Was the driver’s actions racist, or is there more to this story?
Today’s society seems to be obsessed with judging people just by the way they look, speak and/or dress. People begin to stereotype others which lead to conflict. Today, racism is widespread and often ignored. There are even some people who dislike people of their same race. The sad part about racism is that only a few people step up and defend those who are being bullied and discriminated against.
A set of photos went viral on Facebook, showing a native Igorot man wearing a Bahag, a traditional loincloth often worn by many Cordillerans, waiting for a bus—and was denied a ride for some reason.
According to user Dhrins Laurente Napeek, he saw the old man waiting for a bus, and was shocked when the man was the only one left before the bus sped off.
Contrary to what other news sites wrote about the story, the man wasn’t going home. Instead, he was supposed to visit a patient in Villasis or Rosales, but was allegedly denied a ride.
Napeek believes the man was denied a ride because of how he was dressed, sparking outrage from netizens. However, according to a post by a woman who claimed to be on the bus, the bus was already full, with many people already standing inside the bus, making it impossible for the man to fit in.
The bus company also responded to the inquiries thrown at them, and promised to conduct an investigation regarding the incident.
What is a Bahag?
Bahag is a loincloth that was commonly used throughout the Philippines before the arrival of European colonizers, and which is used by some indigenous tribes of the Philippines today – most notably the Cordillerans in Northern Luzon.
It is basically a hand-loomed piece of long cloth that is wrapped around a man’s middle. The design of the weave is often unique to the tribe of the person wearing the Bahag, much like the Celtic Tartans were.