Both the name of the host and the TV program speaks for itself, you’d get no entertainment with redeeming value from Willing Willie.
Then last March 12, 2011, a 6-year-old boy became a constestant in one of the show segments in which each had to showcase their ‘talent’ be it singing or dancing.
When a Snoop Doggy Dog rap tune played, I thought the boy would dance hip-hop or something, but instead he danced like a macho dancer. He was twisting and making waves with his body in a provocative dance that you would only see in a nightclub.
If you found it funny and entertaining, then there’s something wrong with your sense of humor and morals. I rarely watch Willing Willie and hardly pay any attention to Willie Revillame for since his days over at ABS-CBN, I’ve come to know him as someone who has a sick and perverted ways of entertaining and ‘helping’ poor Filipinos: humiliating and subjecting them to ridicule then dangling stacks of money so that they’d do literally anything to make him and his audience laugh or have a good time in to receive the money.
It’s the institutionalization of dole-outs in a demeaning way, all done on prime time television.
However, what happened last March 12, when a 6-year-old boy danced the dance of shame with tears falling down his cheeks, much to the thunderous cheer and egging of Willie himself and the audience, I was simply left speechless.
Allow me then to borrow the words of Judith Albano who said it via Facebook:
You do not laugh and let a child dance like a stripper, while tears are constantly falling from his eyes… You do not laugh, and let him dance the dance of shame. And then ask for a high-five, and laugh again and call for applause.
It wasn’t entertainment. It wasn’t a game show. It degenerated into a nightclub where the star of the night was a 6-year-old boy, crying as he danced like a macho dancer. And he was given money, lots of it, for the performance.
Concerned citizens have organized to address this incident. A page on Facebook has been setup to coordinate an action that has called the government’s attention to this alleged case of child exploitation on Willing Willie. As per checking the page’s news feed, the Commission on Human Rights has already received the complaint letter written by the collective formed around the Facebook page.
How this story will develop, how Willie himself and TV5 will respond and how the government too will respond is something to look out for in the coming days. Ultimately, what would happen next to the 6-year-old boy hangs in the balance. Should let this kind of ‘entertainment’ go on or should this be the time we set our foot down and say enough is enough? If you are concerned, let your thoughts be known, blog, tweet or post on your Facebook account about this issue.
Image and caption by Definitely Filipino