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PH gov’t will still assist undocumented Filipinos in US, says incoming DFA chief by Dana

M. SioSon

AJPress

senAtor Alan Peter Cayetano said that the Philippine government will still give assistance to undocumented filipinos in the United states amid the trump administration’s new immigration policy. Cayetano issued the clarification in response to criticisms of some overseas filipino workers (ofWs) against President rodrigo Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano set to succeed Duterte’s recent statement that he current Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. would “not lift a finger” to help as the head of the DFA.

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USA

from the AJPress NEWS TEAM AcroSS AMEricA

Trump’s travel ban temporarily lifted Hundreds of citizens from the seven Muslim-majority nations return to the US

undocumented filipinos if they got caught or deported. According to the senator, Duterte’s remark was merely an affirmation that the Philippine government would not interfere with the United states’ domestic affairs. “Ayaw lang ng pangulo na diktahan ang Amerika kung ano ang immigration policy nito, dahil ayaw din nating diktahan tayo (The president just doesn’t want to dictate America on its own immigration policy, just like how we PAGE A2

A HOUSE DIVIDED. Thousands of the urban poor hold a protest action in front of the National Housing Authority in Quezon City on Wednesday, Feb. 8, during a housing summit. President Rodrigo Duterte was guest of honor and keynote speaker during the conference. Among other demands, the protesters pushed for continued peace talks between the government and the communist rebels, as well as genuine land reform and national industrialization. ManilaTimes.net photo by Mike De Juan

PH deploys erring cops to Mindanao by Dana

M. SioSon

AJPress

DePloying alleged erring cops to conflicted areas in mindanao is not a form of punishment, the Philippine national Police (PnP) said in a statement on tuesday, february 7. According to PnP spokesperson senior supt. Dionardo Carlos, it is a ‘regular thing’ for officers to be transferred or reassigned in another area. “hindi po ito parusa (it is not a

punishment). it’s an ongoing activity or program in the Philippine national Police,” Carlos said. the PnP made the statement following President rodrigo Duterte’s order to send over 200 supposed rogue cops to Basilan, sulu, and tawi-tawi. “We are members of the PnP and not just a local police force, unlike in the U.s. na may sheriff, federal police. tayo po ay maaring ma-reassign saan mang lugar sa ibang Pilipinas (We can be

After several days of complete disorder at airports as immigration officials and airlines try to adjust to the new immigration policies, a federal appeals court on sunday, february 5 maintained the temporary stop to the controversial travel ban. Days before, seattle-based U.s. District Court Judge James robart on friday, february 3 issued a temporary restraining order that blocked President Donald trump’s travel ban nationwide. Washington state Attorney general Bob ferguson also filed a motion for the restraining order for a nationwide block on trump’s executive order, contending that parts of the

assigned anywhere in the Philippines),” Carlos explained. earlier on tuesday, PnP Chief Director ronald Dela rosa brought over 200 police officers allegedly involved in various offenses — including minor offenses and other cases of extortion, robbery, and drug-related offenses — at the malacañang Palace grounds to supposedly clean the Pasig river. Duterte, however, did not order the cops to clean the river. standPAGE A4

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Palawan, Boracay islands get boost at New York Times Senate suspends death penalty Travel Show hearings over int’l treaty

ERRING COPS. President Rodrigo Duterte (lower right corner) addresses 264 policemen who have allegedly committed offenses while in uniform. Director General Ronald Dela Rosa escorted the policemen to Malacañang Tuesday afternoon, Feb. 7 purportedly to clean up the Pasig River. Inquirer.net photo by Noy Morcoso

PAlAWAn and Boracay – two of the best islands of the Philippines were on top of the list of travellers in 2016, according to a couple of major travel and lifestyle magazines – travel + leisure and Conde nast’s traveler. three Philippine islands – Boracay (#1), Palawan (#2), and Cebu (#5) – ranked among the top island destinations in the world according to Conde nast’s traveler’s 2016 reader’s Choice Awards while Palawan was named by travel + leisure as “World’s Best island”, followed closely by Boracay as the second-best and winning over equally famous destinations such as Bali in indonesia, tahiti in french Polynesia and santorini in greece. the international recognition of these isPAGE A2

Pacquiao: Drug traffickers ‘deserve’ to be put to death by Dana

SioSon AJPress

the senate Committee on Justice and human rights has suspended its public hearings on the bills seeking the reimposition of death penalty in the Philippines amid the rising concerns of violating an international treaty. “We are suspending because there is a supervening event — the treaty of international convention on civil and political rights — which states that all Senator Manny Pacquiao, author of a proposal seeking to re-institute the death penalty executions should not be continued, in the Philippines and increasing the penalties of heinous crimes such as drug trafficking, was ratified,” senator richard gordon, kidnapping, child trafficking, exploitation, prostitution, pornography and rape.

Senate photo by Cesar Tomambo

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Defense chief: Duterte allowed US construction on PH military bases by aJPreSS

PresiDent rodrigo Duterte has allowed the United states to construct and upgrade facilities on its military bases in the Philippines as part of the enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (eDCA) signed by both countries. Philippine Defense secretary Delfin lorenzana made the remarks on tuesday, february 7, a week after Duterte accused the U.s. of building a ‘permanent’ arms depot in the country and threatened to repeal the Visiting forces Agreement (VfA). ratified by both countries in 1999, the VfA states that the U.s. forces are not allowed to build permanent structures anywhere in the Philippines. “ewan ko kung saan nakuha ni presidente yung information niya (i do not know where the president got his information) but i corrected it. i talked to him sabi ko (and said), ‘mr. President, first there was no construction yet sa mga eDCA camps. Wala pa (Not yet). it will be constructed some time PAGE A2

Kris Aquino appeals to Duterte: Don’t arrest Noynoy by Dana

SioSon AJPress

PhiliPPine President rodrigo Duterte on monday, february 6, disclosed that tV host and actress Kris Aquino has asked him to not arrest her brother, former President Benigno “noynoy” Aquino iii, over the mamasapano anti-terrorist raid that resulted in the deaths of 44 special Action forces (sAf) Kris Aquino two years ago. in his speech during the launch of the Bureau of internal revenue’s (Bir) new tax campaign in Pasay City, Duterte relayed that Kris Aquino had sent him a text message saying “‘huwag mo namang ipakulong si noy’ (’Don’t arrest Noy’).” PAGE A4


A

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Senate suspends death penalty... PAGE A1 the committee chair, told reporters in an interview. During the resumption of deliberations on the proposed revival of capital punishment in the country on Tuesday, February 7, Senate President Pro Tempore Franklin Drilon reminded the Department of Justice (DOJ) that the Philippines has signed and ratified the Treaty of International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) of the United Nations Human Rights Committee — which prevents states from carrying out execution as a form of punishment — in 1986. Drilon further took note that the Philippines also ratified the Second Optional Protocol to the ICCPR in 2007. Pointing out that Article 1 of the Second Optional Protocol, Drilon — who is also a former justice secretary — stressed that the treaty states “no one within the jurisdiction of a state party to the present protocol shall be executed.� Drilon then warned that if the Senate continues to push for the passage of the death penalty bill while being under the ICCR, the Philippines would possibly be isolated from the international community due to the repercussions of being unable to honor its international commitment. “If we violate our international

treaty, it could be reviewed and that can be the basis for withdrawing the benefits,� the senator explained. The senator then added, “We will be isolated from the international community, because we cannot even be trusted to honor our treaty obligation. Malaking bagay iyan sa international arena na mabansagan tayo na hindi tumutupad sa ating international treaty (It’s going to be a big deal in the international arena if we are labeled a country who failed in honoring an international treaty).� Drilon then suggested that the Philippines should withdraw from the treaty first before continuing its hearings on the death penalty. “In my view, let us go through the process of getting the concurrence of the Senate to withdraw, but again that is questionable. That is part of the law of the land; that is part of our Constitution now,� Drilon said. Following the suspension of the hearings, Gordon said the inquiry would remain on a halt until Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II presented his position on the matter. Presently, there are six bills seeking the reimposition of capital punishment pending before the committee—three of which were authored by Senator Man-

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ny Pacquiao, while the remaining were filed independently by Senate Majority Leader Vicente “Tito� Sotto III, Senator Panfilo Lacson, and Senator Sherwin Gatchalian. Pacquiao reiterates need for death penalty During the hearing on Tuesday, Pacquiao pushed anew for the death penalty for drug-related cases, citing the “immensity of the drug problem� in the country. “On a personal level, I can forgive. However, the heinous crime of drug trafficking is committed not just against a person but against the nation. Drug traffickers deserve [the] death penalty,� Pacquiao said. Pacquiao authored Senate Bill No. 185, known as “an act to impose the death penalty and increase penalty on certain dangerous drugs crimes.� “We cannot ignore the immensity of the drug problem in our country. We cannot maintain the status quo. We need to take a firm stand against drug traffickers,� the senator added. According to him, it is more “beneficial and practicable� if the death penalty bills filed were filed on a per case basis. He said it should not be combined with other crimes as it would complicate the definition of a heinous crime. “To bundle it with other crimes will dilute arguments and complicate definitions in determining whether a particular crime is heinous or not because offensive acts may be of different characters,� Pacquiao explained. Pacquiao also authored two other separate measures seeking capital punishment on kidnapping, and another one on aggravated rape. Apart from Pacquiao, Sotto, Lacson, and Gatchalian, other senators who were supportive or said they were at least “open� to the idea of the death penalty include Senators Sonny Angara Joseph Victor Ejercito, and Joel Villanueva. Among the senators who expressed opposition, meanwhile, were Senators Drilon, Gordon, Bam Aquino, Leila De Lima, Francis “Chiz� Escudero, Risa Hontiveros, Francis “Kiko� Pangilinan, Antonio Trillanes IV, and Senate Minority Leader Ralph Recto.

PH gov’t will still assist undocumented... PAGE A1 don’t want to be dictated by them too). But it doesn’t mean that the president doesn’t care,� Cayetano explained. The senator also assured OFWs that the Philippine government is currently holding discussions with its U.S. counterparts to ensure due process for them. Last month, U.S. President Donald Trump signed an executive order that temporarily bans people from seven countries, which include Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen, as part of his administration’s stricter immigration policy. Following Trump’s order, Duterte called on illegal Filipino immigrants in the U.S. anew to come back to the Philippines. “To Filipinos there (the U.S.), you better be on the right track. If you are not allowed to stay there where you are staying, get out because if you are caught and deported, I will not lift a finger. You know that it is a violation of the law,� Duterte said in a press

briefing on January 30. The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), seeking to clarify Duterte’s pronouncements, said the president only wants Filipinos in the United States to obey the foreign country’s laws. In a statement issued on February 2, the DFA also said that the Philippine Embassy and six Philippine Consulates are always ready to provide assistance to Filipinos who might encounter problems with the U.S. government. “Most of our kababayan (countrymen) in the U.S. have no encounters with the law. But for those who regrettably do, the Philippine Embassy and the six Philippine Consulates in the U.S. are always able and ready to provide guidance and assistance to ensure that the rights of our kababayan under U.S. law are protected and the appropriate services are extended to them,� the foreign department added. Cayetano, Duterte’s running mate and vice presidential bet in the previous national election, is

also set to succeed current Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. as the head of the DFA. Cayetano, however, cannot assume the role until the middle of 2017 as the law forbids appointing losing candidates for any Cabinet posts one year after election. Allaying the fears likely caused by Trump’s recent travel ban, U.S. State Department spokesperson Mark Toner, meanwhile, said that Filipinos remain “welcome� in the United States. According to him, Filipinos with valid visas could still travel and live in U.S., taking note that the Philippines was not included in Trump’s list of blocked countries. “Now the Philippines was not among those countries that were labelled (areas) of concern. So I would say that Filipinos both in the United States and the Philippines themselves should by all means... We welcome them to the United States,� Toner told reporters during a press briefing last week.

Department of Tourism-NY officer-in-charge Zeny Pallugna (left) discusses the under the radar destinations that the Philippines has to offer along with top rated island such as Boracay, Palawan and Cebu at the New York Times Travel Show held last week. AJPress Photo by Momar G. Visaya

Palawan, Boracay islands get boost... PAGE A1 land destinations from travelers themselves is a major boost to the country’s tourism efforts aimed at encouraging more tourists to visit the Philippines to experience its unique beauty and culture. The Philippines’ top three island destinations and other natural attractions were among the highlights featured at the Philippine booth during the New York Times Travel Show held at Jacob Javits Convention Center on 2729 January 2017. Department of Tourism Officer-in-Charge Zeny Pallugna joined other panelists from Ma-

cau, Korea, Japan, China and Malaysia in a panel discussion called “Focus on Asia�. The panel discussed, among other things, up and coming travel destinations in the Asia-Pacific region, which are not yet on the radar of most clients. Savvy travelers are always on the lookout for the next big thing in travel, destinations that can truly be labeled as hidden gems. In her presentation, Pallugna talked about going beyond one’s bucket list and talked about how there are plenty of destinations in the Philippines aside from Palawan and Boracay. “We have Siargao, considered

as one of the world’s top ten surf spots and a haven for scuba divers since the Philippines is on the apex of the coral triangle. You can also go swimming with whale sharks in Cebu and Sorsogon,� Pallugna said. “You can also travel up north to see the Banaue Rice Terraces and the hanging coffins of Sagada in Mountain Province.� Being at the so-called apex of the coral triangle, the Philippines is has the world’s greatest biodiversity of marine life. Pallugna also shared that the Philippines is one of three countries where there are bodies of PAGE A3

Defense chief: Duterte allowed US...

PAGE A1

later this year or next year,’� Lorenzana related. The defense secretary continued, “It will be constructed

sometime later this year or next year. Second, it’s not allowed in our agreement. There will be no stockpiling of weapons or anything that could be used for war

games.� Last Sunday, January 29, Duterte claimed that the U.S. military is presently unloading arms in the Philippines. He also accused the U.S. of violating the VFA by allegedly constructing permanent depots in the country. In response, the U.S. denied the Philippine president’s accusations. “No such arms depots exist and there are no plans to build any,� U.S. Embassy spokesperson Molly Koscina said in a statement on January 31. Koscina then assured that the U.S. “has no intention to reopen military bases in the Philippines.� On Tuesday, Lorenzana clarified that U.S. troops would only bring equipment for humanitarian assistance and disaster response. He took note that any other weapons they would bring for war games will be brought back in the U.S. when they leave the Philippines. Lorenzana also cleared that building arms depot is not part of EDCA. He pointed out that the U.S. is only allowed to construct barracks and fuel tanks in its local bases in the Philippines, which the Filipino military were also allowed to use. “I actually asked his (Duterte’s) decision kung ituloy natin yung EDCA or not (if we are going to continue EDCA or not). Sabi niya, ‘Ituloy natin pero be sure na walang stockpiling ng mga ammunition d’yan (He said, ‘We are going to continue it but be sure there is not stockpiling of ammunition there),’� Lorenzana said. Duterte, known for his constant tirades against the U.S., previously threatened that he would scrap the EDCA. Lorenz, however, later announced that the EDCA exercises would continue. EDCA, a treaty both signed by Manila and Washington in 2014, allows U.S. forces to be deployed in Philippine territory temporarily for maritime security and humanitarian and disaster response operations. n


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Dateline USa

LAS VEGAS ASIAN JOURNAL • fEbRUARy 9-15, 2017

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Rep. Titus announces $1.8-M grant to Catholic charities for refugee resettlement

Washington D.C.—Rep. Dina titus of nevada’s First Congressional District announced that Catholic Charities of southern nevada received a $1,844,300 grant from the U.s. Department of health and human services for the Wilson-Fish refugee resettlement program. Catholic Charities will use the funds to offer intensive case management for special refugee populations and provide temporary refugee cash assistance for individuals or couples with no children. single refugees receive $335 monthly and $450 per couple

(Upper left photo) Officers of the Philippine Department of Tourism in New York (PDOT-NY) led by Ms. Zeny Pallugna (2nd from left) and the Philippine Consulate General (NYPCG) led by Consul Felipe Carino (far right) at the Philippine booth of the 2017 New York Times Travel Show at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in Manhattan. Also joining them is travel/tour operator Ms. Zoila Mendoza (2nd from right) and Mr. Wendell Gaa (far left), economic assistant at the Consulate. (Upper right to lower right photo) PDOT-NY, NYPCG and Philippine Airlines officials assist various guests at the Philippine booth. Photos courtesy of PDOT-NY/PCGNY

Palawan, Boracay islands get boost... PAGE A2

water with non-sting jellyfish. the two others are Palau and indonesia. on hand to welcome and assist visitors at the booth Pallugna and her team, the Philippine Consulate general in new York led by Consul Felipe F. Carino iii. also addressing guest queries at the booth were officials of Philippine airlines and travel/tour operator Ms. Zoila Mendoza. the new York times travel show is a three-day event featuring nearly 500 exhibitors representing over 150 countries. one of the most popular attractions in new York during the winter season, the travel show is currently the largest travel trade and consumer show in north america counting visitors from all over the world. the travel show has notably grown in attendance within the past few years, as thousands of guests flock to the Javits Center to learn more about selective global destinations, as well as new opportunities in the travel industry. the event promotes

travel to domestic and international hot spots, popular travel sites and off-the-beaten path destinations. Travel developments according to documents obtained by the asian Journal, almost 5.4 million tourists visited the Philippines from January to november 2016 and spent 210.76 billion pesos. this represents 12.12% increase in tourist arrivals for the same period in the previous year. almost a quarter of this figure or 1.33 million came from Korea, followed by Usa (771,849); China (630,327); Japan (491,261) and australia (218,438). Rounding up the top ten markets are taiwan, singapore, United Kingdom, Canada and Malaysia. among these markets, China and taiwan posted the highest upsurge of arrivals with 39 and 30 percent growth, respectively. tourists from other countries such as india, saudi arabia and European countries led by germany, France, spain, netherlands and sweden also showed an uptick in arrivals in 2016.

a number of hotels and casinos are also expected to open in the next couple of years to accommodate more tourist arrivals. the Westin Manila Bayshore, with 600 guestrooms, is slated for opening on December 1, 2018. it will be part of Resorts World Bayshore in the Entertainment City in Parañaque. the sheraton Manila hotel, with 350 guestrooms, is scheduled to open on March 15, 2018 at the Resorts World Manila complex in Pasay. Conrad Manila, the first hilton Worldwide and Conrad hotels and Resorts property in Manila with 347 guestrooms, was officially launched last June 2016. the hotel was home to the candidates of the recently concluded Miss Universe pageant held at the Mall of asia arena. among the other new hotels in the Philippines are Citadines Millennium in Manila; Park inn by Radisson Clark in Clark, Pampanga; Movenpick Resort Boracay in Boracay, aklan; tRYP by Wyndham in Manila and aqua Boracay by Yoo in Boracay.

for the first 8 months after their arrival and rely on Catholic Charities to receive English language instruction, cultural orientation, food, clothing, secure housing, and furnishings. “these funds will further the mission of Catholic Charities by increasing the resources available to help refugees overcome barriers to job placement, find employment, and achieve financial independence. Despite the rhetoric from President trump, refugees flee their homes because of persecution based on religion, race, nationality, political opinion, or social status. the work of Catholic

Charities and other organizations can be the difference between life and death for innocent men, women, and children around the world. ” Refugees who arrive in nevada will undergo a multi-step vetting process that includes screenings conducted by the Department of homeland security, the state Department, and the United nations. as the state’s refugee office, Catholic Charities of southern nevada will pass funding to the other resettlement agencies: the northern nevada international Center and ECDC african Community Center.

New speaker series aims to inspire, mobilize young Fil-Ams Singer AJ Rafael, Chef Charleen Caabay and music mogul Roslynn Cobarrubias speak at #TFCUtalks’ first college tour by Klarize

Medenilla AJPress

as a way to inspire young Filipino americans to achieve their dreams, tFCUniversity held its first ever #tFCUtalks, a touring conference in which successful Filipino-american game changers from all industries speak about the importance of staying true to one’s mission. #tFCUtalks’ kicked off its college tour on saturday, February 4 at Cal state Long Beach with singer/songwriter aJ Rafael, Food network’s “Chopped” winner Chef Charleen Caabay and music entrepreneur and television host Roslynn Cobarrubias speaking to about a hundred Fil-ams. the theme of the talk was “breaking the mold” with a message to the young audience: as a Filipino american, how are you going to make an impact in the world? First up was oakland-based Caabay, who detailed her life from a struggling it employee to a successful chef and restaurateur. Caabay owns Kainbigan, a Filipino comfort food joint located

Singer-songwriter AJ Rafael

in oakland and is considered a pioneer in the emergence of Filipino cuisine into the mainstream food world. Most recently, she took home the prize of Food network’s “Chopped”, where she defeated seasoned, professionally-trained chefs with her unique Filipinoinspired creations. “it was an amazing, amazing

AJPress photo by Klarize Medenilla

feeling. i’ve never felt so confident and so amazing,” Caabay said of her “Chopped” win. “to be able to break many stereotypes, to be able to break the mold that our social norm is so used to and being proud of the fact that i am a woman — that i am a Pinay — and to be able to instill our culture to the judges PAGE A4


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february 9-15, 2017 • LaS VeGaS aSIaN JOurNaL

New speaker series aims to inspire... PAGE A3 and to be able put it on national television for thousands of people was quite an experience.” Through her self-reliance and commitment to stay true to herself, Caabay encouraged the young Fil-Ams in the crowd to never sacrifice their identity on the road to success. “Despite racial discrimination and political tension that’s going on, what are you gonna do? What are you gonna do to stay true to who you are?” Charleen asked the crowd of mostly college students. Cobarrubias next took the audience through her ample career from a local radio DJ, to senior director of artist relations and senior director of integrated marketing of MySpace to host and producer of MyxTV and to the co-founder of mydiveo. The energetic entrepreneur was previously named one of Billboard Magazine’s “Top 30 Music Industry Professionals” and The Source Magazine’s “Power 30.” At just 36 years old, the music mogul has produced hundreds of live events and interviews with artists like Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake, Justin Bieber, Drake, Rihanna among other big names. But, as she told the audience, it wasn’t an easy journey and was often turned away because of she is a “triple minority”: she’s Filipino, a woman and

“vertically impaired.” Despite these factors, she was able to overcome rejection by seeking out positives in her experience and going on to the next project. Through that, she volunteered, interned and networked with individuals which, she said, was the key to her moving up the chain. “A lot of you guys are going to graduate soon. Thousands of people graduate college every year, but what sticks out and the number one thing, especially in the music industry, is your relationships,” Cobarrubias said. “Secondly is your experience. Third is your experience or your knowledge. So, definitely invest in yourself and take the time to develop relations, and not only with your teachers and your classmates you can potentially network with because those are the people you’re going to work with in the future.” The final speaker was Rafael, who launched his wide-ranging career all from his YouTube channel. A lifelong musician, the young Riverside native was inspired by his father, who passed away when Rafael was 10 years old. He began writing and promoting his music on MySpace, but it wasn’t until the invention of YouTube in 2006 when his popularity skyrocketed. One of the earliest YouTube stars, Rafael affirms that he never really

wanted to become a mega star, but merely want to create a connection to his audience. “It was really about connecting and having a fan base, and everywhere I would perform they would sing my songs back to me. That meant more than anything,” Rafael said of his early performances. “To me, it was never about ‘making it,’ really. I just wanted to write a song and have someone relate to it and share it with their friends because they relate to it, too,” Rafael added. More than 10 years after starting off on YouTube, Rafael still writes and performs his original songs but has delved into other artistic and activist endeavors, such as musical theatre. He, along with actor Dante Basco, host the monthly Asian American artistic collective “We Own The 8th” in downtown Los Angeles, where artists can come together to collaborate and learn from each other. “I want to encourage you all to do something with whatever platform you guys have for the next generation and for yourselves, the current generation. Just empower each other. Don’t forget to be you,” Rafael said. #TFCUtalks was organized by TFCUniversity, The Filipino Channel’s offshoot to produce programming and events for Filipino-American millennials.

Kris Aquino appeals to Duterte... PAGE A1 Without further elaborating the details of Kris’s supposed message, Duterte then said he replied: “Sabi ko (I told her), ‘No Kris, I’m not out to find fault. I just want to know the truth.’” On January 24, a day before the SAF commandos’ second death anniversary, Duterte berated former President Aquino for allegedly “feeding the soldiers to the lion’s den,” asking why the government did not send any reinforcements to the cornered soldiers. “Wala akong habol na ipakulong ko ang mga dating opisyal (I’m not after arresting former officials). I’m not into the habit of sending to prison the guys on the other side of the political fence or whatever. I just want to give the Filipino the truth,” he added. Duterte also demanded that

the former president explain his role in the botched operation. He claimed that it was secretly led by the United States’ Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). In response, Aquino insisted that his only fault was trusting then-SAF Commander Getulio Napeñas Jr. with the responsibility of planning and coordinating the operation. At the same time, he denied the American involvement in the Mamasapano anti-terrorist raid, explaining that the U.S. only helped with equipment and intelligence gathering. He stressed that he did not discuss the details of the operation with American officials. Last month, Duterte also said that he would form a fact-finding commission that would investigate the Mamasapano tragedy. In his speech on Monday,

however, Duterte announced that he would no longer pursue the commission’s creation because the Ombudsman reportedly has the case still pending before them. “I do not want to have a multiple incongruity especially if one finding fights with the other,” Duterte said, adding that he would just wait for the results of the Ombudsman’s investigation. On January 25, 2015, the SAF troopers successfully killed Malaysian terrorist Zulkifli Abdhir, also known as Marwan, during a raid in the southern Philippines where various separatist rebel groups are based. The elite soldiers, however, were ambushed by insurgent groups, including the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).

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Senate leader Kevin de León shares his Fil-Am community connection and actions to protect Californians under Trump era by Christina

M. Oriel

AJPress

SINCE the election of President Donald Trump, California has been leading a movement to counter his administration’s various policies from immigration to health care. One of the progressive individuals on the forefront of this is state Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León, a Democrat of Mexican descent who represents parts of Los Angeles, including Historic Filipinotown, East Hollywood, Eagle Rock and Highland Park. In an interview with the Asian Journal, de León made it clear that the state is not “looking for a fight with Donald Trump.” “But we will do everything in our power to protect our economic prosperity, the values and the people in California,” the state senator said on Thursday, February 2 at his district office in Los Angeles. “There are numerous frontal assaults against the people of California in the areas of climate change, environmental protections, workers’ rights, women’s rights, immigrant rights and the threat of separating families…and health care.” Repealing the Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare), he said, would “devastate many Filipinos in the health care industry.” In December of last year, de León introduced SB 54 (the California Values Act) to prevent the use of state and local public resources to aid federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in deportation proceedings. The bill creates “safe zones” — public schools and universities, hospitals, and courthouses — that prohibit the presence of immigration enforcement. “It’s un-American to separate children from their mothers and mothers from their children,” he said. “That’s not who we are as a nation and as a state.” Further, the legislation bans state and local law enforcement from cooperating and collaborating with ICE agents in the detention and deportation of immigrants. “To use local tax dollars that we supply the police department to serve the community and have them abandon their neighborhoods to go help ICE agents go raid a workplace or factory or stake out an elementary school waiting for a mother to pick her child at the curbside, that’s not making our communities safer,” de León said, adding that the federal government has the responsibility to carry out federal immigration laws, but shouldn’t use local resources and tax dollars to do so. On Tuesday, January 31, SB 54 passed the Public Safety Committee — just days after Trump signed a series of executive

Courtesy of the office of Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León

orders on immigration, including one that calls for defunding “sanctuary jurisdictions” that do not cooperate with federal officials in removing and detaining undocumented immigrants. “It is my hope that Donald Trump and his administration will find value in what we do in California…,” he said. “If you tear things down and decimate programs, you’ll just be hurting the people of California and the economy of the United States.” Though the Filipino-American community has not been single out as much as other communities have by the divisive, anti-immigrant rhetoric, de León noted how it’s important more than ever to have a support system and to be civically involved, whether by participating in demonstrations, communicating with elected officials, and voting. By coming together and being inclusive, it adheres “to the higher ideals and values of what it means to be an American,” he said. “Filipino Americans are my neighbors, my friends and they’re Californians,” he said. “As their senator, it is my role to do everything in my power to protect Filipino Americans, whether they’re legal, U.S. citizens, or undocumented.” “I know that the Fil-Am community has a very wonderful representative in the state, [Assemblymember] Rob Bonta. I’m sure he’s the community’s No.1, but I’ll be the Filipino’s No. 2.” De León’s ‘Filipino story’ In addition to his current political work in the midst of the Trump administration, de León is proud to have spearheaded the campaign to raise the minimum wage in California to $15 an hour — making it the largest rate in the country. De León also opened up to the Asian Journal about his special experience with Filipinos that continues to resonate with him.

Though he hardly shares this story, it’s one that he will “forever cherish in [his] heart” and gets to the root of why he has been proud to serve many Filipinos in Los Angeles for the past decade. Growing up in San Diego — which boasts one of the largest Filipino populations in Southern California aside from Los Angeles — de León saw his mother working alongside a lot of Filipino immigrants when she was a housekeeper and later on when she was a licensed vocational nurse and certified nursing assistant at convalescent homes. “They had a really had a big influence on my mother, and therefore, on me,” he said. But the firsthand testament to Filipino hospitality and warmth came when his mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. “If it wasn’t for the Filipino community, it would have been difficult for us to eat because my mother was too weak, she was too sick. Her Filipino sisters would always bring chicken adobo, pancit, lumpia, rice and they kept us fed,” de León recounted. “At times, they took care of us…I’ve always had a very special place in my heart for Filipinos because in the darkest, most painful time with my mom — eventually she passed away — it was the Filipinos…who really stepped up and helped us.” He added, “California has always been an amazing, beautiful tapestry of different ethnicities from all over the world. I’ve been blessed and very honored to have Historic Filipinotown in my district. I’ve learned so much from my Filipino brothers and sisters: the strong family values, strong religious values, hard work ethic — just like my mother — and wanting their children to succeed and have all the opportunities possible.”

PH deploys erring cops to... PAGE A1

ing in a podium while facing the police officers lined up before him, the president ordered them instead to prepare for deployment in two weeks. “Kailangan ko ng pulis sa south. Kulang ang pulis sa Basilan kasi maya’t maya, pinapaputok mga estasyon doon; nauubos. Kayong lahat nandito, kasali kayo sa Task Force South. Padala ko kayo sa Basilan. Tumira kayo doon ng mga dalawang taon (I need police in the south. Basilan lacks policemen because their stations are always being bombed. All of you here, you are part of Task Force South. I will send you to Basilan. Live there for two years),” Duterte said in a speech full of expletives.

“Kung lumusot kayo buhay, balik kayo dito. Kung doon kayo mamatay, sabihin ko sa pulis, huwag na magastos na para dalhin pa kayo dito, doon na kayo ilibing (If you survive, you come back here. If you die there, I will not spend to bring you back here. You will be buried there),” he added. The Chief Executive, however, gave unwilling cops an option of resigning. He also warned that he would “create a battalion to keep track” of dismissed officers. “Karamihan ng mga pulis, ‘yung nadismiss, ‘yun ang mga sindikato kasi may alam kayo. Kayo ang pinakadelikadong kriminal pag-alis sa pulis. Alam ninyo ang pasikot-sikot eh. P***, papatayin ko talaga kayo sa harap ng Pilipi-

nas (Most policemen, particularly those who were dismissed, were part of syndicates because they know many things. You are the most dangerous among criminals after leaving the police. You know your way around. I will really kill you in front of the Philippines),” Duterte remarked. The president also shot down Dela Rosa’s previous recommendation to retrain the supposed erring cops. “Hindi ako mag-retraining. Ano ang i-retraining ko sa inyo? Tapos na ang training n’yo araw-araw. Ang i-retraining ko ang utak ninyo (I would not order a retraining. What would be your retraining? Your training is done everyday. What I need to retain are your brains),” Duterte said.

Trump’s travel ban temporarily... PAGE A1 executive order violate the Constitution. “We are a country based on the rule of law and in a courtroom, it is not the loudest voice that prevails, it’s the Constitution,” Ferguson said at a press conference. “At the end of the day, either you’re abiding by the Constitution or you are not. And in our view, the president is not adhering to the Constitution when it comes to this executive action. With the temporary restraining order, families that are waiting in terminals overseas may now fly to the U.S., according to Ferguson. “If someone who may be waiting to board a plan overseas, wanting to come to the United States, has a ticket, does this apply to them now? The short answer is yes.” he said. Trump took to Twitter to weigh in on the restraining or-

der, fully confident that it will be reversed. “The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned!” the president tweeted on Saturday, February 4. On Sunday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit brought the chaos to a head when it denied a request from the White House to reinstate the travel ban, which barred travel to the U.S. from the Muslim-majority countries of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The Justice Department then filed a motion to the appeals court on Monday, February 6 requesting that the travel ban is resumed temporarily while waiting for an appeal from the White House. The argument was set for Tuesday, February 7 at 3 p.m.

As of press time, the court said it would issue a ruling sometime this week. If the judges rule in favor of the Trump administration, the travel ban will continue. Previously, the states of Washington and Minnesota sued President Donald Trump, some high-ranking officials in the administration and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Since then, hundreds of affected travelers — many of whom are refugees fleeing from wartorn countries — over the weekend had their visas restored and were able to return to the United States, reuniting with friends and family. Before Robart ordered the restraining order, officials from the State and Justice departments revealed that about 60,000 — and possibly as many as 100,000 — have been revoked as a result of Trump. (Klarize Medenilla/AJPress)


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February 9-15, 2017 • LaS VeGaS aSIaN JOurNaL

OpiniOn

Oil and water

Features

THE relationship between government and religion has always been a complicated matter in the Philippines, one that is both a desensitized and hardly discussed issue. As a predominantly Catholic nation, where 86 percent of its population is Roman Catholic, it has become a Filipino’s moral obligation to live by the Church’s teachings—or at least respect them—no matter how dated some of them may be. Because the Philippine government rules in an established democracy, a line that separates the state from the Church exists. Article II Section 6 of the 1987 Constitution states that the “separation of Church and State shall be inviolable.” In this way, the government may not force a certain religion on its people, the same way the Church cannot mandate doctrines as laws. On Sunday, Feb. 5, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), rallied the faithful to join the Church in objecting the killings of drug suspects without due process in courts. More than 7,000 drug suspects have been killed by police and unknown assailants since President Rodrigo Duterte launched his bloody campaign after taking office in June last year. In a strongly worded pastoral letter, the CBCP denounced the killings of drug suspects during police operations and by supposed vigilante groups, which they branded as “evil.” “The life of every person comes from God. It is He who gives it, and it is He alone who can take it

back. Not even the government has a right to kill life because it is only God’s steward and not the owner of life,” read the statement signed by CBCP president and Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas. “We in the Church will continue to speak against evil even as we acknowledge and repent of our own shortcomings. We will do this even if it will bring persecution upon us because we are all brothers and sisters responsible for each other,” the bishops stressed. The CBCP statement also lamented that killings of drug suspects take away their rights and opportunities to defend themselves in trial and for reformation in penitentiary once convicted. Following his statement, Villegas is encouraging the faithful to voice out similar objections to the government by joining a grand procession on February 18. Dubbed the “Walk for Life,” the procession aims to oppose drug-related killings, the death penalty, and other measures labeled by the Catholic Church as “anti-life.” “Let us fill our streets not with blood, not with

Editorial

ManilaTimes.net photo

dead bodies, but with prayer, with courage, to walk, to stand up for life,” Villegas said. The Church’s ethical stance on the sanctity of life is absolute. This rule has no exception, making sensitive issues such as abortion, euthanasia, contraception, and capital punishment as non-debat-

able. The Constitution also guarantees the same, as warranted by Article III Section 6, which states that “no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws.” (AJPress)

Legal showdown: Is Trump’s travel ban constitutional? WHeTHeR or not you agree with President Donald Trump and his executive order, which bars citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries (Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen) from entering the U.S. for 90 days, all refugees for 120 days and indefinitely bans refugees from Syria, it is fair to say that what we are witnessing right now is democracy at work in the United States. On Tuesday, February 7, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has begun hearing arguments from the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the State of Washington as to whether Trump’s travel ban should be reinstated or rejected, after the ban was determined by a federal judge in Washington on Friday to be unconstitutional and harmful to the state’s interests. The decision covers not only the state of Washington, but the entire United States.

Commonsense

Marichu a. VillanueVa DOING away with his prepared draft speech as he always does, President Rodrigo Duterte casually mentioned in the course of extemporaneous remarks last Monday about a private message he received from controversial TV/movie actress Kris Aquino. Straying from the subject matter of his address before the country’s biggest taxpayers, President Duterte disclosed the actress purportedly sent him recently a text message asking him not to send to prison her only brother, former President Benigno “Noy” Aquino III. According to President Duterte, Kris apparently alluded to his previous pronouncements about his plans on how to put a just closure to the January 2015 Mamasapano massacre. As then commander-in-chief, PNoy deployed the Special Action Force (SAF) troopers to capture internationally wanted bomberterrorists, but 44 of them were killed in the course of their operation. Before the same audience, President Duterte announced he would no longer pursue his earlier plans to set up a special commission to re-open investigation into the Mamasapano massacre. The President added he would just wait for the Ombudsman to complete its probe into this case where PNoy, along with his coaccused, were facing charges filed against them. As of this writing though, Kris

Protests all over Prior to the judge’s the world were also ruling, chaos erupted The Fil-Am organized to dein major airports in nounce what they the United States with Perspective call an illegal and immigration and state discriminatory ban officers, as well as airsingling out people port personnel lost on because of their naclear guidelines of how tions of origin and to implement these ex- Gel SantoS-reloS religion. ecutive measures. Following the federal judge’s ruling, More than 60,000 people had been affected by the ban — citizens and the ban has effectively been lifted and permanent residents awaiting family those with valid visas from the seven reunification, U.S. businesses relying countries, as well as Syrian refugees on professionals from these countries, who had already gone through strinstudents attending U.S. universities, gent vetting for two years and had been patients needing urgent medical care found to not be threats to the security of in U.S. hospitals, refugees approved the United States amid terrorism conto take shelter in the U.S. pursuant to cerns, were allowed to enter the counthe refugee program in agreement with try. The Trump administration appealed other countries participating in the humanitarian program, among other sce- the case to the Ninth Circuit Court, which may possibly be elevated to the narios.

Supreme Court. The DOJ has argued that Trump was just exercising his authority and the obligation as president to keep the United States safe. The Trump administration contends that is not discriminating against Muslims nor the seven countries. These countries, it argues, are in fact determined by the Obama administration to be high-risk countries and that the Obama administration had in fact subjected nationals from these countries through stricter vetting before they are issued visas to enter the U.S. The lawyers for the states of Washington and Minnesota have presented the argument alleging that Trump’s executive order was designed to discriminate against Muslims, citing Trump’s rhetoric during the campaign season promising voters to ban Muslims, giving preferential treatment to Christians from Muslim

countries to enter the U.S. Those opposing the ban likewise question why the countries where actual terror threats came from were not included in the ban like Saudi Arabia and egypt — countries Trump has business interests in. Trump’s critics also question why he would not include in his fight to keep America safe those terrorists and attackers coming from non-Muslim countries like the right wing Christian extremists. The three judges of the Ninth Circuit Court will deliberate on the arguments of both sides and will make a decision soon. *** 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 www.TheFil-AmPerspective.com, https://www.facebook. com/Gel.Santos.Relos

Former Pres. Aquino haunted now by his past who is equally articulate and at times tactless like President Duterte, has not issued any response to the public disclosure of her private message to the Chief executive. Surely, this is yet another action by Kris without the imprimatur of her brother. The chivalrous President Duterte gave though his public assurances to Kris he is not one to send her brother to prison just because his predecessor happens to belong “to the other side of the political fence.” While the public assurance is well-meaning, it is the court, not the President, that can send somebody to jail. Only dictators can do that. There is what we call due process as enshrined in our country’s 1987 Constitution. Incidentally, the country quietly observed the 30th anniversary of the ratification of the Philippine Constitution last Feb. 2. It was the late icon of democracy, President Corazon Aquino, whose Constitution is now the subject of the renewed Charter change attempts, including the current administration of President Duterte. While Kris may have saved PNoy from jail—for now—exPresident Aquino is facing yet another case. The former President is being made to account for the Philippine government loss to an international court that ruled as illegal the latter’s unilateral decision to scrap the contract of a Belgian company to undertake the Laguna Lake dredging project. The International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) reportedly ruled in favor of the Belgian dredging firm Baggerwerken Decloedt en Zoon

(BDZ) which elevated their case to this United Nations commercial arbitration body. The BDZ brought their case against the Philippine government after the former President scuttled their P18-billion contract to dredge the Laguna Lake in November 2010, or a few months after the Aquino administration took office at Malacanang. The ICSID ordered the Philippine government to pay P800 million plus interest to BDZ for all the losses incurred by the firm for the project’s cancellation. Sought by The STAR for his side, Mr. Aquino who has yet to get a copy of the ICSID ruling noted the Belgian firm was the same one that dredged the Pasig River before his tenure as president. Further, he cited, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) determined that at most, only 40 percent of the project was done and the allocation had all been used. The Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) which entered into contract with the BDZ has yet to issue its rejoinder to the ICSID ruling. The LLDA is a government-owned and controlled corporation under the Department of environment and Natural Resources (DeNR). It was former presidential spokesman and ex-ambassador of the Philippines to Greece Rigoberto Tiglao who first reported the issuance of the ICSID ruling. Tiglao, who now writes a regular column at The Manila Times, rhetorically asked in his Feb. 1 column: “Why should we taxpayers pay the cost of Aquino’s hubris and idiocy?” Tiglao though noted Mr. Aqui-

Former Pres. Benigno Aquino III

no did not issue any written order to officially inform the Philippine government’s cancellation of the BDZ contract with the LLDA. Tiglao recalled it was scuttled in actual practice only through Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima’s refusal to sign the documents accepting the Belgian government’s P7 billion grant to fund the project. Tiglao blamed the scrapping of the BDZ contract to what he described as PNoy’s “irrational, apoplectic bias” that everything his predecessor did or planned was graft-riddled. By the way, Tiglao also once served as press secretary of former President Gloria MacapagalArroyo. Going through our own files of stories on this case, there was a speech made by the ex-Finance chief on Jan. 30, 2012 before the

Management Association of the Philippines where he justified the cancellation of the dredging project. The following excerpts from his speech explains why PNoy scrapped the contract: “The Laguna Lake project, I heard President Aquino say: ‘There were a lot of good projects in the previous administration.’ But you know, there were some such as the Daang Hari that were already started and we did continue with it. But the Laguna Lake, a dredging project for P18 billion and based on studies, what they will dredge will be back in three years because we have not addressed the source of the siltation, which is the deforestation of the Marikina river watershed and the human settlements are delayed. For the sake of accelerating expenditure, President Aquino could’ve signed that. But you

would have wasted P18 billion of your money.” Purisima’s successor, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III was quoted saying the Duterte administration may appeal the ICSID ruling. Dominguez confirmed they just got a copy of the ICSID ruling a few days ago. “So we’ll go over it carefully and we’ll see what legal remedies there are. If we have to pay, we will pay,” Dominguez pointed out. Sadly, we taxpayers may have to pay for it. But the non-dredging of the Laguna Lake will continue to bear upon us, for residents in Metro Manila and the rest of the areas that suffer severe flooding at the slightest rains. This is yet another legacy of Mr. Aquino that will continue to haunt him like the Mamasapano incident. (Philstar. com)

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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Dateline PDuterte hiliPPines OKs awarding of Medal of Valor to 42 SAF troopers by alexiS

RomeRo Philstar.com

MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte approved Wednesday, Feb. 8 the awarding of Medals of Valor to the remaining 42 Special Action Force (SAF) commandos who died during the Mamasapano encounter in 2015. In a letter to Interior Secretary Ismael Sueno, Duterte said the medals given to the slain SAF troopers would be upgraded to Medal of Valor from distinguished COURTESY VISIT. United States Ambassador to Philippines Sung Y. Kim pays a courtesy visit to Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel medal “for acts of conspicuous III on Tuesday, Feb. 7. Senate photo by Ariel Cagadas gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life and limb above and beyond the call of duty.” A total of 44 SAF members were killed during the Mamasapano clash on Jan. 25, 2015. Two of them, Senior Inspector Gednat Tabdi and Police Officer 2 Romeo Cempron, were awarded Medals by Dana SioSon concern. Their lives have only be- pines.” of Valor last year. AJPress De Lima, meanwhile, said that come worse,” Villegas said. The 42 police commandos who The archbishop, dubbing the Malacañang to say that “remind- will be posthumously awarded IN separate statements, Sena- war on drugs as the ‘reign of ter- ing our people of these basic Fili- with the medals of valor include tors Leila De Lima and Francis ror in many places of the poor,’ pino values is being out of touch Chief Inspector Ryan Pabali“Kiko” Pangilinan on Monday, pointed out that many killers un- with reality is like saying that our February 6, backed up the Catho- der the campaign were allegedly countrymen no longer value life, lic Bishops’ Conference of the not brought to account. liberty, and social justice.” Philippines (CBCP) in denouncing “It is the president who is out of “An even greater cause of conthe Philippine government’s brutal cern is the indifference of many to touch with reality, when he thinks campaign against illegal drugs. this kind of wrong. It is considered he can dispense of these basic valDe Lima, a vocal critic of Presi- as normal, and, even worse, some- ues in his drug war and still mandent Rodrigo Duterte, described thing that (according to them) age to keep the country’s spiritual the CBCP’s pastoral letter as a needs to be done,” Villegas said. and moral fabric intact,” De Lima “wake-up call to a nation in a He then reiterated that the added. nightmare.” Likewise, Pimentel expressed church will continue to denounce “Binabangungot na ang ating the killings associated with the his support for the CBCP’s stand bansa sa patayan at kawalan ng war on drugs. against the killing of drug suspects puso ng pamahalaan sa mga maResponding to the CBCP’s let- and the strong governmental push hihirap ng biktima ng Tokhang ter that was read aloud at mass to reimpose the death penalty. (Our nation is having nightmares services beginning Saturday “The campaign against illegal with the killings and heartlessness night, February 4, Malacañang drugs and heinous crimes must of our government to the impov- responded by correcting that the not cost us the lives of our people, erished victims of Tokhang),” De government’s war on drugs is not especially the innocent. Our poor, Lima said. a ‘reign of terror’ but a ‘reign of already living under the weight of She then labeled Duterte a “fake peace.’ historical and structural injustices, idol and false messiah in Malaca“The efforts of these Church have carried the burden of this ñang.” leaders might be put to better use anti-crime drive,” Pimentel said. In a pastoral letter dated Janu- in practical catechetics that build He then urged the government ary 30, CBCP President Archbish- strong moral character among to “uphold its responsibility to op Socrates Villegas expressed the the faithful, and so contribute protect our people, to promote church’s “deep concern” about more to the reign of peace felt by their welfare, and make them the “many deaths and killings in ordinary citizens everywhere, es- safe” and “pursue justice to the the campaign against prohibited pecially those who are innocent families who have lost their loved drugs.” of illegal activities,” Presidential ones to criminals.” “This traffic in illegal drugs Spokesperson Ernesto Abella Since Duterte launched his needs to be stopped and over- said in a statement on Sunday, crackdown against illegal drugs in come. But the solution does not lie February 5. July last year, the Philippine Nain the killing of suspected drug usAbella also took note that the tional Police (PNP) has recorded a ers and pushers. We are concerned church leaders seemed to be “out total of 7,000 people slain in both not only for those who have been of touch” with the “sentiments of during legitimate operations and killed. The situation of the fami- the faithful who overwhelmingly by unknown suspects in relation lies of those killed is also cause for support the changes in the Philip- to the campaign.

De Lima, Pangilinan support CBCP’s call against killings

CAR ACCIDENTS • TRIP AND FALLS

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nas, Chief Inspector Max Jim Tria,Chief Inspector John Garry Erana, Chief Inspector Cyrus Anniban, Senior Inspector Joey Gamutan, Senior Inspector Rennie Lumasag Tayrus, SPO2 Lover Ladao Inocencio, SPO1 Rodrigo Fernandez Acob, Jr., SPO1 Virgel Serion Villanueva, SPO1 Noel Onangey Golocan, SPO1 Andres Duque, Jr., SPO1 Junrel Kibete, SPO1 Victoriano Acain, Jr., SPO1 Robert Allaga, SPO1 Jedz-in Asjali, SPO1 John Lloyd Sumbilla, PO3 Amman Esmula, PO3 Romeo Senin II, PO3 Chum Agabon, PO3 Glenn Bedua, PO3 Richelle Baluga and PO3 Noel Balaca, Jr. Other SAF troopers who will be conferred the highest police award are PO3 Joel Dulnuan, PO3 Walner Danao, PO3 Godofredo Cabanlet, PO3 Franklin Danao, PO3 Jerry Kayob, PO3 Noble Kiangan, PO3 Ehraim Mejia, PO3 Omar Nacionales, PO3 Rodel Ramacula, PO3 Roger Cordero Cordero, PO3 Peterson Indongsan Carap, PO3 Nicky de

Castro Nacino, Jr., PO2 Russel Bilog, PO2 Windel Candano, PO2 Loreto Capinding II, PO2 Gringo Cayang-o, PO2 Mark Lory Clemencio, PO2 Joseph Sagonoy, PO2 oliebeth Viernes and PO2 Angel Chocowen Kodiamat. During a dialogue with the families of the slain SAF troopers last month, Duterte questioned why only two were conferred the Medal of Valor. He ordered the Philippine National Police to study the possibility of awarding the highest police award to the other fallen commandos. “If you think …that the 44 deserves the (Medal of) Valor, then recommend it and I would give it to them. All of the soldiers, the 44,” Duterte said. Duterte has also announced plans to form a commission to reinvestigate the Mamasapano clash but decided not to push through with it after he was informed that the ombudsman is already conducting its own probe.


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VEGAS&STYLE Journal

The Origin of Valentine’s Day By Dana

SioSon AJPress

Many people around the globe celebrate February as the month of love. Specifically, the 14th day of the month is usually referred to as Heart’s Day or Valentine’s Day. During this day, romantic couples, couples-to-be, families, and friends express their feelings of affection or gratitude to the people close to their hearts—usually by giving special gifts or by going out. “Valentine” comes from the Latin word valentia, which means “strength” or “capacity.” While the real history behind Valentine’s Day itself remains a mystery, there

are different stories that tell how the modern celebration of heart’s day originated. The Lupercalia festival One version says that Valentine’s day actually originated from one of the most ancient Roman sex tradition, the Lupercalia festival. The Lupercalia festival, which dates back to before the Christian era, was celebrated annually on February 15 to honor of the Roman god of fertility, Lupercus. In Roman mythology, Lupercus is said to be the she-wolf who raised Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome, in a cave called Lupercal. During the Lupercalia festival, Romans offer goats and dogs to the fertility god, which is said to be remarkable for its sexual instinct. young men would also strip themselves naked and hit the women with a goat’s or a dog’s skin. This particular action, in their belief, would make women fertile. Women’s names were also placed in jars as a lottery for men. It is said that the early Roman

Catholic church, unable to completely remove the pagan tradition from the people, adopted this festival with revisions. St. Valentine another version of the origin of Valentine’s Day tells the story of Saint Valentine in the Roman Catholic belief. around 496 aD, then-Pope Gelasius I declared February 14 as the feast day of Saint Valentine, their patron of love and couples. In the Catholic church, there were at least three different men named Valentine, or also referred to as Valentinus in other versions,

who were all martyred on February 14. The question who among them Pope Gelasius intended to honor, however, was not known. One story suggests that Valentine was a priest during the third century in Rome, under the reign of Emperor Claudius II. Emperor Claudius was said to have banned young men from marrying in theory that single men were better soldiers than married men who worry about their wives and families. Despite the emperor’s decree, Valentine continued to perform marriage rites. Upon the PAGE B4

Valentine’s Day by the numbers: How much spending is done for love By Malou liwanag-BleDSoe AJPress

LOVE brings a lot of emotions, one of them being (sometimes) unwise on how a person expresses his/her love. This is true for what we spend for the person we love, making Valentine’s Day the third largest consumer holiday in the United States. More than $18 billion per year is spent in Cupid’s name, with lovesick shoppers buying gifts in the name of love. Gifts from the heart — and wallet It is indeed, a love affair with spending. This year, it is projected that the total Valentine’s Day spending will be $18.2 billion,

with an average of $136.57 per person. about 32 percent will buy their gifts at discount stores. ninety-four percent of the people celebrating the day want to receive candy and chocolate. (The first Valentine’s Day box of chocolates was introduced by Richard Cadbury — founder of Cadbury’s cocoa and chocolate company— in 1868.) This is no surprise as $1.7 billion will be spent by the 49.7 percent of celebrators who plan to buy candy this year. Flowers are ahead of candy with 20 percent of annual flower sales happen around Valentine’s Day. It is estimated that $2 billion PAGE B7

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Love and more love: Some fun facts about Valentine’s Day LOVE is in the air as Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. now who wouldn’t be familiar with this great day meant for sharing love gestures? I know many couples excitedly wait for February 14 so they can express their feelings to their partners. However, though we may be familiar with the day’s history, some may not know some interesting information involving the celebration. Here is a list of fun facts to think about: • Animal love. about 3 percent of pet owners will give gifts to their pets. The reason is that most pet owners consider animals to be more grateful and loyal than humans. • A rose by any other name. California produces 60 percent South america. approximately of american roses, but the vast 110 million roses — the majority number sold on Valentine’s Day in red — will be sold and delivered the U.S. are imported, mostly from PAGE B4


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Eva Noblezada and her journey from Charlotte to West End to Broadway

unites Eva with some of her castmates from West End: Jonjon Briones as The Engineer, Alistair FILIPINO-American theater Brammer as Chris and Rachelle fans in the tri-state area are count- Ann Go as Gigi. This makes Eva ing down the days, as Miss Saigon giddy in anticipation as she has – the musical that has cast most built a strong relationship with Filipinos than any other musical them when they were still in in history – makes its return to London. the Broadway stage this spring. “I love them, I am a very lucky Previews begin on March 1 and girl. I don’t think people realize the official opening is March 23. how lucky I am. My relationship The musical will run until January with Jonjon, he’s like the older next year and a national tour will brother I never had. I consider follow in October 2018. his family my family. Alistair, I get Eva Noblezada was barely 18 along with him really well, along years old when she was thrust with his lovely wife. We have a into the limelight and cast as Kim good chemistry and we laugh in the West End revival of the mu- together. Shin is my sis, I could sical back in May 2014. She was tell her everything. I’m grateful for then a high school student at the her and I’m glad that all four of us Northwest School of the Arts in are making our Broadway debuts Charlotte, North Carolina. together,” she mused. We chatted with Eva a couple of Her journey so far weeks ago at the Times Square ofEva Maria Noblezada was born fice of legendary theater producer in San Diego, California and their Cameron Mackintosh, the man be- family moved to Charlotte when hind Broadway hits such as “Cats,” she was six years old. They have “Les Miserables,” “Phantom of the lived there since. Opera,” “Mary Poppins” and “Miss “Charlotte wasn’t really me but Saigon.” I made the most out of the time I First, I asked her about her had there and it was great. But I upcoming Broadway debut. was really eager to leave and start “I’m ready. I’ve been prepar- doing what I love because I did ing myself—not just for Broad- not have the opportunities that I way—but just in general. I just needed there,” she related. “So want to always be prepared and I when it was time to leave, it was feel like I’m ready to start again,” bittersweet to leave my family but Eva shared. “I’m excited to see I was so excited to go to London what changes I can make to make and start my life.” my performance better.” Despite the major adjustments, The Broadway production re- Eva fell in love with London and by MoMar

G. Visaya

AJPress

Eva Noblezada Scenes from the London production of ‘Miss Saigon.’ Photos by Michael Le Poer Trench and Matthew Murphy

what the city had to offer. It was her home for nearly three years. She admits missing it so much but she is looking forward to living in New York. “London had its arms wide open for me. It was a special time of my life when I moved and lived there, alone as an independent woman. It was amazing,” she said. “I didn’t know how to imagine my life there because I didn’t move, I never left the country before so it was such a new experience and it was worth everything. Every new experience I just grabbed on to and clinged on to. I’ll never forget those first few months.” Eva spoke with a certain level of maturity in her voice, particularly when she talked about her family. She will turn 21 on March 18.

Since its London premiere in 1989, Cameron Mackintosh’s production of Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg’s epic musical MIss Saigon has become one of the most successful musicals in history. The original Broadway production of Miss Saigon opened on April 11, 1991 with what was the largest advance sale in Broadway history ($37 million). The show went on to play for nearly ten years and 4,063 performances seen by more than 5.9 million people. Miss Saigon has been performed in 28 countries, over 300 cities in 15 different languages, has won over 40 awards including 2 Olivier Awards, 3 Tony Awards, and 4 Drama Desk Awards and been seen by over 35 million people worldwide.

Her leaving them in North Carolina was sad, but it was expected she said. She had to act like an adult and accept the responsibilities that came with accepting the role that would change her life forever. “I got family-sick all the time. I wanted to see them but I had to work. You can’t always have everything you want,” she said matter-of-factly. She found a cure to being family-sick and home-sick when she made new friends. “I made a living for myself, that’s a huge thing, not having to depend on anybody. Learning to do things that I never had to learn when I was at home. It was growing up really quickly and I really loved it,” she added. Born to do it Eva vividly remembers the moment she knew she wanted to be a performer. She was around four or five and she sang in front of a church where she wore “this hideous orange and pink skirt with white buttons”. She felt that everyone in the family knew that it was something she was going to do. “I was always singing, always the loudest one. I loved putting on costumes,” she reminisced laughing. “I (even) tried to make a stage in my Lola’s and Papa’s backyard with wood and I failed epically. “ At the age of nine, she watched her first Broadway musical, “Lion King” at the Minskoff Theater. “I remember everything. I got emotional in the beginning. I was like ‘This is so beautiful!’ and I want to do it so bad,” she shared. “I wanted to do what they were doing. It makes perfect sense now,

it is what I want to do.” Nearly ten years later, she was back in the same theater, not as an audience member but as a performer on that theater’s stage singing her heart out. It was for the National High School Musical Theatre Awards or more famously known in the industry as The Jimmys, named after Broadway producer James Nederlander. She earned the right to go to New York when she won at The Blumeys, Charlotte’s regional competition. Eva sang “With You,” a ballad from Ghost, The Musical. “I was initially like, ‘Meh, Ghost’ I’ve seen it and it’s sad. Then, I listened to it again and wow, it is a beautiful song. It spoke to me in ways I didn’t think a song could,” she said. Broadway casting agent Tara Rubin was inside that theater that day. She fell in love with Eva’s rendition and recommended Eva to Miss Saigon’s director Laurence Connor and eventually, Cameron Mackintosh. “It was luck and it was a God thing, it was crazy. She was in the audience and it was crazy coincidental. I was just very lucky,” she said. The family went back home to North Carolina and a month later, she got a call to audition for “Miss Saigon.” They drove back to New York to do it, then drove back down. A few weeks later, they drove back again for two more auditions. Her final audition was at the Majestic Theater in front of Cameron Mackintosh himself. She sang “I’d Give My Life” for You’ and after her performance, Mackintosh offered the role to her.

AJPress photo by Momar G. Visaya

“Three auditions in all and he told me I got the part,” she said wistfully. “I just couldn’t stop repeating what he said – ‘Would you like to move to London? Would you like to move to London?’ I couldn’t think of anything else, it was so overwhelming. It didn’t really hit me until we got home and I was screaming with my family. It was amazing,” Eva added. As we closed the interview, I asked her how Miss Saigon changed her life. She paused a bit and reflected. Then she replied, “It forced me to grow up and [it] made me realize how to understand who I am as a person and as an actor and it really ignited my passion to act and perform and tell a story. It taught me as a young woman how to live my life. It taught me a lot of things and I am grateful that I get to do this with this elite group of people and that I get to work with them.”


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Julia Montes: ‘I’m not switching networks after ‘Doble Kara’’ by Iza IglesIas ManilaTimes.net

a yeaR and a half since it premiered in august 2015, “Doble Kara” has become a huge part of the Filipino viewer’s afternoon habit what with its thrilling and heart wrenching scenes that buoyed the show high up the ratings. lead actress Julia Montes said she is overwhelmed how long the series had lasted, and considers it one of the biggest blessings of her career. “We didn’t not expect to be on air as long as this because before we started—when they told me that i would play the role of twins—i was really nervous how viewers will find my two characters to be, and if i would play them effectively. So i’m thankful to all our directors for the workshops, and all the help they gave so i could show the differences and similarities of Kara and Sara.” She added, “i’m also thankful to the writers who were very clear on the direction of the story. i played the roles with their guidance and it made everything easy.” Due to its success—beating out the slew of afternoon series from competing network—Montes was given the title “Daytime Drama Queen.” “i was kind of pressured that people gave me a title like that but i’m just blessed they gave me this kind of work. they trusted me from the very start. i did not

The cast and crew of ‘Doble Kara’

expect it. like what i usually say, whatever i pray and ask for from the lord, He gives it to me ten times more than what i hoped for,” Montes shared. “i don’t mind to be put in whatever time slot. Whether in the morning, afternoon or even midnight it is okay as long as i get to work on something people support. it also feels good whenever the audience are enjoying it and then they became the part of the story,” the 21-year-old actress added. although “Doble Kara” is nearing its goodbye, Montes assured

that she will not transfer to another network and will do another show despite the rumors that she was offered to join her home studio’s rival. “Hopefully i can announce as soon as possible the things that are in store for me after this show. Personally i am excited for this because this is all new me, not just the dual role but physically and emotionally. it’s another dream come true when it comes to the team and the cast, so i hope it will push through,” she said. Meanwhile, when asked if she is open to guest in Coco Martin’s primetime show “ang Probinsyano,” “that will not come from me. i don’t know. But yes, if i can join and guest why not, let’s see,” Montes shared. More explosive surprises are coming viewers’ way as alex (Maxene Magalona) puts all her evil plans to work against Sara and Kara and lucille (Carmina Villarroel) returns to their lives as the series nears its much-awaited finale on February 10, Will alex and lucille connive against the twins? Who else will risk their lives to protect their family? Can Kara and Sara be able to protect their families from harm? also included in the cast of Doble Kara are Sam Milby, edgar allan Guzman, Mylene Dizon, allen Dizon, Rayver Cruz, Mickey Ferriols, alicia alonzo, anjo Damiles, John lapuz, Nash aguas, alexa ilacad, Polo Ravales, and Patricia Javier.

BoybandPH is composed of (from left) Ford Valencia, Niel Murillo, Russell Reyes, Tristan Ramirez and Joao Constancia

BoybandPH succeeds in spreading ‘unli kilig’

Reality show Pinoy Boyband Superstar winners—Ford Valencia, Joao Constancia, Niel Murillo, Russell Reyes and tristan Ramirez—are music scene’s certified newest singing heartthrobs with their winning piece “We Made it” and the release of the catchy single “Unli” as carrier of their debut album which is also their name as a group, BoybandPH. “it’s overwhelming and surreal. We didn’t expect to release an album so soon, just a month after the competition. Now, we have all these shows where we get to bond with our fans and we’re enjoying it so far,” said Russell. “i still can’t believe we’re here, i’m trying to wrap my head around

it,” said Joao about their sold-out shows. “We promise not to disappoint the fans, because we’re definitely having the time of our lives.” “Unli” has been topping radio charts since its release. the music video features singer-actress Janella Salvador. Other tracks include a cover of Depeche Mode’s “Somebody” and originals “Boyfriend” and “Magmamahal” in addition to their winning song. it also carries an acoustic version of “Boyfriend.” the boys said they are encouraged by the positive feedback posted by their fans about their songs. “Our fans matter a lot to us, because they have been supportive

of all of us since the beginning. We had the most amazing time recording the album, and we’re happy to have finally shared it with them,” Ford said. “We dedicate this to our families, friends, and especially to our fans and supporters. Our dreams have come true, but this is just the beginning. there’s more to watch out for,” shared tristan. Moreover, the boys also said they have gotten better and better at performing as a group. Niel, the group’s youngest, said, “We’ve learned so much from Pinoy Boyband Superstar. i gained confidence, we all did. We became more comfortable with our voice and now we’re moving as one.’ (ManilaTimes.net)

Richard Yap and Jean Garcia’s Valentine wishes aFteR being stalled in the Metro Manila Film Festival last December, “Mano Po 7: Chinoy” finally shows in cinemas starting today. Starring Richard yap, Jean Garcia, Jessy Mendiola, enchong Dee, Jake Cuenca, eric Quizon, Kean Cipriano, Janella Salvador, and Marlo Mortel, “Mano Po 7” is different from its predecessors because while the previous ones starred mostly women, this time, the spotlight is on the male “Chinoy” (Filipino-Chinese), explained Jean. “We’ve very proud of this film. Richard is good here. you’ll see a different Richard yap!” she assured. “We’re very honored to be part of ‘Mano Po.’ it’s been a very successful franchise and we’ve seen big stars star in it,” yap enthused during the movie’s advanced screening last weekend at HOOQ Hangouts. “Most actors in this movie are Filipino-Chinese. this is the most authentic ‘Mano Po,’ i think.” according to him, the movie is relatable to both Filipino and Chinese community as it has a lot of Chinese dialogues with corresponding subtitles, helmed by the flick’s Filipino-Chinese writer and director. this year of the Fire Rooster, besides good fortune and health, Jean wishes for love life “para lang masaya.” Richard, in turn, wishes for more successful projects and “more blessings, so we can continue to become a blessing for others.” Jean Garcia and Richard Yap play husband and wife in “Mano Po 7: Chinoy.” (Philstar.com)


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Direk Cathy beyond fairy tales The origin of Valentine’s... by Pablo

a. tariman Philstar.com

In this early evening encounter at Dolphy Theater when LizQuen fans are apt to scream at the mere sight of their idols, direk Cathy Garcia-Molina says her new project is a composite story of life and love as drawn from stories of friends and people she knows. She has to work closely with her writers to make sure the characters suit the lead actors and the new situations not found in their previous roles. “I am through with fairy tales — at least in this project,” she declares. “I am exploring emotions of people who have been there and back and still asking, ‘Is there life after a breakup?’ How does one cope when the past suddenly reappears in the present? Let’s start with me. I fell in love, got hurt and am prone to ask: How can he even hurt me? Going back to normal after a sad episode is just about what this movie is all about. This movie touches on post-relationship life and is as real as it can get. There is something from my life in it but we have enough materials from other people’s true-to-life stories.” Liza Soberano and Enrique Gil admit “My Ex and Whys” is a new challenge as it offers them a new acting landscape in which to trod on a more mature emotional journey. “I know this role is not going to be easy. It is far detached from our telenovela roles. But direk Cathy has a way to get what she wants. She talks to us. She tells us the complexity of our roles and why we can’t use the same acting style in the teleserye.” Direk Cathy was surprised how easily Enrique got into the part and proved himself. “At one time while observing him do a scene, I was at once amazed how he could transform himself. To the point that I told myself he has the making of a John Lloyd Cruz.” On the part of Liza, she admits

With ‘My Ex and Whys’ stars Enrique Gil and Liza Soberano. The lady director has evolved as a person and as director after more than two decades in showbiz.

Direk Cathy Garcia-Molina on the set in Korea. She has had enough of fairy tales.

worked with the country’s box-office stars like Bea Alonzo, John Lloyd Cruz and Sarah Geronimo, among others. Has she evolved through the years as a mother and as director? “You put me on a spot with that question,” she says trying to hold back something she cannot quite pin down. “Maybe I am growing and maturing as a person, maybe I am evolving as film director. And if my directorial style evolves, it’s not intentional. As we mature, we absorb new things and discard the old ones. We get to know what will work and what is useless. We grow as a person and our stands on many subjects like love are likely to change as well. It is not intentional. You may like it, you may not like it. The management maybe looking for something that is not in the finished product. But who would want to watch the same rom-com I directed 10 or 15 years ago? Hence, it is likely you will see something new in my latest project.” But her approach to working with her actors has not really changed much. As she earlier pointed out, being a director is like playing psychologist as well. “I treat members of the cast as my siblings and I have to be able to see through their individual characters and relationships. I make sure I get to know them well and fast as the shooting goes on.” In all likelihood, direk Cathy will not likely point to a favorite project. As she earlier said, “Every film I do is different and in all of them, I invested blood, sweat and tears. But for some reasons, some films did stand out because of some interesting reactions. I heard of a couple who told me they patched up and started anew when they saw my film. All my films are memorable but each has its own peculiar share of memories.”

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her limited exposure to the complexities of love affairs. She just turned 18 and adjusting to a new phase in her life. “I admit I didn’t have the kind of experiences that my character went through. So, I have to age quickly at least emotionally to show what the character is going through. But thanks to direk Cathy, she knows my capability and my limitations. She allowed me to explore beyond my limited experiences. I must say this is my first real mature film.” As a mother of two, direk Cathy has obviously gone through a lot herself enough to pass that life changing episodes on to her actors. Her real and reel lives have no sharp boundary and she tries to learn from every chapter of her real and showbiz life. She joined showbiz in the summer of 1992 as a continuity script assistant of director Chito Roño. She was later promoted to assistant director and given a directorial break in one episode of “Maalaala Mo Kaya” in the late 1999. With the onset of the new millennium, she megged several blockbusters that broke records, among them “Close to You,” “One More Chance,” “A Very Special Love,” “You Changed My Life” and “Miss You Like Crazy,” wherein she

PAGE B1 discovery of his actions, the priest was put to death. There was also another version that says Valentine used to help early Christians escape Roman tortures. Another legend tells the story of Valentine’s own love tale. Valentine, a Christian who was imprisoned, fell in love with his jailer’s daughter. Valentine was said to have written a letter to her before his death, which contains the phrase from your Valentine, an expression that is still widely used today. There was also a theory that says the daughter was used to be blind but Valentine was able to heal her sight. This event, according to the story, converted the jailer to Christianity. In 1969, however, due to Saint Valentine’s unclear history, the Roman Catholic Church removed his feast day from their general liturgical calendar. The present February 14 Presently, Valentine’s Day is widely celebrated by different countries across the globe, regardless of the dominant religion—including the Philippines and the United States. Despite being an unofficial holiday, most public places—such as

restaurants and gift shops—decorate their stores with Valentine’s Day-themed ornaments. These usually include hearts and Cupid, the mythical Roman god of love who resembles an infant with wings holding a bow and arrow. So how do Filipinos celebrate Valentine’s Day? Here are just some of the many ways Filipinos express love during the day of the hearts: 1. Gift-giving Just like any other occasion, giving gifts has always been part of the Filipino Valentine’s Day. Among the common presents people give to their love ones include chocolates, flowers, and stuffed animals. In the Philippines, you’ll immediately know it’s already February when you start to see people selling roses and teddy bears along the streets. 2. Dates Going on dates is, of course, one of the highlights in celebrating the holiday. Romantic couples usually go on ‘special’ dates on February 14—some couples celebrate it on other days, though, especially when the 14th falls on a weekday. While the kind of date itself varies, couples usually tend to make it more meaningful than their usual dates.

Apart from couples, some Filipino families also celebrate Valentine’s Day together, just like Christmas and new Year but in a less-grand way. During Valentine’s, families usually go out and eat dinner or watch movies. Children usually give letters of gratitude or small gifts to their parents. 3. Confessions and proposal For some people, Valentine’s is one of the perfect days to confess their love or propose to their loved ones. After all, the month of February itself has a very sweet atmosphere. With all the sales, special items and promos during the month of hearts, confessions and proposals fit the mood. These are just some of the ways how Filipinos usually celebrate Valentine’s. As diverse as countries and cultures are, so are the people’s practices when celebrating Valentine’s Day. However, one thing is no doubt a common factor when people mark this holiday: people always try to show their appreciation to the people they love—whether it’s romantic love, family love, friendship love, or even gratitude, people try to express their feelings of affection.

Love and more love: Some fun facts... PAGE B1

within a three-day time period. • Flowery messages. Each color of rose sent on Valentine’s Day have some meaning. A red rose means love and respect, pink says, “I am having sweet thoughts about you” and white stands for purity and states, “I am worthy of you.” Also the number of roses also counts. For instance, one stands for love at first sight, 12 is to say “I love you,” 108 is recommended for marriage proposals and 999 means “we’ll always be together.” • “Signed, XOXO.” Many believe the X symbol became synonymous with the kiss in medieval times. People who couldn’t write their names signed in front of a witness with an X. The X was then kissed to show their sincerity. • Sweets and romance. The most romantic place to share candy is in front of the fireplace, according to an American poll done in 2012. • Cure a broken heart. In the 1800s, doctors commonly advised their heartbroken pa-

tients to eat chocolate, claiming it would soothe their pain. To this day, many women find comfort in a box of chocolates when dealing with hearbreak. • The symbol of love. The heart is the most common symbol of romantic love. Ancient cultures believed the human soul lived in the heart. Others thought it to be the source of emotion and intelligence. Some believed the heart embodied a man’s truth, strength and nobility. However, the heart may be associated with love because the ancient Greeks

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believed it was the target of Eros, known as Cupid to the Romans. Anyone shot in the heart by one of Cupid’s arrows would fall hopelessly in love. Because the heart is so closely linked to love, it’s red color is thought to be the most romantic. • Lonely hearts club. If you’re single, don’t despair — February 14 is also Single Awareness Day (SAD). Meant as an alternative to love and romance, the holiday is for single people to celebrate or to commiserate in their single status. (AJPress)


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Your Immigration Solution atty. RaFael toRReS, iii & atty. NaNCy MilleR The past few days have been filled with political and legal turmoil stemming from a flurry of executive orders issued by President Donald Trump. Our country has responded with an earnest outcry of activist movement, but the fact remains that these problematic orders still exist. Among these orders are some that focus on immigration matters, including the initiation of a plan to increase border security, pursue undocumented individuals within the United States, and suspension of entry into the United States by all immigrants and nonimmigrants from certain countries, as well as suspension of the United States Refugee Admissions Program. each of these orders are a weighty exercise of executive authority, and, when considered together, reveal a pattern of severe reduction in the forms of relief and benefits available to our immigrant community. As such, anyone with a potentially available immigration option, the time to act is now. Some initial options to consider are adjustment of status and naturalization, although there are many others. eligibility for adjustment of status is complicated. Records of travel to and from the United States must be reviewed, as well as the types of documents used during these trips. The next issue, among a host of other factors, that needs to be evaluated is the grounds for seeking adjustment of status to that of lawful permanent resident status. Some

Immigrant Living: 101 and Beyond MoNette aDeva Maglaya IF you’re a woman who believes in secret in such things as love-at-first sight and happilyever-afters, TAKe heART. even during this cynical, jaded age of information when nothing seems sacred or mysterious any more, there are still countless women (and maybe some men) the world over just like you, who believe in the magic and mystery spun by that ancient, invisible force called LOVe. It is written in our DNA. So don’t fight it. It’s just that modern women probably won’t admit being romantic in public, for fear of ridicule. They will say, “Bah, humbug!” with a straight face and then watch every romantic comedy on the sly. That is probably why this movie genre makes a killing at the box office. Women are a captive audience and these women, in turn, drag their partners, more than likely, kicking and scream-

Health@Heart PhiliP S. Chua, MD, FaCS, FPCS COUNTLeSS lives around the world have been saved by CPR (Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation). Accounts by locals on this remote Alubihod beach resort in Guimaras Island (across Iloilo), where we were as of this writing, revealed they have witnessed CPR performed on a drowning victim a couple of times in the past several years. Actually, you can even save your own with self-CPR. Yes, you can actually perform CPR on yourself, when your heart falters (giving you a most uncomfortable panicky feeling, irregular rhythm, with or without chest pains, and a sensation of impending doom), anywhere you are, especially when you are alone or driving, and save a life (your own) and prevent a crash that might kill other people too. The physiologic mechanics: The heart is in between the left and right lungs, framed by the vertebrae (spine) behind and the sternum (breastbone) in front. When the lungs expand, like when you take a real deep breath, the distended lungs will not only provide oxygen to your blood but also squeeze on your heart. This helps in the faster flow of blood out of the heart, easing the workload of your ticker. In standard CPR performed by any trained person, mouth to mouth resuscitation is done, precisely to fill the lungs with air (oxygen), which also squeezes the heart. At the same time, cardiac massage (pumping down on the sternum (chest) aimed at squeezing the heart) is performed. SelfCardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (SCPR) is a vital option when one is alone, as an instant first-aid measure, when faced with a situation that calls for it. The technique: The first thing

The time to act is now common grounds are a qualifying family relationship, specialized employment, or maintenance of refugee status for a set period of time, just to name a few. To further muddy the waters, some categories of qualifying family relationships may disappear in the near future, such as the category encompassing brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens or even married children of U.S. citizens. Thus, if there are any U.S. citizens who have considered filing petitions for their siblings or married children, they should do so immediately before these categories are removed. Of course, if there are no U.S. citizens in your family, you may not have access to such a petition, unless someone is eligible to naturalize. If so, the application should be filed now. Among those who were subject to detention and denial of entry to the United States this past weekend as a result of President Trump’s executive action, were lawful permanent residents and persons holding various types of validly-issued visas. This is an indication that those who enjoy the benefit of lawful permanent resident status are not immune from the danger of deportation. U.S. citizens are much more protected and enjoy access to a larger pool of rights and privileges as compared to individuals with lawful permanent resident status. Thus, if you are eligible, you should apply for naturalization now. As an added motivating factor, if you are approved and sworn in as a U.S. citizen, you may be able to pass immigration benefits to some of your qualified family members. These are tumultuous times. Unfortunately, no one knows

what the future holds for our immigration system. What we do know paints a bleak picture. Take, for example, one of President Trump’s recently issued executive orders which established broad enforcement priorities against all individuals who are currently present in the United States and are without legal status. Specifically named in the order are priority enforcement against those who have been convicted of a crime, charged with a crime, committed acts that constitute a crime, are subject to a final order of removal but have not yet complied, among others. In response to this type of action, you should prepare by doing everything you can to protect yourself and your family. how do you do that? The best thing you can do is to immediately consult with an experienced and knowledgeable immigration attorney. There is absolutely no substitute for such a consultation because the attorney will be able to conduct a tailored inquiry into your history and may be able to propose solutions. Most importantly, the time to act is now because your options may literally disappear with the stroke of a pen. *** Reeves, Miller, Zhang & Diza Law Corporation’s offices are located in Pasadena, Irvine, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Makati City. Telephone: (800) 795-8009 E-mail: immigration@rreeves.com Website: www.rreeves.com. *** The analysis and suggestions offered in this column do not create a lawyer-client relationship and are not a substitute for the personalized representation that is essential to every case. (Advertising Supplement)

That thing called love and what to make of rom-coms “The past is prologue.”

— Shakespeare

ing because they would rather watch violent movies oozing with blood and gore. Yeah, yeah. Talk about women coming from Venus and men, from Mars. That’s what makes the chemical attraction between straight genders so compelling and fascinating — repelling and binding at the same time. Deep within most women, despite all that they’ve seen and been through, some, despite being scarred beyond belief by past toxic liaisons, if they don’t let bitterness and acrimony permeate their hearts, that thing called LOVe, still rules and does so mightily. Romantic comedies churned out fairly regularly from the hollywood story factory seem to come from a well-worn template, copy-fitted in about 90 minutes of

predictability. After a while, they taste like prepackaged burgers, food enough for the starving romantic soul, but hardly satisfying. After you have seen a few, you can very well interchange the characters and the plots and subplots like pieces of Lego. It’s a formula that keeps on giving: girl meets boy; a delicious attraction sizzles; a situation sets up a series of conflicting, seemingly complicated twists and turns made more tenuous by a third opposing character, just like Bluto, in the Popeye, Olive Oyl triangle, that horrible antagonist that prevents the girl and the guy from coming together; couple almost gives up trying but then an unexpected twist happens, some deus ex machina, a manipulation PAGE B7

Self-CPR and other tips to do immediately, when the symptoms start, is to take repeated deep breaths, and coughing real hard between each breath. If the heart irregularity and uncomfortable feeling continue after 10 series of deep breaths and hard coughing, hitting the chest moderately hard with a clenched fist might help. The coughing and deep breaths must continue as the person drives to the nearest hospital emergency room or physician’s office. The disappearance of the symptoms as a response to the SCPR still requires the need for immediate medical consultation. Clinical observation shows that when one is alone doing chest compression during a standard CPR on a person who had cardiac arrest, the chest compression alone appears to be effective enough even without the mouthto-mouth component. This is a relatively recent finding. But if mouth to mouth could also be performed, it should be done. Our entire school system, starting from the elementary school to colleges and universities, would do humanity a great service if a course in CPR and SCPR is made mandatory at every level of its curricula every couple of years. *** If the ambient air is too dry, whether you are in a desert, in a room with a heater during winter, or on board an airplane (where the air is very dry), you can devise your personal “humidifier” by soaking a face towel and putting it against your nose. This will provide moisture to the air you breathe in. The same improvisation and/or wet towels in strategic areas will help humidify any dry room. Running the shower will also do it but that is terribly wasteful and expensive and is not eco-friendly. *** Large paper clips will serve well as collar stays when one for-

gets to bring them on a trip. Or, making collar stays with a piece of hard plastic or cardboard. A small safety pin or large needle could be used (instead of the special gadget) in extracting your cellphone sim card. *** Sticking a bright colored emblem of any kind (mine is a red heart) on your credit card is a way of identifying your card at a distance, when you hand it over to a sales clerk at any store, and makes it a lot easier for you to “detect” when you are given back another card, by mistake or intentionally, which has happened. *** One of the best ways to prevent viruses from attacking your computer (on top of your anti-virus software) is by not opening any emails you receive from someone you do not know and trashing them immediately. If needed, you could retrieve them from the trash bin, which holds them for 30 days prior to final deletion. even if the email comes from a person you know, its attachment, if any, must be tagged or designated “virus free.” The spam mail eliminator is not enough. Common sense and vigilance do a lot more in protecting your computer and all valuable data on it. Disciplining yourself to adhere to this practice religiously will severely minimize, if not avoid, virus infestation and computer crashes, loss of priceless data, inconvenience, and avoidable expenses. *** handling money, touching stair or escalator hand rails and door knobs in public places, or even handshakes (especially with one with a cold) expose one to a lot of viruses and or bacteria, and potential illnesses. Imagine that thousands of people of various personal habits have touched those paper bills, coins, handrails, and door knobs, conPAGE B7

LAS VEGAS ASIAN JOURNAL • fEbRUARy 9-15, 2017

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Maxine Medina and the ‘most beautiful day’ in the Philippines By Monet

Lu

After everything has been said—or was not said—and done, we choose to look at the bright side. We choose to see beneath the surface, avoid the negativity and focus on what really matters: the kingdom, not the ‘crown.’ Some of you may be surprised to know that I am one of the few who predicted the victory of Miss Universe Philippines Maxine Medina. We met last year and I could honestly see the potential in her. She is very pretty. In fact, her mentors (and some judges of Miss Universe 2016) agree that Maxine was “one of the prettiest” contestants the Philippines “has sent to

Miss Universe and to any beauty pageant.” She has the face, the figure, the personality, and the crowd who cheered her on, to bag the crown. But she fell short in one category. And the million-dollar question is, “Why didn’t she use the interpreter?” or “why didn’t she just answer in tagalog?” the question for Maxine was: What is the most significant change you’ve seen in the world in the last 10 years? the interpreter asked the question in tagalog and Maxine answered: “In the last 10 years of being here in the world, I saw all the people bringing in one event like this in Miss Universe. It’s something big to us that we are one. As one nation, we are all

together. thank you. Maraming salamat po.” I was not surprised that she didn’t use an interpreter. though for me, she didn’t need one. Did I think she should’ve answered in tagalog and let the interpreter translate it? I admit, I did. But was her answer wrong? technically no. It is a valid answer, but not the best. In her defense, she was called first during the question-andanswer round and was asked a question that could go both ways. If she took her time and thought (a decade’s worth) of a more elaborate answer, say some historical event or phenomena, she have ended up with an awkward dead air and lose the momentum. On the other hand, if she responded with whatever

What’s trending: Trump’s E.O. Immigration Corner Atty. MAriA ritA reyes-stuby And bernAdette bretAnA SINCe its issuance on Jan. 27, 2017, the executive Order on immigration (trump’s e.O.) has been dissected because it is a “travel ban” of nationals from seven specific countries ( Iraq, Iran, Yemen, Syria, Sudan, Libya and Somalia) whose majority populations are Muslims. While the previous administration and Congress have characterized them as war-torn and posing ‘national security risks’ to the U.S., the present president’s acts have a far more unsettled effect on other nationals seeking entry into the U.S, whose visas, immigrant or non-immigrant, were issued in accordance with procedure. No one was spared: green card holders were detained at the airports, while visitor, student, and other non-immigrant visas were cancelled. the inevitable uproar from all over is fully deserved. Why the conundrum of heightened proportions? A reading of the full text of the e.O. readily shows that it is not about the ‘Muslim ban’ or the ‘travel ban’. this major issue of constitutional infringement on the freedom of religion and affecting states’ vital interests seems to be a camouflage of what is still to come. the e.O. was issued to basically thwart possibilities or actual acts of terrorism in this country which could be perpetrated by foreign nationals who are admitted here. We all want to be safe but should the solution be hysterical rather than rational? the future is a rollercoaster ride – whether you are a government agency, private law firm, an immigrant or a non-immigrant visa holder in the U.S. Briefly,

the three major issues brought to light before the courts are: (a) whether the e.O. is unconstitutional as infringing upon freedom of religion and violating the equal protection clause as enshrined in the constitution; (b) whether the all-encompassing ban to restrict entry to the U.S. of nationals of these seven countries would cause ‘irreparable harm’ to the interests of the states and its constituents; and (c) whether or not it is within the powers of the president to suspend and/or refuse to allow nationals of other countries entry into the U.S., with no distinction as to whether or not they are immigrants or with valid visas. A perusal of the e.O. would lead us to a significant provision which is more relevant to all nationals entering the United States. Section 4 with the sub-title: “Implementing Uniform Screening Standards for All Immigration Programs.” It mandates the relevant agencies involved in executing the immigration laws to review and/or re-evaluate its present screening standards of granting benefits to the end that individuals who intend to commit fraud, malice or harm post-admission can be sufficiently detected and immediately excluded from the United States. the same Section 4 further provides that a better screening mechanism has to be in place to detect at inception whether there is a ‘likelihood’ that the applicant can become a “positively contributing member of society” and has the “ability to make contributions to the national interests…” Section 4 has been drowned out of the public quagmire but it is important in the implementation process, hence, the infamous weekend disaster at airports around the country. this nation is broadcasting to the whole world that the traditionally known system of governance in a democratic society known as

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“checks and balances” is hopefully still at play. the 3 branches of the government -executive, judicial and legislative, are co-equals, exercising power for the benefit of the governed. the e.O. zeroes in on the 7 countries with terrorist leanings but as a businessman the president must know that the world has gone global, what about the other 188 countries? No implementing rules were in place when the e.O. was issued. Section 4 is a blanket justification for the U.S. Department of homeland Security and Department of State to maintain a new posture in adjudicating cases, i.e., more vigilance and a stricter policy in evaluating and adjudicating of all immigration benefits applied for. It actually has ‘lifespans’ such as 30-60-120 day deadlines and the ‘travel ban’ is supposed to be temporary while reports are drafted by the appointed agencies nd submitted to the President to use in further issuing executive Orders which can be more definite, expansive and permanent ‘travel bans’ to the 7 and other nations which can be added to the list. We are just beginning to feel the heat of extreme vetting without due process. Is this how democracy works? Destroy the hopes of refugees and other immigrants, close the door to visitors but without a clear policy targeting terrorists. So vigilance please, executive orders are double edge swords. *** Maria Rita Reyes-Stuby is a licensed attorney in Michigan. She is a graduate of the University of the Philippines College of Law. She specializes in immigration and practices in Las Vegas, Michigan, California and other states. Bernadette Bretana, a graduate of the Ateneo Law School and Ms. Stuby are licensed attorneys in the Philippines. Please call @702-403-4704 or email her at stubylaw@aol.com or go to www.mrstubylaw.com for any questions on this article.

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ART AND SOUL (The Healing Power of Art) exhibit in Washington, D.C. In celebration of National Arts Month, the Philippine Embassy in Washington, D.C. is pleased to invite you to an exhibit entitled, ART AND SOUL (The Healing Power of Art), featuring the works of Artist and Curator Julian Oteyza and Sony Florendo at the Romulo Hall of the Philippine Embassy from February 10-16, 2017. The exhibit will be open for viewing from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. except Saturday and Sunday. For more information, please contact info@philippineusa.org. The embassy is located on Bataan street corner 1600 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington DC, 20036.

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FALW to celebrate Valentine’s Day in Seal Beach, CA The Filipino Association of Leisure World will celebrate Valentine’s Day with a dinnerdance at the Clubhouse #2 at 1232 Golden Rain Road, Seal Beach, CA on February 11. Music will be provided by The Midnight Motion Band. For other related questions, please call the president of the association, Ren Villanueva at (323) 854-6209.

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Valentine’s dinner & show in Waipahu, HI Need Valentine’s Day plans? Come to the Filipino Community Center in Waipahu, Hawaii on Tuesday, February 14 for “Hugs and Kisses,” a dinner and show. Tickets for the dinner and full show are $47 per person. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Dinner will be served at 6 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. The show will be hosted by Lil Guy with an opening act by Shawn Garnett (aka Cousin Flippa on “Hawaii Five-O”). For reservations, please call (808) 680-0451. The FilCom Center is located at 94-428 Mokuola St. #302, Waipahu, HI 96797.

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Free parenting class in Eagle Rock, CA Come to a free parenting class in Eagle Rock on Saturday, Feb. 18 at 10 a.m. It will be held at the Eagle Rock Lutheran Church at 5032 Maywood Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90041. To RSVP, please call (323) 304-9898.

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Talk and book signing with Susan Quimpo, author of “Subversive Lives” in Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey Come see Susan Quimpo, one of the authors of “Subversive Lives” on Monday, March 6 at the Free Public Library of Hasbrouck Heights from 6 to 8 p.m. “Subversive Lives” is a memoir by eight siblings (plus one by marriage) who dedicated themselves to the anti-Marcos resistance in the Philippines. Quimpo will talk about her personal experience during the Marcos years. Books will be available for sale. A book signing will follow after the talk. The Free Public Library of Hasbrouck Heights is located at 320 Boulevard, Hasbrouck Heights, NJ 07604.

If you have an upcoming event and would like us to post it, please email us the details at info@asianjournalinc.com or calendar@asianjournalinc.com

came first to her mind, she might not be able to justify her answer. So (just like what most people thought happened), she took the safe route and answered with the ‘most significant’ event in front of her: Miss Universe 2016 happening in the Philippines after 22 years. for me, it was a safe answer. Not a crown-worthy one, but not a wrong answer either. And let’s not forget the fact that out of 86 gorgeous and talented candidates, she was one of the six most beautiful women. Despite the criticisms on her allegedly poor english and communication skills, she got in the top six! that should count for something, with or without the crown. Speaking of the coveted crown, it may not have landed on Maxine’s head but the entire Universe will never see the Philippines the same way again after “the most beautiful day” was held in our country. Just think about those candidates appreciating our tourist spots, being welcomed by the warmest people they’ve ever met -- all of this was shown on tV! I could’ve sworn that it didn’t look like it was shot anywhere in the Philippines. the beaches were so beautiful. I almost forgot how beautiful the Philippines truly is. the Miss Universe Organization (MUO) even thought that the Philippines was the perfect host. MUO president Paula Shugart described the Philippine hosting of the prestigious beauty pageant as the ‘best show’ she has ever done. Shugart gave former Ilocos Sur Gov. Luis “Chavit” Singson of the pageant host committee, LCS Group of Companies, a sash that

read “Mister Universe” as a token of gratitude for the country’s successful hosting. those stories about candidates falling in love with the filipino people and even donating their pageant gowns are testaments to how the filipinos have captured the hearts of their visitors. Some of them even opted to extend their stay. I wouldn’t be surprised if one of them decides to live in the Philippines. All I am saying is, we shouldn’t think of Miss Universe 2016 as a failure just because we did not get the back-to-back win were hoping for. We should see it as one of the most beautiful events the whole universe has ever seen. It was indeed the ‘most beautiful day’ in the Philippines and Maxine was right in the middle of it all. She represented the country that gave these women the most unforgettable experience they could ever have in their lifetimes. the home-

court advantage may not have played well for Maxine in terms of winning the title but it did create a huge impact on the ‘universe’ for all we know. Now, we welcome the new Miss Universe, Iris Mittenaere of france. She deserves our support as much as she deserved the crown. On behalf of the beautiful people of the Philippines, I congratulate Miss Universe 2016 Iris Mittenaere and I hope for all the best in your reign. *** 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 www.monetsalon.com or email him at monetsalon@aol.com

LVMPD now hiring for police recruit For full details and requirements regarding this employment opportunity and application, visit our LVMPD Employment page at: www.lvmpd.com We’re all concerned about crime in our community. If you’re the type of person who doesn’t want to sit on the sidelines anymore, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department has an exciting opportunity for you to train and work alongside Metro’s finest. experience is not required, however, candidates must have completed the twelfth grade and possess a high school or General education Diploma (GeD). Candi-

dates must also possess an appropriate valid Nevada driver’s license at the time of hire. Additional requirements are as follows: Must be 21 years of age by the date of exam. Must be a citizen of the United States by the date of the fitness exam. Must have no convictions of any crime for which registration in the State of Nevada is required pursuant to NrS 207.090 or 207.152.

Must have no convictions of any misdemeanors involving the use/attempt of physical force if committed by those listed in the Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act of 1997. for further information you can contact the LVMPD recruitment Detail by email at recruitment@ lvmpd.com or by phone at 702828-5787. Preparation material can be found by going to www. ProtecttheCity.com.

Get the best price for your valuables at Nevada Coin Mart WIth tons of places to choose from to bring your old jewelry, there’s only one place in Las Vegas that will pay the best amount for these valuables. At Nevada Coin Mart, customers can rest assured that they will be properly compensated for the precious stones and metals they bring in. Neil Sackmary, the owner of the store, is a graduate gemologist from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) with more than 20 years of experience in buying these items. “When it comes to myself, this is my passion. this is what I went to school for,” Sackmary said. GIA is the world’s foremost authority on diamonds, colored stones and pearls. It was established in 1931 and strives to protect the jewelry and gem buying public by setting quality standards worldwide. As a certified GIA specialist, Sackmary points out that simply because a business that purchases these stones has been around for decades, that does not make it an expert source. this is a particularly important fact for members of the Asian American community to note. “In the Asian community, people don’t buy cheap stones. they always spend really good money and when they do, they want to sell them for good money and they want someone who’s an expert. You don’t want to take it to someone who says they’re in the business for 35 years. that does not make them an expert,” Sackmary said. Nevada Coin Mart purchases

Neil Sackmary

a wide variety of items, including coins, bullion, diamonds, jewelry, gold, silver and watches, at premium prices. At the shop, Sackmary has the latest technology, including a $9,000 diamond microscope and $30,000 X-ray spectrometer, which allows him to thoroughly examine how much the metals and stones customers bring in are worth. “Most people want to rip off customers because they don’t care. they look at them and say, ‘Well, if I can, I’ll take advantage. I’m never going to see you again’,” Sackmary said. that’s not what happens at Nevada Coin Mart. In one instance, Sackmary paid a customer $1,510 for two rings that were quoted for $150 at a competitor store. It’s because of its transparency and fairness to those who walk into Nevada Coin Mart that about 70 percent of its clients are repeat customers who come back for the value they receive for their items. the business takes it a step further by providing security guards who are former police of-

ficers and 47 cameras to monitor the entire building. Visitors can also request to have a guard walk them in and out of the building free of charge. Sackmary and his wife have been in the business of buying jewelry and other metals for many years and have been online selling costume jewelry for about 15 years. they are also present every day the shop is open, which is located on the corner of Jones Boulevard and flamingo road. In addition to putting their customers’ interests first, the Sackmarys are active community members who have participated in charity event Operation fireheAt and are founding sponsors for the Anthem Women’s Club. Nevada Coin Mart was established in 1971 and is licensed by Clark County to legally purchase jewelry from the general public. Nevada Coin Mart 4065 S Jones Blvd. Las Vegas, NV 89103 Phone: (702) 776-7061 hours: Monday through Sunday, 9am to 5 pm Advertising Supplement


Features

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That thing called love and what to...

PAGE B5 by the love god, that resolves the conflict and zaps away all obstacles e.g. a can of spinach that rolls from nowhere, that energizes Popeye to pummel Bluto; guy gets girl or whoever is doing the hot pursuit; and finally, the way is then made clear for the de riguer wedding scene. Sigh. THE END. BIG CHA-CHING. Romcom makes mega millions at the box office. A sequel may or may not follow. Ho-hum … There was a time when young girls relied on the tattered pages of a fairy tale book or a radio drama series or a television series which fired up their imagination, leaving them sighing and dreaming of their knight in shining armor. Disney has pretty much scoured the bottom of the barrel in spinning out modern versions of animated stories from ages past. In medieval times, when marriage, the nunnery or spinsterhood were the choices that were available, most young girls dreamt about that rich, dashing knight riding on a horse, that would slay the dragon, overcome overwhelming forces, sweep them off their feet, ride out into the sunset and live happily ever after. For a few centuries, that was how it was. But we all know, real life tells far different stories. The fairy tales turn out to be more like Gothic novels. Girl and guy don’t always end up happy. The depressing d’s descend on every life: divorce, deceit, despair, discouragement, disillusionment, darkness and death. And we’re left disappointed. But for all that, hope springs eternal in the human heart and keeps the romcom writers busy. We have this need to believe even if we begin to view with a jaded eye that the concept of happilyever-after is just a myth, long after the harsh facts of reality beat us into submission in a staredown. Slowly, warily, we learn to separate fact from fiction. Our world has changed from the simple to the utterly complicated present times. We now live with ubiquitous social networks available to our fingers where we can engage electronically in our pajamas and unmade beds, engage with one another instead of what used to be face-to-face interpersonal relationships when we need to be right where we need to be to make our case. We facebook and twitter all day long electronically creating,

maintaining or killing off disposable internet relationships, that can defy space and time constraints, that can either bloom and thrive or take shallow roots and die in an instant. It doesn’t really matter. The next thing is just a click away. It remains to be seen what will come out of this relatively new phenomenon that is rewriting how this generation and the succeeding ones will find their mates that are right for them. There is no precedent, no formulas, no template, no books to copy from. The young ones may have to muddle through, make mistakes and come up with a new set of rules to write brand new stories to fire up and light their imaginations while holding steadfast in the belief written in “Desiderata” that despite “…all aridity, love, is as perennial as the grass …” Something happened in the middle of the last century to cause some kind of imbalance. Women became liberated from their traditional role after WWII. They joined the work force and learned to be independent. The roles of genders, and those inbetween, are no longer as clearcut as they once were. With postwar prosperity and abundance, came opportunity for women who decided from a wide range of choices that included college, career, family and the chance to be financially independent. This is not to say that the past was better, only that it was different and maybe, just a tad easier to figure out. The present times pose dilemmas that leave us scratching our heads. The rules of engagement between men and women perhaps need to be rewritten. Romantic comedies often glorify the attraction of opposites. But it must be made clear in the interest of equal time, that the attraction of opposites is only one half of a truism. There’s a serious caveat emptor for all young men and women out there looking for a lifetime mate and seeking guidance from a higher power on how to best proceed. Here it is. Although opposites do indeed attract, it is the likes that stay together. The possibility of longer, happier lives exists in such a union. In an increasingly unstable, disintegrating world such as ours, such unions of like minds, bodies and spirits make a whole lot of difference. However, NEVER discount the

power of chemistry. It is a real force wired into each one that draws one to the other. Deal with it. But in the end, it is the little things that you may have to look for to muddle through the choices and get past appearances. If you are a young woman, see how he treats his mother, his sisters and all the women in his family. If he shows kindness and is respectful of them, chances are, he will be kind to you and respect you as well. The same is true of young men. Look at how your intended treats her dad and all the men in the family. Look for kindness and generosity of spirit above all, oldfashioned traits that wear well. There are clear indicators and there are red flags. Watch for them. Do not let love or the stirrings of lust blind you totally. If faith and religion, commitment and fidelity are both important to you, the likelihood is there that these core beliefs will be a bond that will hold you in tough times. It may seem funny to you but the parents of your intended are more than likely a preview of how your fiancé or fiancée will turn out to be 2 or 3 decades from now. The past, as Shakespeare once said, is prologue. Take heed. There will be exceptions of course, but the mango does not fall far from the tree. You can prevent heartache by a balanced mix of heart and mind when choosing the love of your life. Sometimes, the heart is recalcitrant and makes a choice for you but know that a humble, grateful heart who asks for guidance particularly in the all too important decision of choosing a lifetime mate, in sincere, constant prayer that assaults heaven will not be spurned. If this is important to you and it should be, get down on your knees and beg for this grace. Since God gave us free will, we are able to write parts of our own stories. If we were all writers, we have in front of us, a tabula rasa, a blank page, a cursor at the ready, steadily flashing, patiently waiting for your stories to spill, the remanufactured, recycled or better yet, the brand new, original stories of romantic comedies that beg to be written. The world, I am sure, would like to hear about yours. ***

LAS VEGAS ASIAN JOURNAL • fEbRUARy 9-15, 2017

B

Valentine’s Day by the numbers: How much...

PAGE B1 will be spent by the 34.7 percent who plan to buy flowers. However, jewelry tops the list, as an estimated $4.3 billion will be spent by the 18.7 percent who plan to buy it as a gift. One thing to note though — 24 percent of single adults buy themselves a present for Valentine’s Day. For those who don’t believe in spending too much, sending greeting cards still seem to be their best bet. There are about 1,500 types of Valentine’s Day cards offered by Hallmark alone this year, and it is estimated that $1 billion will be spent on greeting cards alone. To celebrate or not to celebrate? Americans between 35 and 44 years old are most likely to celebrate Valentine’s Day, while less than half of people at least 65 years old will commemorate the occasion. A night out on Valentine’s Day will average $73.68 per couple, with a total amount of $3.8 billion for the whole of the U.S. Men also spent almost double than women last year, suggesting that chivalry is not, in fact, dead. However, 46.1 percent of adults do not plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day this year. Also, 53 percent of women say they would break up with their significant other if they got nothing planned.

Still, the day holds a lot of significance for many people. In fact, it is believed that 9 million marriage proposals will be made on Valentine’s Day this year. Another thing is that 1.9 million Facebook uses changed their relationship status within a week of Valentine’s Day. While it’s great to see that

people are willing to splurge for their loved ones on Valentine’s Day, some still believe that looking for simple and affordable ways to show their appreciation and love is best. Though there are means to spend on expensive gifts, the saying that “it’s the thought that counts” holds true when it comes to giving.

Self-CPR and other tips

PAGE B5 ceivably many of them with poor hygiene. Washing your hands at least eight times a day is more of a rule than an exception if one has to prevent bug contamination and upper respiratory or gastrointestinal infections. The use of alcohol “wipes” or gel also helps. Antibacterial (antibiotic) hand wash preparations are discouraged for fear of inducing a bacterial resistance to the antibiotic. *** Interested in antioxidants for better health? Vegetables and fresh fruits, in general, are the best natural sources, compared to the very expensive pills, potion and lotion in the market, advertised as antioxidants. The pill version is processed and sometimes contains chemicals with adverse Nota Bene: Monette Adeva Maglaya is side-effects. Antioxidant score: ORAC (OxySVP of Asian Journal Publications, Inc. To send comments, e-mail monette.maglaya@ gen Radical Absorbance Capacity) measures the antioxidant units asianjournalinc.com

available to reduce harmful oxygen free radicals. As far as fruits are concerned, according to the United States Department of Agriculture and Brunswick Laboratories, the following are the ORAC score (per 100 Grams) of the following fruits: Bananas - 879; Plums – 7291; Oranges – 1814; Blueberries – 9019; Apples – 3253; Cranberries – 9456; and, Cherries – 3361. Sunsweet, a company popular for its preserved fruits in the United States, came out with what it calls Antioxidant Blend, a dried fruit variety combo, which includes blueberries, cherries, cranberries and plums. One fourth cup serving (40 Grams) contain 90 calories. In Asia, the popular “licorice” flavor fruit preserve “Dikyam” is made from plums. *** To those who love water sports, carrying an intact plastic garbage bag, might be life-saving, even for

a good swimmer. Experts have reported cases of leg cramps among some who did not bother to wear a life vest, who were saved by a plastic bag they inflated, aiding in their buoyancy and ability to stay afloat longer, giving them the critical time for recovery from the debilitating cramps. Obviously, wearing an appropriate life vest is a must for the “seafarers” amongst us, especially for the occasional beachcombers. *** 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. Email: scalpelpen@ gmail.com


B february 9-15, 2017 • LaS VeGaS aSIaN JOurNaL

http://www.asianjournal.com • (702) 792-6678

Las vegas edition february 9 15, 2017  
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