Does Janella Salvador Deserve The Backlash AKA Why Are Women Crucified For Bravely Saying No?

Does Janella Salvador Deserve The Backlash AKA Why Are Women Crucified For Bravely Saying No?

Saying “no” is considered more as a privilege than a right



On very many—maybe too many—occasions, society considers a woman to be empowered only if she’s respectful, conforming and pleasing. Otherwise, she is labeled rude and tactless regardless of the reason. And the latest example of this is Janella Salvador, who recently received massive online backlash for simply saying “no.”


Quick background: the 26-year-old Star Magic artist graced noontime program It’s Showtime to promote her upcoming film with Thai actor Win Metawin, Under Parallel Skies. While on the live program, Janella brought up her upcoming 10th anniversary concert—which then prompted one of the hosts, Kim Chiu, to ask for a “sample.” Janella, however, refused to sing, reasoning that her voice was unwell at the moment.


As she puts it, “Paos ako, kayo na lang (My voice is hoarse right now, you guys sing). Next time, promise!”



Ano kaya ang say ng mga madlang people sa pag guest ni Janella Salvador and Win sa Showtime? Nang sinabihan sya na mag sample sa mga audience biglang napasabo na “Paos ako kayo nalang” Kaloka! #janellasalvador #showtime #fyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy #foryou #fyp? #viral #fyp

? original sound – REALTALK LANG – REALTALK LANG


Right away, Janella’s remark gained steam online, with many netizens vilifying and labeling her as disrespectful. Almost immediately, hate was projected—even her son Jude got dragged into the narrative—and she was put under the daunting light of slut-shaming.


But the question is: Was she really rude for doing so? The answer is as simple as no. Does she deserve the hate? Definitely not.


Even Janella, herself, is aware that there was nothing wrong with what she did. She isn’t one to apologize for setting a valid boundary, and she finds resolve in knowing that not everyone has to agree.



So why the backlash?

In an industry that still pressures females to fit a certain mold and to uphold a manicured image, even expecting them to always say yes, it is still always revolutionary—intimidating even—to see women steadfastly do the opposite. While some may celebrate these gestures, the act of ruffling a certain pattern will still scare the majority. And in doing so, comments of hate, disbelief and shame follow.


Janella is not the first woman to experience backlash for having strong convictions and standing her ground, and she won’t be the last. Time and again, this vicious cycle permeates deeply across all fields—but particularly in the entertainment scene.


We’ve seen the likes of Greta Thunberg stand up for ecological injustices, with malevolent reactions coming from men who attack her gender and age. Taylor Swift is no exception either, constantly receiving criticism for her dating life and for talking about these experiences in her music.


Just like the popular tag on TikTok, “to be a woman is to perform” confirms that a woman’s worth is only measured by how entertaining she is. It feeds the notion that girls have to tip-toe, walk on eggshells and put their best face forward for the sake of putting on a show. If she fails to perform as expected, there are serious consequences.


We are no stranger to this pattern. Even inanimate objects like the headless statue of Nike (Winged Victory) in Paris and the statue of Liberty in New York are expected to perform, to hold weight on their stillness and just be a wondrous spectacle of glory—nothing more.


And if this is expected of the inanimate, how much more should we expect from Janella, who is talented, pretty and has the freedom to speak her mind?



#duet with @i put mayonnaise on my fries “to be a woman is to perform”

? sonido original – Francisco Reyes



? Think Of Me Once In A While, Take Care – Take Care


The art of saying no

As The Joy of Saying No author Natalie Lue puts it, women are conditioned to say yes to avoid conflict. This is rooted in a deeper concept: that women, as nurturing as they are, should always give and never take. Or if they have to take, they can only take as much as they have already given. Despite its strong chokehold on women, Laura Palumbo of the National Sexual Violence Resource Center in the United States affirms that women can still free themselves by treating refusal as more of a right than a privilege.


Surely, Janella’s refusal sent a message loud and clear—rallying legions of women behind to exercise the same right. From a simple exchange came a simple word that says so much. She said it with so much gusto, sticking to her convictions.


Here’s to hoping we continue to hear “no” more often.



Words Rod Hagen

Art Alexandra Lara

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