Ang inyong anak ay hindi ninyo anak, sila’y mga anak na lalaki at babae ng buhay. Bagama’t nanggaling sa inyo, sila’y hindi inyo – L.Bautista

That Tagalog quote is actually taken from the poem “On Children” by Kahlil Gibran.

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

I am once again reminded of the recent events in Willing Willie and the alleged child abuse and coincidentally, the Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness month that is observed in the United States. I am often reminded that a child’s dignity and respect must never be violated.

It boggles the mind that the Willing Willie producers, Willie Revillame , the parents of the boy and even TV 5 Manila do not see anything wrong with that March 12 incident. They can claim that they had no intention to exploit the kid, but in any case of CHILD ABUSE, the INTENT of the abuser is IRRELEVANT.

There is not much I can do with regards to the programming aspect of Willing Willie. The child abuse incident is being taken cared of by DSWD and the Commission of Human Rights. The MTRCB is in taking charge of the possible violations of the program.

What I can do is raise awareness on child abuse prevention.

I believe our children are the country’s most valuable resource, and they need our support to thrive and grow into healthy, productive adults.

Every child deserves a nurturing family and a safe environment, free from fear, abuse, and neglect. Parents, guardians, relatives, and neighbors all share a responsibility to prevent these devastating crimes, and our government plays a critical role as well.

Please speak for our children.

Join the Blog Carnival

It will help if we can first raise awareness among ourselves. Speak out about child abuse issues. Raise child abuse awareness by writing in your blogs be it a self-hosted blog, blogger, wordpress, tumblr or facebook note. All of your posts will be placed together in a blog post called a “carnival”. A Blog Carnival is, at its heart, a themed collection of permalinks to other blog posts.

Here is how

1. The blog entry can be a personal experience, a commentary, proposals to raise awareness on child protection laws. If you do not have a blog, you can also post here at Just register at

2. Once your blog entry is posted , submit the link to the Blog carnival.

I had no idea what awaited me that Sunday afternoon as I clicked on a Youtube link provided by a concerned blogger who wanted me to write about it. My heart broke as I watched a six-year-old kid gyrating like a macho dancer on the variety show ““Willing Willie,” with TV host

Willie Revillame making fun of him and the audience amused beyond belief. It was truly sickening. I cried as I watched the boy’s pained facial expression. I couldn’t take it anymore. The first thought that ran through my head was, ““Could this be a violation of Republic Act No. 7610, or the ‘Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act’ Section 3 (b)?”

What I witnessed was Willie repeatedly humiliating a boy in front of millions of people tuned in to the TV station. Where is the dignity in that? Why did he allow the boy to  dance like a male Chippendale dancer for the general public entertainment? The adults who taught him to dance that way? Ugh, the very same people responsible for his well-being.

This incident reminded me of Human Rights Day last year when I wrote on ““Who will speak up for our children?“. A conversation with a friend made me realize that our kids don’t have a voice unless an adult speaks up for them. When a child is caught in a tussle when their parents are hitting each other, who will speak for this child? A child can be silently suffering from domestic abuse, bullying and corporal punishment. In the Willing Willie episode, who will speak up for this six-year-old boy who cried as he gyrated to the music? The fear and embarrassment written in his eyes was undeniable. I wanted to hug him and rescue him from his discomfort and tell the boy that he didn’t have to do that dance.

continue reading at UNBLOGGED

shoemart59mini.jpgI am not surprised that after the mashing incident in Greenbelt 3, a smiliar incident will happen again. A friend in her mid twenties emailed me about a child abuse incident in Shoemart (SM) Baguio. The father, Angelico Mercader is the Head of Communications at the Office of the Secretary in the Department of Education and a father of three young children. He is advocating against child abuse after that incident:

I’d like to share an incident which happened last Saturday, April 29, 2006 in Baguio City where my two sons, age 6 and 8, were sexually harassed at SM Baguio.


I went to SM Baguio with my two sons and 4 year-old daughter on Saturday afternoon. At the entrance, there was this routine baggage inspection – one line for males and another for females. Upon our entrance, the guard inspected my bag and frisked me. As I was holding
my little girl, my two sons were following right behind me.

After I was inspected, I saw the guard frisking my sons from the waist down to their private parts, one after the other. I freaked out when I saw what the guard did, as I also saw him smiling while my two sons were looking at me helplessly. I reprimanded him and said that he had
just sexually harassed my children. Instead of apologizing, he argued that he was only joking and that he wasn’t gay and that my children were boys anyway.

The complete email can also be found here and here. Incidentally, the owners of SM and the security agency, Star Force Security, are one and the same.

The incident angers me because of a similar attitude I got from a fellow mother-chaperone in one of my girls’ choir tour in Canada. Another mom whispered to me that one of our kids, a 6 year old girl (let’s call her Leila) fondled the private parts of her Filipino-Canadian host’ 8 year old child. I was appalled and immediately reported it to the mother-chaperone of Leila. I was even more shocked at her reply:

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