National Artist for Film and Broadcast Ricky Lee has addressed a viral video showing a security guard seemingly ignoring him while he shook hands with beauty queen Pia Wurtzbach at the Manila International Book Fair on September 14.
In an interview, Lee mentioned that the security guard could have been more gracious in handling the situation. He emphasized that it wasn’t about his senior citizen status or being a National Artist, but rather about showing respect to everyone, including Wurtzbach, who acknowledged his presence.
“Siguro ‘yung guwardiya could have been more gracious. Hindi ko iisipin ang sarili ko. Iisipin ko ‘yung ibang tao ‘yan,” he told PEP. “Hindi kinakailangan na senior or hindi kinakailangang National Artist. Pero kung may taong nilapitan din ni Pia, kinamayan pa ni Pia, respetuhin niya [guard] ‘yung tao at si Pia, kasi kilala ni Pia.”
Lee pointed out that the guard’s behavior was somewhat rude and that it’s important to treat everyone with courtesy and kindness, regardless of their age or status.
“I think medyo naging rude ‘yung guwardiya. Again, ulitin ko, hindi dahil senior citizen, hindi dahil National Artist. I think maski na sinong tao, maski na bata o estudyante, kung in-acknowledge ni Pia, kinausap at pinasalamatan, huwag niyang itaboy. ‘Yun ang punto ko.”
He shared that he wasn’t aware of the incident at the time and only realized it when he saw the viral video and comments the next day. “Nagulat din ako kasi hindi ko napansin, hindi ko nahalata ‘yung nangyari. Wala akong napansin. The next day, ipinakita sa akin ng assistant ko ‘yung video at comments na ang dami-dami. Nagulat ako, bakit may ganitong comments. Hindi ko naman naramdaman, wala akong naramdaman na nangyari na ganoon. Siguro, hindi lang ako masyadong pala-pansin sa sarili.”
Lee hopes that such incidents serve as a reminder for people to be more considerate and respectful toward one another in public encounters.