Web firestorm over blog post about Assumption

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 06 2013 07:41 PM | Updated as of Dec 12 2016 05:41 PM

MANILA, Philippines – After learning of the suspension of celebrated comic artist Pol Medina by the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper over a gay comic strip, actress Saab Magalona used her blog to express her opinion about the issue.

Her blog post immediately went viral on Twitter and other social networking sites – not because of her defense of Medina, but for her comments about another all-girls’ school.

Complaining about Assumption Antipolo where she and her sister, actress Maxene Magalona, studied, Saab pointed out some of the school’s alleged senseless policies, such as requiring students to wear hair accessories only of a certain color.

She also claimed that the school also has a lot of lesbian students, comparing it to St. Scholastica’s College, which was mentioned in Medina’s controversial comic strip.

“’Pag maraming pinapagbawal, mas nagiging rebelde ang bata. I speak from experience. Sa Assumption Antipolo, even a simple thing like the color of your ponytail holder kailangan blue, red, black or white ONLY. NAKAKALOKA. ANONG CONNECTION SA PAG AARAL?? Simplicity?! Eh paano kung gift sayo ay puro pink na pangtali at wala ka nang budget pangbili ng bago?” Saab wrote.

“I must say, marami talagang close-minded na exclusive schools. Ang daming bawal noon sa Assumption. Ang dami ring lesbian. Eh ano ngayon?”

Saab went on to rant about how her older sister, Maxene, was asked to transfer schools because she starred in a sanitary napkin commercial.

“Hindi siya artista eh, commercial model lang siya nun. Ang sabi sa family ko okay lang na lumabas sa TV kung educational or something, basta wag bastos or mga beer commercial DUH. Kung may mga greetings for my dad (Saab’s father, the late rapper Francis Magalona) sa Eat Bulaga baka pwedeng wag nalang daw. ANYAREH?! Hindi pwede mag happy birthday sa TV?! Kasalanan ang paglabas sa TV? Hindi educational ang napkin commercial? Hindi lahat ng babae nagkaka-period? SIMPLICITY?! NAG-ARAL BA KAMI PARA MAGING MADRE?!” she wrote.

But she was quick to add: “Chos. Di ako galit. Joke lang yung all-caps para mag-LOL kayo. But I’m sure yung mga Assumptionista umiiyak, ‘OWEMJEE, why is she so galit with our school?!’ (Chos again, alam kong hindi ganun magsalita mga taga AA).”

Saab also alleged that Maxene’s schoolmates back then in Assumption bullied her over her sanitary napkin commercial, and accused the school for “not undergoing due process.”

“Cino-correct ko lang na hindi na-kick out si Maxx because pinanindigan namin na walang mali sa pagtulong sa finances ng pamilya by making a napkin commercial. Tinapos niya ang school year amidst bullying from high school girls na mga inggit at pangit. We transferred schools and sued AA for not undergoing due process. They called her to the principal’s office and made her cry instead of sending a letter to her parents. She was in 7th grade, I think. Very Jesus ang peg ng mga madre, noh? Not. Love you, Maxx. We won the trial, by the way.

“Hindi ako galit sa mga madre at pari. Galit ako sa mga holier-than-thou na hypocrites.”

Assumption students cry foul

Several Internet users, most of them from Assumption, cried foul on Twitter over Saab’s blog post, with "AA" becoming a local trending topic on the microblogging site for quite some time.

“How low can Saab go? Come on. Seriously. Respect for Assumption please!” said Simoune Licuanan.

“You’re mad at AA just because they made your sister transfer schools and the ponytail color policy? Ang babaw mo ate,” said Twitter user Samantha.

“Saab Magalona’s comment about AA tho: [limbo instructor voice] How low can you go,” said Twitter user riri.

“Saab Magalona can kiss her kicked-out sister’s ass. The school has their reasons for making rules and that doesn’t make it bash worthy,” said Twitter user Yomi C.

'Encourage individuality'

Others, however, defended Saab and praised her for being frank.

“I don’t think what you said was offensive. You’re just saying what you have experienced,” said Christine Peña.

“I love your I-write-as-I-speak and your honesty,” said Lanel Ibasco.

Hours later, Saab made it clear that she is not mad at Assumption, and encouraged its students and teachers to speak their mind.

“In the end, I just wish children were not forced to fit inside a box they’re too fabulous to be in. Teachers should encourage individuality,” she wrote.

“And I’m so happy those who are bashing me are only young high school students. You will grow up to realize things on your own.”