Why Aren’t People Convinced By Facts and Reason?

As the war against COVID-19 wages in hospitals, government offices, and empty streets, a different battle is being played out in the news, on social media, and in our minds and hearts. Early insights show that citizens in the US differed in how they would personally act on COVID-19 based on their political leaning, with … Continue reading Why Aren’t People Convinced By Facts and Reason?

Perception, Reality and Cohesive Societies

I read an article many years ago that mentioned the stereotype of the Filipino maid in Singapore. The article started with, "One of Singapore's most popular comic characters happens to be a Filipino maid called Leticia Bongnino." I mulled this strange thought as I sat across the President of Singapore, Halimah Yacob, for dinner. If … Continue reading Perception, Reality and Cohesive Societies

Two Worlds: Growing Up Both Muslim and Catholic in the Philippines

I've always said that my feet step in two worlds. In one world, I inherited the Catholic heritage of my father, a native of Zamboanga, a former seminarian, and the person who had always reminded me to keep, in Chavacano, el temor de dios. Fear of God. In another world, I wear this hijab in … Continue reading Two Worlds: Growing Up Both Muslim and Catholic in the Philippines

Why the Bangsamoro Organic Law Will Not Be Enough

Today, President Rodrigo Duterte signed the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL). Well and good. Coming from a family with roots from Sulu and Zamboanga, I understand why Muslim Filipinos have long struggled for autonomy. I now hope - along with most others - that the BOL becomes a concrete step in attaining peace. With the involvement … Continue reading Why the Bangsamoro Organic Law Will Not Be Enough

Youth as Protagonists in Preventing Violent Extremism

I am honored to have represented Extremely Together during the "Youth as Protagonists in Preventing Violent Extremism" panel at the first-ever United Nations High-Level Conference on Counter-Terrorism held in June in New York.┬áThe event was made possible by the Global Community Engagement and Resilience Fund (GCERF) and the delegation of the State of Qatar to … Continue reading Youth as Protagonists in Preventing Violent Extremism