On the Uglification of Baguio

One of the slogan’s during the past elections that I like is Jack Cariño’s “Stop the Uglification of Baguio” (we first blogged about Jack here and he has a blog here). I guess I like the slogan because it aptly captures what is happening to the city (its uglification) and provides an answer, i.e., to stop it.

Anyway, as we usually do in this blog, we are uploading comments (in different blog entries) regarding this issue. We do not necessarily agree with the commenters but they bring up important points which are worth mulling over. Here’s one comment from Betelnut:

Betelnut on the uglification of Baguio:
When will these people understand that Baguio is only for 25,000 people yet they want “housing” for the squatters here. To think of it that even before the world war two, Baguio has already reached its maximum capacity. That’s why when more squatters were tolerated, their numbers grew even more because “deforestation” in favor of “free lands” were very favorable to them. Not only that these squatters too are depriving the indigenous people of Baguio their right to ancestral lands… it’s not just the government and the capitalists, these squatters have their share too..especially those who came from other Cordi places. May lupa naman sila dun, bakit nakikisiksik sila dito? Why don’t they just CREATE opportunities for them? Cebu is a good example of a province that rose on their own..without help from Imperial Manila or even the National Government.

It’s internal immigration that destroyed Baguio. You see,during the times when Bagui was dominated by Baguio people(Ibalois and pre war immigrants) life was simple, peaceful and comfortable..when the immigrants came.. everything went haywire.

The once discriminated people are now one of the most progressive in the country. In fact half of the tourists go to the Visayas, Cebu in particular.

That is why I hate Yaranon. He gave the ambulant vendors tolerance permit to sell in the sidewalks. Hello, may stalls naman ang Baguio for the ukay ukay. Why don[‘t these people settle there. Pilipino nga naman..nagrereklamo sa corruption eh sila rin ang corrupt. I mean, unfair naman yung sila binigyan ng tolerance permit tapos yung mga legal stalls ay ang bigat ng bayad sa tax. That’s why I sympathize with the LEGAL meat vendors in the city market. The problem with the lower class naman is that they’re using “poverty” as a front to escape their social responsibilties. Kung ganyan, talgang magiging pooor sila forever kasi they will never know the “art of management”. It’s not that I am against helping the less fortunate..but this is not the right approach. Spoiling them is not the way.

PHOTO CREDIT: Gary Yetter

6 thoughts on “On the Uglification of Baguio”

  1. Maganda ang Baguio kaya lahat gustong tumira at “makisiksik”…

    Ngayong halos apektado na ang lahat sa tinatawag na negatibong economic externalities ng kanya-kanya style at walang planning.
    Panahon na for planful city deconstruction at revitalization.
    Something has to give and the shared ethics will have to govern what gives. [Halimbawa, everyone believes that the city should have morepine trees, almost everyone believes that Baguio is NOT a place for gambling at kolehiyala prostitution and abortion, etc].

    Great for Cebu if they are indeed managing their growth better. Let’s hope most that other Philippine cities are evolving in a more planful way din and learning lessons from Baguio, the country’s oldest and original tourist city.

  2. the politician are to be blame for the uglification of Baguio. They gave way to the organized squatters
    This is what they do. They find a spot, public land. organized themselves.then in the middle of the night build their shanties.While guarding their shanties. They go the the bureau of lands. claiming this is the ancestral land.(actually their from other province) register this
    lands in their name with a backing from a politician.This is copied by
    another group or the same group to another area.

  3. Hi Anonymous,
    Thanks. You kind of voiced out what I feel about the matter. Mostly unplanned growth kasi ang nangyayari sa Baguio. Hey, I like the “shared ethics” thing. Thanks again.

    Hi Brad,
    As elsewhere, the politicians have a part in the problem so we hope that they will also play a part in finding solutions. Thanks 🙂

  4. It is only in Baguio that squatters have mansions or they have the ability to construct such big big houses and apartments in a squatted land…Comparing to manila where squaters can only build houses from garbage…In Baguio squatters are Professionals..

  5. On deconstructing and revitalizing a history-laden city:

    As far as redefining a niche for Baguio as an educational center in the the 21st century, how about the idea of developing it and its neighboring towns as summer/study abroad destination for the international community of learners for all ages.

    I think the time ripe considering that there are now many schools across Northern Philippines that can or should meet the TRADITIONAL regional educational needs that Baguio use to meet (and has caused much of the population boom and infrastructure overload!).

    See http://www.internabroad.com/NewZealand.cfm.

    New Zealand type of offerings is a good example for Baguio and neighboring towns. I think Baguio as it is now can be “retrofited” to a be higher quality global education center of the north.

  6. Hi Nats,
    Hehe. May point ka diyan.

    Hi Anonymous,
    Hey, that’s a good idea. Hope Baguio officials would entertain the suggestion.

    Another idea is to make/promote the city as a honeymoon destination just like Niagara Falls in Canada. I was surprised a few years back when a friend from Mindanao told me that they had their honeymoon in Baguio. Apparently, in the place where he comes from, people dream about having their honeymoon in the city. Thanks.

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