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Volume 11 – Issue 38 • 16 Pages

JULY 13-19, 2018

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Duterte unfazed by the drop in satisfaction rating by RITCHEL


Pres. Rodrigo Duterte with Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque Malacañang photo


DATELINE Malacañang says US-China trade war to have ‘some effect’ on Philippines FROM THE AJPRESS NEWS TEAM ACROSS AMERICA

Possible free trade agreement discussions not needed to be ‘fast-tracked’

PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte was unfazed when a new survey revealed that his satisfaction rating dropped to a new low in the second quarter of 2018. The nationwide survey was conducted by the Social Weather Stations (SWS) from June 27 to 30. It showed 65 percent of adult Filipinos are satisfied and 20 percent are dissatisfied with Duterte’s performance for a net satisfaction score of +45. His score was down by 11 points from the +65 he received in March. Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque merely shrugged of the result and said Duterte does not work to raise his popularity ratings. According to him, Duterte is not a “survey-driven” leader. “Our president does not govern for the ratings. He


APOLOGIZING TO GOD. President Rodrigo Duterte (left) meets with Jesus is Lord Church founder Eduardo ‘Eddie’ Villanueva (center) at the Malago Clubhouse in Malacañang Park on Tuesday, July 10. Also present are Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence ‘Bong’ Go, Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo and lawyer Angelino Villanueva. Malacañang photo

Drop in Duterte’s rating pinned on discontent Pacquiao, Matthysse ready to rumble Growing discontent with President Rodrigo Duterte has been pulling down public satisfaction for the Chief Executive this year, church and human rights groups and his critics in Congress said on Wednesday, July 11. “We are not surprised. More and more people including those who have defended him before are speaking out, especially since he has not spared even God in his tirades,” said Fr. Marco Sulayao of the Philippine Independent

Church (PIC). Sulayao, chair of the Promotion of Church People’s Response on Panay Island, said PIC members who supported the President were angered when he called God “stupid” in one of his tirades. “That drew the line for many. That was too much and we cannot let this pass,” Sulayao said. A major source of dissatisfaction for the President, Sulayao added, was the sharp increase in the pric-

es of fuel and basic commodities, which the people blame on the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act that the President signed into law last December. Net satisfaction (satisfied vs dissatisfied), which is used by SWS as a rating of the President’s performance, was down 11 points from the first quarter to +45 in the survey of 1,200 Filipinos conducted in the last week of June. That had

KUALA LUMPUR — For the first time since their fight was announced last April, World Boxing Association welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse and his challenger Manny Pacquiao appeared in one room on Tuesday, July 10 and separately pronounced their preparedness for their titular encounter five days from now in this soccer-crazy Malaysian capital city. The six-month-old belt owner from Argentina and his Filipino

title contender face each other off this coming Sunday are the Axiata Arena with the former putting on the block his 147-pound belt for the first time since winning the same January this year. That day, the two protagonists appeared in the traditional Grand Arrival ceremony held posh Le Meridien at the heart of this city. “Lucas is ready, he prepared hard for this fight and confident he’s still the champion when we



Duterte wants to elect a federal transitional president

THE Trump administration imposed its first wave of tariffs against China less than a week ago after confirming that the U.S. would start collecting tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods. Another $16 billion worth of tariffs are expected to follow. Describing the U.S.’ move as “typical trade bullying,” China hit back by imposing $34 billion in retaliatory tariffs on American products like soybeans and cars. In the Philippines, Malacañang said on by KLARIZE MEDENILLA Monday, July 9, that it expects the trade war AJPress between the U.S. and China to effect the country to some extent, but did not provide AMID considering a possible presidential specifics. term extension, Philippine President Rodri“I know that both DTI (Department of go Duterte wants the leader of the federal u PAGE A2 transition government to be an elected official, Malacañang confirmed on Monday, July 9. The Consultative Committee (ConCom) is currently reviewing the 1987 Constitu-

The president will reject the possibility for a term extension, acknowledging the possibility of a truncated three-year presidential term to end in 2019

Trump announces nominee for Supreme Court justice

tion and possible revisions and proposals. Among the provisions included in the new Constitution is one that will make the leader of the federal transition government to be an elected official. According to Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, Duterte requested this measure, which would cut the latter’s term to be co-terminus when the transition Manny Pacquiao and Lucas Matthysse pose with the latter’s WBA welterweight championship belt during the final press conference at the Hilton in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Thursday, period starts.


u PAGE A4 photo by Abac Cordero

Horrific crash kills father, four daughters; mother survives

The president nominates DC Circuit Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh after Justice Anthony Kennedy announces retirement WITH the retirement of Supreme Court (SCOTUS) Justice Anthony Kennedy, Trump has nominated a conservative circuit court judge to fill the vacant seat, signalling the first steps in potentially affirming the court’s conservative lean for years to come. On Monday, July 9, Trump nominated United States Circuit Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Brett Michael Kavanaugh as Kennedy’s replacement, calling Kavanaugh “one of the finest and sharpest legal minds of our time” who would apply the U.S. Constitution “as written.” Upon his nomination, Kavanaugh, 53, promised that he would “keep an open mind in every case” and reiterated that the job of the Supreme Court justice is to “interpret the law, not make the law.”

July 12.




More than a thousand friends, schoolmates, neighbors and relatives trooped to Votee Park in Teaneck, NJ on Saturday, July 7, 2018 to remember the five members of the Trinidad family killed in a horrific crash in Delaware Friday afternoon. The father, Audie Trinidad, 61, and their four daughters Kaitlyn, 20, Danna, 17, and twins Allison and Melissa, 13 died in the crash. The mother, Mary Rose Ballocanag, is the lone survivor in the crash and is currently in a hospital in Delaware. AJPress photo by Momar G. Visaya; inset photo courtesy of the Trinidad family

A FILIPINO-AMERICAN family from Teaneck, NJ was on their way back from their July 4th vacation in Ocean City, MD when a tragic accident happened along Route 1 in Delaware. A pickup truck crossed over the median and hit the family’s minivan head on, leaving five members of the family dead. The crash killed the father, Audie Trinidad, 61 years old, and their daughters 20-year-old Kaitlyn, 17year-old Danna and the 14-yearold twins, Melissa and Allison. Mary Rose Ballocanag Trinidad, the mother, is the sole survivor and was brought to Christiana Hospital

in Newark, Delaware. The accident happened on the afternoon of Friday, July 6. More than a thousand people came out on Saturday evening, July 7, to attend a prayer vigil at Votee Park in Teaneck. Friends, family and classmates came in droves, bringing candles, flowers and prayers for the Trinidad family. Lydia Agas, Mary Rose’s aunt, said that the latter was asleep when the accident happened. “When she woke up, her husband was on her chest, leaning and she wondered what happened. She had fractures all over



july 13-19, 2018 • NEW yORK AND NEW jERSEy ASIAN jOuRNAl

Drop in Duterte’s rating pinned... PAGE A1

dropped from +58 last December. Reylan Vergara, secretary general of human rights group Karapatan, said the decline could also be attributed to the growing alarm among the people over extrajudicial killings and unfulfilled promises. “More and more people are realizing and being convinced that (Mr.) Duterte’s promises of change, eradicating illegal drugs in six months and ending ‘endo’ (end of contract labor practice) are just that—promises,” Vergara said. “The quality of life especially of fixed income earners and those receiving the minimum wage have worsened while officials of the administration are being linked to anomalies,” he added. Duterte myth is gone Opposition Senators Bam Aquino and Antonio Trillanes IV agreed that rising prices were hurting Filipinos, causing them

to become dissatisfied with the President. “The Duterte myth is gone. The novelty of his crass behavior is gone, too. The people have finally seen the light,” said Trillanes, one of the President’s most strident critics. Trillanes said the rising prices showed the President was “nothing more than a one-trick pony.” Aquino urged the President to listen to Filipinos “drowning from the high prices” to halt the TRAIN law. Waste of political capital Sen. Ralph Recto said the President should not waste his “political capital.” “Fighting the Church and calling God stupid is unnecessarily utilizing political capital,” he said. Akbayan Rep. Tom Villarin cited the President’s “lack of governance and economic management skills” for the people’s dissatisfaction. • (212) 655-5426

From the Front Page

“Rising inflation, downturn in investments, rising current account deficits and their associated peso depreciation, and abnormal capital outflows are clear signs of an economic crisis,” Villarin told reporters. Unfulfilled promises He said the President failed to deliver on “populist promises like ending contractualization, increasing salaries of nonmilitary workers and staving off high prices of basic commodities like rice.” Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate said he would not be surprised if the President’s satisfaction rating plunged “further faster” due to continuing price hikes, more killings, unabated contractualization, the President’s “subservience” to the United States and China and the stalled peace talks with communist rebels. (With reports from Nestor P. Burgos, Leila B. Salaverria, Vince F. Nonato and the wires)

Malacañang says US-China trade war to... PAGE A1

Trade and Industry) and DOF (Department of Finance) are studying the matter very thoroughly, identifying where we are vulnerable given the kind of export products that we have, assessing if some of our biggest exports to both the U.S. and China will be affected. Take note that the tariff will be for goods originating from China and the United States,” said Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque. “Now, there are some products that we export to China which in turn are further reexported to China. So in that sense there will be some effect on us but we are of course studying and preparing for eventualities,” he added. Both China and the U.S. are among the Philippines’ top trading partners, with the Philippines being a big contributor in the Chinese supply chain. Roque spoke more on discussions between the U.S. and the Philippines regarding a possible free trade agreement (FTA). He said continuing discussions would not be “fast tracked” as a result of the trade war. “I don’t think it’s really a directive of fast-track. It’s just that

its something that has always been there. It’s something that we demanded,” said Roque. “In fact, early on, if the U.S. was offering it to countries like Vietnam which at some point was their enemy, why wouldn’t they offer the same to us given that we have always been their friend,” he added. “It’s not a knee-jerk reaction to the trade war.” U.S. officials met with officials in the Philippines last May to discuss further bilateral economic cooperation between the two countries, including the possibility of pursuing an FTA. Of future meetings, Roque said the Philippines further hopes to be in a “position of equality”, and not “just a be a market for U.S. goods.” He said the Philippines hopes to also be able to export its goods to the U.S. Roque further reminded that the discussions were not yet explicitly of a free trade deal, but of its possibility. “I know that there’s a possibility that there will be a free trade agreement, but I don’t know the details yet,” said Roque. The Philippines has previously acknowledged opportunities

under the existing Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA), and the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP). As previously reported, under the GSP, the country currently benefits preferential duty-free entry to the U.S. In 2017, GSP exports accounted for 17 percent of Philippine exports to the U.S., which valued at $1.492 billion. Tires, electronics, sugar, and fruit and vegetable juices, were among the lead exports. The latest GSP renewal was also made to be effective three years in place of an annual review. It also extended dutyfree treatment to travel goods including suitcases, handbags, backpacks, attaché cases, and similar cases and bags. DTI also said it hoped to add footwear to the list. U.S. President Donald Trump first proposed tariffs against China last March as a fix to what he said were unfair trading practices. Tariffs were also imposed against Canada, the European Union, and Mexico in June. The countries have also issued their own retaliatory tariffs. (Rae Ann Varona / AJPress)

BRAND OF CHANGE, EMPATHY AND UNITY. Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco Jr., Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel “Manny” Piñol, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones, DSWD Acting Secretary Virginia Orogo, Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno, Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Manahan Año, Labor Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III, and other government officials do the clenched fist during “Tatak ng Pagbabago: A Pre-SONA 2018 Forum” held at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City on Wednesday, July 11. PNA photo by Avito C. Dalan

Duterte unfazed by the drop... PAGE A1 is fulfilling his promise and his promise is simple: anti-corruption, anti-illegal drugs and a more comfortable life for everyone,” Roque told radio dzRH on Wednesday, July 11. He also mentioned that Duterte’s score is still higher compared to the latter’s predecessors. However, the SWS survey results showed that that was only true for two former Presidents: Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Joseph Estrada. Presidents Corazon Aquino and Fidel Ramos scored better than Duterte two years into their


That means Duterte’s reign may be cut to three years. According to Malacañang, Duterte previously expressed willingness to serve as the transitional period leader if the new Constitution is ratified earlier than expected, but as of press time, he wants someone else to fill the position. “I understand that the transitory role they have for the President will be for within his term of 2022. So ‘yun walang problema (there won’t be a problem),” Roque said in a Palace press briefing on Monday. “He has made a personal decision. It’s only until

Madaba,Mt Nebo,Petra,Aqaba,Jordan

(Tiberias, Ceasarea, Haifa, Meggido,Magdala, Nazareth, Cana, Mt Carmel, Capernaum, Mt Beatitude, Jericho, Bethany, Mt.Tabor, Mount Zion, Mt. of Olives, Old & New Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Qumran, Masada Dead Sea,Allenby Bridge, Madaba, Mt Nebo Petra, Aqaba Jordan)


Oct 19, 2018 (Fri) Day 2 – Arrive at Ben Gurion Airport, Tel Aviv/Tiberias After we clear Immigration and Customs, we will meet our local guide, who will be with us during our stay in Holy Land. enjoy the panoramic view of the Mediterranean. We will spend our first night in Tiberias. Dinner and overnight (D). Beach Holy Eucharist Oct 20, 2018 (Sat) Day 3 – Tiberias/ Meggido/ Nazareth/ Cana/ Mt Tabor We will have short stop in Meggido and the Plains of We will have short stop in Meggido and the Plains of Armageddon, known in Hebrew as Meggido, a giant fortress and City built by King Solomon. In the New Testament book of Revelation, it is referred as the sites of the “final battle”. From there, we will continue our drive into Nazareth, where we will have Mass in the Church of the Annunciation ,the Cave of the Annunciation and and visit Joseph’s Workshop and Then we will move on to Cana of Galilee, where Our Lord performed His first miracle: changing water into wine at the wedding feast. We will invite couples to Bless their marriage vows,Continue to Mount Tabor ,site of Jesus Transfiguration. Afterward, we will head to Tiberias. Dinner and overnight in Tiberias. (B/D). Oct 21, 2018 (Sun) Day 4 – Tiberias/ Mount Beatitude/ Multiplication / Primacy/ Capernum/Boat Ride “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” Early AM departures to Mt. Beatitude Drive up to Mount Beatitudes, visit the site of the Sermon on the Mount, where Jesus preached to the people., Eucharistic Celebration enjoy a scenic boat ride across the Sea of Galilee to Capernaum, home of Our Lord during his ministry. After visiting the Synagogue where he taught, proceed to Tabgha, the site of the miracle of the loaves and fishes. Then to the Church Primacy of St Peters. ( BB, D) Oct 22, 2018 (Mon) Day 5 – Magdala Full day retreat, Focus will Include programs based on the historical and Religious value of the Magdala sites . More info coming up as we get closer to the dates. MAGDALA, Israel – 2009 Discoveries from a new archaeological dig are creating excitement in the area where Jesus began his ministry. The village is called Magdala (Migdal in Hebrew), and it’s the home of Mary Magdalene.”She lived here and she met Jesus here and she continued with Him. Yes, it’s that place The most important discovery in Magdala has been a synagogue dating back to the time of Jesus. According to archaeologists, it’s the first one discovered in the Galilee. Oct 23, 2018 (Tues) Day 6 – Jordan Valley/ Jericho/ Bethany/Jerusalem Mass at the Church in Bethany After breakfast, we head to Jericho, the oldest inhabited city in the world. View the Mount of Temptation, where Jesus spent 40 days fasting in the desert. We will visit the ancient ruins of the wall. We will continue

to Bethany and will have mass to celebrate Holy Eucharist at the Church of St. Lazarus. Then we will visit the Baptismal site in River Jordan. Upon arrival in Mount Scopus meaning Mount of the Watchmen/Sentinels, is a mountain in northeast Jerusalem. Enjoy the first view of Jerusalem. After the day’s tour, we will check in at our hotel in Jerusalem (B/D) Oct 24, 2018 (Wed) Day 7 – Jerusalem (Old City)/ Via Dolorosa/Mount Zion Mass at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher “And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha.” (John 19:17) We will enter the Old City of Jerusalem and will follow the Via Dolorosa (Way of the Cross) and say the Station of the Cross to the holiest shrine in Christendom, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, visit Golgotha and the Tomb of Our Lord. After mass, we return to the hotel for breakfast. After breakfast, we will enter the Old City, sing a hymn in the Church of St. Anne and view the Pool of Bethesda. Then we will visit the Chapel of Flagellation, Lithostratos (where the soldiers played the Game of Kings) and the Arch of the “Ecce Homo”. Dinner/Overnight Oct 25, 2018 (Thurs) Day 8 – Jerusalem Mass at the Holy Eucharist Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us...” (John 1:14) We will walk to view the Dome of the Rock from the outside, and visit the Western Wall,( Wailing Wall ) the only part of the Herodian Temple still standing and the most sacred place in the world for Jews. Then, we will drive to Mt. Zion, to visit the Upper Room, revered as the site of the Last Supper, then survey the Dormition Abbey, and the Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu, The site where Peter denied Jesus three times. After the day’s tour, we will return to our hotel for dinner and overnight. Jerusalem (B, D) Oct 26, 2018 (Fri) Day 9 – Mount of Olives/ Gethsemane/ Bethlehem/ Jerusalem (New City)/ Ein Karem Mass at the Church of Nativity “O mountain of God, receive me, a mother, with my child.” (Protoevangelium of James 22:3) We will arrive at the Mount of Olives, to enjoy another view of Jerusalem, visit the Chapel of Ascension, Pater Noster Church and the Dominus Flevit (“God wept”) sanctuary. Next, we’ll walk the Palm Sunday Road to the Garden of Gethsemane, and visit the Rock of Agony and the Church of all Nations. In the afternoon, we’ll drive to Bethlehem, a

Duterte, for his part, said survey ratings no longer interest him. “I do not care. Make it (a) 15 (-point drop). It no longer matters to me,” he said on Tuesday night hours after SWS released results of its second quarter survey. “It does not interest me at all,” he added. Duterte also said that he was just “coasting along.” “I just coast along. Just traveling... and with the new suggestion since I’m not popular anymore, Congress might decide to find a popular one. You want a popular president? Fine. Good,” he told reporters in Clark, Pampanga. n

Duterte wants to elect a federal...

FOOTSTEPS OF JESUS Oct 18, 2018 (Thur) Day 1 – Lax to Tel Aviv, Israel Trans-Atlantic flight from L AX to Ben Gurion International Airport, Tel Aviv, Israel. (Meals served in-flight)

terms, with the former garnering +64 in February 1988 and +57 August 1988, while the latter got +67 in April 1994 and +55 in August 1994. Roque further claimed that Duterte’s score is not poor because “the people are still satisfied.” “Regardless of numbers, we assure everyone that the President and the members of his Cabinet would continue to work double-time in bringing the fruits of a better and more inclusive economy, and in strengthening the government’s drive against illegal drugs, crime and corruption,” he added.

city whose name is recognized around the world. After celebrating Mass at the Church of Nativity, we will see the Manger; visit the Church of St. Catherine, the Grotto of St. Jerome and the Shepherds’ Fields. Then we will return to Jerusalem (New City), to view the Temple Model to see how it looked during the time of Jesus. Here, we will gain a better understanding between the old and new cities of Jerusalem. Up next is a trip to Ein Karem, birthplace of St. John the Baptist, to see the Visitation Church, where Mary proclaimed her famous “Magnificat”. We will end our day by returning to our Hotel. (B/D) Oct 27, 2018 (Sat) Day 10 – Jerusalem/ Dead Sea/ Qumran/ Masada Mass at the Church of all Nations After breakfast, we will celebrate mass at the Church of all Nations and then we will drive to Dead Sea, the lowest spot on earth. Visit Qumran; see the caves where the Dead Sea scrolls were discovered. Continue to Masada, visit Herod’s fortress and the Jew’s last stronghold against the Roman. Return to Jerusalem for dinner and Overnight (B, D) Oct 28, 2018,(Sun) Day 11 – Jerusalem/ Allenby Bridge/ Madaba /Jordan/ Mt. Nebo/ Aqaba Mass at Mount Nebo On this day, we head to Allenby Bridge and cross into Jordan. We will go to the Baptismal Site at Bethany, which Pope John Paul II visited in 2000. Then, it’s on to Mount Nebo, where Moses viewed the Promised Land. Our next stop will be the Church of St. George in Madaba, which hosts the famous mosaic map of the Holy Land. Then we will drive down to Aqaba. Overnight in Aqaba (B/D). Movenpick Resort & Residence. Oct 29, 2018 (Mon) Day 12 – Aqaba/Petra Mass at Stella Maris Church – Aqaba After breakfast, we will journey through the Siq, until we get our first glimpse of the Khazneh (Treasury). Then will we walk down to visit the Temple and view the many caves all around the Theater. At the end of the tour, we will drive back to Aqaba for overnight and dinner (B/D). Movenpick Resort & Residence (CALL FOR COMPLETE COPY OF THE ITINERARY)

2022, earlier if possible.” Changes made to the Constitution are to be ratified after a majority vote by the public, a vote which must be held between 60 to 90 days after the approval from the Constituent assembly. Palace officials have said that if the final draft of the Constitution is approved by the people, the transition president will serve immediately, which could occur as early as 2019. “It’s to remove all suspicions and I am tired. Ready to give it to somebody else,” Duterte said, according to Roque. According to members of his Cabinet, Duterte reportedly said that the provision

would make way for a “younger leader” to take over. When reporters asked whether or not Duterte wanted former senator and 2016 vice presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. — with whom the president has close ties — to be the “transition president,” Roque said that “wala naman siyang sinabing napupusuan (he didn’t name anyone in particular).” A Cabinet official added that a provision will be added that will prevent the president from running or seeking re-election, a mandate requested by Duterte. n

Pilgrimage to Some of ITALY’s Highlights and Miracles of the Eucharist Nov 12, 2018 to Nov 22,2018 Spiritual Director REV.JOEL BUGAS

Day 1 – 12 Nov 2018 – (Mon) Day 2 – 13Nov 2018 – (Tues)

- USA - ROME - Rome Upon our arrival in Rome, our Tour Escort will welcome us to Italy. Rome is the heart, home and the spiritual capital of over one billion Catholics all over the world. After a short panoramic orientation of this Eternal City to us Roman Catholics, we will have our dinner and overnight rest at this great ancient City. DINNER AND OVERNIGHT IN ROME (BB,D) Day 3 – 14 Nov 2018 (Wed) – Rome / Papal Audience/ Rome

This morning before we continue with our tour, we will have a Papal Audience. Then after, we will visit the famous Coliseum and see the Forum, the Trevi Fountain and the Pantheon, one of the best preserved ancient monuments in the world. Celebrate the Holy Eucharist at St Peter Basilica St Joseph Chapel .Short stop in Trevi Fountain, before heading to our Hotel DINNER AND OVERNIGHT IN ROME (BB,D) Day 4 – 15 Nov 2018 (Thurs) – Rome / Basilicas We will visit the Vatican Museum this morning and the Sistine Chapel to admire the awesome masterpieces of Michaelangelo, and even ancient Greek and Roman artists. the largest church in Roman Catholicism, St. Peter’s Basilica. Holy Eucharist at ST Mary Major, Followed by visit of the Basilica. We continue to visit the rest of the major Basilicas within the walls of Rome, and St. John Lateran, St Paul Outside the Wall. We will also pray at the Scala Santa or the Holy Stairs. St. Helena transported the steps from Jerusalem; the same steps that Christ ascended to receive Pilate’s unjust condemnation. DINNER AND OVERNIGHT IN ROME (BB,D) Day 5 – 16 Nov 2018 (Fri)–Rome /San Giovanni Rotondo 2018 is the 100th Anniversary of the stigmatization of St Pio. Church Will have Monthly Pastoral Program of Activities for the whole year . San Giovanni Rotondo, the home of St Padre Pio of Pietrelcina from 28 July, 1916 until his death on 23 September, 1968. Enjoy the drive going to San Giovanni, after we check in our Hotel. We visit the Shrines of St Padre Pio of Pietralcina as well as the places associated with him , such as the Shrine of Our Lady of Grace that contains his tomb. Here, we spend some time meditating, see his room, his confessional box and the crucifix that gave him his supernatural Crucifying stigmata, Celebrate Holy Eucharist (Hotel Gran Paradiso ) DINNER AND OVERNIGHT IN San Giovanni Ro-

Please call QTS Tour and Travel NOW at 1 (714) 288-0800 or (714) 761-6280 1095 N Main St. Suite O, Orange, CA 92867

tondo (BB,D) Day 6 – 17 Nov 2018 (Sat) – SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO This Morning we visit the new and Modern Basilica of St Padre Pio, See his uncorrupt body .Celebrate Holy Eucharist Spend some time meditating in this awesomeBasilica. DINNER AND OVERNIGHT IN SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO (Hotel Gran Paradiso) Day 7–18 Nov2018 – (Sun) – San Giovanni Rotondo / Lanciano /Loreto MASS AND BREAKFAST. We arrive at Lanciano, famous for the Miracle of the Eucharist. Near the Piazza Plebiscito, the Miracle is inside the Sanctuary of the Eucharistic Miracle. The miracle took place during the 8th century when a Basiline monk doubted the Real Presence of our Lord in the Eucharist. He found himself holding the host that had changed into Real Flesh and the Wine on the altar had changed into Real Blood. We continue our pilgrimage to the great Marian shrine of Loreto to see the famous sacred home of the most Holy Family, Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. Since 1294 the holy home has been located inside the Basilica of Loreto. Celebrate Holy Eucharist in Lanciano DINNER AND OVERNIGHT IN Assisi Day 8 –19 Nov 2018 – ( Mon) Loreto/ Assisi Today we explore the hilltop birthplace of St Francis of Assisi. In the Crypt of St Francis Basilica lies the tomb of one of the most humble and beloved Saints of all times, St. Francis of Assisi, Holy Eucharist at the Crypt of ST Francis See the Basilica of St Clare, with her incorrupt body, and the little Church of St. Damiano and its Crucifix from which Jesus spoke to Francis about his mission in 1206: “Go, Francis, and rebuild my house, which as you see is falling into ruin.” We visit the Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels, located in the lower plains of Assisi, and the place where the miracle of the Eucharist of Assisi took place in 1240. The small Church of the Porziuncola is inside the Basilica itself. Pope Honorius III granted a plenary indulgence for those entering this humble Church on August 1st and 2nd every year, with Confession, reception of the Eucharist and no attachment to venial sins. (BB,D) Day 9 – 20 Nov 2018 – (Tues) – Assisi / Siena / Florence We will spend half day in Siena. Begin in the old town center with a visit to the Basilica of San Domenico. Built in the 13th century, it is a treasure chest of the Renaissance art and dedicated to St Catherine of Siena. You will learn about the city’s history while admiring it’s cathedrals, Museum, and libraries .Also you will admire the famous piazza del Campo, one of Europe’s great medieval squares. Continue to Florence. (BB,D) We start with a guided walking tour of Florence, this fascinating city with its Piazza, the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Giotto’s Bell Tower, the Baptistery of St. John the Baptist. Rest of the day free (BB,D) Day 10 – 21 Nov 2018 (Wed) – Florence / Rome Leave Florence around 2PM Arrived Rome almost dinner time (BB.D) Day 11 – 22 Nov 2018 (Thurs) – Rome / USA End of our wonderful Pilgrimage .

(212) 655-5426 •

Dateline USa



Horrific crash kills father, four daughters... PAGE A1

MSME SUMMIT. President Rodrigo Duterte chats with some of the exhibitors during the National Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Summit 2018 held at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Convention Center (ACC) in Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga on Tuesday, July 10. Accompanying the President are Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez and Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion. Malacañang photo by Alfred Frias

Southeast Asia tourism grew larger than any other region during year’s first quarter, despite closures PH tourism to focus more on opportunities for women by Rae

ann VaRona


THe Southeast Asian region saw a 10 percent increase in the number of tourists during the first quarter of 2018, according to a recent report by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). The increase topped the six percent international average, giving the tropical and subtropical region the largest increase of any region in the world within the four month period. Seeing the largest increase in arrival numbers was Vietnam, which experienced a 25.2 percent tourism growth during the time period. Countries like Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines also saw doubledigit increases. The growth came despite the fact that countries like Thailand and the Philippines closed off popular tourist sites due to environmental concerns. Thailand’s Maya Bay, made popular by the Leonardo DiCaprio-starring film “The Beach,” remains closed through September. The Philippines’ Boracay — which Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said had turned into a “cesspool” — was ordered to remain closed for six months after tourists were banned late April. From its own tourism data, the Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT) also saw an increase. DOT spokesperson Bong Bengzon told hotel owners and marketers last week that the Philippines saw a 10.24 percent increase in foreign arrivals from January to May despite the Boracay closure. “Despite the closure of Boracay in late April, foreign visitor arrivals in May still grew month-on-month. Total arrivals in May 2018 reached 537,743, representing a growth rate of 0.94 percent,” said Bengzon, as quoted by Rappler. Much of the growth was due to arrivals from China, which grew 43.81 percent. From January to May 2018, China provided 559,289 visitors. During the same period in 2017, the country provided 388,896 Chinese national visitors.

Aside from China, South Korea and U.S. nationals continuously make up most of the Philippines’ foreign tourist arrivals — South Korea being the top source. The increases seen add to the continuing trend of booming tourism in the region. According to the economist, tourism in Southeast Asia jumped 49 percent between 2010 and 2015. Last year, the region took in over $131.1 billion in tourist receipts. Comparing overall growth from 2016 to 2017, the Philippines reported a growth of 10.96 percent. Its 6.6 million tourists last year was regarded a “milestone” high. Women-empowering tourism in PH Philippine DOT undersecretary Alma Rita Jimenez recently told the Philippine government’s news service that the department has been working on providing more opportunities for women in its tourism driving efforts. She said the department has already rolled out different training and capacity building programs. “We train them for tour guiding and doing the gastronomy tourism. Some women who have their own home facilities, we train them in terms of front office management and managing small business,” Jimenez told the Philippine News Agency, which published the interview Tuesday, July 10. Describing tourism in the country as being “very dependent” on micro enterprises, she added that most of the training was focused on community-based empowerment where players are usually women. Providing opportunities for women, she said, was not about giving them privileges, but about laying out an equal platform on which they can succeed. “If the women are equally competent, they should have all the chances of being able to play in whatever field they would want and become successful in it,” said Jimenez. She added, “We want to focus on those with lower economic status. Sometimes they think they are helpless, [since they are] expected and got used to staying at home and taking care of the children. If you would think about it, they’re more than capa-

Pacquiao, Matthysse ready... PAGE A1 get back to Argentina,” Matthysse’s manager Mario Acano murmured in the first of only two questions this writer could field in what was supposed to be an affair for media but turned out a chaotic event instead. “As I told you during the press conference two month ago this fight’s gonna be war. It will. We prepared Lucas to make war. He’s ready to retire Pacquiao as he promised,” Acano assured. Pacquiao, on the hand, in his usual altar boy image, remained humble, saying, ”well, I’m ready, too. Kung handa siya, well and good. Ibig lang sabihin, magandang laban ito as I have been predicting in the first place. Maganda yan para sa fans.” Matthysse arrived at the venue 15 minutes late at his scheduled 10 a.m. turn followed by the fighting senator an hour later. Pacquiao and his team flew late Monday night here following a four-hour Philippine Airlines chartered fight from General Santos City where he held camp for two month. Matthysse came here a week earlier to acclimatize himself with Malaysia’s humid weather. He, along with trainer Joel Diaz spent some two months training under the cold Chino City weather in California. Manny is a heavy favorite to hurdle Matthysse in his bid to win

another world championship following his loss of his 147-pound World Boxing Organization version of the crown to Australian former school teacher Jeff Horn July last year. Pacquiao’s team of trainers expressed belief that the Argentine’s aggressive style of fighting is tailor made for the aging 39-years-old warrior’s 23 years experience. Chief trainer Buboy Fernandez and strength and conditioning Coach Justin Fortune have been studying Matthysse’s recent fights and both agreed the Argentine has a suspect chin after viewing footage of his stoppage loss to Viktor Postol in 2015. However, extreme caution should be exercised here as Matthysse is known as a formidable puncher with 36 knockouts to his credit which he full displayed when he scored a sensational eighth round knockout over little known Tewa Kiram on HBO’s Boxing After Dark in January. At 35, according to his detractors, “The Machine” is no longer in his prime but power is usually the last thing to go as fighter’s age, and the defending champion has proven this true many times over. While Matthysse has defeated some good, not great fighters, his loses have all come at the hands of elite opponents. (Eddie Alinea/

ble of contributing beyond taking care of the children.” The efforts are part of the departments’ bid to make the tourism industry gender and community empowered. “Sustainable tourism development that is gender and development empowered, accessible, and barrier-free is the way to go if we want the industry to remain robust and inclusive,” said Jimenez. n

her body,” Agas said. Agas also delivered the family’s response to the outpouring of support. “We would like to thank everyone who came out tonight. We appreciate all the support. Let’s continue praying for them,” she said. The husband and wife were properly restrained in the vehicle, according to police, but their four daughters were not. “To lose four children in a crash ... it’s just unheard of,” Delaware State Police Master Corporal Melissa Jaffe told ABC News. “I feel so bad for this family. I cannot imagine what they are going through,” said Jaffe. Police told local media that a Ford F-350 pickup truck traveling south crossed the median and hit a northbound vehicle which caused the car to spin out. The pickup truck, which was still moving southbound in the northbound lane, collided head on with the white Toyota Sienna minivan Audie Trinidad was driving. “I don’t understand why these things happen. The whole family wiped out in the blink of an eye,” Trinidad’s brother Daniel told reporters. “I don’t know how my sister-in-law will take this. She’s the only one who survived.” Audie was a postal worker while Mary Rose worked as a nurse at Mount Sinai Beth Israel. The eldest daughter Kaitlyn was a nursing student at the College of Mount St. Vincent in the Bronx. Her roommate and friend Frances Verdeflor found out about the accident after numerous texts and phone calls from their friends. She went to the prayer vigil with her

Frances Verdeflor, Kaitlyn’s roommate and friend

Lydia Agas, aunt of Mary Rose Trinidad AJPress photos by Momar G. Visaya

entire family. “We had so many plans for the coming school year. When I found out at 2:00 this morning, I thought it was a joke. I still couldn’t believe that it happened,” she said. “I can’t help but feel for her mom because she is now by herself and her family is gone. It just hurts so much.” Verdeflor, along with other friends from Mount St. Vincent were among those who spoke at the emotional vigil. Teaneck Mayor Mohammed Hameeduddin also spoke and expressed his condolences. “As we grieve tonight and honor their memories, the question comes down to it is okay to grieve. It is okay to look and ask questions where there are no answers,” he said. “As I was looking through everybody that I knew who went to high school or middle school with them, I could see that they have touched our lives in many ways.” One by one, friends, neighbors, classmates, teachers and community leaders spoke. The girls’ classmates and the Filipino American Society of Teaneck organized the vigil. A GoFundMe page was set up for funeral costs and to support

Mary Rose Trinidad. It was set up by Linda Douglas for Teaneck Families and Friends and Douglas wrote that it’s not clear what amount of support will be needed and the goal amount initially set at $10,000, and has been exceeded many times over. In less than a week, the goal of $250,000 was reached and as of press time, after more 60,000 shares on Facebook and almost 7,000 people donating, the amount raised has reached more than $260,000. The Teaneck Public School District began providing counseling services for all middle and high school students as well as faculty members. Kaitlyn was a Teaneck High School graduate (Class of 2016), Danna would have been entering her senior year (class of 2019), Allison and Melissa would have been entering their freshmen year this fall. Agas said that the family is overwhelmed by the support of the community, including online where people who do not know the family have been sending prayers and donations. She added that funeral arrangements for the five family members have not been made yet. n


july 13-19, 2018 • NEW yORK AND NEW jERSEy ASIAN jOuRNAl

Dateline USa • (212) 655-5426

‘Sea rows no mere offshoot of US-China rivalry’ by Marlon


PEOPLE who insist that the territorial disputes over the South China Sea are the offshoot of the “geopolitical rivalry” between the United States and China are oblivious to the fact that Beijing has illegally claimed ownership over 80 percent of the West Philippine Sea, acting Chief Justice Antonio Carpio said. Speaking at the “Kasarinlan” policy forum, Carpio maintained that it was wrong to say that the fight for control over the resource-rich sea region was

Philippine acting Chief Justice Antonio Carpio photo

merely a power play between the two military giants and that the Philippines should distance itself from it. “Those who hold this view are totally blind to China’s blatant physical seizure of Philippine maritime zones and territory in the West Philippine Sea,” Carpio told the forum, held two days before the second anniversary of the Philippines’ landmark victory in the UN-backed arbitral tribunal in The Hague. The July 12, 2016, ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) recognized Manila’s sovereign rights over the West Philippine Sea, a portion of the South China Sea located within the country’s 370-kilometer exclusive economic zone (EEZ), and invalidated China’s “ninedash line” policy. Carpio, who had been at the forefront of the country’s legal battle for the West Philippine Sea, noted that Beijing had openly declared it owned nearly all of the South China Sea. “No Filipino in his right mind can gloss over this obvious and indisputable fact,” he said. “The core dispute in the South China Sea is China’s appropriation of

the high seas, which belong to all mankind.” Carpio said the diplomatic tension among several countries with overlapping claims in the South China Sea would ease if China “stops its unlawful seizure of the EEZs” of claimant states. Because President Duterte had opted to secure loans and investments from China in exchange for the nonenforcement of the PCA decision, Carpio said it was now up to ordinary Filipinos to take up the cudgels. “It is also our duty now to inform the other peoples of the world that China’s compliance with the award is essential to the survival of Unclos as the governing law for the oceans and seas of our planet,” he said, referring to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. He warned that China’s continued use of military power in the South China Sea might prompt other powerful nations to gain control of sea waters owned by smaller countries. “That will mean the collapse of the rule of law in the oceans and seas of our planet. What will prevail will be the rule of the naval canon,” Carpio said. n

Trump announces nominee for Supreme... PAGE A1 Kavanaugh, who once clerked for Kennedy, has deep ties with conservatives and GOP legal organizations that have lobbied for the appointments of conservative justices. As soon as Kennedy announced his retirement in late June, top congressional leaders have vowed to oppose any Trump nominee deemed too extreme on certain issues. Kennedy was also a conservative, but he often held the swing vote in many socially divisive cases like abortion and reproductive health, affirmative action, workers rights, LGBT rights and the death penalty. Replacing Kennedy with a more stalwart conservative would definitively solidify the conservative slant and put at risk many long-standing social justice cases. Notably, Kennedy’s retirement signalled the possible overturning of the landmark SCOTUS case Roe v. Wade, which granted a person’s right to have an abortion before the third trimester of pregnancy. But one of Kavanaugh’s case history finds him voting against

his party. In 2011, he ruled against a challenge to the Affordable Care Act because he felt that the DC court lacked the jurisdiction to consider the case in question, an opinion that was ill-received by Republicans. In 2015, he riled up social conservatives by rulings in favor of abortion. In the case Priests for Life v. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, he ruled in favor of a contraception mandate that would require employers to offer health insurance plans that included contraception and sterilization. He also ruled in favor in a Jane Doe case wherein an undocumented immigrant teenager requested an abortion while in federal custody. Because of these cases, the pro-life movement have also criticized Kavanaugh’s nomination, saying that the circuit court judge isn’t ardent enough in the anti-abortion movement. March for Life, for example, argued that Kavanaugh lacked the “backbone” to overturn Roe v. Wade. The American Family Association, a socially conservative prolife organization, for example, denounced the nomination for not being more steadfast on be-

half of the pro-life movement. “Judge Kavanaugh’s reasoning on religious liberty, Obamacare and issues concerning life have proven to be of major concern,” The AFA said in a statement calling for citizens to contact their senators to oppose Kavanaugh’s nomination. In order to be confirmed as a justice, Kavanaugh will need to garner 51 votes from the Senate. Senate Democrat Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York vowed that “I will oppose Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination with everything I have.” Schumer added, “Enormously important issues hang in the balance. The right of workers to organize, the pernicious influence of dark money in our policy, the right of Americans to marry whom they love, the right to vote.” Senate Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who blocked former President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland in 2016, expressed approval of Kavanaugh’s nomination but worries that the road to confirmation will be a tough one. (Klarize Medenilla/ AJPress)

URBAN FARMING LAUNCH. In support of her program on urban farming, Senator Cynthia A. Villar leads the launching of the second Urban Vegetable Farming 2018 at the Villar SIPAG Farm School in Bacoor City, Cavite. The senator, chairperson of the Senate Agriculture and Food committee, has been encouraging residents in communities to grow fruits and vegetables in their backyards and in any available space. She emphasizes that urban gardening is an effective tool for the poor urban communities to become healthier and more food sufficient. Senate photo

PH, US kick off naval drills in South China Sea THE Philippine and U.S. navies launched its annual maritime training activity at the Naval Station Ernesto Ogbinar in San Fernando City, La Union. The week-long engagement between the allies includes activities on a wide range of naval capabilities, which will take place in La Union, San Antonio and Subic in Zambales and Manila. The U.S. Navy’s fast transport ship USNS Millinocket, diving and salvage ship USNS Salvor and a P-8 Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft will be deployed along with the Philippine Navy’s BRP Ramon Alcaraz and BRP Tarlac in the South China Sea for at-sea evolutions.

iThe navies will participate in air defense exercises to boost proficiency in air and missile defense, diving exercise to promote mutual efficiency underwater and search and rescue exercises, the U.S. Navy said in a statement. Symposiums and seminars on medial, public affairs, engineering, explosive ordnance and disposal and anti-submarine and surface operations will also be held in other naval bases. The Japanese Maritime SelfDefense Force will also join the exercises as an observer. Rear Adm. Joey Tynch, commander of Task Force 73, said the name of the naval drill “Sama-

U.S. Marines from 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines, 3d Marine Division helped Philippine Marines to improve their basic urban warfare techniques based on feedback from Philippine military forces in Marawi. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Embassy in Manila

sama” perfectly captures the relationship of the Philippines and the U.S., which have been allies for 70 years. “Built on 70 years of strong friendship and deep historical ties, our shared interest in maritime security is what Maritime Training Activity Sama Sama is all about — our shared belief that regional challenges increasingly require cooperative solutions by capable naval forces,” Tynch said. Lt. Gen. Emmanuel Salamat, commander of the Northern Luzon Command, said the training provides an opportunity for both navies to engage in a broader range of maritime operations and unique scenarios. “In this way, we could explore for more cooperation, enhance our interoperability, and provide us effective mechanisms for collaboration and partnership of our Navies in the spirit of our mutual treaty engagement,” Salamat said. This year’s maritime training activity would focus on developing mutual capabilities in addressing maritime security priorities and concern for mutual interests. Last year, the Philippine and U.S. Navies have been partners in patrolling the Sulu Sea, demonstrating their commitment against piracy and illegal transnational activity. (Patricia Lourdes Viray/

(212) 655-5426 •


Dateline PhiliPPines


Palace gives Duterte 8.5 out of 10 for his war on drugs by Ritchel

Mendiola AJPress

MOA VS. ILLEGAL DRUGS. Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director General Aaron Aquino (left) and Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Deputy Commandant for Operations Rear Admiral Rolando Legaspi (right) sign the memorandum of agreement to stop the smuggling of illegal drugs using the country’s vast coastlines, during the ceremony held at the PDEA headquarters in Quezon City on Wednesday, July 11. PNA photo by Joey O. Razon

Pulse Asia: 7 in 10 Filipinos want Duterte to assert rights in West Philippine Sea by PatRicia



Manila — a significant majority of Filipinos believe that the duterte administration should assert the country’s right and protect its sovereignty over the West Philippine sea, according to a Pulse asia survey released on thursday, July 12. a survey commissioned by independent think tank stratbase adr institute showed that 73 percent of Filipinos want the Philippine government to assert its sovereignty claims as stipulated in the 2016 decision of the Hague-based Permanent Court of arbitration. Only 7 percent of the respondents disagreed when asked whether they want the duterte administration to assert the country’s territorial sovereignty while 17 percent were undecided. the survey was released on the second anniversary of the arbitral ruling, which invalidated China’s nine-dash line claim over the south China sea. the Pulse asia survey also showed that a plurality of Filipinos or 36 percent share the opinion that the country should protest the China’s continuous militarization of artificial islands in the south China sea, part of which is the West Philippine sea. about 22 percent said that the

Philippines should strengthen military alliance with other countries such as the United states, Japan and australia while 21 percent said the government should continue its current action of befriending China to avoid conflict. Only 16 percent said the duterte administration should strengthen the military’s capability to protect the country’s territories. the duterte administration has held that its focus on developing diplomatic and economic relations with China does not mean it has given up its claims in the part of the south China sea that Manila claims and calls the West Philippine sea. duterte claimed in May that he would have wanted to take a “stronger, possibly more violent” stand, but “in my own estimation, it would probably be a great loss to the nation and probably end up losing a war.” Presidential spokesperson Harry roque said duterte’s approach “forged friendship which has obtained benefits for our people, boosted investment and trade for our economy, reduced the threat of conflict, and opened the door to confidence-building talks between asean and China.” Pinoys still trust US most Meanwhile, the United states, Japan and australia are the top three countries that Filipinos trust

the most with an overall score of 74 percent, 45 percent and 32 percent, respectively, in the latest poll. China only ranked fourth in the survey with 17 percent, followed by south Korea (14 percent), russia (10 percent), the United Kingdom (9 percent), Vietnam (5 percent) and india (2 percent). On the other hand, 33 percent said that they trust the asean, which only a point higher than the United nations’s 32-percent trust rating. among regional associations, Filipinos appear to trust the european Union the least as it scored only seven percent. the Philippines and the United states have been allies for 70 years since the signing of the Mutual defense treaty. the two countries also have an enhanced defence Cooperation agreement, which allows the presence of american troops in the country. Japan and australia, which are also U.s. allies, have also been consistent on its position in conducting freedom of navigation operations in the south China sea so as to counter China’s dominance in the region. despite the Philippines’ victory at the tribunal ruling two years ago, the duterte administration had set aside the ruling to seek stronger ties with China. n

Palace: Local officials’ murders not related to war on drugs by Julie


tHe recent murders of local executives cannot be blamed on the war against illegal drugs, as extra-legal killings have plagued the country even during the arroyo administration, Malacañang said. this comment was issued in reaction to speculations that the murders of local officials may be linked to those taking advantage of the government’s anti-narcotics drive to besmirch President duterte’s reputation. “that is just a speculation because the problems of killings were exposed by former United nations special rapporteur Philip alston. so during the term of former President Gloria Macapagal arroyo, we already had a problem with extra-legal killings,” said presidential spokesperson Harry roque. He added: “so the extra-legal killings cannot be blamed on the war on drugs, since this has been present in our society.” roque made the remarks a day after sapa-sapa, tawi-tawi Vice Mayor al rashid Mohammad ali was shot dead in Zamboanga City on Wednesday, July 11. ali is the fourth local official to be killed this month, which began with the assassination of tanauan City mayor antonio Halili last July 2. days later, Gen. tinio, nueva ecija mayor Ferdinand Bote was gunned down inside his vehicle last July 3. this was followed by the ambush that killed trece Martires vice mayor alex lubigan last July 7. activists have blamed the “culture of impunity” that allow crime to go unpunished for the spate of extra-judicial killings.

Gina Halili, the widow of Mayor Antonio Halili, is consoled by her relatives during mass at the Saint John the Evangelist Parish Church in Tanauan City, Batangas. The mayor, who was gunned down on July 2, was buried on Sunday, July 8. photo by Andrea De La Cruz

Malacañang, however, refused to link the recent killings to the war against illegal drugs, since not all the local officials are involved in the illegal drugs trade. “Whether or not we have the war on drugs, that will continue. the killings in our society now that elections are nearing have always been there,” roque said. He recognized the efforts of the Philippine national Police (PnP) in investigating and solving the murders, especially the recent apprehension of suspects in Halili’s murder. roque also warned that the “political season” has begun, with the May 2019 midterm polls just months away. “it seems it’s now political season, and there are so many political-related killings,” he said. roque assured the public that President duterte has promised to “speedily investigate, prosecute and punish the perpetrators of these killings.” He pointed to police statis-

tics saying that the number of homicides were actually on the decline. “if you look at the statistics, the number of homicides has actually declined. there are just some prominent people being targeted,” roque said. He added: “this means that even though many high profile cases are being reported, the number of killings in our society is actually going down.” Meanwhile, Malacañang welcomed sri lanka’s move to replicate the Philippines’ success in its war against illegal drugs as recognition of the Philippines’ “best practices.” “We are happy that other countries have taken note of our war on drugs and that they look on us as a best practice on dealing with illegal drugs,” roque said. earlier, sri lanka announced that it will start executing drug dealers by hanging and promised to replicate the Philippines’ success in its anti-narcotics drive. n

Presidential spokesperson Harry roque on tuesday, July 10, gave President rodrigo duterte a high grade on his war on illegal drugs. “i would give him about 8.5. a lot more has to be done,” roque told reporters in Cavite when he was asked to give his rating regarding the government’s war on drugs. according to him, the anti-drug war, which has left more than 4,000 people dead, gave Filipinos a sense of security. “But what is important is even the surveys will indicate that majority of our people, 80 plus (percent) of our people feel safer, they feel more secure in their homes because of the drive against criminality and the war against drugs,” he added. in Pulse asia’s september 2017 poll, 88 percent of Filipinos back the anti-drug crackdown. But while the drug war has been receiving plenty of feedback, it also has its fair share of criticisms.the political opposition, as well as a number of human rights groups, have constantly pointed out how the crackdown is encouraging abusive practices and extrajudicial killings. they also noted that duterte made a promise to provide legal protection to policemen and soldiers who would face charges in relation to the campaign. Meanwhile, officials claim that duterte is against unlawful killings and other illegal acts. authorities also insist that that most of the slain suspects fought violently with the arresting officers. according to a recent study by researchers from ateneo de Manila University and de la salle University declared that the poor are the most vulnerable in the drug war. the common occupations among those who died in the anti-drug crackdown tricycle drivers, construction workers, carpenters, vendors, farmers, jeepney drivers and dispatchers, and garbage collectors. the government still claims that it is winning the war against narcotics despite critics pointing

out that the campaign only focuses on small-time drug peddlers. roque in a recent statement, cited police data that claimed a total of 91,704 anti-drug operations were conducted from July 2016 to March 20, 2018. the operations led to the arrest of 123,648 drug suspects. a total of 189 drug dens and clandestine laboratories were dismantled and P13.46 billion-worth of methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu were seized during the period. n


JULY 13-19, 2018 • NEW YORK AND NEW JERSEY ASIAN JOURNAL • (212) 655-5426



Cesspool no more

THE White Beach is clean and white again, and the cesspool is almost completely cleaned up. Boracay Island is on track to reopen to tourists as scheduled on Oct. 26, according to environment officials, with some reports saying the date could even be moved up. An earlier opening would naturally be welcomed by those who have lost jobs, livelihoods and profits as a result of the unprecedented shutdown of an entire island. The six-month shutdown, which began on April 26, displaced approximately 35,000 workers and is estimated to cost about P1.9 billion in economic losses. After the cleanup period is over, however, the challenge is to sustain it. The island is expected to continue drawing an increasing number of both local and foreign visitors, and the temptation to overdevelop the island will persist. It will require honest and competent management to prevent the abuse of the island’s environment. It will also require the full cooperation of local residents and those doing business on the island. Under new rules, all establishments with at least 50 rooms are now required to have their own

sewage treatment plants. Smaller establishments can pool their resources for clustered STPs. Establishments without STPs can be shut down. The water contamination around the island is no longer critical, according to environment officials. But several of the individuals who allowed Boracay to reach a state of calamity, as declared by President Duterte, still have supervision over various aspects of life on the island. The national government may have to set up a special body to oversee environmental protection and sustainable tourism in Boracay. With the cleanup winding down, authorities can also focus on other tourist destinations that are threatened by indiscriminate development, with little regard for the environment. There are several other such sites around the country, and they are also in a state of calamity or rapidly getting there. (

Editorial photo

Trump’s new SC justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh advocated for sitting president to be immune from criminal investigation PRESIDENT Donald Trump has just appointed a second Supreme Court Nominee on the second year of his presidency after Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement in June. Less than three months before the consequential midterm elections that may swing the balance of power in Congress, Trump immediately nominated conservative Brett Kavanaugh, 53, on Monday, July 9, in true Trump reality TV show fanfare. Kavanaugh is a judge on the D.C. Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals, who worked with Special Prosecutor Ken Starr on the Monica Lewinsky investigation during the 1990s, during which, according to a Newsweek report, President Bill Clinton was almost impeached. As the New York Times reported, Justice Kennedy held the swing vote in many contentious cases on issues like abortion, affirmative action, gay rights and the death penalty. The Times said “replacing him with a committed conservative, who could potentially serve for decades, will fundamentally alter the balance of the court and put dozens of precedents at risk.” Senate Majority Leader Republican Mitch McConnell hailed Kavanaugh’s appointment as a “superb choice” made by Trump, calling the judge a “superb nominee” In a statement, McConnell said, “Judge Kavanaugh has sterling academic credentials. He is widely admired for his intellect, experience, and exemplary judicial temperament. He has won the respect of his peers and is highly regarded throughout the legal community. And his judicial record demonstrates a firm under-

standing of the role of a judge in our Republic: Setting aside The Fil-Am personal views and political preferences in order to inter- Perspective pret our laws as they are written.” With Republicans occupying 51 Senate seats and GEL SANTOS-RELOS Democrats 49 seats, the GOP expects Kavanaugh to be confirmed by the Senate, unless some Republican senators like Susan Collins of Maine, go against Trump’s nominee because of the threat of repealing Roe v. Wade, which gives women the right over their own body and reproductive system. BUT Kavanaugh will face fierce opposition among Democrats. “I will oppose Kavanaugh ‘with everything I’ve got,’” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer vowed. In a statement, Schumer said, “In selecting Judge Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court, President Trump has put reproductive rights and freedoms and health care protections for millions of Americans on the judicial chopping block.” “His own writings make clear that he would rule against reproductive rights and freedoms, and that he would welcome challenges to the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act” (Obamacare). Meanwhile, Vermont Senator and former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders said, “The coming Senate debate over the replacement of retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy is about the future of Roe v. Wade,

campaign finance reform, voting rights, workers’ rights, health care, climate change, environmental protection and gun safety.” While we expected Trump to pick a conservative nominee as he promised during the presidential campaign, Democrats warn that Trump’s decision to nominate Kavanaugh from among 25 names on Trump’s list could be self-serving, especially in light of the Mueller investigation of the Trump campaign’s alleged collusion with the Russian government to interfere in the 2016 U.S. presidential elections to discredit his opponent Hillary Clinton and help Trump win. Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who heads the Russia probe, has already indicted several people, which includes Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort. Mueller wants to question Trump, and the long negotiations are still ongoing, with the Trump team hoping to delay the president’s “participation” despite his previous statement saying he would cooperate in the investigation because he is innocent and has nothing to hide. Democrats opine that Trump chose Kavanaugh primarily because of his advocacy that a sitting president should be immune from criminal investigation. Newsweek reported: “Writing for the Minnesota Law Review in 2012, in an article titled “Separation of Powers During the Forty-Fourth Presidency and Beyond,” Kavanaugh said his

experience working for the Bush White House made him realize being president is “far more difficult than any other civilian position in government.” “It frankly makes being a member of Congress or the judiciary look rather easy by comparison,” Kavanaugh wrote. “The decisions a President must make are hard and often life-ordeath, the pressure is relentless, the problems arise from all directions, the criticism is unremitting and personal, and at the end of the day only one person is responsible.” The Newsweek article further stated “Kavanaugh acknowledges this is not the view he held in the 1990s when he was working towards President Clinton’s impeachment over the affair with Lewinsky, a White House intern. But he now believes, after working for over five years in the Bush White House, that Congress should pass a law giving presidents immunity from civil suits and criminal investigations and prosecutions until they leave office.” Sanders denounced Kavanaugh’s positions on the power of the presidency. “He believes a president can only be indicted after he leaves office and should not be subjected to civil suits while in office. I do not believe a person with those views should be given a lifetime seat on the Supreme Court.” *** Gel Santos Relos is the anchor of TFC’s “Balitang America.” Views and opinions expressed by the author in this column are solely those of the author and not of Asian Journal and ABS-CBN-TFC. For comments, go to, https://www.

A Marcos-Duterte alliance that rocks


ANTONIO P. CONTRERAS THIS is not about an alliance between President Rodrigo Duterte, an incumbent, and former senator Bongbong Marcos, one who by all indications was denied his rightful place to become an incumbent. This refers to the emerging alliance between Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, one that this early may already be sending some people either into throes of ecstasy or suffering sleepless nights. Actually, an alliance between a Duterte and a Marcos is already naturally proven to be formidable, and it has a constituency that is real and not just imagined. There is reason to believe that it was the Marcos votes that provided President Duterte the necessary firewall to thwart any attempt to cheat him of victory in the May 2016 elections. An analysis of the election results reveals that the margin between the votes of President Duterte and his running mate Alan Peter Cayetano was so huge, even as the same is

true with the margin between the votes of Bongbong Marcos and his presidential team mate Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago. This would suggest that there were millions of DuterteMarcos voters, or many Marcos voters, who did not carry Miriam and instead voted for Duterte. It can likewise be said that millions of Duterte supporters junked Cayetano and instead opted for Bongbong Marcos. Unfortunately for Bongbong, and unlike that of the president, this was not enough to make his lead beyond the reach of a massive electronically mediated cheating operation that came like a thief in the night. Nevertheless, there are also Duterte supporters who still abhor the Marcos brand, even as there is a much fewer number of Marcos supporters who do not support the president. But certainly, what is more exciting in the upcoming 2019 elections is the brewing alliance between Governor Imee and Mayor Sara, two strong women with powerful and compelling narratives, and both daughters of strong presidents who generate highly polarized depictions of being either idolized or demonized, depending on which side one sits in the

political divide. The narratives of Ferdinand Marcos and Rodrigo Duterte will definitely loom big over an alliance between Imee and Sara. There is no doubt that supporters will deploy the image of the strong and effective leadership of Presidents Marcos and Duterte, even as it is almost a certainty that critics will harp on the authoritarian streaks of both men. Genetics and inherited traits, from the good to the bad, will be given much focus by supporters and detractors alike. However, it will be most unfair to imprison the narratives of Imee and Sara in the images of their fathers and their surnames. These two women have proven their mettle in public service and have carried their own brands of leadership that may not necessarily mirror those of their fathers. Imee as governor of Ilocos Norte and Sara as mayor of Davao City are intelligent women leaders who have shown records of good governance. Imee runs her office with the typical affability of what many describe as a “babaeng bakla” that endears her to her constituents. She has a charming sense of humor and a downto-earth personality that easily

disarms. Sara runs Davao with a different kind of charm, and a little bit of pleasant aggressiveness, clearly manifested for example when she once smacked the face of a sheriff. She also has the ability to put her father in his place, like when she recently advised people not to take the president seriously on matters of religion since he is not a priest, pastor or imam. Sara Duterte-Carpio formed a new political party, the Hugpong ng Pagbabago, and has recently confirmed the alliance between her party with Imee Marcos. This alliance is further reinforced by the fact that Sara’s Hugpong will begin its nationwide recruitment of members in Ilocos Norte, Imee’s bailiwick. The political optics of an Imee Marcos-Sara Duterte-Carpio alliance creates a compelling narrative of a north-south partnership that will cultivate the already well-grounded constituency composed of the millions of Duterte-Marcos voters and supporters. The geopolitical basis for the partnership resonates nationally even if the main actors are local officials. What is interesting about this alliance is that Imee and Sara appear to be at odds with

the two leaders of the House of Representatives. It is not a secret that Imee Marcos had a spat with Majority Leader Rudy Fariñas, while Sara DuterteCarpio has a history of conflict with Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez. It will be interesting to watch how the Marcos-Duterte alliance will engage Fariñas and Alvarez, who are both members of the PDP-Laban, and their allies both locally in Ilocos Norte and in Davao, respectively, as well as in the national political realignments. It is also going to be interesting to watch how PDP-Laban will be affected by this alliance, further complicated by the fact that the president himself is reported to be forming his own party separate from Sara’s Hugpong. What is equally exciting to watch out for is how the alliance of these two women will impact those who accuse President Duterte of misogyny. From using the hashtag #Everywoman to the now globally recognized and award-winning, at least by Time magazine standards, hashtag #BabaeAko, antiDuterte women campaigners, who happen to be also strongly anti-Marcos, have painted an inclusive discourse of standing up for women. With the emer-

gence of an Imee Marcos-Sara Duterte-Carpio alliance, the women behind #BabaeAko will be forced to lay down their cards in relation to how they will position their politics in the face of two strong women asserting themselves in a male-dominated world of Philippine politics, considering that these are daughters of men they hate and demonize. It is on the manner how #BabaeAko will react to Imee and Sara that they will be tested if they are indeed pro-women, or that they are merely partisan feminists, and that it is not the gender of Imee and Sara that matters to them but their fathers’. In the end, an Imee MarcosSara Duterte-Carpio alliance is an exciting political development. A Marcos-Duterte alliance in 2019 may just plant the seed of a Marcos-Duterte tandem in 2022. If it does develop into such a thing, and regardless of who ends up on top of the ticket, this will certainly be a challenge both to the male-dominated Philippine politics and to the feminist movement in the country. It will also challenge those who support President Duterte but hate the Marcos brand. (

The views expressed by our Op-Ed contributors are solely their own and do not necessarily reflect the predilection of the editorial board and staff of Asian Journal.


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Pres. Duterte breaks BBL impasse Despite leading surveys, Poe still unsure of Senate run in 2019 polls

President rodrigo duterte helped speed up the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) on Wednesday, July 11 when he broke the impasse on the issue of territory, the Palace said. “[Malacañang is] pleased to announce that the President facilitated the passage of the BBL by convincing the two houses of congress to adopt the House version of the BBL, providing that the six municipalities of Lanao del norte and the 39 barangay (villages) of north Cotabato could vote to join the BBL territory,” Palace spokesman Harry roque, Jr. said in a statement. this will be done in a referendum to be conducted in the mother territory of the areas involved, roque added. “With the president’s intervention, citing constitutional provisions and the decision of the supreme Court in the case of Umali, the passage of the BBL has been assured,” roque added. the supreme Court (sC) in 2014 ruled against the motion for reconsideration filed by Aurelio Umali pushing to make Cabanatuan a highly urbanized city. the sC ruled that the entire province of nueva ecija should decide whether Cabanatuan City should be promoted to a highly urbanized city, setting aside the result of the plebiscite done only by the city. duterte broke the impasse when he met Congress leaders in Malacañang. “the President promised that he will do everything to overcome the deadlock,” roque said. the BBL seeks to abolish the Autonomous region in Muslim Mindanao (ArMM) and replace it with the Bangsamoro region. sen. Juan Miguel Zubiri said during the lawmakers’ meeting

with the President, “All agreed that not involving the mother provinces and municipalities during the plebiscite for the towns of Lanao norte and barangay of north Cotabato would be considered unconstitutional.” “And so as not to be struck down by the supreme Court on that provision, the consensus was to adopt the house version on territory,” he said. Issues A Muslim lawmaker on Wednesday said he would question the BBL before the sC if the final version of the measure allowed six municipalities of Lanao del norte to join the Bangsamoro region via a plebiscite. to let the six towns join the Bangsamoro region, according to rep. Khalid dimaporo of Lanao del norte, would violate the Constitution. His plan to take issue with the municipalities’ inclusion came as a group of retired generals and admirals from the Armed Forces of the Philippines took issue with the BBL’s silence on the disarming of rebel groups. the bicameral conference committee was deadlocked over the inclusion in the plebiscite of the six Lanao del norte towns, as well as 39 barangay (villages) of north Cotabato and the cities of isabela (Basilan) and Cotabato. dimaporo, a member of the bicameral conference committee on the BBL, said these cities, municipalities and villages should only be included in the Bangsamoro region, which will replace the ArMM as provided by the BBL, if these places got the approval of their mother units. in the case of the six Lanao del norte towns, dimaporo said the whole province should vote in favor of the inclusion of these

Groups belonging to Bangsamoro communities hold a peace rally at the Shrine of Our Lady of Peace on EDSA on Wednesday, July 11, to stand for their rights during the third day of the Bicameral Conference Committee meeting on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law. photo by Andrea De La Cruz

towns in the Bangsamoro region instead of just letting them decide on whether they should join the proposed region. the six Lanao del norte municipalities, which voted to be included in the existing ArMM during the 2001 plebiscite, are tagoloan, Balo-i, Pantar, Munai, tangcal and nunungan. the 39 barangay in north Cotabato, which is under the ArMM, are located in the towns of Aleosan, Carmen, Kabacan, Midsayap, Pigcawayan and Pikit. dimaporo said the 2001 plebiscite does not count because records from it had been destroyed in a fire. Disarm MILF retired military officials however said the proposed BBL should include provisions disarming and preventing rebel groups from regrouping. the Advocacy Group for national interests (AGni) said drafts of the BBL from the senate and the House of representatives did not include the disarmament of the Moro islamic Liberation Front (MiLF). “We want to ensure and we want to advocate that there should be definitive provisions in the BBL that the MiLF forces will be demilitarized, demobilized and reintegrated into mainstream society, something which is not in the [drafts of the]BBL,” retired lieutenant general edilberto Adan said. Adan was a former spokesman of the Armed Forces and was the deputy chief of staff of the military during the Arroyo administration. He cited peace agreements in europe and south America that he said they had studied. According to Adan, these agreements “always” had provisions that rebel groups opposing a government will have to be demobilized and disarmed. He said such provision should be included in the drafts of the BBL. the group also warned the BBL will violate section 15, Article 10 of the charter, which specified two autonomous regions, namely the ArMM and the Cordillera Administrative region (CAr). He said the Armed Forces and the Philippine national Police (PnP) must remain under the command of the President. “[that is] following the chain of command which is provided by the law and that is what we would like to follow,” he added. Adan’s fellow members in AGni come from the military, the police and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG). (

by Gaea



MAniLA — sen. Grace Poe, a consistent top choice among senatorial candidates for the 2019 midterm elections, revealed she is still uncertain if she will seek reelection. “i’m not even sure at this point. it’s a personal reason for me, i have to talk to my husband about this,” Poe said in an interview on thursday, July 12. Poe said her husband, neil Llamanzares, was “traumatized” by the last elections. “He’s thinking if your landmark or pet bills were already put forward and already approved—my feeding program, for example… For me, it’s a big deal. that alone is a big deal for Filipinos,” she said in a mix of english and Filipino. Poe ran but lost in the 2016 national elections. she placed third. Poe consistently topped Pulse Asia senatorial surveys conducted in March and June.

Sen. Grace Poe

in the latest survey, 67.4 percent of respondents said they would vote for her. But for the senator, the survey results do not necessarily spell victory. “the numbers will not necessarily be the same next year. photo

they’re not really indicative of your placement in the actual time of election. that can’t just be the sole basis,” Poe said. she chairs the senate committees on public information and mass media and public services. n

Palace: Despite Alvarez’s statement, 2019 polls to push through

MAniLA — the 2019 midterm elections would push through despite calls by House speaker Pantaleon Alvarez for the polls to be postponed to focus on the country’s shift to a federal government, Palace spokesman Harry roque said on thursday, July 12. Alvarez said on Wednesday that the no-election scenario in 2019 would be “practical” as it would make way for an easier transition to the proposed federal form of government. roque, however, said the postponement of the midterm polls is unlikely to happen unless the proposed charter was ratified earlier than expected. “the president has the duty to implement the provisions in the constitution and unless the date of the elections is not changed in the charter, the elections in 2019 would still push through,” roque told reporters in a press briefing in the Palace. Alvarez made the remarks after the 22-man consultative committee, led by retired Chief Justice reynato Puno, submitted its

draft federal charter. roque said lawmakers would be very busy in the next few months with the coming third state of the nation Address of President rodrigo duterte on July 23, the official filing of candidacy in October and the start of campaign season in February. “Focus is really needed, we can’t do it (charter change) recklessly,” he said. roque said Alvarez need not explain his remarks to duterte because Congress is an “independent” branch of the government. “surely, our lawmakers know the president’s obligation to implement and enforce our Constitution and the other laws of the country,” roque said in Filipino. despite senators saying that charter change is not their priority, the president’s spokesman said Malacañang remains optimistic that the ratification could still take place next year. “We remain optimistic and the president has said that if it is finally ratified by the people he will step down and he is hop-

ing that both the consultative committee and Congress would adopt his suggestion calling for a transitory provision provided that the transition leader would be an elected post,” roque said. senate President Vicente “tito” sotto iii earlier brushed aside Alvarez’s statement, saying he strongly doubts his colleagues in the upper chamber would support the speaker’s suggestion. He said postponing or scrapping the elections next year would not be possible without amending Article Vi section 8 of the 1987 Constitution, which sets the elections of senators and members of the House of representatives every second Monday of May every three years. Members of the Concom submitted the draft of the proposed charter to duterte on July 9. the House of representatives received its own copy on Wednesday, while the senate received its own on thursday, July 12. (


july 13-19, 2018 • NEW yORK AND NEW jERSEy ASIAN jOuRNAl • (212) 655-5426

JULY 13-19, 2018

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The Asian Journal N E W YO R K / N E W J E R S EY J u lY 1 3, 2 0 1 8

Disrupting the LaunDry inDustry Fil Am entrepreneur turns her passion for clean clothes into a business by MoMar

IN New York City, it is a luxury to have your own washer and dryer in your unit, or even in your building. Some would stuff their dirty laundry into a luggage and go to a laundromat or use a store front cleaner nearby. Rechelle Balanzat struggled with her laundry needs and got frustrated by the service she was getting from her neighborhood cleaners. This led her to think: there must be a better way. That was in 2012. Balanzat used her frustrations and made notes as to how it could be better. She saw a vacuum and felt she could fill it up. “I saw the opportunity there, that a lot of the cleaners were lacking something,” she reminisced. “I was actually solving my own problem. I was unhappy with the cleaners in my neighborhood, the way they cleaned my clothes and the way they dealt with us, the customers.” Because of her background in marketing, branding and customer service, she saw it as an easy fit to bring her expertise to the industry. “The business is already saturated. Just look around

G. Visaya/AJPress

Manhattan,” she said. Indeed. Walk three to four blocks and you’d see cleaners, more if you are in mostly residential areas. But saturation per se is not bad. “It just means that there’s no shortness of dirty clothes,” Balanzat said. Last April, after toiling hard, she finally opened a brick and mortar in the Upper East Side for her company Juliette. Juliette actually started in September 2014 when Balanzat launched her app in three

“You want to walk in a place and say ‘This is a happy place, I want to do business with this company’. That is what I want clients to feel when they walk in,” Balanzat said, describing the reason why she opted for the modern and clean look of Juliette’s space in the Upper East Side.

buildings in Midtown East. The mobile app offers premium overnight laundry service. Using a smart phone, clients can request Juliette for a pickup. Then her staff will clean their clothes and we deliver it back to them the following morning. “Juliette is my alter ego,” she explained. “I wanted to give a sense of someone who is there cleaning your clothes, someone real. The idea is about Juliette watching over and taking care of your clothes.” Opening her UES home is a real game changer for her business. Prior to this, she was renting out space in an existing plant, which posed some challenges for her. The new store gives her control as far as service and quality are concerned. It took two years of endless phone calls and emails to laundry facilities and cleaners asking them if they are selling or if will they sell to her. She also visited cleaners across the city and one day, she got lucky with the space she has now since the previous owner was already looking for a way out and retire. Now, her business is more than just app-based, it has encouraged foot traffic for residents of nearby buildings who do not need to get into the waiting list for Juliette invites. The Juliette App is by invitation only but one can request for an invite through their website. For now, Juliette covers Manhattan from the Financial District to 110th Street and prospective subscribers have to live in a 24 hour doorman building because they pick up and deliver throughout the night. Juliette started with seed money “just shy of $200 thousand” which Balanzat raised on her own. “It was not given to me in one lump sum, it was a lot of pretty much begging and asking and knocking on so many doors. You start off with your family, then you go to your friends, then business associates. At the end of the day, it is a hustle,” she shared. Along the way, she encountered a lot of people who said no to her. “You shouldn’t lose your fire when someone says no to you,” she said. “Everything happens for a reason and to all the people who said no to me, I am happy that they did because I probably

“I have just laid down the foundation. From here, I can see growth and the next thing I want to do is purchase a massive plant, a factory in the Bronx,” entrepreneur Rechelle Balanzat told the Asian Journal in an interview. Balanzat is using her experience in technology, marketing, branding, PR and customer service into her business. AJPress Photos by Momar G. Visaya

would have taken a turn somewhere else and I wouldn’t be where I am today.” Challenges as a woman entrepreneur Our conversation with Balanzat shifted to the challenges and struggles she faced as a woman entrepreneur in New York City. “Is this PG 13?” she asked laughing. “Part of the challenge being a female entrepreneur looking for funding is, as we see in the current landscape right now, a lot of men in powerful positions would use that as an opportunity to take you out to cocktails or dinner. That is when you enter the gray area and as a female looking for capital, it is very alluring because you want that capital. But then, where do you draw the line. I am trying to earn his trust, I want to show him that I am easy to get along with but I want this to be strictly business. Regardless of what’s going on right now, this is a struggle that many women would always have to deal with because unfortunately, that is the way it is,” she said. She personally encountered a few indecent proposals. “It brings me to tears when I think about it, when they say, ‘Rechelle, all you have to do is

go out on a date with him and he’ll write you a check’. Someone said that to me and I really had to think about it. Then they followed it up with, ‘You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do’ and I thought to myself, ‘What? Am I a high end prostitute? What is going on?’ I am looking for fund my company, a working company. That really brought me to tears,” she shared. “Best way to deal with it? You smile and you say no and try not to cause a scene because the world is very small and word gets around fast and unfortunately if you cause a scene, it works against you. You still want to maintain your professional demeanor and politely decline,” she said. Looking back Entrepreneurs say that the first couple of years of a new business can be characterized by lack of sleep, a lot of debt, minor depression, a lot of not knowing which way to turn, which way to go. Balanzat said she went through all of that and more. “Sometimes it is a very lonely journey when you are trying to pursue a dream or a vision that only you yourself can see and no one else seems to understand. It gets to you,” she said. One of her lows happened early on, when she lost her initial

staff. That was the point when she was doing practically everything, from the pick up of the dirty laundry to the physical cleaning to folding to delivery of the clothes. “When I was at that low point, the one that hurt the most was seeing my mother, because no mom would want to see their child struggle and it was a difficult conversation that I had with her where I had to explain that I believed in what I was doing and she just had to accept it,” she recalled. “That was hard, but I persisted,” she said. “I believed in my dream, and I believed in myself and I knew that if I kept on trying, I knew someone was going to open the door. Mathematically, someone had to open it eventually, right?” Nowadays, Balanzat says she can breathe, relax a little and sleep through the night, confident that she has a physical space, a team and staff that support her. Owning her space now has further emboldened this young entrepreneur to continue disrupting the laundry industry. “It means that I can go and get some more, that I am just starting out. I can expand outside New York and it means that I am not crazy,” she said laughing.

Janella and Elmo’s sizzle to fire up Fiesta in America SPARkS of real-life attraction could fly from one of Philippine TV and film’s hottest young stars at Fiesta In America on August 11 and 12. On those two days, Janella Salvador and Elmo Magalona, award-winning performers on the big and small screens, will bring their muchballyhooed love tandem at New Jersey’s Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus. The duo will share the concert limelight with all-time Filipino favorites, Gary Lewis and the Playboys, laughout-loud comic and singer Ogie Alcasid and superb New York-area artists. Janella, 20, has acting in her DNA, being part of the fabled Salvador acting clan as well as a daughter of “Miss Saigon’s” Jenine Desiderio and singer Juan Miguel Salvador. She first appeared on-screen in 2012 at 14 in the teleserye “Be Careful With My Heart”, which became one of ABS-CBN’s most successful dramas. Her first lead role came in 2015 as orphan teenager Sofie in ABS-CBN’s “Oh My G!” That same year, Janella proved

her musical chops when Star Music released her self-named debut album. It reached Number One and was certified platinum, winning her the PMPC Star Awards for Music, Best New Female Recording Artist. Janella was cast with Elmo Magalona in the 2016 music drama, “Born For You,” triggering rumors about a budding off-screen romance. The other half of the dreamy duo also has the movies and music in his bloodstream. Elmo Magalona, 24, son of the late singer-actor-producer Francis Magalona and actress Pia Magalona, first broke into the limelight much earlier than Janella Salvador. In fact, Elmo appeared at six months old on the cover of his father’s rap album, Freeman. In 2011, his film career was launched in the teen comedy “Tween Hearts: Class of 2012”. Signing up with ABS-CBN, Elmo’s debut project was the 2016 musical-drama series, “Born for You”, which introduced his onscreen partnership with Janella. Elmo’s passion for rap served him well when the two

singers teamed up on the official soundtrack for “Born for You”. The album charted at Number One on iTunes Philippines. In October 2016, the young heartthrob released his album, Elmo, which reached gold record status and solidified his credentials among fans of Pinoy rap music. Janella and Elmo are expected to heat up Fiesta In America’s cultural show, but the romantic team will not dampen the excitement for the two other main concert acts. Super comic and recording sensation Ogie Alcasid will impart his inimitable brand of parody and perform some of the biggest hits among his 12 gold records, three platinum records, and three double platinum records. Pop-rock icon Gary Lewis and the Playboys, on the other hand, will revive golden memories with their string of seven Top 10 hits on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, including “This Diamond Ring” (#1), “Count Me In” and “Save Your Heart for Me” (both #2), “She’s Just My Style” (#3), “Everybody Loves a Clown” (#4), “Green Grass” (#8),

and “Sure Gonna Miss Her” (#9). Fiesta In America’s milestone 20th Anniversary edition will be ushered in by a marquee Trade Pavilion. This year, no less than 14 exporters of handicraft, holiday décor, personal accessories, packaged food and other Philippine goods will exhibit their unique products under the Region IV-A (CALABARZON) banner. The Trade Pavilion will also feature tourism exhibits, immigrant-tailored financial and other services, free health screenings and self-improvement workshops, and Total Wellness presentations. The latter will include AARP workshops on how to prevent fraud online, and free sampling of healthful recipes and a workshop on “cultural eating” by Goya Foods as part of the event’s Total Wellness theme. A native food court stocked with regional delicacies, as well as artistic and fun activities for all age groups, will round up the festivities on both days. In the morning of August 12, a Sunday Mass and a colorful Santacruzan pageant will launch the second day’s

Janellsa Salvador

Elmo Magalona

celebration. Fiesta In America’s community-tribute gala, the People’s Ball, will be held on Friday, August 10, at the Meadowlands Hilton in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The People’s Ball will be highlighted by the presentation of awards for

outstanding Fil-Am achievers in diverse fields. To attend, exhibit, sponsor or advertise, please call 212-6826610. For more information, send an email to info@fiestainamerica. com or log on to www. (Advertising Supplement)


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Immigration Corner Atty. MichAel Gurfinkel, eSQ On July 5, 2018, the USCIS issued a Policy Memorandum (PM), providing guidance to officers or adjudicators on when to issue notices to appear (nTA), which is the document placing a person in removal/deportation. This new PM should raise concerns for anyone applying for any immigration benefit (such as a petition, application, extension, etc.), because if USCIS denies that benefit, the person could be placed in removal/ deportation. Please note that this PM provides guidance to the USCIS, which is supposed to be the agency within the Department of Homeland Security that deals with providing immigration benefits. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) were the agencies created for enforcement. Under this PM, USCIS is putting aside its function of providing benefits, and is getting heavily into enforcement. That is why if you are applying for any immigration benefit, you should seek the advice of an attorney, who can evaluate your eligibility, and perhaps even accompany you to any interviews, because the stakes are now so high if USCIS denies your case, which could include deportation/removal. The PM lists a number of aliens now considered “prioritized for removal,” including those who: 1. Have been convicted of any criminal offense. But what does “any” criminal offense mean? Technically, jaywalking, shoplifting, and other minor infractions could be considered a “crime.” While it is understandable that a person could be removable if they committed an aggravated felony or other serious crime, this PM says a person could be subject to removal for “any” criminal offense.

USCIS to start deporting people for being out of status, fraud, or denial of adjustment of status or naturalization

2. Have been charged with any criminal offense that has not been resolved. Ordinarily, under our justice system, a person is considered innocent until proven guilty. There have also been many instances where a person has been “charged” with a crime, but the charges were later dropped or, after trial, they were declared innocent. Does this now mean that if a person is merely charged with a crime, they could face removal, and possibly be removed before having their day in court? 3. Have committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense. It is unclear how a person can be removed from the U.S. based on having committed acts that constitute a chargeable offense. Does this mean they did an unlawful act but were never charged with it? Maybe the person had a domestic dispute or argument with his or her spouse, the police were called, but no charges were ever pressed. I suppose that could have been considered “domestic violence,” and thus, the person could be placed in removal even though no charges were ever filed? 4. Have engaged in fraud or willful misrepresentation in connection with any official matter or application before a governmental agency. Some people committed fraud in connection with immigration benefits, such as entering the U.S. under an assumed name, etc. What ordinarily happens is when they apply for a particular benefit, such as adjustment of status, they include a fraud waiver, seeking forgiveness based on the extreme hardship a U.S. citizen or immigrant spouse or parent would suffer. If the fraud waiver is granted, their case is approved. Does this PM now instruct officers to place the person in removal proceedings even though they are applying for a fraud waiver? 5. Have abused any program related to receipt

of public benefits. Many aliens give birth in the U.S. and their child is automatically a U.S. citizen. The alien then applies for as many government benefits as are available, such as having U.S. taxpayers pay for the birth of the child, food stamps, welfare, housing, etc. These could be considered “public benefits,” and the person might find themselves subject to removal if they applied for and/or obtain these benefits. 6. Are now out of status because of USCIS’s denial of any petition or application. If a person is applying for adjustment of status, or even an extension of non-immigrant status, and the application is denied, that could result in the person being considered out of status or “not lawfully present in the U.S.” In such cases, USCIS could place the person in removal proceedings. 7. Had their naturalization application (N-400) denied based on a lack of good moral character. In addition, if a person obtained their green card through fraud, and their naturalization is denied on that ground, it could also trigger removal/deportation. *** Michael J. Gurfinkel is licensed, and an active member of the State Bar of California and New York. All immigration services are provided by, or under the supervision of, an active member of the State Bar of California. Each case is different. The information contained herein including testimonials, “Success Stories,” endorsements and re-enactments) is of a general nature, and is not intended to apply to any particular case, and does not constitute a prediction, warranty, guarantee or legal advice regarding the outcome of your legal matter. No attorney-client relationship is, or shall be, established with any reader. WEBSITE: Call Toll free to schedule a consultation for anywhere in the US: (866)—GURFINKEL Four offices to serve you: LOS ANGELES · SAN FRANCISCO · NEW YORK · PHILIPPINES (Advertising Supplement)

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THE UPS AND DOWNS, AND THE BITTERSWEET ENDING OF A SPECIAL CASE ABOUT A SPECIAL SON WHO HAD AUTISM ON THIS SUNDAY’S “CITIZEN PINOY!” When Norma immigrated to the U.S., she had to leave behind their autistic son, Michael because he aged out. The separation broke her heart. Norma and husband Joy (left) went to three other attorneys who were unable to deliver results, until they decided to retain leading U.S. immigration attorney Michael J. Gurfinkel, who was finally able to bring Michael to the U.S., to be reunited with his parents. Watch the heartfelt journey of Michael and his family that led to a pleasant reunion, but with a painful ending, on an encore episode of “Citizen Pinoy” – on Sunday at 6:15 p.m. (PST) on TFC.

Immigrant Living: 101 and Beyond Monette AdevA MAGlAyA [Select a handful of those things on your bucket list that have the highest chance of coming to fruition given your time frame. In tech speak, this means before your life’s energy goes into ‘low batt mode’ and life has run out of sockets to plug into.] THInGS break. Once broken, a thing loses its value. If it is worth fixing, it can be fixed and in the hands of a whiz, can be as good as new. In our throw-away consumerdriven, impatient society where quality has taken a back seat to quantity in the name of profit and the bottom line, we are encouraged to simply toss away the broken item in the trash heap and replace it with a new one. For those of us who grew up and were trained by mothers, fathers, teachers and even great

The bucket list Fix the broken (Seventh of a series)

”Broken hearts? Broken relationships? The solution is always the same. FORGIVE. Forgive as you have been forgiven. And while you’re at it, FORGET.” nuns (in my book) who taught us the meaning and value of preserving items, we tend to find the fix for the broken item. We look at the rip in the hemline of a nice dress and figure out carefully how a stitch here and there can make it good as new. That is probably why I can never get on with the supposedly “fashionable” items of ripped jeans. It is, to me, a nod toward rottenness and ugliness. Why pay good money for something so unattractive? Oy Vey! We look at holes in the wall and buy spackle and paint to

patch it up and smooth out the flaws. We crazy glue crockery to weld things back. We solder metals so that the thingamajig, whatever it is, functions once again. We replace batteries so watches and clocks go tick tocking again. We repair broken items. That is our default setting when we see things that are broken. But how about when the breakdown is with affairs of the human heart? How do you fix a broken heart? There are no easy answers. In the physical realm, if Continued on Page 6


An Asian Journal Magazine

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TakeTheStage crosses borders, invades overseas showgrounds On the PEP Front

People, Events, Places BoBBy T. yalong EvEry generation has an iconic boy band being emulated and idolized that indubitably facilitated to define the essence of the said era. Although some bands changed the way the public saw the stereotypical boy band, others have lucratively created a fresh outlook on male performers that unmistakably set new standards and norms. It wasn’t only their own brand of music that was to be considered but their iconic packaging and initial stage appeal that flatteringly showcased their innate musical talents even more. The imminent conquest of European boybands indubitably kindled the rise of fresh ideal images and noticeably since then, there never was a dearth of musical heartthrobs and idol materials worldwide. The craze straightforwardly strewn like wild fire and boybands found their monikers supremely nestled on the zenith of the planet’s entertainment domes… with due credit to their distinct vocal talents, slick dance moves, vocal


TakeTheStage, an Astoria, NY alternative rock band

Anne Curtis with husband Erwan Heussaff


harmonies, peculiar costume appeal, and restructured standards of stage presentation. Contrary to what was earlier concluded and popularly believed, the mushrooming coming out of teen pop groups wasn’t at all influenced by the popularity of Britney Spears and the pop stars of her era but could be traced back to the 40s during the incredible height of the Swing and rock n’ roll. In the US, the late 60s, 70s, and 80s witnessed the rise of Jackson 5, The Osmonds, Menudo, New Kids On The Block, and the 90s saw the emergence of Boys II Men, Back Street Boys, NSyNC, and Westlife on their rose to global fame. The Jonas Brothers, One Direction, Korea’s K-Pop, Japan’s Arashi, and Indonesia’s SM*SH enjoyed phenomenal breakthrough in the 2000s.

(L-R) Kiel, Hans, Shanne, & Brandon...collectively TakeTheStage

Photo from Instagram/@annecurtissmith

Anne Curtis not avoiding pregnancy, just relishing role as wife first by Clarizel abanilla

BLUE, TakeTheStage’s maiden album with 10 tracks

Since then music aficionados equitably predicted with certainty that: “Boybands are here to stay!” Filipinos wouldn’t consent to being left behind in this regard. With the foreign surfacing of boybands (or the so-called allmale-singing-group) as early as the 60s, the Philippine music arena was already captured by the infectious beat and rhythm of the Hotdogs, Boyfriends, vST & Co., APO Hiking Society, and lately South Border, 6 Cycle Mind, Orange & Lemons, Parokya ni Edgar, and Sugar Free, just to name a few. True enough today’s generation has astoundingly produced enumerable male singing groups of every color and creed. A few years back, Queens, New york gave birth to TakeTheStage, a promising group of fresh and talented musicians noticeably climbing the ladder to fame while simultaneously carving a name and stamping its



notable mark in the archives of the entertainment arena across the country and overseas. The quintessential “It Factor” of this promising all-male-group could be evident in their youthful charm and wholesome image every shrieking female teenage fan would be honored (and fearless enough) to introduce not only to their green-eyed peers but to mama, as well. TakeTheStage outfits easily conform to what is “in” and trendy while simultaneously exuding that distinctive “boyish appeal” and boy-next-door image… a typical preference of the wellcultured female audience. Aside from their genteel personality and wholesome representation, they have an edge over their counterparts for having a prolific singer-songwriter within the group plus all members can sing and harmonize other than having mastered the respective instrument assigned to them. Obviously, these young Continued on Page 6

UNLIKE other celebrity couples who aim for babies after marriage, Anne Curtis has always been open in saying she does not want to rush things. But contrary to speculations that she opts to bear a child rather later due to physical demands of work, the “Showtime” host clarified that she does not prevent having a baby if it should happen. The “Buy Bust” star said she just wants to enjoy being a wife first to her husband, food blogger Erwan Heussaff, before becoming a mom. “No, hindi dahil sa pelikula, it was more of I truly believe in enjoying your first year of marriage first. Ganun kami lalo na we still want to travel together, mag-hohoneymoon pa kami so hindi pa. (No, not because of the movie, it was more of I truly believe in enjoying your first year of marriage first. That’s how we are especially that we still want to travel together, we will still go on a honeymoon so not really, for now),” she said at the recent press conference for the upcoming action film “Buy Bust.” Asked if she’s avoiding pregnancy, the actress answered: “No, not at all. ‘Di naman ako bata na at kasal naman na ako. (No, not at all. I’m not that young anymore and I’m married anyway).”


Curtis then mentioned how excited her husband is for her soon-to-be-shown action movie. She even relvealed that, for the first time, her husband blocked off his work schedule to make sure that he’d watch the film on its premiere night. She gushed when she shared that her husband takes care of her when she comes home exhausted from the shoot, and that he treats her like a baby.

An Asian Journal Magazine


The Asian Journal N E W YO R K / N E W J E R S EY JULY 13, 2018


An Asian Journal Magazine

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Aegis celebrates 20 years in the biz by Nathalie


TWENTY years. That’s how long Aegis has been surviving, thriving and representing Original Pilipino Music. “It’s a big honor for us,” vocalist Juliet Sunot said of being part of the Philippine music industry this long. “Dito nagka-anak, nagka-pamilya, nagkaroon ng bahay, nagkaroon ng sasakyan. Dito din, sa musika, nakuha namin ang aming mga pangarap.” Aegis is made up of the Sunot sisters Juliet, Mercy and Ken (singers), Stella Pabico (keyboardist), Vilma Goloviogo (drummer), Weng Adriano (bassist) and Rey Abenoja (lead guitarist). Once described by critics as baduy or too masa, Aegis has vindicated itself by becoming one of the country’s most enduring artists, with its pop-rock music strongly resonating with Filipinos. The band has since crossed over to other genres and inspired an orchestral concert Aegis in Symphony with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra (PPO) that was staged twice at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), and Rak of Aegis, the longestrunning musical of the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA) with six runs and over 300 shows. Their songs have the ability to express intense, deep-seated emotions that singing them can be quite the cathartic experience for many karaoke-loving Filipinos. Aegis members hailed from different cities and provinces like Cagayan de Oro (the Sunot sisters), Misamis Occidental (Stella), Southern Leyte (Rey), Pampanga (Rowena), Vilma (Manila), and previously belonged to other bands while working as entertainers and musicians in Japan. They were eventually formed into a group initially named AG’s Soundtrippers (after their manager’s initials) and then renamed Aegis in 1998 by the band’s manager and Alpha Records. That was also the time Aegis returned to the country to record the debut album Halik, which carried many of the band’s greatest hits and received quadruple platinum record status. During the late ‘90s to early 2000s, the pre-digital era, such accomplishment equaled to nearly half a million physical albums sold. Just as lasting as the music is the band members’ close bond. Aegis never underwent a change in line-up let alone considered disbanding. It only saw the addition of Ken six years ago. According to Ken, she’s “very lucky” to have never experienced the early struggles of the band. Mercy said they are grateful to God for blessing them with career longevity. For her part, Stella said they are not mindful of the years they’ve been together. If there are problems, they said, these are resolved once they hit the stage. Music keeps them together, Juliet stressed. “We need this job that’s why we’re also together,” they laughed. Amidst all the laughter, it’s no joke how they managed to reach this far in the music business. Stella recalled that prior to becoming Aegis, in the late ‘80s to early ‘90s, they got paid as little as P32 per show. After successfully working in Japan, their management decided to bring them home in 1998 to record an album. They could now laugh at the memory of playing in no-name bars because “no popular bars were willing to accept us.” When one established bar finally

PhiliP S. Chua, MD, FaCS, FPCS

Aegis in an old music video

did, they recalled feeling nervous and intimidated by its “classy” crowd. “Nanginginig pa kami kasi sanay lang kami sa tabi-tabi. Sanay kami na nagtsi-tsinelas lang yung mga tao at lasing (laughs),” Juliet shared. However, they were not allowed to perform their original songs. The owner agreed to let them sing originals but on a Sunday, thinking it would be a slow day. It turned out they were able to fill up the venue, with the audiences requesting for their song one after another. They also remembered agreeing to do a mall show for P80 just so they could sell their first album. Eventually, the mall didn’t want to have them because the crowd became too much to handle. They have also experienced performing in a rice field. And they used to lug around their equipment and packed them into taxis, even jeepneys. Vilma said. Stella believes these were all “good experiences because we learned a lot when we were just starting.” To promote the Halik album, friends would call up radio stations during the wee hours of the morning to request for their songs. Radio deejays would decline requests because they found their songs too loud and noisy. Aegis also had some critics that dismissed their music as too masa or baduy. One R&B performer refused to share the stage with them because supposedly, unlike Aegis, “their music is meant for the class A.” “Pero ano ba talaga ang baduy? Baduy ang kanta or baduy ang personality or baduy yung pananamit namin? Dun ako nalilito… Kasi pag sinabi pang-masa yan, sinasabi kaagad baduy yan,” asked Weng on why their masa-friendly songs were being equated to baduy by others. Of course, the band used to get offended by such comments but have learned to just let them go because “you can’t please everyone.” Rey said, “We don’t mind. Basta as far as we know, ang audience namin ay all walks of life, A-B-C-D-E.” Unknown to many perhaps, the main composer of Aegis songs was Rey’s brother Celso Abenoja, who unfortunately passed away 11 years ago. “Ang dami niyang pangarap, ang iba natupad. For example, it was his dream to hear his songs on the radio. Ngayon natupad na. When he was still alive, he used to tag along to our gigs. Although at that time, di pa kami kasikatan.” Rey further revealed, “Actually, sad to say, he became a drug dependent during his college days in Olongapo. Ang brain damage niya, according to his doctor, di na kaya.” Even with his condition, Rey’s brother would make all these searing, emotionally-charged

WHAT are the primary generations in our society? Our society today is composed of five primary generations. Each generation appears to have its own philosophy, goals, values, lifestyle, behavior, work ethics, expectation, and outlook. Some share same characteristics of generations before and after their own. Here are the five generations: • Gen Z, iGen, or Centennials: Born 1996 and later photo • Millennials or Gen Y: Born — hugot in Pinoy parlance — songs 1977 to 1995 about love, loss and pain based • Generation X: Born 1965 to on real experiences, and which are 1976 fittingly interpreted by the Sunot • Baby Boomers: Born 1946 to sisters’ power vocals. Rey said his brother Celso would 1964 write three kinds of songs: “love • Traditionalists or Silent songs, angry songs and super angry Generation: Born 1945 and songs.” before. The story behind BasangBasa Based on this classification, I Sa Ulan, he related, “Nagdadala belong to the Silent, Traditional, siya ng sariling banig at gitara niya Generation. kasi tuliro na siya. Napadpad siya But like countless people sa Quezon City, sa may UP Village, around the world, I consider and nabugbog siya.” myself to be hardly silent, mostly He then returned home, traditional, but not totally, and bloodied and soaking wet because it was raining, Rey recalled. The next conservative in many ways, with day, his brother penned the song as a tinge of reasoned liberalism. triggered by the incident: This stratification of our society “Heto ako ngayon, nag-iisa is very interesting, accurate, and Naglalakbay sa gitna ng dilim makes a lot of sense. The world Lagi na lang akong nadarapa today is what it is because of Ngunit heto, bumabangon pa this mix, a recipe of a variety of rin.” ingredients providing a menu From these lyrics, there’s of high-calorie diversity in a something so easy to learn and mosaic of some clashing cultures, relate to — about being down and out, and yet trying to battle personal traditions, and politics. Hopefully, demons and pick oneself up. the 6th generation would be Rey said, “Kung buhay siya Generation LUC — Generation ngayon... matutuwa siya.” of Love, Understanding, and Celso’s memory lives on Compassion — to achieve world through the songs, and in a way, peace and prevent annihilation of their continued success is a tribute our planet. to him. Is the alcohol consumption Recently, ABS-CBN’s Sunday limit too high? musical-variety show “ASAP” also The current guidelines paid tribute to the contributions of Aegis to the music industry. in the United States for the A rerun of “Rak of Aegis” is also recommended reasonable upper playing at the PETA Theater. The limit alcohol consumption may band credited the wildly-successful not be low enough to be safe, musical for expanding their according to a study published audience base. in Lancet. Review of data from 83 When members were first informed that their music would be prospective studies on 600,000 drinkers who did not have any used in the musical in 2014, they baseline cardiovascular disease, were both shocked and surprised. followed up for a median of 7.5 First thought was, “Why us?” “Sa dinami-daming banda, bakit years, showed roughly 7 percent yung kanta namin ang napili? ‘Baduy’ died and 7 percent had their first kami dati, ni-lo-look down kami, cardiovascular event. tapos ginawan kami ng musical,” The report says: “For both Juliet said. men and women, consuming The orchestral show Aegis in Symphony with the PPO at the CCP 100 grams of alcohol (or about 7 servings) or less per week was last year brought them to tears. associated with lowest all-cause Rey said, “That was the time na mortality. In the U.S., this is about umiyak talaga ako ng husto. You half the recommended upper limit know why? Because me and my brother, we were always for men and equivalent to the together. Sabi niya, gagawa ako recommended limit for women. ng music na balang araw matutupad Men and women who exceeded ito sana. He called it ‘space music.’ the U.S. recommended limits had He had imagined a four-piece band shorter life expectancies of 2.7 but may ibang tugtog sa likod,which years and 1.3 years, respectively, is nangyari sa orchestra (referring at age 40. Higher intake was to the different ensembles of associated with elevated risk for instruments). Naiyak talaga ako.” So, how do they see Aegis in the most cardiovascular outcomes except myocardial infarction next decade or two? “Ten years kaya pa ba? 20 (heart attack).” years?” Juliet, Mercy, Ken, Vilma, Weng, Stella and Rey asked each other, before adding, “sana tangkilikin pa rin nila yung music (hope they continue to support our music) so that we will still be From Page 3 here.” something is broken, you can fix it. And if you can’t, you relegate it to the trash heap. But not so with the human heart … Though broken to a thousand Hell’s Kitchen), there seems no pieces, the heart can live through stopping this fast-rising teen band from attaining success too the dark days until time brings soon with the voluminous slated its healing effects. The pain becomes dull and as life goes on, performances crowding their the sunlight breaks through the calendar. darkness and the heart is made Flying all the way to the whole. Philippines to promote their Resiliency of the human latest album, participate in heart is based on the deep and various musical events, and enduring understanding in the personally attend to “Feed wisdom of the words: “This too, Hungry Minds,” the principal shall pass.” beneficiary of their fundraising But when the pains and the advocacy, TakeTheStage has the following gigs on their calendar: hurt are forged into the deep - Mission Beyond Music (July recesses of the memory and the 18 at St. Francis Learning Center wounds are encouraged to fester, for Aeta Children, Mangan-yaka, the brokenness can be as deep as the Grand Canyon. These are Subic Zambales) the very sad cases, when the - Offshore Music Fest (July 27 at the Upper House, 2/F The Brewery, The Palace, BGC Jersey (October 21, 2018) - Moon Lane Festival (August To experience and enjoy 4, Century City Mall Events Hall) the distinct brand of music - And back in the USA… TakeTheStage effortlessly offers, with Vhong Navarro & Gladys come to the above mentioned Guevarra in “All in One US Tour” events and witness their diverse (Sept. 22 at La Boom, 56-15 musicality, imbibe the arresting Northern Blvd, Woodside, NY presence of their youth, enjoy 11377) their pleasant-to-the-ears - PACCAL 26th Anniversary vocal renditions of original Gala at the Ramada Plaza Hotel, and covered ditties while 160 Frontage Road, Newark, New simultaneously being captured

TakeTheStage crosses borders... From Page 4 alternative indie rock band/ musicians from Astoria, New York effortlessly appeal not only to preteen crowd and adolescent followers, but even to the more mature audiences. Their charismatic appeal irresistibly hits all genders regardless of age and status. Noticeably, these seemingly polite young musicians could easily pass as altar boys with the way they greet elders. They will bow as they kiss the hands for blessing, an old-time Filipino custom of respect and reverence… such paucity among the youth. Meet the inspiring young souls composing TakeTheStage that initially took off with just the Garcia siblings in 2012, recruited their cousin Kiel in 2013, and after performing for almost five years, they took with them childhood friend Brandon in early 2018. Hans Garcia Birthday: December 7, 1999 Age: 18 years old School: Borough of Manhattan Community College


Course: Still undecided. Torn between Psychology and Political Science Instrument: Lead guitar / Keyboards, and vocals Shanne Garcia Birthday: November 2, 2003 Age: 14 years old School: Fiorello La Guardia High School Instrument: Drum / Vocals Juan Ezekiel Calonzo Birthday: August 22, 1999 Age: 18 years old School: William Paterson University Course: BS Nursing Instrument: Bass guitar / Vocals Brandon Costas Dionisio Birthday: May 28, 1999 Age: 19 years old School: Baruch College Course: BS Accountancy Instrument: Guitar / Vocals Having just recently launched their ten-track debut album, “Blue,” last June 22, (recorded at the Frequency Studios in White Plains, NY with “Sell” as its carrier single, which was recorded at the Threshold Recording Studios in

Cancer, flu and PPI Does healthy lifestyle still help cancer patients? The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Oncology study reported that “patients who adhere to a healthy lifestyle after colorectal cancer diagnosis, as recommended by the American Cancer Society (ACS), may have improved survival. ACS guidelines for cancer survivors call for a healthy body weight, regular physical activity, and high intake of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.” The study involves 1000 patients undergoing chemotherapy for stage III colon cancer. Patients whose lifestyle were most concordant with ACS guidelines had 42 percent lower mortality risk compared to the non-compliant ones. Added recommendations include “5-6 servings per day of fruits and vegetables and about 150 minutes per week of exercise.” So, never give up, and beat that cancer. Is there a blood test to detect early cancer? CBC (Complete Blood Count), Blood protein testing (electrophoresis for immunoglobulins) and Tumor Marker tests are indirect tests to aid in diagnosing the presence of cancer. So, we are yet to have a blood test that can detect early stage cancer directly. Here’s a great prospect: Illumina, famous for gene sequencing announced that “it’s launching a new company to develop a blood test that will detect early-stage cancers in asymptomatic (no symptoms) patients. Called Grail, the company will use DNA sequencing to look for genetic mutations that occurs when cancer is first developing, thus enabling earlier treatment…the goal being the development of a ‘pan-cancer’ test, a universal test.” This potentially life-saving test is expected to be in the market in 2019 at about $500. Among the investors of Grail are Microsoft founder Bill Gates (net worth 92.1 billion) and Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon (net worth is $139.4 billion). Do acid-reflux pills harm the kidneys? Popular and widely used PPIs (Proton-pump Inhibitors) for acid reflux, to reduce the acid production in the stomach and heartburns, is associated with 20 to 50 percent increased risk for developing chronic kidney disease (CKD), according to an observational study in the JAMA Internal Medicine. The study followed over 10,000 individuals originally free of any kidney disease, who subsequently took PPIs for acid reflux for 14 years, showed 14.2 percent developed CKD versus 10.7 percent among PPI non-users. Users also had higher rates of acute renal injury. Physicians usually prescribe ACE (angiotensin converting enzyme) inhibitors

The bucket list

or ARBs (angiotensin receptor blockers) for PPI users to protect the kidneys. Painkillers (like ibuprofen, naproxen, which are nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) used daily can damage the kidneys. PPI users are advised to have renal function (blood and urine tests) monitoring and serum magnesium level testing. If needed, the physician might switch the patient to H2 receptor antagonist pills to treat the acid reflux. What is this new drug that kills flu virus? Good news: Possibly available before the end of 2018, a new drug marketed by Roche that kills the flu virus within 24 hours and end infectious transmission also within that period, Xofluza (baloxavir marboxil), is waiting for final FDA approval. This could be the first anti-flu approved from a new class in two decades. This drug has already been approved in Japan. Its novel mechanism, unique efficacy, and ability to end transmission within a day are most impressive and beneficial to the whole world in its fight against influenza. According to the study “Xofluza is given only once, instead of five days at twicedaily dosing required by Roche’s own flu stalwart Tamiflu. And, with just that one pill, the drug managed to relieve symptoms and bring down fever in time on par with Tamiflu, a 1,436-subject phase 3 showed. What’s more important, the drug can suppress the flu virus level in just 24 hours, while it takes Tamiflu 72 hours to do the same. Besides, it could treat some Tamiflu-resistant strains from avian flu viruses H5N1 and H7N9. Furthermore, its quick virus-killing action could stop the virus from spreading to others sooner, and packing such power in a one-time regimen could also mean convenience for patients.” Should soft drinks be banned? All kinds of soft drinks, cola or uncola, diet or regular, caffeinated or decaf, have been found to be unhealthy, for both adults and children. They increase the risk for metabolic syndrome. Should they be banned? We want to get your personal feedback. Please e-mail us what you think. er and be conscious of for health maintenance and preservation. *** Philip S. Chua, MD, FACS, FPCS, Cardiac Surgeon Emeritus in Northwest Indiana and chairman of cardiac surgery from 1997 to 2010 at Cebu Doctors University Hospital, where he holds the title of Physician Emeritus in Surgery, is based in Las Vegas, Nevada. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, the Philippine College of Surgeons, and the Denton A. Cooley Cardiovascular Surgical Society. He is the chairman of the Filipino United Network – USA, a 501(c)(3) humanitarian foundation in the United States. For more data, visit philipSchua. com; comments questions: scalpelpen@ (Advertising Supplement)

heart never heals. It is true what they say about dying of a broken heart. There is that thing called pride and in extreme cases, hubris, the kind that damned the fallen angels. This is the one that makes it hard to fix brokenness. We become so big for our britches that forgiveness is beyond us. We equate forgiveness with weakness and our supreme pride won’ t let us do it. Broken hearts? Broken relationships? The solution is always the same. FORGIVE. Forgive as you have been forgiven. And while you’re at it, FORGET. You do yourself no favors by letting the pains and hurts fester. Not that it’s easy to forgive and forget. Nothing worthwhile is ever easy. But that’s the whole story of

our redemption. God forgives and forgets our iniquities. Who are we not to try and do likewise during our short time here on earth? The full benefits of forgiveness accrue first to the aggrieved party, the one who forgives and forgets. Why? Because then the heart is allowed to mend and heal with time, it becomes whole once again. There is a play on words about time and healing that one wit wrote. It is said that. “Time heals all wounds.” And if you believe in karma, “Time wounds all heels.” Let that sink in for a moment. God makes the prayerful heart resilient. In time, the human heart can love again as though it was never broken. Next week: Another idea to consider for The Bucket List... *** Nota Bene: Monette Adeva Maglaya is SVP of Asian Journal Publications, Inc. To send comments, e-mail monette.

in awe by the electrifying stage appeal emanating from the air of the group’s youthful innocence. The next generation of music lovers will crave for more and even better looking and talented teen boybands armed with “intoxicating” rock music and powerful sounds… and TakeTheStage will definitely be a huge name on-the-scene when that time comes.

The brand of music this promising bundle of talents has established in the east coast of the USA is gradually driving its undulating waves way across the seas and over lofty hills while stamping with determination its distinctive mark in the annals of the foreign music production. For comments and suggestions, please email to:

An Asian Journal Magazine


The Asian Journal N E W YO R K / N E W J E R S EY JulY 13, 2018

Six ways to get your body summer ready ‘The Saint of Second Chances’ film

comes to New York City on August 1

By Monet


Summer is here! everybody’s heading to the beach and we all know the ‘scenery’ during beach season, don’t we? Now, don’t you go bailing on some summer fun just because you don’t feel confident wearing a swimsuit. Besides, after your hashtag #balikalindog project failed (for the nth time this year), this is the best moment to get your groove back again and achieve your ultimate ‘summer bod’ goals! I’ve rounded up six ‘realisticallyachievable’ ways to help you start: • If you don’t have time to work out, make time I know this is easier said than done but you have to start if you want to have a bikini body this summer. my tip is to try working out in the morning to get your metabolism revved up for the rest of the day. Commit to a workout routine that you’re comfortable with and stick to it! Once you’ve built the habit, perform exercises that use more than one muscle group such as squats, pushups, rows, and lunges in a circuit to make your workouts most efficient. Again: make time for exercise, no excuses! • Manage your appetite for unhealthy foods by using an app This is one of the many benefits of modern technology, and I am not just talking about diosa (goddess)-transforming filters that you use when posting your selfies or Snapshot that make you look cuter when you’re a bunny or a fairy. You can now make use of your brand new iphone7 to download a mobile app that keeps your diet on track. A recent study in the journal Obesity found that dieters who track their progress using mobile apps drop more pounds than those who keep paper logs. The Weight Watchers mobile app (free with membership) also lets you download recipes, including faves from spokeswoman Jennifer Hudson. • Replace unlimited-rice with more green and leafy food options I know “rice is life” but you’re going to have to make the compromise if you want to rock that tank top. Start by cutting back on processed, starchy carbohydrates such as bagels,

cookies, breads, pastas, and crackers. most of these foods are loaded with extra sodium and preservatives that can contribute to water retention and bloating. Instead, opt for more fresh fruits and veggies, as well as lean protein to keep you satisfied. • Lay low on the alcohol It’s always a good idea to reduce your alcohol intake, especially during summer. Not only is it advisable (for a better and sober you), you will also reduce your total calorie intake and set yourself up for a better night’s sleep to energize you for your workout the next day (note: read tip no. 1 repeatedly). If you’re used to having a glass of wine or pint of beer every night, try cutting back to two or three nights a week. When you do indulge, always sandwich your drink with a glass of water before and after to avoid alcohol’s dehydrating effects. • Keep yourself hydrated – with H2O Since we are on the subject of drinking, I might as well remind you that while drinking too much alcohol is a no-no, drinking more water is a yes-yes-yes! The best way to rid yourself of excess water weight is to flush your body with water. Skimping on water can reduce the effectiveness of your workouts because even mild dehydration can affect your performance and fat-burning potential. You should drink at least half your body weight in ounces each day (e.g., a 150pound woman should drink 75 oz. or the equivalent of about four and a half 16.9 oz. bottled waters a day). • Get more snooze time. research says that sleep deprivation is one of the major causes of obesity. That in mind, you should reconsider the time you put into putting yourself to sleep – the longer the better. Getting a good night’s sleep is an important part of shedding those extra pounds, so be sure you are getting 7-9 hours of sleep.

Winwyn Marquez thinks Miss Universe should be for ‘natural-born women’ WHIle some people were happy to see a transgender woman finally competing in this year’s miss universe pageant, it may appear that one has a different opinion about it — 2017 reina Hispanoamericana titleholder Teresita Ssen “Winwyn” marquez. This comes after Angela Ponce, a transgender woman from Spain, is set to compete in the renowned pageant. marquez said in a interview that while she loved the idea of Spain allowing Ponce to join, she thinks “miss universe per se” should be given to “naturalborn women.” She also clarified that she has nothing against transgenders. The interview was posted on YouTube by entertainment blogger mJ De leon yesterday, July 12. “Kasi (Because) there is miss International Queen, tama ba (is  that right)? It’s a prestigious pageant also… let’s just give it (miss universe) for natural bornwomen and for transgenders to have their own prestigious pageant,” she explained. “Pero kung a-allow naman ng (But if it  would be allowed by) miss universe pageant, then we should accept it also.” marquez’s opinion was met with some opposition. Transgender model Xtina Superstar was one of those who questioned it. She answered the beauty queen via Twitter yesterday: “Girl, just cut the bs and say that you don’t agree to it, wag mo na echosin ng (don’t  sugarcoat it with) ‘nothing against transgenders’ or ‘I respect the lgbt’ keme, nakakairita lang (it’s 

Winwyn Marquez Photo from Instagram/@teresitassen

just annoying).” meanwhile, a fan named Cherry Ann D. Santos (@ CheJoshGabe) agreed with marquez that the pageant should be solely for “real women.” But @xtinasuperstar answered back: “Transwomen are women, no such thing as ‘real’ women; the fact that you just used ‘real’ like it’s an upgrade to a woman’s femininity does not make sense.” Back in 2012, the miss universe pageant stirred controversy when a Canadian transgender model, Jenna Talackova, was disqualified from the pageant. The organization later reversed the decision and allowed Talackova to join, citing Canada’s legal gender recognition requirements which Talackova appeared to have satisfied, as explained by Trump’s special counsel then, michael Cohen. (Katrina Hallare/Inquirer. net)

Summer is such an exciting season. And with such a highenergy season, comes (an even) higher demand to make sure our bodies are summer-ready and in tip-top shape. I hope these six steps would help flaunt your body confidently in front of your friends and family. It’s never too late to get fit and fab! *** Monet Lu is a Marikina-born, awardwinning celebrity beauty stylist with his own chain of Monet Salon salons across Southern California and Las Vegas, Nevada. Ultimately, Monet is known as an all-around artiste who produces sold-out fashion and awards shows as well as unforgettable marketing campaigns. Monet is also the founder of the revolutionary all-natural beauty products such as Enlighten, your solution to discoloration . To contact Monet, please visit or email him at

PrODuCeD by Jesuit Communications Philippines (JesCom), Ignatius of loyola is a modern and very human take on the story of St. Ignatius of loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, often called ‘The Saint of Second Chances.’ As a brash, hot-headed soldier in a time of political upheaval in Spain, the young Iñigo went from living a life of brutal violence and debauchery, to becoming one of the greatest saints in the history of the Church. This film chronicles Iñigo’s torturous struggle to turn from darkness to light—a struggle that nearly destroyed him, but also gave him the key to a spiritual weapon that continues to save lives to this very day. Hosted by the magis Theatre Company, loida Nicolas lewis, and Dr. Angie Cruz, come and watch Ignatius of loyola on August 1, 2018 (Wednesday) 6:00pm at the Wallace Hall, Church of St. Ignatius loyola, 980 Park Avenue, New York City. For inquiries, call (212) 756-8958. [Note: This movie is not suitable for young children]. See poster for more details.

An Asian Journal Magazine


Th e A s i a n J o u r n a l N E W YO R K / N E W J E R S EY J u lY 1 3, 20 1 8

071318 - New York & New Jersey Edition  
071318 - New York & New Jersey Edition