San Pedronian vs. San Pedrense, Part 3

san pedronian vs. san pedrenseThis post is another addition to the debate about “San Pedronian vs. San Pedrense”. I really never thought that this discussion would inspire such passionate opinions from a few of our residents. But it seems that it has.

This  post is another comment sent to me by the same anonymous letter sender I referred to in this post: San Pedronian vs. San Pedrense: Another Open Letter. Now, before you go on reading that post, you must first read the letter  that inspired it, which is published in full here: Who Are We: San Pedronian vs. San Pedrense. I suggest that you read both posts as well as the comments because they are really insightful.

I also want to encourage you to read Ms. Elizabeth Medina’s post about this issue on her blog, With One Past. Her post “San Pedronian? Really?” is another well-written addition to this debate.

Without further ado, here’s the comment:

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Veronica,

Para sa ginoong sumulat sa ating alkalde, hindi naging malinaw na ang posisyon ko sa isyung ito’y parehong may tamang pinagbabatayan ang San Pedrense at San Pedronian sa impluwensyang Kastila at Amerikano. At hindi naging malinaw sa naturang manunulat na kasama rin sa intensyon ko ang palaganapin ang paggamit ng San Pedrense; iyon nga lamang ay hindi ko mahihigitan ang kanyang pagpupunyagi bilang pasimuno ng usaping ito?

Pambihira. Matapos kong sabihing dapat siyang papurihan bilang pasimuno ng usapin ng paggamit ng San Pedrense ay kabaligtaran naman ang sukli niya sa akin. Paano ang gagawin niya kung posisyon ko rin ang huwag hamakin ang paggamit ng San Pedronian? Sinabi ko nang mas ginagamit ko ang San Pedrense, kung bakit hindi niya ako itinuring na kasangga sa usaping ito?

Ano ang itinatawa niya sa paggamit ng San Pedronian? At sa kanyang pagtawa, hindi ba iyon nangangahulugan ng paghamak niya sa mga hindi gumagamit ng San Pedrense? Tahimik siya sa kaugnay na halimbawang Manileño vs. Manilan. Busy man siya o hindi, kailangan pa rin niyang ipagpatuloy ang kanyang sinimulang usapin. May katapusan naman ang lahat ng ito at alam niya iyon dahil manunulat siya. At swerte niya sa libreng espasyong ipinagkakaloob ng blog na ito.

Kwestiyonable ang aking bukas-liham pagka’t una sa lahat ay hindi ako nagpapakilala hanggang sa isinusulat ko ang komentong ito. Kwestiyonable man, ito’y hindi nangangahulugang walang kwenta sa mga mambabasa ng usaping ito; ni hindi rin ituturing nilang tanging ang mga nagpapakilala lamang ang may tamang ipinupunto. Dahil dito, Veronica, muli akong nagpapasalamat (1) sa espasyong ibinigay mo sa iyong malawak at patuloy pang lumalawak na blog, at (2) sa paggalang mo sa desisyon kong huwag lumantad sa usaping ito na bagamat may iniuusad ay nananatili pa ring hindi aktwal na kaso o kontrobersiya kung saan walang deklaradong aktwal na perwisyo at posibilidad ng perwisyo sa hinaharap (read: justiciable controversy).

Veronica, dati ang sabi niya ay hindi lang mali kundi maling-mali ang San Pedronian. Matapos siyang makabasa ng interaksyon, hindi na ngayon kasi raw: “Tama rin ang San Pedronian. Kaya lamang…” Sabay banggit ng problema niya sa mga ipinunto ko at kung anu-ano pang pinoproblema niya. Pero tanggap ko pa rin naman ang bagong pangyayari sa posisyon niya tulad din ng pagtanggap ng maraming lipunan sa minsanang pabagu-bagong desisyon ng kanila mismong mga Kataas-taasang Hukuman. Nangyayari iyon. Ewan ko lang sa pasimuno ng usaping ito kung tanggap niya sa sarili niya na nagbago ang posisyon niya. Kung hindi niya tanggap na nabutasan siya, huwag siyang mag-alala pagkat wala akong babawiing pagsaludo sa kanyang posisyong gamitin ang San Pedrense lalo pa’t patuloy niya raw itong pamumunuan matapos niyang sabihing hindi nagwawakas ang aksyon niya sa liham niya sa alkalde; katunayan nga’y pasimula pa lang naman daw iyon.

Mga karagdagan (walang nabago) sa aking posisyong parehong may tamang pinagbabatayan ang San Pedrense at San Pedronian, at hindi popular ang San Pedrense kaya palaganapin natin ito:

Sa pagpapalaganap ba ng San Pedrense, kailangan pang mamroblema sa San Pedronian? Sagot: Siyempre, maling mali iyon.

Sa aasahan nating pagpapalaganap sa pamumuno ni Ginoong Alas, hindi ba nararapat lamang na magtapos ito sa mahusay na pagtuturo ng kasaysayan ng San Pedro na may kinalaman/kaugnayan sa naunang demonym nila lolo’t lola at ng ating mga ninuno? Sagot: Oo, nararapat lamang na sa ganun magtapos, at huwag ipagpilitan ang ating pribadong aspirasyon.

Dahil ba San Pedronian ang gamit ng “iba” kay Ginoong Alas, kung kaya’t gusto nilang palitan at gawing Saint Peter o kung ano pang pangalan ang bayan ng San Pedro? Sagot: Not necessarily (hindi awtomatikong ganun ang pakahulugan).

Habang ipinagtatanggol – makatwirang ipinagtatanggol – ni Ginoong Alas ang pang-Kastilang demonym ng San Pedro, nabanggit niyang ang wikang Inggles ay “papalubog/papahina” na. Totoo. Pero para sa mga Pilipino sa lahat mang dako ng mundo, hindi lang sa Pilipinas, ito’y ituturing na masamang balita. Pero hindi kasing sama ng lumang balita na ang Espanyol ay hindi na opisyal na wika ng Pilipinas dahil niratipika natin ang Saligang-Batas noong 1987 na nagsasabing ang ating mga opisyal na wika ay (1) Filipino at, maliban kung itadhana ng batas, (2) Inggles. Konstitusyunal pa rin ang pagpo-“promote” ng Espanyol (at Arabic) subalit boluntaryo at opsyonal, hindi opisyal.

Kaya sa alegasyong “un-Filipino” ang may kaugnayan sa paggamit ng San Pedronian, ha?

Kaya sa sinasabi ni Ginoong Alas na “I may accept the demonym ‘San Pedronian’ only if it stands side by side with ‘San Pedrense’ which is not happening,” ha? Saka, sana maliwanagan ang mga mambabasa kung papaano ‘yung “side by side”; makabubuti kung makapagbibigay-halimbawa siya ng ganun. Kung hindi, subukan kong intindihin at tumawa siya kung mali ang pagkakaintindi ko. Baka… baka ganito ang kanyang ibig ipakaintindi: Kung may “Search for Outstanding San Pedronian” kang mababasa sa gusali ng munisipyo, meron ka ring mababasa doon na “San Pedrense.” At kung hinihingi ng espasyo na magbawas ng characters/words, di pa rin natin alam kung paano dedesisyunan ang kondisyong “side by side.”

Kaya gayon na lamang din ang limitasyon ko sa promosyon ng San Pedrense; mahirap nang tumbasan ang pagpupunyagi ng pasimuno ng usaping ito. Kung baga sa social networking site, mukhang hanggang “like” lang ako sa kabila ng paniniwala kong ito ang katumbas na demonym sa Espanyol at San Pedronian naman sa Inggles.
Meron akong tinutukoy sa sinasabi nilang pagsasalarawan sa ating bansa – “300 years in the convent” (pamamalagi ng mga Kastila) at ang “50 years in Hollywood” (pamamalagi ng mga Kano). Isang partida: Sa kabila ng mas matagal na pamamalagi ng mga Kastila ay hindi nagpadaig ang mga Kano; katunayan nito ay ang kaugnay na mga halimbawang Manilan vs. Manileño, saka San Pedronian vs. San Pedrense. Dahil dito’y sinasabi ko ring imateryal nang pag-usapan kung dapat pa bang itama ang umano’y mali sa paggamit ng San Pedronian.

Nakalulungkot bang isipin na ang San Pedronian ay mina-mali – ewan ko lang kung patuloy pang pagtatawanan – nang isang bihasa sa maliit na aspeto ng kasaysayan? Maaari. At mas nakalulungkot bang isipin kung iuugnay pa ito sa kawalang-galang sa pinanggalingan? Maaari rin. Pero alam kong hindi ako nag-iisa na may pang-tapat sa naturang tawa ni Ginoong Pepe Alas gaya ng:

“Wapakels” (A Pinoy slang for “I don’t care”).

San Pedronian vs. San Pedrense, Part 2

San Pedronian vs. San PedrenseMore than three months ago, I received permission from Mr. Pepe Alas to publish his letter to Mayor Calixto R. Cataquiz about using San Pedrense instead of San Pedronian to refer to the people of San Pedro, Laguna.  He gave a historic and compelling argument that made me change the title and header image of this blog.

Now, I received another letter in response to Alas’ own. It was sent to my email by a reader who wants to remain anonymous. Again, I am publishing the letter in its entirety, unedited. I hope it sparks conversation among us, the people of San Pedro.

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Hello Veronica,

Thank God I chanced to re-visit your site! Your blog about who we are – San Pedronian or San Pedrense – has been so insightful you needed to arrive at a wise decision to change the name of your blog and its header image.

Wait. I’m afraid my premise differs from that of the historian-letter sender. I wouldn’t be surprised if nothing has been done officially endorsing San Pedrense in a dire attempt to “correct the old mistake.”

Considering the utter lack of importance of this matter of speech involving practically all people of San Pedro, Laguna (its overseas people included), any jumping into conclusion bears nothing at all. Yet add my two cents I must, to avoid being accused of mocking my place’s identity and dishonoring its history because I also believe in the Filipino saying, “Ang hindi lumingon sa pinanggalingan ay hindi makararating sa paroroonan.”

Let me tell you two points:

  1. Both San Pedrense and San Pedronian are correct.
  2. San Pedrense isn’t popularly used in San Pedro, Laguna so let’s promote it.

The letter-writer’s noble intention and his interest for a correction are very laudable. But when he agreed that San Franciscan is one who resides in San Francisco, he couldn’t have said San Pedronian is a wrong that needs to be rectified. Assuming that people of the USA are forever allowed to say it since San Franciscans are people of San Francisco, California, USA following his argument, allowing USA-based members of a San Pedronians club to say that they are San Pedronians forever are simply out of the question. And we are forever allowed to also follow American influences as much as we have some unobjectionable Spanish dictates.

The Philippines had 50 years in Hollywood and 300 years in the convent, so why not simply and unperturbedly view San Pedronian and San Pedrense as correct on all accounts?

Linguistically and from a socio-cultural standpoint, San Pedronian is a big mistake, according to the letter sender. Never. In fact, we cannot afford to lose that demonym just because San Pedro is Spanish that has San Pedrense as the equivalent Spanish demonym. Spanish is promoted only on an optional and voluntary basis but our official languages are Filipino and, unless provided by law, English (not Spanish). It follows, therefore, that the San Pedronian demonym is here to stay.

One need not be a language expert or require him to take advanced courses from Spanish to English and from legal writing to creative writing for him to appreciate the correctness of San Pedronian. He only knows San Pedronian as a proper noun, that’s it. We have private aspirations to let a resident know he is a San Pedrense, let’s all feel free to inform and educate him about it. But at the end of the day, the public has the right to decide for or against our private aspirations.

Veronica, mga San Pedrense tayo (Veronica, we are San Pedronians). We truly are, we would feel relaxed and unperturbed on such usage. BTW, I have used San Pedrense more than San Pedronian in my entire life. I also use “taga-San Pedro” and “tubong San Pedro” as compared to the letter sender’s “taal…”

How the letter-writer can argue with the English proper noun’s typical evolution is unfortunate. San Pedrense versus San Pedronian is just like Italyano/Italiano versus Italian, Amerikano/Americano versus American, Pilipino versus Filipino, Indiyano/Indiano versus Indian, Kastila/Spaniard versus Spanish, Israelita versus Israelite/Israeli, Mehikano/Mexicano versus Mexican, Aprikano/Africano versus African, Tsino/Intsik/Tsinoy/Chino versus Chinese, Koreyano/Koreano versus Korean, Romano versus Roman and many more, we don’t have right or wrong choices. That’s it.

Let nouns evolve (of course, with some restrictions). Let proper nouns evolve as well. But with a demonym, which is a mere sample of an upshot of evolution of words, gradually becoming an object of major queries would have consequences far more than simply academic. I would rather side with those agents of academic success; I consider the need to correct San Pedronian, Manilan, and the rest, as moot anyway.

When the late artist Francis Magalona said in part “Ako’y Manileño, taga-Mandaluyong” in one of his hit rap-songs, we allowed ourselves to be under Mga Kababayan’s leverage. That’s it. Need I say more on the relaxed feeling when we keep on singing this rap-song? Nobody cared to check where he was from, either Manila or Mandaluyong.

Contrary to the letter sender’s research, San Pedronian is accepted in its English form by people in the United States and other countries based on my Internet research. I even asked some of my American friends about it and they all verbally confirmed its correctness though, interestingly, one pronounced it as “San-Paydro-nian” and the two “San-Peedro-nian.” Also, “Pedronians” in the search engine entries could be treated as “San Pedronians” after sorting out such entries with reference to the demonym for the people of San Pedro.

How about questioning the letter sender’s being a Filipino with his spelling of “alcalde” and his phrases “dito sa Filipinas” and “tayong mga Filipino” and many other Spanish words he mentioned despite their being popularly spelled the Filipino way to follow his logic? I tell you, “mayor” hasn’t been popularly spelled as “alcalde” in one of its Filipino versions since the 1987 Philippine constitution, and same cases with his two three-word phrases. Check with average grade-schoolers, chances are they would have the guts to say that these were wrong and should have been spelled as “dito sa Pilipinas,” “tayong mga Pilipino” and “alkalde.”

San Pedrense versus San Pedronian? It’s a non-issue to the people of San Pedro, Laguna in particular and the Filipino people in the Philippines and abroad in general.