and Asian Festival. Locations to be announced. Contact: Aylene Mafnas 703 868 5660 June 15 (Saturday) 6:00pm-

12:00pm. Philippine Indepen-

dence Gala Ball. JW Marriott Washington, DC. Continues the tradition of celebrating Inde- pendence Day with Philippine Embassy dignitaries, the FilAm community, special guests. $85;

premier seats $110. Contact:

Nanette Carreon at NSuyat1681@ June 15 (Saturday) 7:30pm Filipino Mass at St. Bernadette Catholic Church, 7600 Old Keene Mill Road, Springfield, VA 22152. Sponsored by Filipino Ministry of St. Bernadette. Con- tact 703-569-1054. June 30 (Sunday) PAFC

Philippine Festival’s Commu- nity Picnic and Sports Fest. Fun and food, games for children and sports for grown-ups plus

a cultural show and a band

marathon pull the community

together. Special Feature: Parada ng Lechon, Tucker Road Recre- ational Park, Fort Washington,

MD Contact: Mya Talavera at July 20 (Saturday) 7:30pm Filipino Mass at St. Bernadette Catholic Church, 7600 Old Keene Mill Road, Springfield, VA 22152. Sponsored by Filipino

Ministry of St. Bernadette. Con- tact 703-569-1054. July 27-28 (Sat-Sun) Asian Festival with Philippine Village

at Fairfax Government Center.

Cultural performances and food

from different Asian countries;

product and service booths, chil- dren’s area and more. Contact:

Bing Branigin at mcbranigin@ Nov 16 (Saturday) 2pm – 5pm PAFC “Dr. Jose Rizal Youth

Awards” Romulo Hall, Philip-

pine Embassy, Washington. Contact: Aylene Mafnas 703 868


Dec 1 (Sunday) PAFC, Phil-

ippine Embassy and FOCUS, “Paskong Pinoy.” Pryzbyla Hall, Catholic University of America.

(a) 6:45am Springfield Mall in

May 23 (Thursday) 6:30-

front of JC Penny parking lot

8:30pm. PAFC Planning Meet-

(b)7:30am Clarion Hotel , 6400


for Philippine Festival and

Oxon Hill Rd Oxon Hill,MD.


Festival. Sweet City Des-

$50.00 per person with $20.00

serts, 131-A Maple Avenue W,

back from Bally’s. Breakfast and drinks will be provided. For

Vienna, VA 22180 , tel: 703-938- 8188. Contact: Aylene Mafnas

information and reservations


868 5660

contact: or Agnes Espeleta 240.441.9377. April 27 (Saturday) 7:00pm San Pedro Calugnsod Memorial Mass, Sacred Heart Chapel at

May 11 (Saturday) 12:00noon-4:00pm. Asians for Mary Annual Pilgrimage, includes a 60 Filipino man/ woman choir for the event.

OLGC. Light refreshments after

Basilica Shrine of The Immacu-

mass at the Counsel Room. direc-


Concepcion, Upper Church.



Michigan Ave., Washington,

May 2 (Thurs), 6:30-8:30pm.


20017. Contact: Jacinta Mas-

PAFC Planning Meeting for Phil-


Details to follow.

May 11 (Saturday) Marin- duqueneo Assn of the Capital

Area Atlantic City Fundraiser. Pickup at Montgomery Mall, Bethesda 6:00am, drop-off 10. $45(21 and over) $35(under 21) includes busfare and voucher. RSVP by March 31; payment due

by April 6. Contact: mataac@ May 16 (Thursday) PAFC

Planning Meeting for Philip- pine Festival and Asian Festival Philippine Multicultural Center, 7500 Livingston Rd., Oxon Hill,

MD 20745


Mafnas 703 868 5660 May 18 (Saturday) 6:00- 11:30pm, Feed the Hungry, Inc.

“Spring Shindig.” Fort Myer Community Center, McNair

Road, Fort Myer, VA. Contact:

Mila Nazal 301 288-7010

May 18 (Saturday) 7:30pm Filipino Mass at St. Bernadette Catholic Church, 7600 Old Keene Mill Road, Springfield,

VA 22152. Sponsored by Filipino

Ministry of St. Bernadette. Con-

tact 703-569-1054.

May 26 (Sunday) Miss Teenage Philippines Pageant, Inc. Annual Coronation and Ball. Hyatt Regency Crystal City, 2799 Jefferson Davis High- way, Arlington, VA 22202. Con-

tact Trini Padama-301-705-8550 . May 29- 31 PAFC Philip-

pine Festival’s Brown Strokes

on White Canvas Art Exhibit.

Opening reception Wednes- day, May 29 at 6:30pm. Loca- tion Romulo Hall, Philippine Embassy. Contact: Julian Oteyza

at or


May 30 (Wednesday) 6:30-


Philippine Embassy. Contact: Julian Oteyza at or 703.969.5469 May 30 (Wednesday ) 6:30- Contact:
Philippine Embassy. Contact: Julian Oteyza at or 703.969.5469 May 30 (Wednesday ) 6:30- Contact:


Around DC in Pictures

April 15, 2013

1616 Around DC in Pictures April 15, 2013
1616 Around DC in Pictures April 15, 2013 The Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote (APIA

The Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote (APIA Vote), held a de-brief and retreat in Washington, DC, last March 22 to 24. Volunteers of the national campaign attended the three-day event, organized by Ms. Christine Chen, Execu- tive Director, APIA Vote. The team exchanged ideas on how to effectively ran a registration and voters campaign and to continue to advocate for more participation by the Asian Pacific Islander and American community. An estimated 58.7% of eligible voters turned out to vote,in the 2012 Presidential election, below the 2008’s benchmark high but still above most presidential elections in the past 40 years.Minesota rank number 1 in turnout with an estimated 76% of eligible voters casting votes, follwed by Wisconsin by 73.2%. Virginia was 7th with 66.9%, and Maryland in 8th with 66.8%. Washington, DC was 22nd, with 63.3%, and last was Hawaii with 44.5%.

DC was 22nd, with 63.3%, and last was Hawaii with 44.5%. The Philippine American Foundation For

The Philippine American Foundation For Charities, officially acknowledged the 2013 grant recipients April 3 at the Philippine Multi Cultural Center. They are Al Santoli for Asian America Initiative (AAI), Ron Curameng for YOYO Cultural Group, Marindoqueno Inc, Gawad Kalinga, Angkop, Mabuhay, Inc., and American University-FOCUS. Also in photo are officers and members of the PAFC Board and officers headed by Mr. Ador Carreon (right, first row.) (Bing C. Branigin)

by Mr. Ador Carreon (right, first row.) (Bing C. Branigin) The All Nippon Airlines held a

The All Nippon Airlines held a reception at the Mayflower Hotel recently to announced their new aircrafts from Dulles Airport to Tokyo, Japan and continuing to other major cities in Asia, including Manila. Hundreds attended the reception, including Filipino American owned travel services in the Washington, DC., area. (By: Bing Cardenas Branigin)

Visit us online:

Cardenas Branigin) Visit us online: Avante-Garde artist and magician Julian Oteyza, from

Avante-Garde artist and magician Julian Oteyza, from Virginia, presented Juliana Chang, a world champion female magician from China, an original rotating “Dyslexart” painting, at the conference of the International Broth- erhood of Magicians held in Alexandria, Virginia April 6, 2013. Chang was an acrobat touring with a Chinese group when she injured her foot and was forced to retire a few years ago. This forced her to focus on her other inter- est, performing magic. She got so good at it that she started performing all over the world and winning competitions.

performing all over the world and winning competitions. The Mail’s Bing Branigin, after a long wait,

The Mail’s Bing Branigin, after a long wait, finally gets a picture of the Cherry Blossoms in bloom.

Asian Heritage Festival set May 18 in DC

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In celebration of Asian Heritage Month, Asia Heritage Founda- tion once again brings Asian flair to the Nation’s Capital Main Street with its 8th annual National Asian Heritage Festi- val--Fiesta Asia. The Signature Celebration is a multicultural street fair on Saturday, May 18, 2013 from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM along Pennsylvania Avenue NW between 3rd & 6th Streets in the District of Columbia. Fiesta Asia Street Fair is a Key Partner Event of Passport DC. This year’s featured high- light is the new Fiesta Asia Emerging Stars Contest - a live talent search for ages 5 to 17. AsiaMoves, our annual ‘learn online, dance in the streets’ proj- ect is rocking a Bhangra Mania theme. Everyone can try their skills at the Fortune Cookie Writing Contest and vote for their favorite ‘word of wisdom’

online. Entertainment and activi- ties are scheduled for nine con- secutive hours featuring five stages, five zones, over eight hundred performers and sev- enty diverse groups from over twenty cultures locally, region- ally and internationally. Admission to Fiesta Asia Street Fair is FREE and open to the public. In addition to the May 18th street fair, DC metro area residents can explore and experience a variety of cultural activities including, Fiesta Asia @ Silver Spring on May 4th, Fiesta Asia Planet Family @ Smithson- ian’s National Zoo on May 12th & Fiesta Asia Film Fest @ West End Cinema on May 28th -30th. For more information about par- ticipation as a partner, sponsor, exhibitor, volunteer, or about our month long activities, please visit www.asiaheritagefounda-

April 15, 2013 17 Philippine Oriental Market & Deli celebrates 35th year By Jennie L.

April 15, 2013


Philippine Oriental Market & Deli celebrates 35th year

By Jennie L. Ilustre

Oscar and Evelyn Bunoan marked the 35th anniversary of the Philippine Oriental Market and Deli on April 9 with the blessing of their newly-reno- vated store, located in Arling- ton, Virginia. The event was a double celebration, as friends also toasted Oscar’s birthday. Through the years, the cou-

ple’s business has been a part of Mainstream America. Ameri- cans keep coming back for pancit (noodle dishes). The spring roll remains the all-time favorite of most customers. Evelyn herself has been fea- tured in the D.C. Examiner. She was a guest on WUSA-TV9. She’s

a regular guest at the Summer

Asian Festival, conducting cook- ing demonstrations. Evelyn and Oscar put in

a lot of hours in growing their

business. It’s a partnership that’s rooted in “caring about pro- viding varied, healthy food for our customers, and also offer- ing a wide range of items,” said Evelyn. They are popular with people of all ages. They also have a wide following as Manila Mail columnists. He has a jokes column. She shares her own reci- pes and kitchen tips. “It is a major milestone, yes,” said Oscar, who is known for his keen sense of humor and friendly ways. “What makes it special is we view our customers

as family and friends.” Evelyn recalled: “Yes, we consider our customers as family. When I started, some of my customers were college students. Now, their grown-up children are among my custom- ers. Some families call me up and order a whole lunch or dinner, or cakes for some special occa-

a whole lunch or dinner, or cakes for some special occa- Oscar and Evelyn Bunoan proudly

Oscar and Evelyn Bunoan proudly pose in front of their renovated Philip- pine Oriental Market & Deli.

of their renovated Philip- pine Oriental Market & Deli. Friends of Oscar and Evelyn Bunoan gathered

Friends of Oscar and Evelyn Bunoan gathered at the Philippine Oriental Mart in Arlington Va. on April 9 to celebrate Oscar’s 67th Birthday and the blessing of the newly-renovated store, which opened 36 years ago. Attending were, from left: Oscar, Fr. Randy Gonzales, Evelyn, Becky and Pat Pagsibi- gan, Herb Manila, Julius Jose, Jose Donato, Emy Batulan, Lem and Becky Ramos. Guests also included Tony Donato, Jennie Ilustre, Miriam Riedmiller and her mother, Mrs. Bustamante. (Photo by Jennie L. Ilustre)

sions–the way one would ask their mom or aunt. They like that

everything tastes home-cooked, or home-baked.” Indeed, Fr. Randy Gonza- les, CICM, who officiated at the store and deli’s blessing, and guests felt that way. “Everything is fresh and home-cooked–and the hosts are so nice,” said Becky Pagsibigan. The menu consisted

of crab salad, sisig, vegetable lumpia, grilled jumbo shrimps and adobo. Cake was served with tea and Starbucks coffee and the Philippine favorite, cara- melized sago drink. Guests also included Jon Melegrito, Tony and Josie Donato, Lem and Becky Ramos, Pat Pagsibigan, Emy Batulan, Julius Jose, Herb Manila, and

Pat Pagsibigan, Emy Batulan, Julius Jose, Herb Manila, and Fr. Randy Gonzales, CICM, leads a prayer

Fr. Randy Gonzales, CICM, leads a prayer as he blesses the newly-renovated Philippine Oriental Market and Deli, which Evelyn Bunoan (center) opened 36 years ago in Arlington , Va. The April 9 event was also a celebration of Oscar Bunoan’s 67th birthday. (Photo by Jon Melegrito)

of Oscar Bunoan’s 67th birthday. (Photo by Jon Melegrito) The paintings of Evelyn are displayed on

The paintings of Evelyn are displayed on walls of the Deli.

Miriam Riedmiller and her mom, Mrs. Bustamante. Nowadays, customers can also enjoy the display of Evelyn’s paintings, while gobbling down their food. Yes, this chef also paints. Self-taught, she has sold oil paintings to customers. One wonders where she finds the time (at night, when she’s doing the laundry, working on three paintings at a time.) Evelyn Bunoan started her career in numbers, not in art (she earned her B.A in accounting from the University of the East.)

Later, she enrolled at Le Cordon Bleu in London and studied French cuisine and patisserie, graduating with French Master Chef credentials. She bought the store in 1978, while she was still working at the World Bank. She retired from the Bank in 2000, after working for nearly three decades. The store is located on 3610 Lee Highway in Arlington, Virginia (across Safeway) with Tel. No. (703) 528- 0300. It is open from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., from Wednesday to Sunday.

is open from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., from Wednesday to Sunday. Carlo Yano finally ties

Carlo Yano finally ties the knot with longtime girlfriend Monique Arciaga in a civil wedding ceremony last April 4, 2013, in Maryland. The event was attended by close family members and some friends from the diplomatic circle. In this picture are from left, first row: Roberto Gunio, Jane Docampo, Thelma Arciaga (mother of the bride), Monique Arciaga and Carlo Yano, Estela Yano (mother of the groom), Kim Razon Second row: Gino Sarrate, Mike Docampo, Delfin Lorenzana, Alexander Yano, Maj. Gen. Cesar Yano (Father of the groom).

Alexander Yano, Maj. Gen. Cesar Yano (Father of the groom). Hon. Maria Andrelita Austria, Charge d’

Hon. Maria Andrelita Austria, Charge d’ Affaires of the Philippine Embassy, led a wreath-laying ceremony at the World War II Memorial to commemorate the Fall of Bataan 71 years ago on April 9. Participating were Ret. Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba, Ret. Maj. Gen. Delfin Lorenzana, Brig. Gen. Yano, Filipino American community leaders and supporters, Philippine Embassy offi- cials and military attaches. (photo by Jon Melegrito)

1818 U.S. News Briefs

April 15, 2013

1818 U.S. News Briefs April 15, 2013 Lorna assumes post as NY district court judge NEW

Lorna assumes post as NY district court judge

NEW YORK - Lorna G. Schofield, the first Filipino American district court judge, was sworn in by Chief US Dis- trict Court Judge for the South-

sworn in by Chief US Dis- trict Court Judge for the South- Lorna G. Schofield ern

Lorna G. Schofield

ern District of New York Loretta

A. Preska at the ceremonial court

room on Pearl Street in Manhat-

tan on March 28, 2013. Over 100 guests, including Sen. Chuck

E. Schumer (D-New York) who

recommended her to President Obama, Lorna’s partner Stephen Landsman and her daughter, close friends and colleagues wit- nessed the event. A proclama- tion from President Obama was read as Schofield, clad in black robes, stood up to be sworn in. Then she climbed the stairs to sit alongside her judicial peers and the Chief Judge. Schofield is the first Filipino American to serve as an Article III U.S. Fed- eral court judge. During the reception that followed, Judge Schofield received the congratu- lations from Schumer, Temple University School of Law Dean JoAnne A. Epps, and others.

APAICs leadership award for 2013

WASHINGTON D.C. - Applications are open for the 2013 APAICS National Lead- ership Academy. The annual Academy gives Asian Pacific American leaders the tools to successfully reach their goals, whether they are to be elected to a higher political office or coalition building. Academy alumni include Representative Colleen Hanabusa (D-Hawaii) and Hawaii State Representative and APAICS Board of Directors Member Scott Nishimoto. This year, the Academy will be held from May 9th and 10th at the Washington Hilton in Washing- ton, D.C. on 1919 Connecticut Ave NW. The Academy will be split into two separate tracks for local elected officials (Day 1) and community activists (Day 2).

FASA starts search for Pinoy identity

SAN FRANCISCO - A new student group fosters Filipino men in developing identity in Campus. Real men don’t cry. Real men also don’t talk about family issues, real men don’t suffer, and real men are aggres-

sive and assertive. Most impor- tantly, real men never, ever, talk about their feelings. All of those misconceptions and more are the targets of a new group on campus whose aim is to help Fil- ipino men navigate a universal search: the search for who they are. “Lalake,” or boys in Taga- log, is a new support group at SF State for male Filipino students to discuss and explore their cul- tural and gender identities in a

safe, protected space. It’s a place to talk. Started through a collabora- tion between Filipino-American history professor Eric Pido and Ismael de Guzman, a university counselor, the group meets once

a week in Burk Hall in the hope

that an open forum can heal the

wounds for men exploring what

it means to be Filipino. The idea

for Lalake came from the sheer

number of male Filipino students that would come to Pido with the same identity struggles time and time again, he said.

Jessica Sanchez returns to ‘Idol’

LOS ANGELES - Filipino American Jessica Sanchez late last month performed at the elimination round of the 2013 American Idol show and sang

a tune from her first single and

first solo album “Me, You & The Music”. Sanchez, the second placer in American Idol last year, performed the song with R&B star Ne-yo. She told “Balitang America” that she was initially nervous about doing the perfor- mance on the Idol stage, but she

eventually got over her jitters. “I just let go because I was, like:

˜Girl, you’re not gonna be judged tonight,” Sanchez said. She also pointed out that having Ne-yo on hand for the performance helped her get over her nervousness. About her first single and first solo album, Sanchez explained that she had a big hand in craft- ing her music. Sanchez also confirmed that she will be a guest star on the hit musical TV show, “Glee”.San- chez’s two-episode arc on ‘Glee” will air in May. Later this year, in June, Sanchez will again return to the Philippines to promote her first solo album.

Filam guerrilla dies in NJ at age 87

BERGENFIELD - Fe Tolen- tino (Pening), of Bergenfield, New Jersey died March 25 at age of 87. She was born in the Phil-

ippines and came to the United States in 1981. Before retiring in 1987, she worked at Bradley’s in Hacken- sack. During World War II, she joined the underground move- ment, Filipino American Irregu- lar Troops conducting intel- ligence surveillance until the

liberation of the Philippines in 1945. She was awarded due rec- ognition by the American gov- ernment as a Deserving Guerilla

by the American gov- ernment as a Deserving Guerilla Fe Tolentino of World War II. She

Fe Tolentino

of World War II. She worked with the Phil- ippine government’s Commis- sion on Elections; managed and operated a family-owned theater business before going to Vietnam where she was the chief docu- mentation officer of the Army and Air Force at Nhatrang Depot until the fall of Saigon in 1971. Predeceased by her husband, Jonas Tolentino, she is survived by her children, Erly Cortez, Pepe Tolentino, John Tolentino

and Frayda Ascrate; nine grand- children; seven great-grandchil- dren and various in-laws, nieces, nephews and other relatives.

Pinoy Taekwondo’s winning streak

NEW YORK - Former Phil- ippine Team Taekwondo cham- pion turned coach Rodolfo Valenzuela Jr. has produced several gold medalists among his students in the Philippines. Now based in New York, he continues that winning streak as a teacher and coach of Tae- kwondo at Central Park in Man- hattan. Just recently, two of his students, bagged gold medals at the 2013 USAT New York State Championships held March 16 at

Queens College-Fitzgerald Gym, hosted by the New York State Taekwondo Federation. Jaron Rothbaum, 8, won a gold in spar- ring competition, while Jamie Schimmer, 6, received a gold in poomse/forms. Both Rothbaum and Schimmer are now qualified to compete for the 2013 USAT National Championship sched- uled in July in Chicago, Illinois.

No more illegal immigrants - AP

The Associated Press’s AP Stylebook made some changes in how we describe people living in a country illegally. Senior Vice President and Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll explains the thinking behind the decision: The Stylebook no longer sanctions the term “illegal immigrant” or the use of “illegal” to describe a person. Instead, it tells users that illegal should describe only an action, such as living in or immi- grating to a country illegally. AP has rejected descriptions such as “undocumented” because it is not precise. A person may have plenty of documents, just not the ones required for legal resi- dence.) The new section on mental health issues argues for using credibly sourced diagnoses instead of labels. Saying some- one was “diagnosed with schizo- phrenia instead of schizophrenic, for example.

Tribute to Filam labor movement

SACRAMENTO, Califor- nia - A bill requiring California public schools to instruct stu- dents on the contributions of Filipino Americans to the farm labor movement unanimously passed the Assembly Education Committee on March 20. AB 123 will now move to the Assembly Appropriations Committee and, if successful, it will go to the floor for a full Assembly vote. Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland), the bill’s sponsor,

noted that Filipino Americans are the largest Asian population in California and continues to grow, yet the story of Filipinos’ contributions to the farm labor movement is an untold part of California history.” The goal of AB 123 is to supplement California’s public school instruction on its “rich farm worker history,” explained Bonta, who is the first Filipino American to be elected to the State Legislature. Latino farm worker icon Dolores Huerta, who was inducted into the Cali- fornia Hall of Fame, stated that although she rarely had time to

testify in support of legislation, she did not want to miss this his- toric opportunity to support AB


Virgin the best, United the worst

NEW YORK - Virgin Amer- ica did the best job of flying cus- tomers last year while United Airlines was the worst, though passengers experienced over- all better performance, a study showed. The performance of the 14 leading carriers in 2012 was about the same as the best year ever in 2011, according to the 23rd annual national Airline Quality Rating (AQR), which ranks airlines based on U.S. Department of Transportation figures. The industry improved in two of four areas: on-time per- formance and baggage handling. Involuntary denied boardings and customer complaint rated were higher, the study said. Virgin America had the best bag- gage handling rate, 0.87 mishan- dled bags per 1,000 passengers, and American Eagle had the worst, at 5.80 mishandled bags per 1,000 passengers. Hawaiian Airlines, owned by Hawaiian Holdings Inc, was best at stick- ing to schedules, while Skywest Inc’s ExpressJet and AMR Corp’s American Airlines were the worst, the study showed.

ing to schedules, while Skywest Inc’s ExpressJet and AMR Corp’s American Airlines were the worst, the
April 15, 2013 19 ‘Flirter in Chief’ apologizes! WASHINGTON D.C. - Pres- ident Obama has

April 15, 2013


‘Flirter in Chief’ apologizes!

WASHINGTON D.C. - Pres- ident Obama has apologized to California Attorney General Kamala Harris for saying she was “the best-looking attorney general in the country” during a Democratic fundraiser April 4. Obama’s comment stirred up a controversy, particularly in the California press. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said April 5 that after the event, Obama called Harris “to apologize for the distraction created by his comments.” “They are old friends, good friends and he did not want in any way to diminish the attorney general’s professional accom- plishments and her capabilities,” he said. Asked whether Obama only apologized for the “distraction,” Carney clarified that “he apolo- gized for the remark.” A spokesman for Harris also said that she and the president “had a great conversation and she strongly supports him.” The unusual slip came during a Democratic fundraiser in Atherton, California. While toggling through the routine introductions of local dignitaries, Obama offered effu- sive praise for Harris.

dignitaries, Obama offered effu- sive praise for Harris. President Obama with Kamala Harris, the “best looking

President Obama with Kamala Harris, the “best looking Attorney General in the US.’

“You have to be careful to, first of all, say she is brilliant and she is dedicated and she is tough, and she is exactly what you’d want in anybody who is admin- istering the law, and making sure that everybody is getting a fair shake,” Obama said. He added: “She also hap- pens to be by far the best-looking

attorney general in the coun- try -- Kamala Harris is here. It’s true. Come on. And she is a great friend and has just been a great supporter for many, many years.” The married president took some ribbing for the comment, which teetered on the line of pro- priety.

RNC reaches out to Asians; ‘Mail’

WASHINGTON D.C. - As part of its campaign to include minorities and Asians in its new outreach program, the Republi- can National Committee chaired by Reince Priebus has included the ‘Manila Mail’ in its mailing list.

The latest press release to the Mail was about the speech of Mr. Priebus at the National Press Club breakfast March 18 titled “The Party of Growth and Opportunity.” Priebus said the loss in November was a wake up call that spurred the GOP to initiate the most public and most comprehensive post-elec- tion review in the history of any national party The review, he said, explained the reasons why the Republicans lost in the presi- dential race. “Our message was weak; our ground game was insufficient, we weren’t inclu- sive; we were behind in both data and digital and our primary and debate process needed improve- ment,” Priebus declared. He said “the five most important areas where we’re taking immediate, substantive actions: messaging demographic partners cam- paign mechanics technology and the primary process. Excerpts:

“Our task will be to reach

out to the most voters and build the best infrastructure ever. A passion for the issues

build the best infrastructure ever. A passion for the issues Reince Priebus drives good campaigns; and

Reince Priebus

drives good campaigns; and voters of all races, income levels, and backgrounds need to under- stand that our policies offer a chance for a brighter future. “The report offered some specific examples of areas where Republicans fell short in this regard, highlighting the ways some groups of voters have been turned off. It also highlighted examples of Republican inno- vation - particularly among our governors - that have won over newvoters. These governors pro- vide new ideas for the way for- ward.”

among our governors - that have won over newvoters. These governors pro- vide new ideas for


April 15, 2013

2020 April 15, 2013 PAFC Helps Rebuild Classrooms When Typhoon Sendong hit the southern Philippines at

PAFC Helps Rebuild Classrooms

When Typhoon Sendong hit

the southern Philippines at the

end of 2011, the Board and Offi-

cers of PAFC quickly reacted by

organizing back-to-back fund-

raisers, including a Happy Hour

and an instant Alay Concert. In

a matter of weeks, $8,000 was

raised and turned over to Feed

the Hungry for the rebuilding of

classrooms in Indahag Elemen-

tary School (IES), Cagayan de

Oro. Additional funds were pro-

vided by Jonathan and Terry

Gaw of American Express, Kona

Visayan Club of Hawaii, and

FilAm Communities in Washing-

ton, DC, Kona and LasVegas. At

the end of 2012, even before the

classrooms were inaugurated,

the classrooms were in use by

fifth graders.

Indihag Elementary School

compound holds several build-

ings, but some were damaged

when the Sendong typhoon hit.

Classrooms donated by PAFC

and groups mentioned above

hold 50 students each and came

with desks, blackboards and

other needed items.

and came with desks, blackboards and other needed items. Principal of the Indahag Elementary School Karen

Principal of the Indahag Elementary School Karen C. Verdad is interviewed by ABS-CBN in front of the new classrooms.

is interviewed by ABS-CBN in front of the new classrooms. Chairman Ador Carreon of PAFC and

Chairman Ador Carreon of PAFC and his wife Nanette visited the class- rooms last February 26 accompanied by their host Bong Pelaez, son of former Ambassador/Vice President Emmanuel Pelaez and regional chair- man of the Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals. Mr. Carreon said he was pleased and proud of what he witnessed, “Education is so important to Filipino families, so it was wonderful to see that PAFC was able to contribute classrooms for many children.” He continued, “I want to tell everyone back in Washington, DC, their contributions have brought much joy to these children.”

PH marks Bataan

MANILA, Philippines - As the nation observes Araw ng Kagitingan April 9, the Depart- ment of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has called on all local government units (LGUs) to lead in the 2013 cel-

ebration by holding meaningful activities that will highlight the bravery and valor of our coun- try’s veterans. Executive Order No. 203, Series of 1987 has declared April 9 of every year as Araw ng Kagit- ingan, and the theme for celebra- tion this year is: “Ang Beterano:

Sigla at Inspirasyon ng Kabataan Tungo sa Tuwid na Daan.” To ensure a meaningful observance, the Secretary of National Defense was tasked by the President to lead the cel- ebrations and create a technical working group, with the DILG

as one of its members. In this light, all local chief executives (LCEs) have been tasked to conduct activities in commemoration of the Araw ng

Kagitingan in areas with histori- cal value and to observe Philip- pine Veterans Week from April 5

to 11, 2013.

The activities lined up for celebration include a wreath-lay-

ing ceremony which was held at the Libingan ng mga Bayani on

ing ceremony which was held at the Libingan ng mga Bayani on The Dambana ng Kagitingan

The Dambana ng Kagitingan (Shrine of Valor) a 92-meter cross erected at 555 meters above sea level in Mount Samat, Bataan was again the focal point of attention April 9 as the nation celebrated Araw ng Kagitingan.

April 5, and a tribute to all Fili- pino heroes at Filipino Heroes Memorial in Cavite which was held on April 7.

Araw ng Kagitingan proper will be observed at the Mount Samat National Shrine in Pilar, Bataan.

Filvets protest Obama’s inaction on equity claims

By Jennie L. Ilustre

Washington, D.C.-Area veterans protested the Obama administration inaction on denied one-time equity pension benefits at a wreath-laying cer-

pino WWII veterans living in the Philippines. Some 4,000 of over 20,000 rejected veterans have applied

for reconsideration. The US gov-

ernment has paid equity pen- sions to over 18,000 qualified

ernment has paid equity pen- sions to over 18,000 qualified Filipino American veterans show support for

Filipino American veterans show support for those who were denied pen- sions.

emony marking Bataan Day of Valor April9 Tuesday. The cer- emony took place at the Bataan- Corregidor fountain in the WWII National Memorial here in the nation’s capital. President Barack Obama signed the stimulus law in 2009, which included the equity pen- sion provision for Filipino and Filipino World War II veterans. Last year, advocates and the Philippine embassy urged Obama to issue an Executive Order to allow other official doc- uments certifying to the service of the rejected veterans, such as official discharge papers. Under the law signed by Obama on Feb. 17, 2009, only those whose names are in the 1948 Revised Reconstructed Guerrilla Roster (RRGR) kept in Missouri, are qualified for the equity pension of $15,000 for Filipino American WWII veter- ans residing in the US and the Philippines, and $9,000 for Fili-

veterans in the Philippines and in the US. Remarked veteran Celestino

Almeda, in an interview at a pro- gram held subsequently at the Philippine embassy: “It has been


months since Obama formed


Interagency Working Group

to solve our veterans’ service rec- ognition problem. We’ve been waiting and waiting. Nothing


happened.” In a statement issued by


American Coalition for Fili-

pino Veterans, of which he is a

member, he noted: “Our friend

in the White House, Cabinet

Secretary Chris Lu, resigned in January. He was the head of the Interagency Working Group. He has not been replaced. No rec- ommendations have been made after two years of our talks with the White House staff, (then) Defense Secretary Leon Paneta and Veterans Administration Secretary (Eric) Shinseki.”

Oldest Bataan Death March vet honored

MANILA - Technical Ser- geant Tranquilino Olarte Cabil- ing, 112, the oldest living survi- vor of the 1942 “Death March,” was given recognition for hero- ism during the 71st celebration of Araw ng Kagitingan or Day of Valor at the Mount Samat National Shrine in Pilar, Bataan. Day of Valor. Tranquilino Olarte Cabiling, left, and the Libingan ng mga Bayani are shown here on the eve of Araw ng Kagitingan or Day of Valor. Cabiling was born on July 6, 1900, in Albuera, Leyte. He said he was among

the thousands of Filipino and American soldiers who were forced to walk 145 kilometers to Camp O’Donnell in Tarlac from

Bataan by Japanese soldiers after the fall of Bataan and Cor- regidor. President Benigno Aquino

III gave Cabiling a Plaque of

appreciation in March during

the celebration of the Army’s 116th Anniversary. Military records say Cabil-

ing joined the service on Aug.

3, 1922, and became part of the United States Armed Forces in

the Far East.

April 15, 2013 21 Neophytes with names, money top Senate surveys MANILA - Money, power

April 15, 2013


Neophytes with names, money top Senate surveys

MANILA - Money, power and name recognition seem to be putting some neophytes in the Senate race in the Magic 12 Circle. The three are Nancy Binay, daughter of Vice President Jejo- mar Binay and sister of Makati Mayor J. Binay; Rep. Jack Enrile, son of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Rep. JV Estrada, son of former president Joseph Estrada. Others in or near the circle are Paolo “Bam’ Aquino, cousin of President Aquino III; Rep. Cynthia Villar, wife of former Sen. Manuel Villar; Rep. Juan Angara, son of Sen. Edgardo Angara and Grace Poe Laman- zares, daughter of Fernando Poe, Jr.

Team PNoy takes the lead in latest SWS-BW poll. On the other hand, Pulse Asia survey says that of the total of 33 candidates for senator, at least ”nine from Team PNoy and six from the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) have statistical chances of winning a place in the 12 senatorial seats. Pulse Asia said majority of probable winners were re-elec- tionist members of Congress, but two neophyte politicians, Nancy Binay and Grace Poe, were strong contenders. Administration bets still dominate the race for the 12 Senate seats up for grabs in the May 13 midterm elections, but with fresh positional changes it is too early for the Team PNoy and United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) lineups -- and particu-

larly the candidates in conten- tion -- to rest easy. As of the March 15-17 poll, six administration and two

easy. As of the March 15-17 poll, six administration and two Sen. Loren Legarda opposition bets

Sen. Loren Legarda

opposition bets are in statistical positions to take the top eight seats, while four Team PNoy and three UNA candidates are com- peting for the last four. “Given the statistical ties, the possible Team PNoy-UNA score could range from 10-2 to 7-5,” the SWS said. Still leading the list of likely winners was reelectionist Sen. Lorna Regina “Loren” B. Legarda of the Nationalist People’s Coali- tion, although she saw her sup- port falling five points to 59% in the latest survey. The Nationalista Party’s Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano -- another reelectionist -- rose to number two with the backing of 57% of the respondents (from 58% pre- viously) after staying third in four prior SWS-BW polls that began in August last year. Erstwhile second-placer Sen. Francis Joseph “Chiz” G. Escu- dero, meanwhile, found himself

Joseph “Chiz” G. Escu- dero, meanwhile, found himself ranked 3rd-4th with UNA bet and San Juan
Joseph “Chiz” G. Escu- dero, meanwhile, found himself ranked 3rd-4th with UNA bet and San Juan

ranked 3rd-4th with UNA bet and San Juan City Rep. Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito, who clawed back February’s positional loss

Ejercito, who clawed back February’s positional loss Rep. JV Estrada to 9-10th. Mr. Ejercito, the son

Rep. JV Estrada

to 9-10th. Mr. Ejercito, the son of former President Joseph E. Estrada and a first-termer in Congress, added five points to share a 48% score with Mr. Escu- dero, who lost 14 points. Battling for 5th to 7th place were Maria Lourdes Nancy S. Binay (UNA), former Las Pinas City Rep. Cynthia ‘Misis Hanep- buhay” A. Villar (NP-PNoy) and reelectionist Sen. Aquilino Martin “Koko” D. Pimentel III (Partido Demokratikong Pili- pino-Lakas ng Bayan-PNoy), each with scores of 47%. Ms. Binay, the daughter of Vice-President Jejomar C. Binay, was 7th in the last survey. Her score was unchanged. Mr. Pimentel, the son of former Sen. Aquilino Pimentel, was previ- ously 5th-6th. Ms. Villar, wife of outgoing Sen. Manuel B. Villar, fell from 4th in February. Their previous scores were 48% and 53%, respectively. Reelectionist Antonio ‘Sonny” V. Trillanes IV (NP- PNoy) was the sole candidate not to have moved, staying in 8th with a score of 44% -- down two points from last month. In another rebound, reelec- tionist Sen. Gregorio “Gringo” B. Honasan (UNA) took 9th place with a score of 43%, after falling to 15th last month. President Benigno Simeon Noynoy S. C. Aquino III’s cousin,

Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV, was in sole 10th place with an unchanged score of 42%, from 9th-10th previously, but fellow

unchanged score of 42%, from 9th-10th previously, but fellow Sen. Chiz Escudero administration bet Grace Poe-

Sen. Chiz Escudero

administration bet Grace Poe- Llamanzares was not as fortu-

nate as she fell six places to 11th via an eight points lower score of


Ms. Llamanzares, former Movie and Television Review and Classification Board chief, is the daughter of deceased actor Fernando Poe Jr., who unsuc- cessfully ran for president in


The 12th slot went to Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo M. Angara of the Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino-PNoy, who scored an unchanged 39%. He ranked 11th- 12th in the last survey. Still in striking distance of the last four slots in the Magic 12, according to the SWS, were Cagayan Rep. Juan Ponce “Jack” Enrile (UNA) and former Sena- tor Ramon “Jun” B. Magsaysay, Jr. (Liberal Party-PNoy) -- tied for 13th-14th with scores of 37%, and former senator Juan Miguel “Migz” F. Zubiri who was 15th. Mr. Enrile, the son of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, has yet to recover from rankings downturns seen in prior sur- veys but the latest result was not markedly different from Febru- ary’s 13th place. His score was down a point to 37%.

Mr. Zubiri, meanwhile, slipped out of the Magic 12 for the first time as his support fell to 35% from 39%. Mr. Magsaysay added five points to 37% for the

leap up from 16th in February.

Statistically below 12th




February. Statistically below 12th In 16th-17th, meanwhile, Grace Poe Lamanzares were former senators Maria Ana Consuelo

Grace Poe Lamanzares

were former senators Maria Ana Consuelo ‘Jamby” A. Madrigal (LP-PNoy) and Richard “Dick” J. Gordon (UNA), with scores of 33% each; former partylist Rep. Ana Theresia “Risa” B. Honti- veros (Akbayan, 18th, 29%); and former senator Ernesto “Manong Ernie” Maceda (UNA, 19th,


Sharing 20th-21st places were the president’s aunt, Mar- garita “Tingting’ Cojuangco (UNA) and Zambales Rep. Maria Milagros Esperanza “Mitos” H. Magsaysay (UNA, 14% each), while Eduardo “Bro. Eddie’ Vil- lanueva (Bangon Pilipinas, 13%) and Puerto Princesa Mayor Edward “Ed” S. Hagedorn (inde- pendent, 11%) placed 22nd and 23rd, respectively. With single-digit scores were partylist Rep. Teodoro A. Casino (Makabayan, 7%), Marwil Llasos (Ang Kapatiran, 4%), Samson Alcantara (Social Jus- tice Society, 4%), Richard Penson (Independent, 4%), Ramon Mon- tano (Independent, 4%), Baldo- hero Falcone (Democratic Party of the Philippines, 4%), Rizalito Yap David (Ang Kapatiran, 3%), Christian Seneres (DPP, 3%), John Carlos De Los Reyes (Ang Kapatiran, 3%) and Greco Anto- nious Beda Belgica (DPP, 2%). Two percent of the respon- dents in the SWS-BW had no answer or were undecided, while 5% of the ballots counted were ruled to have invalid mark- ings.

in the SWS-BW had no answer or were undecided, while 5% of the ballots counted were


April 15, 2013

2222 April 15, 2013 FilAms join D.C from page 1 Filipinos and Filipino Amer- ican community

FilAms join D.C

from page 1

Filipinos and Filipino Amer- ican community leaders and supporters in the DC area joined the nationwide “Call to Action” to press immediate passage of an immigration reform bill that would provide a path to citi- zenship for 11 million undocu- mented immigrants and protect family reunification provisions. The rallyists on Capitol Hill were made up of Hispan- ics, Asians, religious communi-

ties, immigrant rights coalitions, labor organizations, and others who came from other cities in the East Coast to hear speakers chant “Si, Si Puwede” (Yes We Can) and “The Time Is Now.” A bi-partisan group of eight senators are expected to intro- duce a comprehensive immi- gration reform bill as early as next week. The rally was orga- nized mainly to put pressure on the senators not to impose any restrictions on the path to citi- zenship for the undocumented immigrants. Asian Pacific Amer- ican Islander (AAPI) advocates are also concerned about attacks on family reunification provi- sions, particularly the elimina- tion of family visas. Representing the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) were leaders and supporters from the Capitol Region, who also partici- pated in congressional visits ear- lier in the day. Former Maryland Delegate David Valderrama led

a delegation that met with legis-

lative aides of U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara Mikulski. “We should not eliminate family visas in exchange for more high skilled foreign work- ers,” Valderrama said. “That would undermine our cherished values of family unity. America benefits when immigrant fami- lies come together. They work hard, pay taxes, buy homes and start job-creating businesses.” In a statement, NaFFAA National Chair Ed Navarra called on community leaders to let their voices heard by call- ing or writing their senators and US representatives. “This issue directly affects our families and our communities,” he said.

“Let’s take this opportunity to engage our political leaders and let them know how much we care about reuniting families.” For four hours under the hot sun, the demonstrators urged Congress to speed up the legalization of the millions of undocumented immigrants and the retention of the family-based visa provisions that are so dear to the hearts of Asians. Some Republicans and Democrats are inclined to pres- ent a bill that would reduce the quota for family-based visas. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) had ear- lier sounded ambivalent about the limited family-based visa as proposed by the Senate Gang of Eight. He told the Asian Jour- nal recently he does not want to make the family-based visa backlog worse. At the same time he said he is inclined to recom- mend more relaxed provisions on family-based petitions in the bill being hammered out in the Senate. Earlier in Los Angeles, Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) advocacy groups led by the Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC) made a call for an end to “attacks” on family reunification. At the press conference held at the Beverly Union Park, Rep.

Judy Chu (27th District of Cali- fornia) joined a coalition of com-

munity organizations called API FIRE (Asian Pacific Islanders for Immigrant Rights & Enforce- ment) to ask Congress to legis- late fair and just reform to immi- gration law while strengthening the family immigration system. Rep. Chu also called for immigrant families to make their voices heard and express their concerns over immigration reform, particularly on family reunification provisions.

The group called for protec-

tion of the provision in immigra- tion law that allows citizens and legal permanent residents (LPR) to be reunited with their imme- diate family from their home countries through family-based visas.

family from their home countries through family-based visas. Filipinos and Filipino Americans joined the Family

Filipinos and Filipino Americans joined the Family Reunification Rally last April 10, at the West Lawn of the US Capitol. The National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA), was one of the organizing associa- tion of the rally. Photo: Vida Benavidez, Mitzi Pickard, Maurese Owens, Jon Melegrito, Naomi Tacuyan, and Jacko leads the team at the rally. (Bing Cardenas Branigin)

Jacko leads the team at the rally. (Bing Cardenas Branigin) Photo shows the massive rally in

Photo shows the massive rally in front of Capitol Hill April 10.

Chu went on to explain that there are those in Congress who believe that in order to make room for work-based visas, the number of family-based visas need to be trimmed down. Basically, they propose that LPRs will no longer be able to bring their siblings to the US, and parents will no longer be able to petition for their children who are married and above the age of 21, and effectively preventing reunification among immigrant families. Today there is a huge back- log of family-based petitions with Filipinos topping the list. Thousands have to wait up to 20 years for visa petitions for broth- ers, sisters, parents and grand- parents.

Bur Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), one of the Gang of Eight drafting the reform bill, said he wants to reserve green cards for the country’s economic needs and less of family-based peti- tions. Reid noted he is confident that his recommendation to allow more family-based peti- tions will get the support of other legislators during delibera- tions in Congress. Reid also said his proposal will address the exceedingly lengthy twenty-year wait to get a family-based petition approved. He cited the cases of Filipinos who hae to wait 20 years for their green cards to be approved. The Gang of Eight has sought to make the pathway

tough enough so that Repub- licans can convince their party that it’s not amnesty but not so onerous that they lose support from the left, and risk repeat- ing mistakes from past reform efforts. Democrats are under intense pressure from the White House, labor unions and immigrant advocates to craft as clear of a path as possible to legal status and citizenship. That means no border-security benchmarks that must be met before undocu- mented immigrants can secure citizenship. No exorbitant fines and fees. And realistic require- ments for proving work history, learning English, and passing criminal background checks.

Manila duns US $1.4-M

from page 1

eign Affairs Albert del Rosario, during his meeting in Wash- ington D.C. with US Secretary of State John Kerry, secured the assurance of Kerry that the US will pay for damages to the reef. But he said a joint body will determine the cost of the damage. The fine of $1.4 million is but

a slap on the wrist, as the salvage

operation has been estimated to cost close to $45 million, she said. Songco said a letter request- ing compensation would be sent to the US embassy next week, stressing this is the amount

required by a law passed to pro- tect the reef, a Unesco World Heritage site in a remote area of the Sulu Sea. Meanwhile, the US Navy relieved the captain and officers of the Guardian for failing to follow the rules in navigating through the waters of the Philip- pines. It was on its way to Indo-

nesia after stopping over in Subic two months ago.

A team of divers and

researchers from the TMO and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)-Philippines just finished assessing the full damage of the

January 17 grounding of the Guardian. Salvors finished extricat- ing the ship, which had to be dismantled piece by piece, on March 30. According to the report of the assessment team, ‘results indicate the damaged area spans 2,345.67 square meters - smaller than the 4,000 square meters originally estimated by an Amer-

In this photo taken on March 30, 2013, and released by the Philippine Coast Guard on April 1, the stern

of the minesweeper USS Guardian is transferred to another ship after being lifted out of the water at the Tubbataha Reef, a World Heritage site.

ican team, WWF-Philippinesd said in a statement. Under Republic Act 10067 or the Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park Act of 2009, a fine of about $600 or P24,000 per square meter of damaged reef is mandatory. Further park rule violations

of damaged reef is mandatory. Further park rule violations boosted the final total to slightly less

boosted the final total to slightly less than P60 million, or roughly $1.4 million, the organization said. WWF-Philippines vice-chair and CEO Jose Ma. Lorenzo Tan said the fine to be paid to TMO should help it build a significant endowment fund to sustain its operations through the years. The basic issue here is not tourism. It is food security. This fresh infusion of funds will allow TMO to concentrate on putting the money to good use - from building a better Ranger Station to upgrading their capacity to manage the country’s most pro- ductive coral reef, he said.

April 15, 2013 23 OAVs start mid-term May 13, 2013. But many overseas voters will

April 15, 2013


OAVs start mid-term

May 13, 2013. But many overseas voters will be going to the polls without knowing who the candidates are, their platform of governance, their qualifications and other details that are needed to cast an intelligent vote. The Commission on Elec- tions has relied on the 2 TV channels to inform the overseas voter probably because of lack of funds. But last week, several Comelec commissioners flew on a junket ostensibly to check the readiness of the embassies and consulates abroad to perform their task. “The overseas Filipinos are our new heroes. Beyond the economic contributions and the sacrifices they do to ensure their families of a good life, they are now also given their politi- cal right through the OAV. It is time that they exercise the right to vote,” DFA Undersecretary Rafael Seguis said in a statement posted on the department’s web- site. Seguis also serves as chair of the OAV Secretariat. OAV Secretaruat vice- chair Nestor Padalhin likewise assured the public that this year’s

from page 1

OAV will be “honest, orderly and peaceful.” The poll body has auto- mated the election in seven selected countries for overseas Filipino voters. It also announced that 36 precinct count optical scan machines will be dispatched and

used for Filipino voters in Hong Kong, Singapore, Abu Dhabi, Jeddah, Kuwait, Dubai, and Riyadh for the May 13 mid-term polls. Of the seven countries, Hong Kong has the highest number of voters with 101,482, followed by Singapore with 36,323 registered voters while Abu Dhabi has 21,418 registered voters. The Foreign Affairs depart- ment said the 988,384 OAVs marked a milestone for over- seas Filipinos who are working

or living abroad. Of the total

number, there are 398,554 OAV new registrants. These voters will be cast- ing or sending in their votes in the 93 Philippine Embassies and Consulates General around the world. The OAV will last for 31 days starting April 13 at 8:00

a.m. (designated country time) until May 13 at 6:00 p.m., the DFA said. Daily voting schedules will thus be at least eight hours a day, it added, and Embassies and

voters of the automated and per- sonal modes of voting to bring their passports or other personal identification documents. In the automated mode, voters will have their names

Consulates General may adopt a flexible schedule to accommo- date the most number of voters.

verified against the list of regis- tered voters by the Special Board of Election Inspectors, similar to

All votes, including those


process in the Philippines.

sent through the mail, should be received by the end of the voting period. “Our Embassies and Consul- ates General are well-prepared to conduct the overseas absen-

Voters will be given a ballot, a folder and a pen <#>, and will then be directed to the voting area. Candidates’ names will be listed in alphabetical order on

tee voting process. Our person- nel have undergone a three-day training in Manila last February to prepare them for their duties in this election,” Seguis said. He added similar trainings in Los Angeles, Madrid, Abu

the ballot, and voters will have to shade the ovals beside the names of their chosen candidates. The ballot will then be fed into the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machine which will read the votes on both sides of

Dhabi, Riyadh, Hong Kong and Singapore were also held as part


ballot. The voters’ index finger will

of preparations for the elections


marked with indelible ink,

Overseas voters may only elect the President, Vice President, 12 senators and one party-list repre- sentative. The OAV involves three modes of voting: automated counting in Hong Kong and Singapore, personal voting, and postal voting. The DFA thus reminded

and they will affix their thumb mark in the list of voters. The same process goes for personal voting, except that a compartment will be provided for voters to drop their ballots in. Postal voters meanwhile will receive a mailing packet containing their ballot and the ballot envelope.

They will have to accom- plish the ballot, affix their right thumb mark at the lower portion, tear off that portion and place it inside the ballot envelope. Before sending their ballots back by mail to their respective Embassies or Consulates Gen- eral, voters will have to affix their name and signature on the left-hand corner of the ballot envelopes. Registered Filipino seafarers may likewise personally vote at the Embassy or Consulate Gen- eral where they are currently docked. Votes will be counted at the Embassy or Consulate General where the votes were sent or cast. The DFA said the counting will start immediately after the close of polling precincts, and will be done uninterrupted in public until all the votes have been counted. In line with the start of the OAV, a migrants’ rights group will organize a gathering in Manila of relatives of over- seas Filipino workers (OFW) to encourage their loved ones abroad to exercise and guard their right to vote in the month- long OAV.

Bulosan’s poem theme

from page 1

AAPI Heritage Month is an annual call to action for the AAPI community and an oppor- tunity for the country to see its breadth of its diversity in “pluri- bus unum.” The White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders is providing state and local AAPI commissions and organizations with resources to mark AAPI Heritage Month and further develop ways to address issues facing the AAPI community, ranging from health care and language accessibility, to small business development,

education, and immigration reform. The following resources

are provided to help guide your

heritage month conversations:

AAPI Population Info-graphic;

A demographic illustration of

AAPI population growth across the United States from the year 2000 through 2010;Policy Pri- orities Info-graphic; A detailed illustration of the White House

AAPI Initiative’s policy priorities

on health, economic and com-

munity development, civil and immigration rights, and educa- tional opportunities; Continuing

Progress for the AAPI Commu- nity; An overview of recent Fed- eral Agency accomplishments and priorities for the AAPI community and list of commis- sion members as an “in-person resource” across the country. If you are in the process of

developing an event, we would like to hear about your plans to observe AAPI Heritage Month this year. Share your vision of the- Wide American Earth through this feedback form <http:// Your feedback will help deter- mine our future priorities and contribute to our ongoing con-

versations with AAPI communi- ties.

For more information, please contact: White House Initiative on Asian American

and Pacific Islanders, 400 Mary-

land Avenue SW, Washington

DC 20202 E-Mail: WhiteHouse- <mailto: White-> www. <http://links.govdelivery.

com/track? WASHINGTON D.C. Asian

Pacific American pioneers will

be honored at APAICS’ 19th

Annual Gala Awards Dinner on Wednesday, May 8th at the Washington Hilton on 1919 Con-

necticut Ave NW. The Gala is

a chance to celebrate the mile-

stones and trailblazers of the Asian Pacific American com- munity as part of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. We look forward to seeing old friends and meeting new ones this year, Apaics said. To purchase tickets or request information on sponsor- ship packages, please contact

Helen Ruggiero at (202) 296-9200

or More infor-

mation is also available on our website

Manila hits China anew

and exaggerated maritime and territorial claims have not only created uncertainty but have undermined the rule of law.” Three days earlier, Del Rosa- rio met with US Secretary of State John Kerry and US Defense Sec- retary C. Hagel in Washington D.C. He agreed with the top US officials that conflicting claims in the region be resolved peacefully through arbitration and the rule of law. But in Manila, Del Rosario said China’s agressive moves have posed a serious risks to regional peace and stability. He lambasted China as thousands of US and Filipino troops began annual military exercises April 5. He said the exercises were vital to building Philippine defence capabilities against the rising threat of China. Told about the tension in

from page 1

threat of China. Told about the tension in from page 1 Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario

Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario links arms with US Amb. Harry Thomas and Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin during the opening of the Balikatan exercise.

North Korea, Del Rosario said in

a separate interview the Philip-

pines will help the United States

if it is attacked.

While he did not mention China in his Balikatan speech, he later told reporters he was refer- ring specifically to China.

Tensions have escalated in recent years as China has sought


stamp its authority over the

which requires that the United



States comes to the aid of the

“Balikatan, with its com-

pino troops, 30 military aircraft

The Philippines has accused China of occupying a shoal close

Philippines if it is attacked. But unlike the US treaty with NATO

plicated and complete set of exercises, is an important con-


its main island, and appealed

countries, its response to an

tribution in not only preparing


the United Nations to rule on

attack on the Philippines would

both our armed forces to work

the validity of Chinese claims to the resource-rich sea. The Philippines has sought

have to be approved by the US Congress. Del Rosario said the Balika-

together but also in building my country’s own capacity to defend itself.”

closer diplomatic and military ties with the United States, its former colonial ruler, amid the rising tensions. The two countries share a

tan (shoulder-to-shoulder) exer- cises were very important. “For my country we need to secure our borders and protect our territorial integrity more vig-

The manoeuvres involve more than 8,000 US and Fili-

including a dozen US F/A-18 Hornets and three naval vessels,

61-year-old mutual defence pact,

orously than we have before,” he


two countries said.

Del Rosario said the Balika- tan exercises were a very impor- tant part of the Philippines’ efforts to secure US support. Del Rosario added it was vital for the Philippines to have more US forces rotate through- out the year, and not just for scheduled exercises such as Balikatan. “This will be crucial in our efforts in the short term to establish our minimum cred- ible defense posture, and in the long term to build a more robust national defense structure,’ he said, without giving details. The Philippines said last year it would allow more US troops to visit for short dura- tions, such as for naval port calls, although it ruled out a return of

permanent bases.

2424 Entertainment

April 15, 2013

2424 Entertainment April 15, 2013 Sean-Catherine wedding off? Despite reports that The Bachelor (Sean Lowe) and

Sean-Catherine wedding off?

Despite reports that The Bachelor (Sean Lowe) and Fili- pino American Catherine Gui- dici are heading for the rocks, the two are still proceeding with plans to marry. Lowe’s ‘Dancing With The Stars’ partner Peta Murgatroyd has revealed how he feels about Catherine. Murgatroyd told Holly- woodlife.Com that Catherine visits Sean on set and she told us how Sean really feels about his ˜Bachelor’s” fiancee and how they are so in love. “Catherine even gives him critiques on his dancing. Peta, 26, has been tearing up the dance floor with Sean, 29, for the last two weeks on DWTS, and she knows all about his and Catherine’s romance! Catherine, 26, arrives each week to cheer on Sean and Peta has now revealed that she even visits him while training! “They are so in love, its kind of sickening!” Peta told *Holly-* at McDonald’s Premium McWrap Launch Party Paramount Studios on March 28. We asked Peta if Sean visits Catherine while training, and she said “He does, today he wanted to see her earlier but we needed to get our dance done. And Cath- erine even comes to practice and gives Sean advice! “She does sometimes and gives him critiques¦ He likes to have a third eye. How cute! Catherine is always seen sitting beside Sean’s mom and dad *Sherry* and Jay Lowe at DWTS, and Peta says they love her. “They get along great, his

and Peta says they love her. “They get along great, his Gossips about a breakup between

Gossips about a breakup between Bachelor Sean Lowe and Catherine Gui- dici was sparked by Sean’s participation in Dancing with the Stars with his prtner (inset) Peta Murgatroyd.

Mom is great! Everyone adores

Catherine and she is such a plea-

sure to be around! She is a sweet-

heart, his Mom loves Catherine.”

So sweet! Sean clearly

picked a winner!

BIR charges actress with tax evasion

The Bureau of Internal Rev- enue (BIR) has filed a criminal complaint with the Department of Justice against Solenn Marie Adea Heusaff for willful attempt to evade or defeat tax and for deliberate failure to supply cor- rect and accurate information. Charged with Heusaff was her certified public accountant (CPA) Teofilo Magno Jr. who certified the former’s financial statements in violation of Section 257 of the Tax Code. Heusaff is an actress, tele- vision host, model, singer and endorser of various products in the Philippines with residential address at 17 Tamarind Street, Forbes Park, Makati and busi- ness address at 1970 Kasoy Street, Dasmarinas Village, Makati.

Investigation revealed that she declared a gross income of only P6.73 million in her income

declared a gross income of only P6.73 million in her income Solenn Marie Adea Heusaff tax

Solenn Marie Adea Heusaff

tax return (ITR) for taxable year


A comparison of the gross income declared by Heusaff in her 2011 ITR as against the income she earned for the same year certified by her income payors disclosed that she sub- stantially underdeclared her tax- able income for 2011 by P6.65 million or by 99 percent. Consequently, Heusaff was sued for a total tax liability amounting to P3.6 million for deficiency income tax covering taxable year 2011, inclusive of surcharges and interests. For his part, Magno was sued for issuing an unqualified opinion in his certification of the financial statements of Heusaff despite the latter’s aforemen- tioned underdeclaration in her

reported income.

Kris meets an old Frenchman!

Fresh from a two-week vacation in Europe with her sons, actress-host Kris Aquino returned to her morning show “KrisTV” with a new inspiration - man she met in France! “Alam mo may na meet ako sa France,” she told guest co-

inyo.” Aquino even said her son with ex-husband James Yap approves of the man. “Pumasa kay Bimby, kaya tignan na lang natin. Let’s pray. Let’s pray dahil gusto niyang mag-build ng mga buildings sa

pray dahil gusto niyang mag-build ng mga buildings sa A changed Kris smiles as she recounts

A changed Kris smiles as she recounts meeting an old Frenchman during her trip to Europe.

host Melissa Cantiveros. “Pero ‘yun nga ka-edad na siya ng

a little more (than 60

years old). Sobrang successful na

negosyante at darating siya dito sa Pilipinas sa June dahil gusto niyang bumili ng island. Hindi ba sosyal?” Asked if the man looks younger than his age, Aquino replied: “Ay hindi masyado. Okay na ‘yan, Melai. Papakilala ko sa

papa mo

Philippines. So ipagdarasal ko ‘yan dahil mas maraming tra-

baho para sa maraming Pilipino. Pray with me, okay?” Aquino said.

Aquino left for a planned vacation in Europe last March 23, amid a new spat with her former husband, who has been ordered by the court to stay at least 100 meters away from Aquino and their son.

Dolphy’s daughter makes waves in show biz

Born to Comedy King Dolphy and singer-actress Zsa Zsa Padilla, it was inevitable that Zia Quizon would end up in

performance by a female record- ing artist, and song of the year. Her self-titled album under Pol-

and song of the year. Her self-titled album under Pol- Zia Quizon show biz. After barely

Zia Quizon

show biz. After barely two years in the industry, Zia is steadily making waves in the music scene via her fun and breezy first single “Ako na Lang,” which perfectly showcases her distinct vocal tone’a curious mix of Norah Jones and Up Dharma Down’s Armi Millare. The song won for Zia three awards in the 25th Awit Awards last year: best performance by a new female recording artist, best

yeast Records has also reached gold status (7,500 copies sold). Though undeniably tal- ented, Zia is the first to admit that, personality-wise, she wasn’t built to revel in the spotlight.”I’ve always been shy, even as a kid,” Zia told the Inquirer. So, if at times she comes across as uncomfortable onstage, that’s because the 21-year-old is still trying to conquer her inhibi- tions, one performance at a time.

April 15, 2013 25 Probate QUESTION: In your last column, you mentioned some- thing about

April 15, 2013


April 15, 2013 25 Probate QUESTION: In your last column, you mentioned some- thing about “probate”


QUESTION: In your last column, you mentioned some- thing about “probate” which occurs when someone dies leav- ing behind some assets. Can you explain what probate is? ANSWER: Probate is the legal procedure in which the decedent’s debts are paid and the remaining property is distrib- uted to the beneficiaries named in the decedent’s Will. Although the processes and procedures that govern probate vary from state to state, in general the pro- cess begins when the decedent’s Will is submitted to the probate court designated by the relevant state to handle probate cases. Typically, if the probate court declares the Will be to be valid and legitimate, the Will is pub- licly recorded and the executor or personal representative desig- nated as such in the Will by the decedent is then authorized to carry out the decedent’s wishes pursuant to the decedent’s Will. When the decedent’s estate is ultimately settled, the decedent’s executor or personal representa- tive files a final accounting of the decedent’s estate. In some states, if the value of the decedent’s estate is very small, the estate does not have to go through a formal probate process. Note that if the decedent died with- out a will (i.e., intestate), many states would still require that the decedent’s estate go through the probate process, although the applicable probate process may be markedly different from the probate process that would nor- mally apply if the person died testate. In any event, as I dis- cussed in my last column, if a person dies intestate, the state’s intestacy/inheritance laws will apply and the decedent’ estate will be distributed accordingly. In this column, however, we will focus on the probate process that applies when a person dies testate (i.e., has a valid Will). I emphasize that the probate pro- cess can be exceedingly compli- cated, and readers of this column are advised to seek competent legal assistance as each situation is unique and each presents its own set of issues. QUESTION: Can you explain briefly the probate pro- cess in Virginia? ANSWER: Virginia has no separate probate court. To pro- bate an estate in Virginia, you must go to the Circuit Court of

the county in which the decedent resided at the time of death. If the decedent died in a nursing home or similar institution, that person’s residence is presumed to be where he or she resided prior to becoming a patient at such institution. There is no set time frame within which a Will must be probated. To start the probate process, the executor named in the Will must schedule an appointment with the Probate Division of the relevant Circuit Court to probate the Will and qualify as executor. The named executor should be a Virginia resident. When the named executor is not a resident of Virginia, a Virginia resident must accompany the executor to the Probate Office to either co-qualify as a co-executor or be appointed as a resident agent. All executors in Virginia must be bonded, and the appropriate bond is usually set at the time the executor is qualified. The named executor must bring to the pro- bate appointment the following (not inclusive): the original Will and codicils, if any (codicils are amendments to the Will); a cer- tified copy of the death certifi- cate; approximate dollar value of any solely held personal assets; approximate fair market value of real estate in Virginia deeded solely to the decedent or the value of the percentage owned by the decedent when the real estate is deeded as ten- ants-in-common; names, ages, and addresses of heirs at law; a check, cash or credit card to pay fees calculated during the pro- bate appointment; a valid photo identification. Once qualified, the execu- tor is required to do the follow- ing: (1) give notice of probate to interested parties and file an affi- davit of notice; (2) file an inven- tory not later than four months after qualification date of the executor; (3) file a settlement of accounts or statement in lieu of accounts no later than 16 months after qualification date of the executor with the Commissioner of Accounts Office (not the Pro- bate Division of the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office), until the estate is closed; (4) file income, inheritance, or estate taxes with the federal or state government; (5) notify the Commissioner of Accounts of any change in the executor’s address; (6) pay all probate taxes due to the Clerk

Veggies prolong life

Animal meat is not really

essential for health and life, and fish and vegetables maximize longevity.” There is no question that diet plays a very important role in the development of cardiovascular diseases, metabolic illnesses, and some forms of cancer, especially

of the gastrointestinal tract.

One particular diet - one high in saturated fat and choles- terol, and low in fiber - consist- ing mainly of red meats (pork, beef, non-skim dairy products, etc) and eggs, has been branded as unhealthy. Voluminous clini- cal studies have shown beyond

a reasonable doubt that excess

serum cholesterol, specifically chronically elevated HDL (the bad cholesterol) and riglycer- ides, is the culprit in the more than half a million deaths from heart attack each year in the United States alone. This translates to one person dying from a cardiovascular ill- ness every 60 seconds. And this does not even include the mor- tality from cancer.

The culprit

Cholesterol is a sterol, a complex alcohol constituent of animal fats and oils. If abnor- mally high in the blood stream, this substance forms plaques which adhere to the inner wall of

substance forms plaques which adhere to the inner wall of arteries causing hardening of the arteries

arteries causing hardening of the arteries and stenoses (blockages), many leading to heart attacks, strokes, or poor leg circulation. Animal fats also increase the risk for the formation of cancer, besides Alzheimer’s and obesity. Omega-3 fatty acids The good fats come from

fish and is called Fish Oil or Omega-3 fatty acids. These substances are a natural blood thinner that prevents blood clot formation and minimizes hardening of the arteries. Thus, eating fish daily reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke, even among those who are diabetics and hypertensives (those with high blood pressure), provided these conditions are treated and well-controlled.

Diet and longevity

The proponents of vegetar- ian diet argue that studies have shown that the longest-lived ani- mals had low-calorie vegetarian diet, and that rats fed high pro- tein, high fat diet had the short-

est life span. The studies of Dr. Paul Dudley on the Hunzas of Pakistan, who have amazing lon- gevity, showed that they subsist on spartan and vegetarian diet of nuts, grains, fruits, vegetables, and a little goat milk. Fresh and/ or dried apricots are their staple food. The Hunzas’ lifespan is 140 years. While the inference is clearly there, more extensive controlled clinical studies on human sub- jects are needed to find out with certainty if vegetarian diet, although already proven to be healthy, really improves longev- ity.

Vegetables and fruits

Vegetables and fruits have phytochemicals that are good for our body. Twenty-three epidemio- logical studies have shown that diet rich in grains and vegetables reduces the risk of colon cancer by 40%, and breast cancer by 25%. Some of the

Continued on page 27

of the Circuit Court; (7) pay all

debts in the order required by law; (and (8) disburse remain- ing assets according to the Will. Completion of the probate pro- cess—from qualification of the executor to disbursement of remaining assets—varies from

case to case, although Virginia law does impose time require- ments on certain filings. Note also that, in some instances, pro- bate may not be necessary. For example, if the decedent’s only asset is a motor vehicle, probate may not be necessary. Likewise, under certain circumstances, an estate valued between $15,001 and $50,000 may not be subject

to probate.

QUESTION: Can you explain briefly the probate pro- cess in the District of Columbia? ANSWER: The probate pro- cess in the District of Columbia can be broken down into four general stages: (1) find the Will and file it with the D.C. Supe- rior Court Probate Division, and obtain D.C. Superior Court appointment of the decedent’s executor (referred to as “per- sonal representative” in D.C.); (2) make an inventory of the assets the decedent owned at death and determine the value of each asset; (3) determine the debts, taxes and settlement expenses of the estate and pay them; and (4)

distribute the remaining assets to the rightful beneficiaries. In the District of Columbia, there are three different estate settlement procedures for pro- bating an estate. By using the procedure that best suits your particular needs and circum- stances, you should be able to save time and money during the estate settlement process. These are (1) unsupervised administra- tion (also called informal pro- bate administration); (2) super- vised administration (also called formal probate administration); and (3) small estate administra- tion. Unsupervised administra- tion is the principal way estates

are probated in the District of Columbia. Pursuant to D.C. law, estates are generally probated using the unsupervised or infor- mal probate process unless the courts order differently. Infor- mal estate administration is designed for most estates where there is little or no disagreement about how the assets of the estate should be distributed. Informal administration requires very little court participation. Super- vised or formal administration is designed to provide more court involvement and oversight to the probate process. Supervised probate administration may be appropriate when (i) the estate includes complex arrangements

involving investments, real property, or other assets; (ii) interested persons anticipate a dispute concerning the proper distribution of the decedent’s assets; and/or (iii) one or more interested persons question the ability of the executor to fairly administer the estate. With formal administration, the D.C. Superior Court Probate Division closely monitors the executor throughout the probate process, and certain documents must be filed periodically with the Court. Small estate administration is a simplified way of probating an estate with limited assets. Small estate administration is avail- able only in estates with pro- bate property valued at $40,000 or less (for persons dying on or after April 26, 2001). This is gen- erally the simplest, fastest, and least expensive probate proce- dure. The small estate adminis- tration usually takes less than 60 days and, in some cases, it can be completed in as few as 10 days. A. Enrico C. Soriano, Esq., is the managing member of Axxis Law Group, PLLC (www.axxislaw. com). The answers and discussions provided in this column do not con- stitute legal advice, and no attorney- client relationship is created hereby. You should consult a competent attorney for further assistance.


April 15, 2013

2626 April 15, 2013 MUSTARD GREENS WITH DRIED SHITAKE MUSHROOMS Mustard greens (mus- tasa) are nutritious,


Mustard greens (mus- tasa) are nutritious, with huge amounts of vitamins and miner- als.

They are high in vitamin

K which makes them a heart-

healthy food. In addition, the dietary fiber in mustards has been shown to reduce choles-

terol levels. They are also rich

in Vitamins A, C, and E - all

anti-oxidants and proven cancer fighters. Mustard greens are good eaten raw or cooked.


3 large bunches of mustard


16 large pieces dried shitake mushrooms salt and pepper

1 teaspoon light soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon thyme, chopped 2 tablespoon cornstarch, diluted in 3 tablespoons of water


Cut out the mustard green leaves and save the stems. The leaves can be saved for another recipe. Cut the stems into

squares approximately 1” size.

recipe. Cut the stems into squares approximately 1” size. Wash the stems thoroughly to remove any
recipe. Cut the stems into squares approximately 1” size. Wash the stems thoroughly to remove any

Wash the stems thoroughly to remove any dirt residue. Bring water to a boil with a little salt and blanch the stems for not more than 2 minutes. Shock the stems with cold water to retain the green color. Drain and set aside. Meanwhile, soak the dried mushrooms in hot water for 20-30 minutes. Discard the liquid. Cook mushrooms in just enough water for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Strain the liquid and save for later use. In a skillet, bring 1 cup of water, 1 cup mushroom liquid, and soy sauce to a boil. Add the mushrooms and mustard greens and let simmer for 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Thicken sauce with cornstarch mixture at the desired consis- tency. Sprinkle with lemon thyme during the last 2 minutes of cooking. Serve hot. Chef’s Tip: The dried

mushrooms can be soaked over-

night in its own liquid (the one used to boil it) to give superb richness and extra depth to the dish.

Master Chef

Evelyn: 100 Most Influential Fili- pina Women in the U.S., 2009, Fili- pina Women’s Network; MHC Most Outstanding Migrant Award in Culinary Arts, 2011; PAFC Dakila Special Achievement Award, 2011; Owner/Chef, Philippine Oriental Market & Deli, Arlington, Virginia; Founder and President of CHEW (Cancer Help – Eat Well) Founda- tion, a 501 (c) (3) public charity formed to help and cook pro-bono for Filipino-Americans who are afflicted with cancer and other serious ill- nesses; Culinary writer; Member, Les Dames d’Escoffier International, Washington DC Chapter; Member, International Cake Exploration Society, Member: Culinary Histo- rians of Washington, D.C.; Master Chef, French Cuisine and Patisserie, Le Cordon Bleu, London.

Editor’s Note:


While on a road trip, an elderly couple stopped at a road- side restaurant for lunch. After finishing their meal, they left the restaurant and resumed their trip.

The woman unknowingly left her glasses on the table and she didn’t miss them until they had been driving for about twenty minutes. By then, to add

to the aggravation, they had to

travel quite a distance before they could find a place to turn around and go back to the res- taurant to retrieve her glasses. All the way back, the elderly husband became the classic grouchy old man. He fussed and complained and scolded his wife relent- lessly during the entire return drive. The more he chided her, the more agitated he became. He just wouldn’t let up for one minute. To her relief, they finally arrived at the restaurant. As the woman got out of the car and hurried inside to retrieve

her glasses, the old geezer yelled

to her, “While you’re in there,

you might as well get my hat and the credit card.”


Two Indians and a Tennes-

see Hillbilly were walking in the woods. All of a sudden one of the Indians ran up a hill to the mouth of a small cave. Wooooo! Wooooo! Wooooo!” he called into the cave and then he listened very closely until he heard an answer, “Wooooo! Wooooo! Wooooo!” He tore off his clothes and ran into the cave.

The Hillbilly was puzzled and asked the other Indian what that was all about. Was the other Indian crazy or what? “No,” said the Indian. “It is our custom during mating season when Indian men see cave, they call ‘Wooooo Wooooo! Wooooo!’ into the opening. If they get an answer back, it means there is a girl in there waiting to mate.” Just then they saw another cave. the Indian ran up to the opening of the cave, stopped, and hollered, “Woooo! Wooooo! Wooooo!” Immediately, there was an answer, “Wooooo! Wooooo! Wooooo!” from deep inside the cave. He tore off his clothes and ran into the cave. The Hillbilly wandered around in the woods alone for a while, and then he came upon a great big cave. As he looked in, he was amazed at the size of the

he was thinking,

“Oh, man! Look at the size of this cave! It is bigger than those the Indians found. There must be some really big, fine women in this cave!” He stood in front of the opening and hollered with all his might “Wooooo! Wooooo! Wooooo!” He grinned and closed his eyes in anticipation, and then he heard the answering call, “Woooo! Wooooo! Wooooo!” With a gleam in his eyes and a smile on his face, he raced into the cave, tearing off his clothes as he ran. The following day, the headline of the local newspaper read

huge opening

“Naked Hillbilly Run Over by Train”.


Tatay: Kumusta naman ang mga exams niyo sa eskuwela, mga anak? Andoy: Mabuti po, Itay. Nakakuha kami ni Dina ng 100%. Tatay: Magaling! Nagmana kayo sa talino ko. Dina: 60% po yung sa akin at 40% yung kay kuya.


Kiko: Pare, lagyan mo nga ako ng tattoo! Greg: Bakit naman?

Kiko: Pare, lagyan mo nga ako ng tattoo! Greg: Bakit naman? Kiko: Napagkakamalan kasi akong bading.

Kiko: Napagkakamalan kasi akong bading. Greg: Ganu’n ba? Sige saan mo gusto? Kiko: Sa kilay para mukhang suplada.


Sir: Inday ba’t di mo pa dini- diligan yung mga halaman natin sa labas? Inday: Sir, umuulan po, eh. Sir: Sus, eh di magkapote ka.


Mister: Ayon dito sa survey marami sa mga magaganda at matatalinong babae ang naka- kapag-asawa ng mga tamad na lalaki. Bakit kaya? Misis: Matagal ko na nga ring tinatanong yan sa sarili ko, eh!


Isko: Ang galing ang nabili kong hearing aid. Hi-tech at ang lakas ng dating!

Kiko: Magkano ang bili mo? Isko: Oo, kanina lang.


Tonio: Pare, sa wakas nagka- girlfriend na rin ako! Juan: Ha, sa tanda mong yan ngayon ka lang nagka-girl- friend? Tonio: Kasi ang higpit ng misis ko. Ngayon lang ako nakalusot!


Misis: Inday, dadalaw mamaya ang mga kamag-anak ko mula sa probinsiya kaya magluto ka ng marami. Inday: Opo Mam! Anong luto po ang gusto niyo, yung magtatagal sila dito, o yung uuwi agad sila sa probinsiya?


Mga misis, kung ayaw niyong magsinungaling ang mga mister niyo, huwag na lang kayong magtatanong.

April 15, 2013 27 The Lopez Sweatshop Sweatshop is a pejorative term for any work

April 15, 2013


April 15, 2013 27 The Lopez Sweatshop Sweatshop is a pejorative term for any work environment

The Lopez Sweatshop

Sweatshop is a pejorative term for any work environment considered to be excessively demanding or dangerous where

employees work long hours for very low pay and are subjected

to abuse.

So why did our children coin this term for their father’s medical practice? The Emig- dio A. Lopez, M.D., PC office in Springfield, VA is anything but wicked. Employees and friends view it as professional, efficient, and pleasant, and bring several

generations of their family to be treated there. That is the highest compliment. It started when our daugh- ters became teenagers and needed part time work in the summer. We didn’t like giving them money without earning

it and I was weary of juggling

home and office responsibilities.

So Mitch and I offered them part

time employment as office staff responsible for data entry, post- ing payments, billing, and book- keeping. They were content. But that contentment lasted a very short time. They found positions else- where with better pay albeit with less friendly hours. I had gotten

used to their help and was not happy to lose them. Soon an array of their classmates, friends, friends of friends, and relatives came to work part time to replace them. Not all at the same time of course. The back office became

a lively place. Our daughters

found the arrangement amusing and started referring to it as the

Lopez Sweatshop’. The diversity of men and women who passed through that revolving door is worthy of its

own reality show but without the drama and inanities. Some were in between jobs, some needed extra income, and I had a feel- ing some were just plain bored staying at home. Most had to be re-introduced to accounting 101.

It made my life interesting and

frustrating at times but that was better than having to show up at

the office every day. I relished the free time and began explor- ing other interests.

One lovely lady was more creative than practical. She was buoyant, had a ready smile, and with nary a disparaging word

of anyone. She reminded me of

the perfect nun in ‘The Sound of

Music’. She improved the back room with flowers and was more

interested in keeping it neat and tidy. She left me beautifully written notes with artistically doodled flowers beside her sig- nature. Another one connected the

office to Medicare. I was finally introduced to ‘high tech’ by entering claims into a receiver bank then faxing the lot to Medi- care. Until then I carried a man- sized tote bag with the red-inked CMS 1500 claim forms. Every free time was dedicated to filling claims and filing by hand. Even drives through the countryside on weekends lost their romance. There was a newly married couple who had just returned from their honeymoon. They worked while holding hands. It tickled me to see them work in tandem but it worried me.

How could they remain efficient while giving loving pecks in between entries? I checked and rechecked their postings. They had the fewest mistakes among the sweatshop-pers. Surprise, surprise! And shame on me for doubting since they graduated at the top of their class. Even friends may have a secret past. One day I received a call from an investigator. He was tight lipped as to his reason for the background check regarding

a then current employee. I knew

I should not answer his prob-

ing questions until after I had checked his credentials which he provided. I didn’t find out about

my young friend’s police record until years later. A sad end to a lovely friendship. The list of possible part-tim- ers was eventually exhausted. The time came when we had to look for a permanent replace- ment. It was a revelation to learn the do’s and don’ts of interview- ing, disqualifying, and accept- ing employees. The mine fields were as varied and perplexing as those that tripped me as I dealt with insurance companies. And

until I found him or her, I had to assume my Girl Friday mantle once more. It was fatiguing. We found our posting clerk. She and our office manager are the Lopez office mainstays. They work seamlessly together and truly like working for Mitch. Their dedication and genu- ine regard gain them our deep

respect and appreciation. I am conflicted to report the back-room ‘Lopez Sweatshop’ is no more.

OFWs must earn respect


“I f we want respect, we must demonstrate that we have political

power!”. This was the consensus at a recent meeting of members of US Pinoys for Good Governance, the group that grew out of US Pinoys for Noynoy-Mar, which raised money and actively campaigned and voted in the last presidential elections. The group agreed to draw up a short list of senatorial can-

didates and actively campaign for them, contribute to their war chest, and persuade friends and relatives in the Philippines, par- ticularly those who depend on their financial support, to vote for them. ‘Only by showing that we have a potent overseas voting bloc will we be given the respect we deserve,” the agitated FilAms declared. Why the USPGG members, all immigrants or dual citizens and all qualified to vote in the forthcoming senatorial elections, became so hot under the collar was because of the blunt answer to a question raised at the meet- ing:

How important are we over- seas Filipinos to the leaders of our country? Answer: As important as the money we send home. And not much more. That appears to be the harsh truth. In late February, overseas Pinoys from the United States, Europe, Australia, the Middle East, countries in Asia and even

South America answered the

call of the Motherland, through the Commission on Filipinos Overseas, and attended the 2nd Global Summit of Filipinos in the Diaspora. The objective of the conference was to harness the skills and resources of the wan- dering Pinoys for national devel-

and resources of the wan- dering Pinoys for national devel- opment. At the same conference, del-

opment. At the same conference, del- egates formally established the Global Filipino Diaspora Coun- cil, an idea proposed at the 1st Global Summit in late 2011 and developed further at a CFO- initiated gathering in Rome last year. The Council, led by Loida Nicolas-Lewis and Rodel Rodis, as chairman and president, respectively, would generate the desired synergy to effectively and speedily achieve the CFO’s laudable goal. Unfortunately, the enthusi- asm of the delegates to the 2nd Global Summit was dampened by three things. Firstly, President Aquino was too busy to person- ally speak at the conference. He sent a videotaped message instead. Secondly, according to Palace insiders, Aquino was also “too busy” to oblige a request of delegates to witness him sign the amended overseas voting bill that does away with the require- ment for foreign-based voters to execute an affidavit stating that they would return to the Philip- pines within three years, under pain of imprisonment (as it turned out, the bill had not even been passed by Congress - a fact that the “Palace insiders” should have known in the first place). Thirdly - and this was the unkindest cut of all - the Com- mission on Elections ruled that 238,000 overseas Filipinos were no longer qualified voters, osten- sibly for failing to cast their bal- lots in the last two elections. It took a meeting with the Comelec, arranged by leaders of the Global Filipino Diaspora

Council, to persuade the poll body to reinstate the disenfran- chised voters. But there’s no reason to celebrate yet, because some consular offices are still waiting for clear and specific instructions from the Comelec, and those have yet to be given. It’s the classic chicken or egg impasse. These grievances were aired at the USPGG meeting in Daly City. Being pragmatic, I sug- gested to the members that they should not get mad. They should just get even. ‘Let’s face it,’ I said. “We’re only important to the govern- ment because of the 20-plus bil- lion dollars that we remit every year. That money keeps the Phil- ippine economy afloat. But if the politicians and the Comelec can have their way, they would prefer that we do not vote in this election or any other election in the future.” It is the specter of an over- seas voting bloc that the politi- cians are wary off. They don’t

want voters who are not under their control. Theoretically, overseas Pinoys cannot be bought off or intimidated and we’re supposed to be more enlightened, having been exposed to the political pro- cess in more advanced countries. But the theory is as real - or unreal - as the vaunted Catholic vote. There could be a Catholic vote if Catholics were as regi- mented as the members of some religious sects. Similarly, there could be an overseas voting bloc

if Filipinos abroad could rally to

a common cause.

Veggies prolong life

hundreds of phytochemicals in fruits and vegetables are: lyco- phene, ellagic acid, lutein, flava- noids, saponins,monoterpenes, phthalides, phenols, ajoene, cas- saicin, coumestrol, genistein, sul- foraphane, zeanthin. Our moth- ers were right in cajoling us to eat vegetables and fruits while we were growing up. Too bad, most of us didn’t listen. But since we are now wiser and know better, let’s educate our own children and persuade them to eat more vegetables and fruits and less animal meat for better health. The incidence of can- cers, heart and kidney diseases, diabetes, hypertension, and obe- sity among vegetarians is much lower than among meat-eaters.

from page 25

Imported from England

The Rev. William Metcalfe of England, together with his friend, Sylvester Graham, a young Presbyterian minister and 40 other English church mem- bers, brought the vegetarian way of life to the United States in 1817. For thousands of years, being a vegetarian was a part of socio-cultural-religious practice around the globe, most notably in the Far East. Many people around the world today choose to be vegetarians for health rea- sons.

Vegetarian Who’s Who

If you are a vegetarian, you’re in good company. Some of the famous vegetarians include

Pythagoras, Socrates, Plato, Leonardo da Vinci, Buddha, Plutarch, John Milton, Sir Isaac Newton, Mahatma Gandhi, The Dalai Lama, Benjamin Franklin, Shakespeare, Vincent Van Gogh, Leo Tolstoy, Ralph Waldo Emer- son, Voltaire, Albert Schweitzer, George Bernard Shaw, Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Rabin- dranath Tagore, Mark Twain, Robert Browning, Linda and Paul McCartney, John Denver, Richard Gere, Kim Bassinger, Steven Spielberg, Cameron Diaz, Josh Hartnett,¦etc.

Was Jesus a vegetarian?

Knowledge as recorded in the Bible about how the Essenes, the Nazoreans and Ebionites lived suggests that Christ was probably a vegetarian.

2828 Editorial

April 15, 2013

2828 Editorial April 15, 2013 A sleeping Comelec Many Filipino overseas absentee voters (OAV) in the

A sleeping Comelec

Many Filipino overseas absentee voters (OAV) in the United States and Canada may not be aware that voting has already started around the world for the mid-term Philippine elections. More than 900,000 overseas voters are eligible to cast their votes or mail in their ballots to the Philippine embassies and consul- ates in their respective countries. The polls for OAVs officially opened April 13 and will close on May 13, 2013. The OAVs will be joined by the more than 20 million voters in the Philippines who will vote on May 13. One of the reasons for the lack of information about the elections abroad is the failure of the Commission on Elections in Manila to promote it. It has relied only on the Manila TV channels to spread the word. Instead of sending press releases to Philippine embassies abroad and the thousands of Filipino American newspapers in the US and Canada, for instance, sev- eral Comelec commissioners spent money for junkets to Hong Kong, Singapore and the Middle East early this month ostensi- bly to drum up support. There was no reminder about the date of the voting, the pro- cedure to be followed by voters or embassies and consulates that have been designated as official voting places. Not many know the voting is limited only to senatorial candidates and party-list bets. Unlike overseas voters in Hong Kong, the Middle East and Singapore, many in the United States, Canada and Europe do not even know who are running for senators, how many posi- tions are open and the platforms of the major parties involved. Many do not know that of the 33 major candidates for the 12 seats, are from Luzon. Of these, 19 are from Metro Manila, the country s capital region. Only one senatorial aspirant -- inde- pendent candidate Ramon Montaño -- originated from and is considered a resident of the Visayas. He was born in Cebu, the most vote-rich area outside Luzon, and is a registered voter in Negros Oriental. It’s time for the Comelec to wake up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! .

up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso
up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso
up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso
up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso
up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso
up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso
up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso
up. It must fulfill its duties to keep the OAVs informed! . The Diplomat as Tsismoso

The Diplomat as Tsismoso

There are reports that there is a higher entity (not ghost, pare) ruling the Philip- pine embassy whenever the ambassador is on home leave. When my Tsismoso reporter prods these moles to elaborate, they simply clam up!

*** A Tsismoso who obviously visits the embassy website often and have some knowledge about foreign affairs, has some comments about the press statement issued by the embassy about the meet- ing between US Secretary of State John Kerry and Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Albert del Rosario at the State Department April 2. This Tsismoso, who obviously knows something about diplo- matic niceties and protocols is wondering why the press release was issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila and not the Philippine embassy in Wash- ington D.C. Didn’t DFA trust Del Rosa- rio in issuing the statement himself? Or was he being censored? Were officials in Manila afraid the secretary might declare war on China? he asked.

*** Well, after ignoring the repeated requests of Filipino American activists supporting the Filipino Overseas Work- ers in Louisiana for a meeting with Phil- ippine Ambassador Jose L. Cuisia, Jr. the embassy finally relented last month. That was because some protesters were dem- onstrating in front of the embassy and calling for the firing of the ambassador. But instead of meeting with the top honcho, the activists calling itself the Jus- tice for Grand Isle Shipyard met with an embassy official. But he was not a top- level official. He’s First Secretary and Consul Elmer Cato, previously the press officer and part-time photographer in the embassy. After the meeting, the embassy issued a statement saying “The embassy is satis- fied with the discussion.” And the online magazine, The Filam, said they “agreed to disagree.” As expected, the activists went away still grumbling and asking for the firing of the ambassador for not helping the work- ers.

*** According to some Tsismoso report- ers, there is a favorite ditty being recited by some disgruntled staff of the Phllip- pine embassy every time the ambassador

goes to the Philippines for home consulta- tions. “When the Cat is Away, the Mouse is at Play1” Many are trying to figure out what this means. One Tsismoso says that when the ambassador leaves, the embassy is run by

a surrogate who is stricter than the ambas- sador.

*** Some Tsismosos in the Washing- ton D.C. area have been acting like Polar bears lately. Some Tsismoso sources appear to have gone in hibernation, prob- ably because of the long Winter. But a few are still active. Take for instance this unconfirmed report that a former commu- nity leader owns condos in the National Harbor, the new development along the Potomac. That a rich Middle Eastern man is funding the business of a Pinoy. In McLean, Virginia.

*** Hurrah! Three Cheers. Tsismoso has found a compadre, a counterpart in the Philippines. My newlyl-discovered fellow Tsismoso in the Philippines is a man in

a Cossack. He is none other than Arch-

bishop emeritus Oscar Cruz, former presi- dent of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines. This Tsismoso bishop was reported to have swore on a stack of Bibles that Kristina Bernadette (alias) Kris Aquino, President Aquino’s 3rd youngest sister, has set her eyes for the second highest position in the land in 2016! Msgr. Cruz said his information was confirmed by “credible” sources from within the present administration. And the Manila media went wild over the bishop’s report. He said “this information was con- firmed by credible sources from within the present administration.” “Formerly, it was only in whispers. Now, it has become more commonly said and heard that the youngest sister of the President of the Republic will also run as vice president [VP] of the Republic come 2016,” Cruz said. “I’m not saying that she will do it in 2016. I’m just saying that, up to now, this is what is being said,” the retired prelate said. When asked if the movie and televi- sion actress has a strong chance of suc- ceeding Vice President Jejomar Binay, Cruz answered in the affirmative.

April 15, 2013 Opinion 29 The Ties that Bind C arlos Bulosan was 17 years

April 15, 2013

Opinion 29

April 15, 2013 Opinion 29 The Ties that Bind C arlos Bulosan was 17 years old

The Ties that Bind

C arlos Bulosan was 17 years old when he left his hometown of Binalonan,

Pangasinan. Along with thou- sands of other young Filipinos, he arrived in California where they labored as farm workers for big plantation owners and houseboys for rich, white Ameri- can families. They worked hard despite low wages and inhu- mane working conditions. The America in the 1930s through the 1940s was a hostile world for brown-skinned men like Bulosan. Recruited as vital help to meet the country’s eco- nomic needs, they were nonethe- less treated like dogs and hunted down like criminals. They suf- fered beatings, threats and ill- health.

They suf- fered beatings, threats and ill- health. p29image001.tif In his autobiography, “ America is in


In his autobiography, “ America is in the Heart,” Bulo-

san wrote: “I came to know after- ward that in many ways it was

a crime to be a Filipino in Cali-

fornia . I came to know that the public streets were not free to my people.”

They also suffered a more insidious form of oppression. About 80 percent of Filipino men

in California were under 30 years

of age and unmarried. The ratio of Filipino males to females was fourteen to one. Filipino young women were not allowed to leave home at the time. Under the circumstances, brown men dated white women. But misce- genation laws prevented Filipi- nos from marrying whites. Inevitably, starting a family in the US was nearly unfeasible. As historians point out, “many had waited years, and even decades, to marry a woman and start a family. Because of this,

Filipino men were having chil- dren as old as 81 years old. Some went back to the Philippines to rekindle flames from former loves.” Forced by the exigencies of racism, and because U.S. employers did not usually pay for the passage of family mem- bers, these migrant workers suf-

fered loneliness and isolation. Deprived of marriage and family life, these manongs lived out their days in the grim shadows of their aging years as “hurt men.” In the words of writer Ben Santos: “old timers” and “socially excluded, childless Filipino bachelors.” Still, while America failed

to live up to his “most cherished

dream” of American citizen- ship, Bulosan’s faith and love for

America never faltered. Despite the rejection and bitterness, the suffering and abuses, he remained hopeful in his vision of America as an “unfinished ideal in which everyone must invest time and energy” and contribute “something toward the final ful- fillment of America .” A Cherished Dream. My own family’s journey to this land of promise in the 1960s was not as heroic or dramatic as Bulosan’s. Like him, my father plowed his farm with a carabao and struggled to improve his

family’s chances of a better life. American citizenship was also

a cherished dream. He and my

mother came as students and later got their green cards. My two younger sisters and younger brother, carrying student visas, soon followed. But when it was

my turn to come, I made the mis-

take of telling the US Consul in Manila that I planned to join my siblings, as it was my parent’s dream to bring us all together as one family. Wrong answer. Visa denied. I dreaded the prospect

of being separated. A friend later told me that I should have answered, “I’m dying to see snow,” to the consul’s question of why I wanted to go to Amer- ica . Snow, not siblings, don’t raise red flags. Fortunately, the US Embassy reversed its deci- sion after an American mission- ary intervened. There is a God, after all, I exulted. In the meantime, my brother received a deportation order because he was caught working after graduating from college in

Continued on page 31

Single First Lady

I n a recent interview with

a TV station in Burlington,

Vermont, First Lady Michelle

Obama referred to herself as a busy single mother who faces the same problems many mothers do trying to balance family time with work. She corrected herself as soon as she realized she had her foot in her mouth. Opps! Those who doubt that Pres. Barack Obama was born in Hawaii will now have another issue. They will demand to see the marriage certificate of Barack and Michelle. Some celebrities tend to enjoy highlighting their misfor- tune or challenges in life. Ophra reveals that she was abused as a child. Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas claims she was discrimi- nated in her childhood. My smart aleck barber how- ever insists that truth comes out in unguarded moments.

I said,” I can believe that she is busy but of course she is not single.”

“It’s the other way around”, my barber insists. “You mean, she is not busy but single?” “Listen carefully, he says. First, she has more than one sec-

carefully, he says. First, she has more than one sec- retary to do her office chores,

retary to do her office chores,

a few butlers to do personal

errands, Secret Service agents to

keep away the flies from disturb- ing her peace and quiet, and the entire staff of the White House kitchen to see to it that scram-

bled eggs are ready for breakfast every morning. What else is there

to do other than copy the body

language of her idol, Beyonce?” “OK, I get it. But nobody ever questioned the marriage of the first couple.” “Personal admissions are

telling. You can be married and


single.” “You are confusing me now.


the way, be careful with those

scissors.” “Consider this”, my barber gestures with those pair of scis- sors to catch my serious atten- tion.

“The President wakes up early and goes to the White House gym then takes a quick shower before dropping by the

breakfast table, then security

briefings, then sword splay with Speaker John Boehner, then consulting Defense psychics to predict what the young North Korean leader will do next, then 18 rounds of golf.” “But then Michelle owns the evening, I said. “That’s when the

real action begins.” “Not anymore”, my barber smiled. In the evening, Holly- wood descends on the White House and Barack spends the entire evening pressing celebrity flesh. “What happens after the celebrities leave?” “Barack sits by a telephone and watches Michelle fall asleep while he makes follow-up calls for contributions from the top 1% that he so despises.” “Is Michelle really com- plaining?” “You can see a Pope resign

Continued on page 31

The threat within

M y wife is terrified by

the prospect of North

Korea launching a

nuclear-tipped missile on the United States or the Philippines. I tried to explain why that was unlikely but the steady drone of ominous news reports on TV seemed to drown everything out.

Now that the yearly US- South Korean joint military exer- cises are winding down, expect the rhetoric to follow suit. The North, despite its bluster and the unpredictability of its leaders, know it can’t win. The hermit nation is obviously trapped in the 20 th century, its vaunted mili- tary (said to be 4 th largest in the world) relying on Soviet-style doctrines and weapons that have been proven ineffective in the Sinai Peninsula, Iraq, Libya, etc. And Soviet-era military calculus is anchored on one overriding concern – survival. The US has time and again demonstrated its capability to take unwanted regimes down. It’s costly but if you give Amer- ica a compelling reason to do it, she probably will. Last month, I received a press release from the Missile Defense Agency announcing the success of tests to intercept bal- listic missiles over the Pacific Ocean. The cruiser USS Lake

missiles over the Pacific Ocean. The cruiser USS Lake Erie, guided by satellites, used a standard

Erie, guided by satellites, used a standard Aegis ship-to-air mis- sile to knock out a dummy mis- sile launched from Hawaii. The statement said it was the 24 th suc- cessful intercept in 30 tests (an 80 percent ratio which is better than most operational anti-missile defense systems). The US and Philippines kicked off their own bilateral training exercises last week. The US dispatched a flight of F-18 Hornets although the official statement said this year’s Balika- tan “war games” is more geared towards responding to natural disasters. Curiously, the Philip- pines lost the last of its fighter jets to obsolescence a few years back and this is the first time since the country has any kind of supersonic interceptors, even if they happen to be American. Feeding the North Korean threat storyline further, For- eign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario said the US can use Phil- ippine ports and airfields if hos-

tilities do break out in the Korean Peninsula. Ultimately, North Korea’s antics pose a greater danger not against the US, but against China. It could drive South Korea to acquire a nuclear weapon; the only reason Japan hasn’t fully re- armed is because of the US secu- rity guarantee. Vietnam, which is contesting Chinese claims on islands in the South China Sea, could travel through the same path. India and Pakistan already have a nuclear arsenal. If China doesn’t rein its clients in North Korea, it could wake up to its worst nightmare – a border shared with nuclear-armed neighbors. Much has been said about the penchant of the press to scare its audiences – it drives TV rat- ings up and sells newspapers. This will surely fuel that percep- tion even as the White House said it was trying to dial down on the rhetoric, perhaps giving

Continued on page 31


April 15, 2013

3030 April 15, 2013 Senators-in-Waiting MANILA B y the time you’re reading this, the Philippines will
3030 April 15, 2013 Senators-in-Waiting MANILA B y the time you’re reading this, the Philippines will


MANILA B y the time you’re reading this, the Philippines will be edging closer to judg-

ment day for politicians vying

for positions all over the land. May 13 is election day for sena- tors (who are voted nationwide) and local officials from town mayor to governors to members

ects to finance. But here pork barrel money also finds its way into the sena- tors’ pockets in the form of kickbacks. Pork barrel funds are allotted to specific projects favored by a senator and the projects’ contractors (favored ones as well) “kick back” part of the money to the sponsoring


Congress. These elections are pivotal

senator (or congressman). Thus, senators become rich just for


how the nation will be gov-

that. In the Philippines, there are

erned in the next three years and beyond. It’s because the politi- cians the people will vote into office will either be supportive

no senators who live in shanties, even if that’s were they used to reside before they became sena- tor. That’s a fact of life here.


President Benigno Aquino III

No wonder senatorial can-

or not. Aquino has said the elec-

tion winners will be key to his reform program, and he has been travelling around the country to persuade people to vote for his chosen candidates. This is espe-

cially true for the candidates for the Senate. Besides the President, sena- tors are the only other officials who are elected by a nationwide vote (unlike in the United States where senators, like congress- men, are voted by state). For this reason, senators are held in higher regard among all gov- ernment officials, except for the President of course. For this reason too, the senate is seen as

a breeding ground for future

presidents. Having to court all the voters around the country is of course a grueling task. Senatorial candidates have to cover prac- tically all the major cities and towns around the archipelago. That takes a lot of time and effort. And money, lots of money. Sena- torial candidates have to spend millions of pesos and mount nightmarish logistics in order to cover the whole nation. But the rewards are hand- some. Being a senator brings prestige and clout. Senators are next only to the President in terms of political power. And any one of them, in theory at least, is a potential president. And it also pays in money terms. Senators get P200 million each in pork barrel funds (con- gressmen get P70 million each) that they can allot for projects anywhere they like around the country. The pork barrel system here works essentially the same way as the one in the United States in terms of the senators being able to pinpoint what proj-

didates (and all the other can- didates for office here) shell out lots of money just to get elected. Campaigning requires a lot of money. The sheer logistics alone of campaigning need massive funding. And when you have to cover a lot of ground, the finan- cial requirements of campaign- ing get multiplied. That’s why the winning candidates need to recoup their “investment” later on through kickbacks and other forms of stealing. As you read this, the can- didates for the May 13 polls are right in the middle of the cam- paign. Having started the cam- paign in the middle of last Febru-

ary, the senatorial candidates are by now exhausted, both physi- cally and financially (candidates for lower office started their cam- paign last March 29 only). Those who have money on their own, those who have fat cats as back- ers and large political parties to support them obviously have a built-in edge. The less endowed make do with physical exertion by trying mightily to cover as much ground as they humanly can. They will slog through to the finish line on May 12, if indeed they have the stamina to get there. As of this writing, the sena- torial bets who are doing well in the surveys are reelectionists Loren Legarda, Chiz Escudero, Alan Peter Cayetano, Koko Pimentel, Antonio Trillanes and Gregorio Honasan. Grace Poe, Cynthia Villar, Nancy Binay, JV Ejercito, Jack Enrile, and former senators Dick Gordon, Ramon Magsaysay and Jamby Madrigal are also within the ambit of win- ning.

Continued on page 31

Immigration Notes

By J.G. Azarcon, Esq.

Love visa

T rue love may pave the way

for a ticket to the United


An alien who is the fiance(e) of a U.S. citizen petitioner may be issued a K-1 visa which will allow entry to the U.S. for the purpose of marrying the U.S. citizen petitioner.

To qualify for a K-1 visa, the petitioner and the alien must sat-

isfy the following requirements:

(i) the parties have personally


within two years preceding


date of filing of the petition;


they must have a bona fide

intention to marry; and (iii) they are legally qualified and actually willing to conclude a valid mar- riage in the U.S. within ninety days after the fiance(e)’s arrival. The requirement for a per-

sonal meeting within two years preceding the filing of the peti-

tion may be waived by the Immi-

gration Service if the parties can establish that the meeting would result in extreme hardship to

the petitioner or would violate

the traditional customs of the

beneficiary’s foreign culture or social practice, as in marriages arranged by parents. Health rea-

sons, travel restrictions or finan-

cial burdens are circumstances

that may merit a waiver based on extreme hardship. The documentation neces- sary to prove contact and intent



First: Unmarried sons/daughters of US citizens Second:

Feb. 15, 1999

A: Spouses/minor children of permanent residents:

Dec. 15, 2010

B: Unmarried sons/daughters 21 years

of age or older of permanent residents Third: Married sons/daughters of citizens Fourth: Brothers/sisters of citizens

Jul. 15, 2002 Oct. 01, 1992 Aug. 15, 1989


First: Priority workers

Certain Religious Workers


Second: Professionals holding advanced degrees or persons of exceptional ability Third: Skilled workers, professionals Other Workers Fourth:

Current Sep. 08, 2006 Sep. 08, 2006 Current Current

Fifth: Employment creation/ (Million or half-million dollar investor)


to marry includes, among others, photographs of the parties being together, letters, e-mail, tele- phone bills and affidavits of rela- tives who have personal knowl- edge of the relationship. If the alien beneficiary has minor children, the children can come with the principal ben- eficiary under a K-2 visa, either accompanying or following to join within one year of the issu- ance of the K-1 visa. If the alien or the petitioner

fail to marry within 90 days of the alien’s arrival, the alien then becomes subject to removal. A K-1 visa holder will not qual- ify for an extension of stay or change to another immigration status, i.e. B-2, H-B1 or employ- ment based immigrant petition.

If the alien marries another U.S.

citizen instead of the petitioner, the alien cannot apply for adjust- ment of status while remaining

Continued on page 31

Caribbean Piggy Banks


“F ollow the smell of money”. Investigative reporter Amitabha

Chowdhury worked by that rule in his “Ananda Bazar Patrika” exposes of murky contracts in India . Chowd-

hury won the 1961 Magsaysay Award for Journalism. Anna Politkovskaya used “accountability reporting”

in “Novaya Gazeta” exposes

of Vladimir Putin’s regime and abuse of Chechen people.

A gunman, in 2006, cut her

down in a Mocow lift. She was


Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein’s reporting on

the Watergate break-in won the

1973 Pulitizer Prize for Public

Service Their reports led to US

President Richard Nixon’s one sentence letter of resignation “Watchdog journalism” can uproot malfeasance at

national levels. What if jour- nalists “follow the smell of money” across borders? The International Consor- tium of Investigative Journal-

ists did just that. This April, ICIJ

completed a 15-month probe

did just that. This April, ICIJ completed a 15-month probe of global tax havens. Former Sydney

of global tax havens. Former Sydney Morning Post’s Gerard Ryle, marshaled 86 journalists in 46 countries, including the Phil-

ippine Center for Investigative Journalism. They picked apart a hard

drive, delivered mysteriously, Agence France Presse reports Crammed into it were accounts of 120,000 offshore companies and 130,000 individuals. In it’s first release Easter week, ICIJ nailed the Azerbaijan presi- dent’s family and the French president’s former campaign treasurer. PCIJ pinpointed three Filipinos who hold secret off-

shore trusts in the Virgin Islands

: Ilococ Norte governor “Imee”

Marcos- Manotoc, Rep.Joseph Victor ‘JV’ Ejercito and Sen. Manuel. Villar Jr. “ICIJ found more than 500 Philippine residents who have

links with offshore trusts…Half have public profiles, of varying prominence”. Others are busi- nessmen in foreign companies. Public officials must list all assets in annual Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth. SALNs should include stashes abroad. The Constitution directs : “Upon assumption of office, ( legislatiors must ) make

a full disclosure of their financial and business interests.” Imee is a beneficiary of Sintra Trust. Others in the trough are her adult sons with estranged husband Tomas Manotoc: Ferdinand Richard, Matthew Joseph; and Fernando ”Borgy” Martin. “Documents

up to 2010, show that Imee also

had interests in a company in which Sintra Trust was a ben- eficial shareholder: ComCentre Corporation. Formed in January

Continued on page 31

April 15, 2013 31 Senators-in-Waiting Loren Legarda, the reported front-runner in the senatorial race, is

April 15, 2013



Loren Legarda, the reported front-runner in the senatorial race, is a former television news- reader who has distinguished herself as an environmental advocate. Very ambitious (she has run for vice president twice but lost). Chiz Escudero too has higher political ambitions, having once flirted with the heady thought of running for president but relented when his expected campaign money didn’t materialize from a conglomer- ate tycoon. Alan Cayetano is a member of a brother-and-sister act in the senate who likes to fight brinkmanship games like impeaching presidents (then President Gloria Arroyo) and verbal jousts with his nominal boss, the senate president (Juan Ponce Enrile who himself has figured in dramatic political epi- sodes as a henchman of the dic- tator Ferdinand Marcos in the 1970s and 80s). Grace Poe is the daughter of the late movie icon Fernando Poe Jr. who is respected, like both her father and mother (movie star Susan Roces), in the film com- munity. From this Observer’s eyes, a liberal in political persua- sion. Cynthia Villar is a former congresswoman and the wife of former Senate President and 2010 presidential candidate Manny Villar. Doing well in the surveys because of early visibil- ity by engaging in charity work and capitalizing on the family name. Nancy Binay is the daughter of Vice President Jojo Binay, and that’s her only apparent qualifi- cation and surely the only reason why she’s doing well in the sur- veys. Has never held any elec- tive position before and spent many years as either her father’s or mother’s (who had both been mayor of Makati, a wealthy suburb of Manila) personal assis-

from page 30

tant. Jojo Binay won a startling and come-from-behind victory

in the 2010 election as vice presi-

dent, trouncing the front-runner, former senator Mar Roxas. Binay and Roxas appear to be the main protagonists in the presiden- tial election of 2016. A possible third candidate is current sena- tor Bong Revilla, a former and present movie star, but this is a ludicrous prospect if ever there was one. JV Ejercito is a son of former President Joseph Estrada who had served as town mayor (in their bailiwick of San Juan, a suburb of Manila, and as con- gressman). The luckiest politician in modern Philippine political history is Joseph “Erap” Estrada.

He too (!) was a movie star who later became a petty politician (town mayor of, where else, San Juan) who then was voted into higher office (senator, vice president, president) by the star- struck masses. He was convicted of plunder (amassing money illegally), then pardoned by the opportunistic Gloria Arroyo, and in 2010 ran for president and came in a distant second to President Aquino (Manny Villar was an even more distant third). And now Joseph Estrada is run- ning for mayor of Manila against the incumbent Fred Lim, himself

a former senator. Estrada, who

has no qualification whatsoever for higher office (his supporters will dispute this of course) has remained alive in politics despite having no gray matter between his ears and his conviction as a plunderer. He also maintains several wives. Only in the Philip- pines! “Bam” Aquino is a cousin of President Aquino and, for those in North America who remem- ber Ninoy Aquino, a Ninoy look-alike. Bam is a youth leader who has won several awards

and is touted by his party and supporters as qualified for the senate. But, to this Observer, President should not have

approved Bam’s candidacy for the reason that they’re cousins, thus taking away the President’s moral ground for attacking

dynastic politics, which has been

a bane here for keeping poli-

tics so feudal still, with political families controlling elections and how localities are governed and administered. The other candidates men-

tioned above haven’t really distinguished themselves in any earth-shaking importance. Except for Miguel Zubiri, in a negative way, who won in 2007 on the strength of vote-rigging manipulations allegedly ordered by then President Arroyo. Zubi- ri’s bogus win robbed Koko Pimentel, a son of another sena- tor (Aquilino “Nene” Pimentel), of four years of his legitimate term in the senate. Koko, natu- rally, is bitter about Zubiri’s usurpation of his victory, and has been very vocal about it in the ongoing campaign. What happens if they both win this time? This current crop of would- be senators isn’t exactly the creme de la creme, but what to do? The present membership of the senate (and worse, also of the

House of Representatives) is so undistinguished and undeserv- ing that the potential winners

this time aren’t likely to raise the quality of either chamber of Con- gress. And yet people continue

to vote them into office.

As the saying goes: People deserve the government they elect. Please tell your relatives here not to waste their votes and vote wisely. The Philippines will continue to be in the doldrums if the quality of our leaders doesn’t improve.

The threat within

from page 29

North Korea’s chubby 30-year- old leader Kim Jong Un space to back down without losing face. North Korea has provided the Obama administration a wel- come distraction – only 88,000 jobs were added in March com- pared to nearly 270,000 the pre- vious month; meaningful gun legislation from Congress seems more elusive than ever; federal agencies are set to enforce the sequestration; and perhaps more disconcerting, reports from Cap- itol Hill on the comprehensive immigration reform (CIR) bill.

As of this writing, the Asian American community is busy mobilizing for a protest on Capi- tol Hill against a proposal by North Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham to exclude the adult children and siblings of US citi- zens from being petitioned to come to the US. That to me is a more funda- mental threat to American values and way of life than any North Korea can hurl our way. It’s unsettling because I have a son

in the Philippines whom I dream

of one day being re-united here

in America along with his wife

and kids, so they can enjoy what

I have had these past 10 years. I’ve always believed that America’s strength lies less on its unmatched military heft as

it is on the superiority of her

people’s values, especially those

in the armed forces, who hold

them true and dear, determined


preserve them. The family is


the core of those values and

for Congress to enact something that blocks the family from being

whole is the biggest threat of all and that’s what scares me.

Caribbean Piggy Banks

from page 30

2002 in the Virgin Island , it is still in operation One Sintra Trust document refers to a United Overseas Bank account Limited Singa- pore. Another refers to an HSBC account. In June 2005, Imee was

named investment adviser of the Sintra Trust, according to a document uncovered by ICIJ. As such, she can direct any finan- cial institution in the purchase, sale, liquidation, and investment of trust assets. Imee’s disclosure

statements do not list them. “ Realize that when I was 20 years old, I had a house, a Mercedes, a Corvette, plus mil- lions in an offshore Carribean account, before I could buy alco- hol legally.” It was not Imee who said that. But she proclaimed , at every turn, “transparency”

The Ties that Bind

Missouri . He was “out of status.” My parents sought the help of a US Congressman who later filed a bill to keep my brother in the country. Happily for my two sis- ters, one a nurse and the other a social worker, they got sponsors

who helped legalize their status. In 1965, Congress finally passed a landmark immigration bill which made family reunifi- cation the bedrock value of the country’s immigration system. The Act abolished national ori- gins quotas that was American immigration policy since the 1920s, replacing it with a pref- erence system that focused on immigrants’ skills and family relationships with citizens or U.S. residents. But all that is about to change. While a bi-partisan immigration reform measure is laudable in many respects, nota- bly the path to legalization for the 11 million undocumented immigrants, one aspect threatens family reunification. Some sena- tors are talking about blocking citizens from sponsoring their family members living outside the country. Today, according to the Asian American Justice Center (AAJC), 4.3 million people are separated from their loved ones because of the family visa back- log. Filipino families, in particu- lar, face wait times of over 20 years to be reunited with their

from page 29

families. If these senators have their way, millions of mothers, children, spouses and siblings could be separated indefinitely.

Immigration reform is not just a “Latino issue.” It affects all of us. Family visas are just as important as employment visas in hastening assimilation and providing a safety net for family members. Workers, after all, have spouses and children and siblings. “Immigration is more than

a business relationship Amer- ica has with selected foreign- ers,” says the New York Times in an editorial. “It’s a process that renews this country; it means going all-in on America , through binding ties of love and blood. Recruited workers enrich the country. Reunited families do, too.” As we engage in this historic debate, let us remember Bulosan who would have been 100 years old in November. “ America is not a land of one race or one class

of men,” he wrote. “We are all

Americans that have toiled and suffered and know oppression and defeat, from the first Indian that offered peace in Manhattan

to the last Filipino pea pickers.

America is a prophecy of a new

society … that knows no sorrow

or strife or suffering.” Send your comments to jon-

Single First Lady

from page 30

in your lifetime, but never a

First Lady in the White House. It didn’t even occur in the mind of former FL Hillary Clinton. Single in the White House? It’s not the first time.”

*** Remember the time when liberal activists were picketing Savings and Loans Associa- tions protesting against alleged

“red lining” in order to force the financial institutions to loosen their credit guidelines to enable low income homebuyers to qual- ify for home loans? Their efforts paid off with the support of Fannie Mae and

Freddie Mac and even the Fed- eral Reserve under Chairman Alan Greenspan. The push for easy credit gave birth to sub-

prime loans and many applica- tions approved without verified

income documentation. When the G. W. Bush

administration tried to sound the alarm by proposing the creation

of a review board to oversee the

operations of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Democratic big guns Sen. Chuck Schuler and Rep. Barney Frank dismissed the Bush administration’s concerns. The housing bubble burst and Pres. G. W. Bush got the blame even when the seeds of the crisis were not planted by him. Now, according to a Wash-

ington Post report, the Obama administration is pushing banks to lend to people with weaker credit with assurances that the financial institutions will not face legal action for extending loans


riskier borrowers in the event


default. History repeats itself?

in conduct of official duties. On Ilocos Norte’s foundation day, Imee opens up the capitol to people, literally. “We even opened a provincial safe to show tax collections, how they process the money and bring them to the bank,” she told Inquirer. Alas, that didn’t include Virgin Island slush funds. “Ferdinand and Imelda, early in their rule, opened secret Swiss bank accounts .

Love Visa from page 30

in the U.S. The only way for a

K-1 visa holder to adjust status


permanent resident in the U.S.


by marriage to the petitioner

within 90 days of arrival.

(Any questions pertaining to this article may be addressed to 703 893 0760)


April 15, 2013

3232 April 15, 2013
3232 April 15, 2013