This month, Davao is celebrating the Kadayawan Festival, and like many festivals here, celebrities usually come and do something. One of these celebrities was Ramon Bautista, not sure if you’ve heard of him, I haven’t, anyway, he’s a famous comedian here in the Philippines. He performed here in Davao last week and it didn’t go too well.
During his performance, he made a joke about the people (specifically the women of Davao, I believe), calling them “Hipon” or “Prawns”, and it’s not like in the States where “Shrimp”‘ is a term for “weak”, here it’s a term used for an ugly woman who has a sexy body. Needless to say, Davao didn’t like that joke/insult. I think he crossed the line there. He apologized afterwards, in public I might add, but for some people that wasn’t enough. The Davao City Council said that his apology wasn’t sincere and that he should stay away from Davao for now, and that he’s not welcome here.
I personally think it’s excessive… Very excessive. To actually ban someone for a joke. Even if it did cross the line and was basically an insult, which I don’t think was meant to be that way. Me and my friends joke about each other a lot, it’s all just good fun. Someone on Twitter actually said something that I find fits this situation well, “Sana di na lang sila nag-invite ng comedian kung ayaw nila makarinig ng JOKE. It’s like inviting a magician pero ayaw naman pala maloko.” (You shouldn’t have invited a comedian if you didn’t want to hear a JOKE. It’s like inviting a magician, but you don’t want to be tricked.”). They could have thought of something else, or just have been happy with the apology… A lot of Davaoenos were, they just let it slide and support Ramon Bautista…
It’s not like he isn’t the only comedian who uses insults as jokes, just check out Russel Peters or Gabriel Iglesias, they make jokes about people but they’re funny. It’s not even like he stole something or committed a crime, he told a joke which came out as an insult… Oh no, ban him from the city.
Still, Ramon has been pretty cool about being banned, saying that he’ll respect the decision and abide by it. A lot of people have also been tweeting that he doesn’t deserve it, and that’s he’s a really cool and nice guy, and by the number of people who support him, I’m inclined to believe them.
To end this, was it a wrong move? Yes, it was wrong and disrespectful. Did he apologize? Yes. So what’s the problem? The guy made a mistake and said he’s sorry. Now, Davao is looking like a joke to the whole nation because of it’s response. We need to just relax for a minute and consider a few things:
- He’s a comedian, it was meant as a joke
- He seems like a nice guy, nice enough to apologize.
Next year, invite someone else, a clown maybe