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Gatchalian defends Duterte's OFW kiss: Married actors also do kissing scenes


Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Tuesday defended President Rodrigo Duterte's controversial kiss with a female Filipino worker in South Korea this past weekend, comparing the incident to kissing scenes on television and the movies.

Gatchalian said there is nothing wrong with the kiss as long as the act is done in a professional way.

“Ako I would like to compare this sa mga artista dahil may mga artista na may asawa but they also have kissing scenes in their movies, in their TV shows,” he told reporters when asked about the matter.

“So I think as long as it’s kept professional and there’s an understanding within the partners then siguro pwede nilang gawin ‘yun,” he added.

He added Duterte and the OFW identified as Bea Kim only wanted to please the crowd.

“He is a public official and somehow they wanted to please the crowd, doon sa background sumisigaw ang crowd so siguro this is part of teasing the crowd,” said Gatchalian.

The incident happened during Duterte’s meeting with the Filipino community in South Korea. Duterte has downplayed the incident, saying they only did it to please the crowd, while the OFW attributed no malice to the act.

“Walang malisya, I think this was done out of curiosity of the crowd and kung wala namang na-offend especially the female party and then I think it was mutually consented. Sa pagkakaalam ko at sa videong nakita ko na nag-agree naman sila gawin yun. Kumbaga wala naman nasaktan at pumayag naman sila sa isa’t isa,” Gatchalian said.

But the senator admitted he does not know how the Korean husband of the OFW would feel.

“‘Yung usapan ng babae at asawa niya ibang usapan ‘yun, hindi ko alam ano yung mapi-feel ng Koreano niyang mister. That should be discussed among themselves so I really don’t know what will happen dun sa mag-asawa,” he said.

Senators Panfilo Lacson and Paolo Benigno "Bam" Aquino IV, however, held different views.

“Obviously, they accomplished the purpose based on the laughter and  giggle from the women in the audience. Question is, does that make it right and appropriate? I don't think so, if we consider the status of both parties. The woman is married to a Korean, the man is a President of the Philippines who is on a state visit to Korea. If it was a movie comedian onstage, people won't mind at all,” he said.

Lacson said that when he and Senator Gregorio Honasan II were still at the Philippine Military Academy, even simply holding hands with their girlfriends would cost them a huge demerit.

“Ang tawag namin, 'showing affection in public' - as simple as that. Maakbayan mo lang sa balikat o i-holding hands mo kahit pa gf mo ang babae sa publiko, kahit pa walang masyadong tao, basta openly namin ginawa, todas kami. Tipong conduct unbecoming na ang dating,” he said.

“Habang lumilipas ang panahon, nag e-evolve ang tinatawag nating values at kultura ng mga Pilipino. Minsan nga, habang nasa-shock ako, parang naiingit din ako sa mga anak ko pag nahuhuli kong may dala dalang gf at diretso sa kwarto nila,” he added.

Aquino was also unhappy with what he called the "gimmick."

“Alam mo kanya-kanyang gimik po kami sa pulitika ‘di ba, pero may mga gimik na okay, may mga gimik na hindi OK,” he told reporters, adding that he shared the reactions of the netizens and female lawmakers.

“I shared the same reaction as many of the netizens and our female legislators na hindi po siya akma na gawin po ng isang presidente yung paghalik ng ganoon.”

He said even if the President did not force the OFW to kiss him it is still inappropriate.

“Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should do it. I’m hoping like many of our fellow countrymen na sana maitigil na yung ganitong klaseng mga ginagawa, at ako po bilang isang tatay, dalawa po ‘yung anak ko na babae, kahit po ako nung nakita ko po yung video hindi naging maganda yung reaksyon ko rin dito gaya po ng marami sa atin,” said Aquino. —JST, GMA News

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