The Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) Chairperson, Lala Sotto-Antonio, has come under fire from social media users for her recent statements defending the variety show “E.A.T.” and her parents’ actions on television.
Netizens accused her of employing “unjust double standards” and showing prejudice against LGBTQIA relationships after she addressed complaints about a scene on ABS-CBN’s “It’s Showtime.”
The controversy began when the MTRCB received complaints about an episode of “It’s Showtime,” wherein hosts Vice Ganda and Ion Perez engaged in a playful act of licking icing off each other’s fingers. Following the complaints, the show’s producers were summoned by the regulatory board.
In response to the criticisms, some social media users pointed out a recent episode of the rival show “E.A.T.,” where Tito Sotto, Lala’s father, showered his wife, Helen Sotto, with kisses in-between segments. Lala defended her parents, stating that such expressions of affection were common in their family, as her parents have been married for 55 years.
However, this defense sparked accusations of double standards and prejudice against the relationship between Vice Ganda and Ion Perez, who are members of the LGBTQIA community. Netizens argued that there should be no distinction between different kinds of romantic relationships and that all forms of affection should be accepted and celebrated.
Many social media users emphasized the importance of treating all relationships equally, regardless of gender or sexual orientation. They asserted that Vice Ganda and Ion Perez, being in a committed romantic relationship, should not face judgment or criticism for their displays of affection on television.
The prudent move would’ve been for the MTRCB Chair to recuse herself from this issue and all other issues regarding noontime TV shows…
Wishful thinking in this day and age. https://t.co/va6qPRZKeT
— Leah Navarro (@leahnavarro) August 3, 2023
Masyadong magnify yung homophobic comments lang kay Ion and Vice na echapwera natin na marami rami na ring mga straight people , usually mga tatay at matatanda pinagtatanggol din si Vice at Ion sa facebook. Nakakahappy lang! #ViceGanda #IonPerez
— Pauline AmeLINKS (@AltPauAmelinckx) August 3, 2023
Some netizens also raised concerns about the appropriateness of Lala Sotto-Antonio holding the position of MTRCB chairperson while publicly commenting on her parents’ actions on television. They perceived it as a potential conflict of interest, as she appeared to defend her parents’ actions without acknowledging any violations.
Sbai mo dahil mag-asawa ang nanay at tatay mo.
Sina Vice at Ion, mag-asawa rin naman.
We also have different forms of love and family. Baka di ka nainform. Pakireview na lang po. Charot https://t.co/4LcPgFguXJ
— Kapuso Talks (@KapusoTalks) August 2, 2023
— Y 0 L 0 (@itsY0L0) August 2, 2023
abuse of authority, conflict of interest, what else? lol https://t.co/O3XeXn35FH
— jp✖️ plus why (@dumidyeypee) August 3, 2023
Responding to the criticisms, Lala clarified that no violations were committed by the producers of “E.A.T.” or her parents during the show. She asserted that the actions were deemed appropriate by the MTRCB and did not warrant any notice or summoning.
Lala also pointed out that the producers of “It’s Showtime” might be held liable for possible violations under Section (c) of Presidential Decree 1986, which grants the MTRCB the authority to delete or disapprove portions of a television program considered objectionable for being immoral, indecent, contrary to law and/or good customs, or encouraging violence or crime.
As the issue continues to generate discussions on social media, the call for fair treatment and the rejection of double standards remains at the forefront of public discourse. Netizens are advocating for a more inclusive and understanding approach towards all forms of love and affection on television, regardless of the sexual orientation of the individuals involved.