The harassment and the fanning of hate towards Thomas van Beersum, a Dutch activist who decried human rights violations in PH, is what we call “Jingoism.” According to good old Wikipedia:
“Jingoism is extreme patriotism in the form of aggressive foreign policy. In practice, it is a country’s advocation of the use of threats or actual force against other countries in order to safeguard what it perceives as its national interests. Colloquially, it refers to excessive bias in judging one’s own country as superior to others—an extreme type of nationalism.”
This is the same with the state-sponsored hate in the territorial standoff with China — which goes both ways for our government and China’s as well.
Its main purpose is to deceptively rally the people to national unity by exaggerating a foreign threat. We know it’s not genuine patriotism since we clearly see a double standard: We are made to hate China for its claim of our territories and resources, but we are silent on the permanent presence of US forces in our country and the rapes, wars and pollution they have brought upon us.
We are made to hate Thomas van Beersum for speaking out against injustice in our country when thousands upon thousands of Filipinos can’t even begin to gather enough courage and sense to decry the screwed up lives we are living in. Precisely because the government wants more Filipinos who can’t grow a spine, like docile lambs to the slaughter.
These spectacles are in fact no different from the government glorifying a Manny Pacquiao victory, or in case of defeat, channeling the national mourning over a Manny Pacquiao defeat. The same applies to victories by the Philippine Azkals, Gilas Pilipinas, and whatever incident that sparks extreme patriotism but does nothing to address the long-standing structural problems of hunger, poverty, lack of social services and plunder of our resources that we collectively face.
This “jingoism” is just one in the Aquino government’s arsenal of gimmickry to suppress discontent and cover up state incompetence and fascism. But this much is clear: governance under the Aquino regime has been nothing but a huge communication plan replete with PR gimmickry, discombobulating half-truths and even emotional distractions trying to whitewash its flaws, mistakes and crimes.