BAGUIO CITY – Thousands of Igorots in the different parts of the world are now up in arms against Senator Gordon for his alleged racial slur against their fellow Igorots who were described as beggars.
The video of Senator Gordon describing Igorots as such went viral in the social media over the past several days got the ire of netizens who bashed the senator for his discriminatory remarks against the Igorots he made during a public hearing of the Senate committee on government corporation and public enterprises on a proposed bill that seeks to create the Baguio-La Trinidad-Itogon-Sablan-Tuba-Tublay Development Authority (BLISTTDA) several months ago.
“You know where the Igorots are? They are now going down like the Aetas to make palimos because Baguio is already deteriorated,” Senator Gordon told former La Trinidad Mayor Edna C. Tabanda during the said public hearing.
Some netizens criticized Senator Gordon for such uncalled-for remarks depicting the Igorots as beggars when in fact, numerous Igorots have gone down to the lowlands and bought properties which they are now tilling to earn a living, contrary to Gordon’s depiction of the Igorots as beggars.
The netizens also criticized Rep. Mark Go for his failure to defend the Igorots during the public hearing as he did nothing to correct the perception of Senator Gordon against the Igorots and prevent former Mayor Tabanda from being unduly interrupted by the lawmaker for her to voice out her concern on the proposed law.
The netizens urged different local governments in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) to pass the necessary legislations to denounce Senator Gordon’s malicious allegations against the Igorots for the lawmaker not to repeat the same derogatory statements against the indigenous peoples (IPs) who are peacefully living and making their livelihood in the highlands and other parts of the country.
The netizens demanded that Senator Gordon issue a public apology on his unsavoury remarks to help in easing the anger of the Igorots on such insulting statements.
While the netizens understand that the derogatory statements were issued during an official proceedings of a Senate committee, the netizens claimed that lawmakers should act with utmost decency and not to put to shame their resource persons who have travelled for hours just to participate in their hearings but only to be unduly interrupted in the delivery of their positions on issues being brought to the committee for appropriate action and for possible legislation of applicable laws.
The netizens asserted that it is unfortunate that Igorots are being likened to beggars when a lot of them are actually learned and professionals who are gainfully employed locally and overseas.