Pinay Uprising: Getting Woke

I stumbled upon what I thought was just a nice afternoon show celebrating Filipina women artists but ended up in the what turned out to be an activists’ meeting. I should’ve gotten a hint from the title of the show, of course – “Pinay Uprising.” But it wasn’t just some generic feminist gathering, in fact, it honed in on something super specific – the Philippines. The event was meant to foster “empowerment in the Filipino community and advocate for women’s rights.” The organizers of the event were Malaya: a US Movement Against Killings and Dictatorship and for Democracy in the Philippines. According to the organizers, the name “MALAYA” (Filipino for “free”) seeks not only to broaden opposition from the U.S. to fascism but also to broaden U.S.-based support for the cause of freedom and democracy in the Philippines.

Performers at “Pinay Uprising” included: Giselle “G” Tongi, Arianna Basco, Minerva Vier, and Ruby Ibarra.

Each speaker opened my eyes to the plight of my kababayans (countrymen) and it was shocking. During the Q&A portion, I couldn’t help but reveal “I am a real Orange County housewife and I didn’t even know “this” (extrajudicial kilings etc) was happening.” It made me sad and mad, it made me feel helpless, as well, being so far away. But there is always something we can do to help. Learn more at