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April 08, 2011

CBCP slams ‘Willing Willie’ over ‘macho dancing’ episode

The Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines is the latest group to slam the show “Willing Willie” following the airing of the episode showing a 6-year-old boy simulating a striptease saying that the show has put the media industry in shame.

In a statement sent to members of the media, the CBCP’s National Secretariat for Social Action, Justice and Peace (NASSA) expressed the clerics’ dismay over the episode aired last March 12 which showed a six-year-old boy crying while dancing like a “macho-dancer.”

“The management and host of the show brought shame not only to (the boy) and his parents but to media practitioners in general,” said Fr. Edwin Gariguez, NASSA executive secretary.

Appropriate intervention and assistance must also be given to the boy and his family, Gariguez said quoting NASSA chair Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo.

“Only by examining carefully the many elements that gave rise to the controversy can a clear-sighted assessment of critical issues be looked into and liable persons are meted out the appropriate penalty under our laws on human rights and child protection,” Gariguez added.

The CBCP official also urged media networks to uphold human rights and not to betray the public’s trust.

“We need to remember that media’s primary role is to promote social awareness and safeguard the dignity and welfare of the people, especially the youth. This explicitly entails social responsibility that will proscribe commercially-driven shows that induce people to think and behave in ways that have grievous moral consequence to society,” Garliguez said.

“In the same way that freedoms in the media are respected so should media practitioners put utmost regard to the dignity and rights of the people whom they serve,” he added.

Garliguez furthered that television networks should create mechanisms that would ensure that marginalized contestants, particularly in game shows, will not be exploited.

“We need to install monitoring system to ensure compliance to child protection policy that will best [put] the interest and the welfare of children and that will pursue liabilities of those who dare transgress it,” Garliguez said.

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