As a tourist, I came to the Philippines knowing ONLY the tag line:
It’s more fun in the Philippines.
So I was pretty excited to have some fun in here. And I am. The minute I arrive, I get invitations to go to Cebu, Palawan, the Islands, etc. But I also get: “oh, don’t go to the South. It’s dangerous” or, “don’t go to Smokey Mountain, it’s not safe there.” Thank you for looking after my safety.
But I can’t help but be surprised at how the divide is so obvious here in the Philippines. When I say it’s only fun in 75% in the country, I mean it’s only fun FOR ME in 75% of the country. I am sure the people at the Trash Mountain are happy and coping with what they have. They are still generous and welcoming. I am also equally confident that some people in North Korea are happy. Happiness is not the same as satisfaction or well-being.
I realize the country is a developing country and income inequality exists everywhere. I actually don’t mind income inequality. I love the Zuckerbergs and the Bill Gates. They can and should be able to make more money. What I do find annoying is the level of poverty the bottom 10% live in. You can still be in the bottom 10% but still be very rich (Switzerland). So, the reason I make these videos is not because I want everyone to be financially equal. I don’t. It’s because I think the objective should be to lift the bottom 10% out of poverty completely.
ONE LAST THING I WANT TO ADD: There is a downside to showing only the positives of a place. It’s more important than ever for Nas Daily to think about what videos are made and how they portray things. So I want to paint a full picture through my days here rather than just a bunch of positive, feel-good videos all the time. If I portray the Philippines as a Utopia, it is my belief that it will do a disservice to those that do not consider the Philippines as a Utopia. I’ve made that mistake before in other videos, and I regret it dearly 🙂
Anyway, this debate could go on forever. If this video stimulates any sort of discussion on this issue, then I’m satisfied. Next up on my agenda: see the most beautiful volcano in my world – Mayon Volcano!
Thank you so much to my friend Sandy from PinaSmile Mnl for showing me around. They’re doing good work there and could use any help Filipinos (or foreigners) have to offer.