EXCLUSIVE: Ria Bautista stands against bullying

After figuring in the news for being bashed online regarding her alleged “anti-leftist” remarks, singer/musician and Paramita member Ria Bautista speaks up and set the record straight about her mis-interpreted opinion.

In an interview with GigsManila over Twitter, the musician clarifies the real context of her statement regarding the rallies staged during President Benigno S. Aquino’s 5th State of the Nation Address.

According to her, the statement she posted on her Facebook page is not intended to vilify the leftist groups and supporters of the rallies against the government. It is also not her intention to attract “anti-rally” sentiments but a call to action for everyone to do his/her part in nation building. She goes on by saying she is not against rallies, but she is not in favor either, which is two different things.

During the course of the interview Ria revealed this is not the first time she voiced out opinion or statement regarding social issues. She recounted her Facebook note written just after the 2010 elections also in the tone of effecting changes in the society. But it didn’t caught must attention then compared to this recent one, mainly because the latter rubs the activist’s sensitivities as she made reference to rallies. The main problem she thought was, her statement was taken out of context by some activists and militant groups. She said “I never singled out a person or org in my original post. Yes i made a reference to rallies, but it doesn’t end there and that wasn’t even the main point.”

Asked if she will become softer or even bolder in her statements after this experience, Ria answered “No, I won’t become softer or bolder, but I will continue to voice out my opinions as I always have unafraid. I don’t expect everyone to agree with me as it is normal for opinions to be met with criticism, but ganging up on someone over a misinterpreted post is wrong. Taking offense is not an excuse to personally attack anyone. I was advised by people close to me to ignore bashers, but sometimes you have fight back especially when your back is against the wall. Sometimes you have to push back or else they’ll keep pushing you around. And I won’t be pushed around and bullied into a cause I don’t believe in.

In the end, she stands firm with her conviction against cyber bullying and bullying in general. And as a final message to those who continues to attack her, she said “Everyone has the right to disagree, but that doesn’t give anyone the right to personally attack a person based on an opinion. This is not about me being sensitive to criticism because I am not. Opinions are always subject to criticism. This is about me taking a stand against cyber bullying and bullying in general. And this is also about me voicing out an opinion without fear or hesitation.