Deafening silence amongst #BabaeAko “activists” despite lewd text messages to Gretchen Fullido revealed!

Text messages sent to ABS-CBN News anchor Gretchen Fullido and published in a Manila Times report reveal the selective nature with which Filipino feminists regard sexual harassment.

Forget for a moment that the person involved is Fullido and the alleged perps are executives at a media organisations known to be disturbingly cosy with the Yellowtards. You’d think the following text message would, in a parallel universe, invoke the shrill ire of the militant Filipino feminist community and draw out no less than “women’s issues” advocate group Gabriela with guns blazing…

“What time are you coming to work? (Fullido: On the way to [ABS-CBN] now. What’s up?) Wala naman. Miss lang kita. Masama ba? Sungit.” (Nothing. I miss you. Is that wrong? Crabby.) “Kailangan mo rin ng konting lambing sa katawan.” (You need some tenderness in your body.)

Inappropriate, right?

Unfortunately in this instance, appropriateness is relative and negotiable. Indeed, according to the Times report, the text messages revealed to them are the same ones reported to ABS-CBN management in an earlier complaint filed by Fullido. But a “formal investigation” mounted by ABS-CBN resulted in the complaint being “dismissed as baseless”.

Normally you’d see women cheering on the latest victim of sexual harassment. But not in the case of Fullido’s plight. This is because of who and what she’s up against. This is ABS-CBN after all.

Is Bianca Gonzalez saying that “Girl Power” means girls sticking together to cover up sexual abuse at ABS-CBN?

In light of recent hints of a toxic corporate culture of sexual harassment at ABS-CBN News following charges of such filed by news anchor Gretchen Fullido, starlet Bianca Gonzalez issued this non-opinion on Twitter

Yes, women should support women. But when its women involved in both sides, nawawala ang “babae ako” at nagiging “babae tayo”. Mahirap. Ang mga involved lang ang tunay na nakakaalam ng katotohanan. But still, we do our best so that women support women.

Translated to straight English:

“Yes, women should support women. But when it is women involved on both sides, it’s no longer ‘babae ako’ (‘Me woman’). It becomes ‘babae tayo’ (‘We women’). It’s hard. Only those involved can know the truth. But still, we do our best so that women support women.”

This could mean one or both of two things:

(1) Women should stick together no matter what.

(2) Trouble within female communities are internal to women and that the truth should sort itself out internally.

It’s hard indeed. Hard to tell what Gonzalez means. She likely struggled to squeeze this tweet out under pressure from Netizens who had called out the deafening silence of celebrities even as this case attracted more and more attention online.

Words chosen too carefully end up conveying nothing or, worse, revealing the opposite of what the message intended to convey.

Maria Ressa’s Mess at ABS-CBN

MARIA RESSA’S MESS AT ABS-CBN
By Justice

Disclosure: I used to work in ANC.

I used to watch Maria Ressa on CNN back in the days. You can imagine how happy I was when I heard that she was coming on board as a News Consultant to ABS-CBN to give our news organization the overhaul that it needed. Her ideas were fresh and her positive vibe was infectious. I was glad that Maria came on board. Many controversies hounded Maria during her tenure, but there were two controversial moves that haunted her the most.

1. When she fired 35 people. (Frankly, the 35 people she axed needed to go.)

2. When she had an affair with the Producer, Lilibeth Frondoso while she was in a long time relationship with another woman.

Frankly, it’s really none of our business who Maria goes out with. It’s not really the fact that Maria Ressa is a Lesbian that shocked us, after all that was in 2005. We were a progressive bunch and a lot of our news reporters were out and Gay that we loved dearly.

No, it wasn’t the news that Maria Ressa was a lesbian that was shocking.

What shocked us was:

1. Maria, A woman of principles, who turn down bribes and tells us to be fearless, is cheating on her current long term partner. I had many conversations with Maria, and I wouldn’t think she was the cheating kind. If this was in the US newsroom, this was grounds for termination. If this was in America, she’d stepped down because Gen Petreus dishonored his position. Maria Ressa’s standards are American. In fact, that’s why she was brought to the newsroom, to uplift the standard of Philliipine Journalism to the Standards used in US! Maria authored the ethical code of conduct! Cheating is not a good ethical conduct, and with someone from the office? Professionalism out of the window.

2.Sad to say, the Producer, Lilibeth Frondoso is not worth leaving anyone for. Why? On a superficial level, she’s not a looker. On her background, we knew she has 3 children (she was proud of them) and the father, a member of the NPA group, Alex Boncayao brigade. Her career? A lackluster performance at ABS-CBN. Underperformer. Why would Maria leave her longterm partner for this kind of person? Plus, Lilibeth, despite her siga nature, was known to be STRAIGHT. People doubted that she was a lesbian even with her belly and boycut hair.

People at the office said that Beth went for Maria for survival because Beth was supposed to be part of the 35 who was going to get fired.

Maria, on the other hand, needed allies. Beth provided her with support to continue with the “good fight”� that her current partner couldn’t provide, that’s why Maria went with her. People close to Maria also said that Maria, despite her accomplishments was an affirmation addict. Beth new this vulnerability and insecurity of Maria and she latched on it.

It really shouldn’t matter who Maria goes out with, but this relationship affected the newsroom. Their affair lowered the morale of the newsroom where promotions and achievements were based on merit and good performance, not on who you go out with. Beth acted like she owned the newsroom. Beth was not impressive as a Producer. Her lackluster performance inside the newsroom was covered because she delegated, and she hired people who were better than her. She was quiet and private, but she never hid the fact that she was going out with Maria, who was already promoted as Head of News.

My view on Maria changed after learning she was going out with Beth Frondoso. Maria, with all her credentials and achievements turns out has no taste and settled when it came to women. I couldn’t believe eto lang ang katapat niya. Kala ko pa naman, sosyal si Maria. Then after thinking about it, It’s not as if Maria Ressa is a looker herself. Short, Dark and with Skin Asthma, what Maria going for her is that she’s rich.

Beth is far from sosyal. Pa sosyal, pwede pa. After they started their affair, Beth was suddenly heard speaking English, a language she hasn’t mastered, but at least she tries.

So magka level sila.

Beth has been on the receiving end of this relationship. After working in ABS-CBN for 11 years, she moved to CNN as the Manila stringer, now she’s working at Rappler along side her lover. Beth has no shame in this. What do you take for a woman who steals another woman, her boss no less, why would accepting jobs she didn’t earn be an issue to her?

Beth admitted to a confidant in the newsroom that Maria took her places that she herself would never go, and that people like Karen Davila, Kim Atienza, Ces Drilon, noticed her unlike before when they *just* regarded her as one of the Producers. She now gained respect, not for her work, but because she’s now Maria Ressa’s buttercup.

[…]

In fairness to Beth and Maria, theirs was a happy ending. Maria used to live in Makati, Beth used to live in Quezon City in a rented house with her 3 children, namely Lejuene who graduated from Interior Design from UP, Uyo an Engineering student at UPLB and Luis, a highschool senior from Claret. None of them took after their hoodlum father, thank God! Now, the entire family lives in Greenhills in a gated community where Beth likes to shop in VirraMall. This is an upgrade from her Isettan days. Beth’s 3 children didn’t approve of Maria at first, but they all relented when they realized that Maria pays for their tuition and standards of living, something their father, Lejune De La Cruz, a gun man for hire can’t provide.

At work, Maria Ressa fought Luchi Cruz Valdez, Charie Villa, Chi Gonzales and Cheryl Favila. Maria was not well liked by Charo Santos. Maria had difficulty with authority and with people who have ideas who are better than hers. This is one of the reason why the people at Rappler are young, and not senior with substance like at Abs-cbn. Maria also got the Abs-cbn rejects like Rupert Ambil, who Beth once had a relationship with before Maria. Correction, Beth TRIED to have a relationship with Rupert but was rejected immediately.

I tell this story because Maria Ressa used to be my idol, until she let go of her own principles for this woman at the expense of the newsroom’s values of fairness, meritocracy and ideals.

I’m just glad that she’s no longer at ABS-CBN, the most powerful news organization in the Philippines, and is now at Rappler. Rappler is nothing. They say that she created Rappler to remain relevant to the Philippines, after all, who is she without a job? A job that defines her as a person.

Now I read that she’s protecting a 40something couple. Hmmn, I guess she hasn’t changed after all. Lies, going behind people’s back, limited disclosure reminds me when she was having an affair in the newsroom of ABS-CBN. Some things never changed.

[NB: This was originally posted on Facebook by user Eric Clark Su and indicated as authored by “Justice”. This article does not necessarily reflect the views of the administrators of Get Real Philippines nor any of its writers and contributors.]

Ces Drilon failed the #MeToo “movement”

Not only did Gretchen Fullido blow the whistle on what could be an entrenched culture of sexual harrassment and bullying in the ABS-CBN News organisation, she went the whole nine yards and filed charges to back her complaint. That’s way ahead of the curve of most victims who only go as far as kicking up stinks over social media.

The #MeToo movement has been criticised as one that involves women revealing their victimhood usually years after the alleged assault of harassment was committed. Usually the subject of the complaint is a prominent person. This is the reason the movement gained traction — it did so on the back of the star power of the accused.

Indeed, Drilon’s account of her own #MeToo experience follows the same template going public over an experience many years ago that stops short of the setting off on the important last mile — filing charges.

Ces couldn’t scream at the time, and merely pushed the perpetrator away as she ran out. For the rest of the day, she pretended like nothing happened. “Well, I was just starting my career as a journalist then, and the person was my superior. I didn’t want to put my job on the line,” she admits. “And it seemed like it wasn’t right for me to make a scene, that was how I felt [then]. I didn’t want to disturb the goings-on of the newsroom, and so I pretended like nothing happened.”

The irony is that the #MeToo movement emboldened women to act on incidents like these and, more importantly, made authorities that are in a position to support and act on these cases more receptive to these complaints.

It is therefore quite disappointing that Drilon and the rest of the ABS-CBN leadership would now take the position of defensiveness, stonewalling and, even worse, silence on this matter.

“All the allegations of Gretchen Fullido on Chair and Maricar, who is Chair’s partner are true”

I’ve been with ABS-CBN News for the past 17 years so I know the history of [Cheryl “Chair” Favila’s] rise to power. It started when @maria_ressa promoted Chair to take over the job Maria’s married partner @bethfrondoso vacated. Chair was different from Beth because she rubbed elbows with the anchors and upper management, while Beth kept to herself and just followed the direction of Maria.

Chair was loved by the Anchor like Kabayan, Ted, and maintained good relationships with Ces, Marie and Pinky Webb. This is the main reason why Ces and Marie gave testimonies on Chair’s character, without knowing that Chair altered their statements to suit her case.

All the allegations of Gretchen Fullido on Chair and Maricar, who is Chair’s partner are true. Even the lengthy months of internal investigation proved that, and ABS-CBN let her go. Chair’s press release was she left for “health reasons.” During the course of investigation, Chair maintained her innocence because doesn’t believe she did anything wrong. She didn’t see anything wrong with inviting Gretchen out, asking GF to send her a sexy video. Chair had an unhealthy obsession with GF. She loved her, yet tried to control her at the same time. Chair thought she would win her internal case because of her strong relationships with the Anchors and she had a tight grip on TV Patrol. She couldn’t imagine anyone running Patrol, with her years of experience, and with the company’s freeze hiring, she thought she was indispensable. She was wrong.

As for Ces and Marie, even when they knew before hand that Chair altered their statements, they never bothered to reach out to GF and clear their name. They both didn’t care about GF. While the allegations about them are untrue, they’re still at fault with not truly supporting GF with her cause by informing her of what Cheryl did to them. This is a lesson they are learning the hard way.

As for Management, the mandate was since cases is already filed in court, they will let law dictate what will happen to their people. Now don’t admire ABS-CBN for believing the process and rule of law. Reality is, they’re not worried because they don’t have any legal liability.

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[This is a GRP Featured Comment. The content of this post does not necessarily reflect the opinion of nor is stated as fact by the administrators of Get Real Philippines Dot Com. Join the discussion!]

Will the #BabaeAko feminist “movement” support Gretchen Fullido?

Nobody seems to be holding their breath waiting for the Philippines’ monopoly feminist “movement” #BabaeAko to raise a stink over embattled ABS-CBN News anchor Gretchen Fullido. Fullido recently filed sexual harassment charges against several ABS-CBN execs in a move that rocked a bastion of Opposition media propaganda.

The trouble with the community of #BabaeAko “activists” is that most if not everyone of them is associated with the Yellowtard community who are, at the moment, the self-appointed “leaders” of the Philippine Opposition. Thus these so-called feminists are caught between a rock and a hard place.

This echoes past incidences of selective “activism” amongst Filipino “feminists” such as the time the wife of fugitive COMELEC chairman Andy Bautista came under fire from Yellowtards seeking to discredit her statements hinting at her husband’s trove of unexplained wealth. Suffice to say, no #BabaeAko “feminist” came to her defense.

So much for genuine activism in the Philippines. Because, in the Philippines, everything is partisan in nature.