Saturday, March 31, 2012

Jessica Sanchez--Fil Am Proud

Jessica Sanchez is now on the top eight---seven notches to go before the finale. This early, American Idol judges have predicted that she's a strong contender along with Colton Dixon, whose last performance was equally amazing. Many people think that Jessica's chances are at best fifty-fifty for one reason: the presumption that "white America" will not vote solidly behind an "Asian". This is a lingering perception which I want to discourage. 

I think America has learned to accept that their vast country is not just for "whites" but for everyone. The United States were established upon the strong foundations of democracy, and as a democracy, every single one is equal before the law and before the eyes of those who accept American culture.

Since the dawn of human civilization, there has never been a freer country than the United States. I am no stooge--I am just telling the truth. Of course, some would debate me about the level of freedom or liberality the United States gives to its citizens, but no one would ever dispute the fact that when it comes to individual rights, the government goes beyond its mandate just for its protection.

Jessica was born and raised in the United States by a Filipina mother and a Mexican of a father who serves the United States military. Jessica is a full-bodied American. Jessica's citizenship is American. Her blood, however, bears both Filipino and Mexican blood.

Filipino and Mexican--both races came under the colonial rule of America. During the Spanish times here, Filipinos and Mexicans were linked culturally. 

American Idol judges ask---where does Jessica gets the "angst" in her voice? She's already technically excellent but there is something still entirely Jessica's--the rich tone which evokes imagery and feelings when she sings.

Well, credit that to daily experience as a member of the minority group. Every single day, as what Jessica admitted, she and her family struggles. 

Her struggle is not just about livelihood---she struggles for recognition from the society where she was born. 

Her experience is not different from millions of others born and raised and living every single day in America. Many of them try to accept the perception of being "minority" or being "second class" citizens even those born and raised in America.

Credit that to a society which sees color as akin to financial status. However, the steady rise of minorities in the arts is helping improve the perception of many about skin and ability and talent.

Hence, for me, American Idol must rename itself, since it is becoming not just for "white America" but for every body. Or, probably, re-define the term "American" to mean "global citizens." Peoples of America must see themselves not just US citizens but global citizens united under the banner of democracy.