Saturday, February 27, 2010

Bishop urges bets: Don’t use kids in political ads

By Kristine L. Alave
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 20:32:00 02/27/2010

Filed Under: Children, Elections, Eleksyon 2010, Politics, Inquirer Politics

Original Story:

MANILA, Philippines -- Leave the children alone.

This was the message of a senior Catholic prelate on Saturday to politicians who have been using children in their campaign commercials.

Capiz Archbishop Onesimo Gordoncillo said candidates for the May 10 national and presidential elections should stop using children in their ads, saying this was a form of exploitation.

“It’s like child abuse,” Gordoncillo said in an article posted on the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) website.

“I’m calling on the candidates to please stop using the children,” he said. “That is against their rights. We should respect the children. Let them grow according to human rights. They should not grow tainted by politics.”

Politicians should also stop using other marginalized sectors, like persons with disabilities and the poor, to trawl for votes.

“They should stop this kind of politics,” Gordoncillo said.

Most of the presidential candidates have ads on television, radio and print focusing on their advocacies that almost always feature children and marginalized groups.

With the elections just over two months away, the battle for votes is heating up and candidates have been flooding the airwaves with their anti-corruption and anti-poverty messages.

Sen. Manuel Villar, presidential candidate of the Nacionalista Party, has been bombarding the airwaves with television and radio ads featuring children singing his campaign song.

His running mate, Sen. Loren Legarda, has been airing ads showing her with farmers.

Liberal Party standard-bearer Sen. Benigno Aquino III’s promotional materials also feature children. His running mate, Sen. Manuel Roxas, is shown interacting with the elderly and market vendors in his commercials.

Original Story:

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