It's 2019. We Need To Call Out Sexist Statements Like This!

This is unacceptable.
PHOTO: Facebook/TANGINA THIS!

On Sunday, June 16, Facebook group Tangina This! posted photos of a car with this statement written in bold, black letters:

"Nangunguha ng may malaking suso"

In English, this roughly translates to: "Will abduct those with big boobs."

Publicly writing such a sexist, disrespectful, and crude statement is NOT OKAY. 

The Toyota Fortuner is on consignment with Marcars Trading and Services Corp., a business that buys and sells cars. 

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The Facebook post stated that it was spotted at Eton Centris, an office and commercial building near EDSA and Quezon Avenue. It’s within the vicinity of the Marcars business address, which is along P. Tuazon in Quezon City.

In the caption, one can read: “Baka may gustong magpaabot sa Centris admin at sa Quezon City LGU na may ganitong palabas sa kanilang [area], nagpapakalat ng kulturang macho, bastos, at anti-kababaihan. MARCARS ang [establishment na] lantarang nambabastos ng mga babae sa lugar na ito.

"Isa ito sa mga dahilan bakit hindi maramdaman ng mga babaeng ligtas sila sa lansangan. Ipinapalaganap ng ganitong palabas ang kamacho-hang nambabastos, nandadahas, at nagkakait ng mga karapatan sa kababaihan."

It is never a joke. Because there will always be impressionable minds that will not understand that it is one.

The original post, which has received over 800 comments and 400 shares as of this writing, quickly turned into a heated discussion with political undertones, but one thing's for certain: Publicly writing such a sexist, disrespectful, and crude statement is NOT OKAY. 

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Cosmopolitan reached out to Marc Martinez, 32, owner and president of Marcars Trading and Services Corp., to ask him about the car in question.

"It's a consignment car [for] me, my business is about buying and selling cars, so I'm selling it for my friend," Marc explained. "The sticker on the side started [around] two weeks ago for the Bumper To Bumper car show held in Metrowalk. I was supposed to join the show, I got five slots, I was supposed to enter five cars, but [my family] went out of town, so nag-back out ako. Nung nalaman ng friends ko na nag-back out ako, [they asked for my slot], and then ima-market na lang nila yung business nila, which is a sticker shop, [along with mine]."

Marc lent the Toyota Fortuner upon his friend's request. "Ang mali ko naman, 'di ba, nauso [recently] yung 'nangunguha ng tsismosa?' [Sabi nila], 'Boss, lagyan natin ito ng medyo kakaiba. Nangunguha ng malaking something.' Kasi raw malaki yung car, so dapat may word na malaki."

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They eventually came up with the "Nangunguha ng may malaking suso" statement, which Marc admittedly gave the go signal for.

"They cleared the statement with me to be honest with you. Nag-oo talaga ako, kasi ako naman yung may-ari, e. Pero sabi ko, 'Bro, parang hindi ako at ease, ha. Before that car was released to me, sabi ko, 'Kabitan niyo ng something para hindi masyadong garapal. Sabi ko hindi ako papayag ng ganyan unless you put something to neutralize it. So naisip nila, lagyan kaya natin ng 'Rated SPG: Striktong Patnubay At Gabay.' Sabi ko, 'Sige lakihan niyo ha, gusto ko sa buong bintana.' So they did it. Ako naman, parang ayokong pumayag, and since ginawan nila ng solusyon, napa-oo na lang din ako."

After the show, the car was brought back to him, and Marc noticed that people were taking pictures of it, so he didn't remove the sticker immediately, despite his wife's advice. Soon, another organizer asked him if he could display his cars in Eton Centris for Father's Day. 

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That's how the Toyota Fortuner ended up in Eton Centris on Saturday, June 15. On Father's Day, June 16, Marc saw the backlash online and got a call from the event organizers. He took immediate action, retrieved the car, and removed the sticker on Sunday afternoon. 

Marc explained, "Ang naging problem ko dito kaya hindi ko natanggal agad is it was Father's Day. Ina-admit ko naman na may mali ako, ina-admit ko rin naman na, kung baga alam ko naman na may chance na mangyari ito, dapat pinigilan ko na noong una.

"My mistake is in-allow ko yun, since [the meme was] uso, but I think it went too far. Na hindi na naging maganda."

Cosmopolitan asked Marc if he had anything to say to the people—particularly women—who were offended by the sign:

"Kung may natamaan akong female, or may hindi magandang dating sa kanila, I'm sorry. I'm not a bad person. Edukadong tao naman ako, so if I made a mistake, definitely I'm going to say sorry. Next time around, I'll be more careful with anything that I'm going to approve. Sa mga nakabasa [or] hindi maganda ang dating sa inyo, syempre talagang magso-sorry po talaga ako. Hindi ko sinasadya to give that feeling [to] them. Of course, naiintindihan ko po naman yun, and I'm sorry."

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Misinformation and honest mistakes aside, this serves as a lesson for everyone to think twice before saying or writing something as sexist as "Nangunguha ng may malaking suso."  

There are three major reasons we should continue to call this type of behavior out:

  1. It is not a compliment, and never will be. Like catcalling, it is a form of sexual harassment because it perpetuates rape and violence. It dehumanizes people and supports the idea that one gender only exists for another's pleasure. It is also a gateway to physical harassment. If you send the message that verbal OR WRITTEN harassment is justifiable, you are telling people that all forms of harassment are excusable. 
  2. Messages like this put the focus on objectifying people. It also teaches people, women in particular, to be conscious of what they wear and to shoulder the blame for any disrespect they receive. Remember: It doesn't matter what outfit someone wears; harassment is caused by the harasser, not a plunging neckline or big boobs.
  3. It is NEVER A JOKE. Because there will always be impressionable minds that will not understand that it is one, and will continue to believe that it is okay to talk about bodies as if they're only to be toyed with. This leads to rape culture, where rape becomes normalized due to societal attitudes about gender and sexuality. That "Uy, sexy!" comment so pervasive in our society can easily become something dangerous years down the line. 
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