Filipinos expressed their support to Kapamilya actress Liza Soberano through the hashtag “#DefendLizaSoberano” after a Duterte supporter questioned if she was a “member” of the New People’s Army following her appearance in a webinar hosted by Gabriela Youth.
A Twitter user shared a screenshot of a YouTube live stream that had the title “Liza Soberano, miyembro na ng New People’s Army?”
It was uploaded by an online user calling herself “The DDS Princess” on Facebook.
“Kapamilya actress Liza Soberano joins Gabriela Youth, a front of the Communists!” the caption of the live stream reads.
Filipinos on Twitter accused the video of “red-tagging” and rallied behind the 22-year-old actress who previously appeared as a special guest in the organization’s webinar that discussed issues concerning girls and young women in the Philippines.
THIS IS REDTAGGING! pic.twitter.com/WAoirfLfda
— Kurt Cocaine (@banalnatubig) October 15, 2020
“I-report natin ang mga ganitong content. Hindi lang dapat #DefendLizaSoberano kundi i-defend natin ang lahat ng mga gustong magsalita laban sa administrasiyon na siyang nila-label naman bilang mga ‘terorista’. #StopTheAttacks,” the Twitter user said in a follow-up post.
“This is nothing but red-tagging and smear campaign against someone who speaks about sexual abuse and VAWC (violence against women and children). Like, WTF? People behind this vid are out of their minds and should be behind bars. #DefendLizaSoberano,” another Filipino said.
“Resorting to red-tagging just to discredit Liza Soberano and Gabriela Youth’s efforts to raise awareness on women and children’s issues really shows you how a woman’s voice, one that stands firmly with her sisters and her countrymen, makes fascists quiver #DefendLizaSoberano,” commented another online user.
Others called out YouTube and urged the platform to do something about “fake news and abusive/harmful behaviors.”
WTH‼️ Ano na naman mga kumakalat na ‘to vs Liza Soberano? @YouTube please do something against fake news and abusive/harmful behaviors! #StandWithLizaSoberano #DefendLizaSoberano pic.twitter.com/4lwB3W5rUd
— #PunchTheLies🤛 (@PunchTheLies) October 15, 2020
Some Filipinos also noted that the same thing happened to Angel Locsin, another Kapamilya actress who is similarly vocal about issues.
“Exactly what they did to Angel. They are really scared of strong women who use their voices for the voiceless,” a Filipino said.
Locsin was previously suspected of being a communist after she defended her nephew, lawyer Neri Colmenares, from being red-tagged.
The actress is known for her philanthropic activities especially amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Meanwhile, Soberano’s talent manager expressed his gratitude for the outpouring of support to the actress following the emergence of the video suspecting her of being a communist.
“Maraming salamat sa lahat ng pumupuri sa pagpoprotekta ni Liza Soberano sa mga kababaihan at kabataan. Ganon talaga ang may tunay na malasakit sa kapwa,” Ogie Diaz said on Twitter.
Soberano previously guested in Gabriela Youth’s webinar on Tuesday titled “Mga Tinig ni Nene: Reclaiming Our Voice on the International Day of the Girl Child.”
The virtual discussion talked about the issues that girls and young women are currently facing in the pandemic.
The organization is the youth arm of Gabriela Women’s Party, a progressive women’s group with a seat in the Congress.
It has been subjected to red-tagging accusations of the government even though it is an unarmed group that advocates for the advancement of women and children’s rights.