FILIPINO teens Shibby de Guzman and Bretman Rock Sacayanan made the cut for TIME’s 30 Most Influential Teens of 2017 where they join other teens like Millie Bobby Brown of the hit TV series Stranger Things, emoji proposer and designer Rayouf Alhumedhi, and R&B singer Khalid among many others.
The annual list was published on Thursday, November 2, and featured individuals chosen from across different fields, who have had global impact through social media and through making headlines.
Fourteen-year-old De Guzman got her spot on the list for her activism against Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s deadly war on drugs — a “risky move” as noted by TIME’s Joseph Hincks.
WIth megaphone in hand and a cardboard sign hung around her neck that read, “Lahat tayo posibleng drug pusher” (We are all possible drug pushers), De Guzman led her fellow St. Scholastica’s College Manila high school classmates in a protest rally against former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos’ burial and Duterte’s ongoing drug campaign.
The sign on her neck was akin to the signs often found on slain victims of the drug crackdown which has left thousands dead.
A photograph of the moment went viral on social media where supporters praised De Guzman for speaking out against Duterte, calling her the “hope of our country”.
To critics who called her and the other young protesters “brainwashed”, De Guzman replied, “We completely know and understand the injustice we are protesting against.”
De Guzman, though only a ninth grader, continues to encourage young people to speak out against injustices.
“It’s so important that [they] know their own rights and when authorities abuse them,” said De Guzman as quoted by TIME. “These values aren’t up for debate.”
Also on the list of influential teens is Hawaii-based Fil-Am Bretman Rock Sacayanan, a beauty vlogger known simply as Bretman Rock to his nearly nine million Instagram followers.
“There is nobody on the Internet more fabulous than Rock. Just ask him,” wrote TIME’s Cady Lang.
In the social media world of beauty vloggers and influencers, the 19-year-old Filipino American is easily one of the most recognizable. His Instagram feed features photos and videos of him lip syncing, dancing, and going on comedic rants, all while in flawless makeup and an assortment of colorful wigs.
While his makeup skills are indeed captivating, or as Lang put “could give the Kardashians a run for their money”, even more so is Rock’s personality which can be described as glamourous, fierce, funny, and above all confident and unfiltered.
“I love myself too much to care honestly,” reads his Instagram bio. Among his favorite topics, as mentioned by TIME are his haters, appearance, and his friends and family.
Earlier this year, Rock hosted the Miss Universe red-carpet pre-show. In August, he hosted the Video Music Awards for MTV’s Instagram story before embarking on a national meet-and-greet tour.
“I think the universe is taking quite good care of [me],” said Rock in the TIME list.