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Uncensored by MANUEL L. MORATÓ

I have a suggestion to beauty contest candidates such as Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss International and the like that if they are of mixed blood and are running as Philippine candidates/representatives, they should put more emphasis on their Filipino family names.

For example, when Pia Wurtzbach won as Miss Universe about three years ago, her foreign name Wurtzbach had more emphasis than her mother’s maiden name Alonzo.  Many abroad thought that Miss Germany won.

I am saying this if more emphasis could somehow be put on the Filipino surname of the mother since the candidate is representing the Philippines.

For the organizer, give it a thought for there are many people here and abroad who think that we are harvesting beauties who are mestizas (or half breed) born abroad and are citizens of another country and the only link to the country is the Filipina mother.  There is no problem if it’s the other way around – meaning to say, born of a Filipino father who married an American, British, German, French, Italian wife.  The daughter will surely carry a Filipino name of the father.  That would erase the doubt that the daughter entering a beauty contestant is “local,” as the saying goes.  And may I say that when I saw the parents of Catriona on TV, her Filipina mother’s beauty was more pronounced, enhanced by the foreign features of the father who is not bad looking either in his younger days.

So, long as it may be, or short at times like Filipino surnames or maiden names such as Cruz, Sison, Garay, Rico, Lopez, Moran, Diaz, Montes, or any other Filipino sounding surnames would give more honor to the Philippines, the country that they represent.

It would be better if our new Miss Universe Catriona Gray could add her mother’s maiden and Filipino name “Magnayon;” and for Pia Wurtzbach to also put emphasis on her mother’s maiden name, Alonzo.  In Spain, the mother’s surname comes last.  For example, Pia Wurtzbach Alonzo; or Catriona Gray Magnayon.

Let’s hear more about Catriona being formally introduced as Catriona Magnayon Gray; and for Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach referred to in her real and true and full name.  No need to abbreviate.  Let the whole world know their real selves.  That would identify them more with the country they represented at mas parang Filipinong-Filipino ang dating!

If this is not taken cared of, soon our beauty queens would appear like our basketball imported stars, black or white.  Our people will always think of them as foreign imports hired by the local companies simply to win for the team.  But where is the patriotism?

Let the foreigners twist their tongues if they cannot pronounce “Magnayon” or “Alonzo” which I think are easy enough to pronounce.  And if it is difficult for some, just call the Miss Universe “Cat,” “Pia,”… from the Philippines as their reigning queens.  If the people worldwide could refer to Miss Universe of Thailand in 1965, Aspara Hongsakula (whom I’ve met in a gathering of the Bachelor’s Club of the Philippines here in Manila), tell me how many more difficult names to pronounce there are from India, Myanmar, Nepal and some Nordic countries of Europe.  For those with stiff tongues, go by an abbreviated nickname.  No abbreviated nickname can drown out a reigning Miss Universe even the label on her “Lava Walk” identifies Catriona.  Then call her Lava of the Mayon Volcano where her mother truly comes from.

We have to do something now before we get to be known as a country of “imported goods.”  That would be a demerit to our local and native beauties which there are so many.  Unfortunately, with not so much exposures and sufficient education to back them up for that counts a lot too in these beauty and brains competition.

I am just thinking out loud!

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