July 22, 2017

AirAsia and that excess baggage called Jamela Alindogan

My gahd! I heyt drahgs.

On July 20th, AirAsia Philippines announced that it would give free baggage allowance of up to 40 kg plus in-flight meals and snacks for Armed Forces personnel assigned to peacekeeping missions.

AirAsia Philippines’ promo was launched after its CEO, Captain Dexter Comendador, witnessed the Bayanihan spirit among Filipinos as passengers of a July 18th AirAsia flight bound to Davao volunteered to take in the excess baggage of soldiers, who were also on the same flight.

One of the passengers, a certain Inday Rakel, said:
“I am blessed to somehow help them with their luggage, and that was a little thank you for the bigger job they are doing. But, we are even blessed to have these men who are ready to die for our freedom, for our land [ABS].”
At a time of extreme political division, stories like these are what this country needs. Here we saw regular Filipinos showing respect and affection to our soldiers who are risking their lives for our freedom, and a company that decides to take that same respect and affection to another level.
Yes, this is one of those moments where we can say, “Ah! I am proud to be a Filipino.”

But wait! Al Jazeera’s Jamela Alindogan won't have any of that shit.

Jamela poops on the parade

On July 21st or just last night, Al Jazeera reporter Jamela Alindogan tweeted:

I don’t get these airlines (sic) giving 40kg to soldiers from Marawi. What are they expected to bring back apart from their own bag of belongings?

Yeah, for all her supposed knowledge about what’s going on in Marawi, she really still had to ask.

One Twitter user who goes by the name Sgt. John Emmanuel Sison, replied:
I am a soldier and an officer of the AFP. Do you have any idea how much our basic deployment packs weigh? Have you carefully read the terms of the perk? Try placing a pair of combat boots in the scale and tell us how much it weighs.
Other Twitter users were not as forgiving, as IAmJennie‏ (@B3A3S0M3) tweeted
You will never get it until you learn the definition of compassion... Pero syempre money talks... Magkano po?
Another user,  Ronald Beldad‏ (@superb_RB) tweeted: 
At least they have something to offer for the soldiers. Eh ikaw anu maooffer mo? Gaga!
I, myself, replied:
Hoy Jamela, papasulubungan ka nila ng utak kaya magpasalamat ka na lang. Choosy ka pa e. Yang pagkamanhid-na-asshole mo na yan ang nagdudulot ng bashing laban sa iyo, tapos mamaya, iiyak ka naman ng bullying. Leche.

Not her first time

I myself do not know how much a soldier’s typical baggage is supposed to weigh. However, what’s important in AirAsia’s gesture is not what the company gave, but its decision to give something, no matter how seemingly insignificant it is.

But Alindogan, despite her supposed journalistic experience, went on to display such an astounding level of callousness that borders on idiocy.

And this is not her first time doing it.

In August 2016, Alindogan published a Facebook status post that reads:
Fifteen soldiers killed. Lives lost. More from the enemy’s side, reportedly. The number is expected to rise in the coming months because President Duterte has called on the Philippine Military to wipe out the Abu Sayyaf. But is it enough? Déjà vu…
Lives lost… Because… Duterte… called on… the… Military… Yes, Alindogan blamed Duterte for the deaths in the operations versus the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf. Is Alindogan high on Rugby? Does she expect the government to do nothing?

Ano, yan, Jamela, may masulat lang?

Of course, she got her fair share of acerbic and extra spicy rebukes from netizens over that stunt.

I can only see two possibilities at this point:

  1. Alindogan is so stupid that she had to commit the same mistake twice, or,
  2. Alindogan is such a famewhore that she needs to court controversy by unnecessarily provoking the grieving public then pulling out the victim card in response.

Alindogan won't admit number 1, so so we are left with number two.

Hence, let's ask, why did Jamela bother posting such stupidity?

Alindogan wants another Swedish Award?

Does Alindogan want another Swedish Foreign Ministry award?

Given a few months after her insipid Abu Sayyaf post, the Swedish Foreign Ministry and UNESCO was recognized for “for defying hate speech and threats, pursuing mission of providing citizens with the information needed to make enlightened decisions about their lives, their communities and their governments.”

I do not understand how taunting the public with mind-boggling callousness qualifies as “providing citizens with information needed to make enlightened decisions”.


Moreover, I also do not understand how online criticism agains Alindogan qualifies as “hate speech”, defined as speech that attacks, threatens, or insults a person or group on the basis of national origin, ethnicity, color, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability.

Unless people are insulting her for her gargantuan pie hole, I do not see how “Jamela, you’re a moron.” qualifies an attack against national origin, ethnicity, color, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability.

But meh, she got the award anyway, so I guess the Abu Sayyaf stunt worked.

So, will it work this time?

Awards mean little

Alindogan tweeted at 8:41 PM Manila, and I expect a deluge of criticism headed toward Alindogan’s way tomorrow morning. So, will this tsunami of criticisms earn her another Swedish Award?

Pathetic. Alindogan can say that the Swedish think she's a great person, but can she say the same about the Filipino people?

Take a look at Krizette Chu, a private citizen who raised over a million pesos to care for the widows of soldiers killed in action in Marawi. She even found ways to provide 40 scholarship grants for the soldiers' orphaned children, and she even maintains a psychological support group of sorts for the widows.

And before you say that I do nothing, my readers and I have already donated P35,000 to the AFP Education Benefit System Office, the agency that helps send soldiers' orphans to school. I sent the amount a few days after the Marawi Clash commenced. 

There are many Filipinos who are trying their darned best to help in their own way. 

Some bought and wore #SupportOurTroops shirts to boost troop morale. Some have sent relief goods to evacuation centers. Some changed their social media profile pictures to show support.

And there's AirAsia, arguably the country's lowest-cost low-cost carrier, sacrificing part of its razor-thin profit margins just to support to our troops.

Here we are, trying to make sense out of the destruction and misery brought by war, and there is Jamela Alindogan, being stupid, as usual.

Jamela, the Excess Baggage

I find it ironic that this entire thing stemmed from the issue of excess baggage. "Excess baggage"
 also serves as an idiom for “any person or thing that is unnecessary or unwanted and thus is or becomes burdensome.”

Alindogan qualifies as excess baggage: her commentaries, both unnecessary and unwanted, have become burdensome because of her relative visibility, thanks to her affiliation with a major news outfit.

I am not against journalists publishing casual posts, but I am against journalists publishing casual posts with little regard for those who are sacrificing their lives for the sake of this nation.

Jamela, you’re stupid and a pathetic award from Sweden does not make you any smarter.

I would like to believe that you have a mental disorder, but I do not want to offend those who genuinely suffer such conditions.

Regardless, Jamela, get tested, please.

P.S. O baka mamaya sasabihin mong binubully kang leche ka. STOP BEING AN ASSHOLE para di ka nakakarma.

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