Ito ang tiniyak ni Senador Panfilo Lacson, chairman ng Senate Committee on National Defense, sa usapin ng posibleng pagtukoy sa red-tagging bilang isang asuntong kriminal.
Ang komite ni Lacson ang nanguna sa pagdinig ng Mataas na Kapulungan sa naturang usapin.
Isiniwalat din ng mambabatas na matapos ang pagdinig ng pinamumunuang komite sa nabanggit na usapin, puspusan na ang ginagawang pag-aaral ng kanyang tanggapan sa lahat ng argumento at position papers na isinumite ng dalawang panig sa naganap na tatlong pagdinig.
The 1987 Constitution will be the ultimate guide on whether there is basis to criminalize “red-tagging,” Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson said Thursday.
Lacson said he and his legislative staff are poring over position papers and other materials gathered from all sides during the last three hearings on the issue.
“We will study and consider the matter, but the bottom line is that such a move will not violate our Constitution,” he said in an interview on DZAR radio.
“One major issue to be addressed if we are to criminalize red-tagging or red-baiting is if it will infringe on our Constitution’s provision ensuring freedom of expression and freedom of speech. This is a basic right that cannot be violated. That said, there are opposing views that such freedom is not absolute – that is why we have laws penalizing libel and cyber-libel,” he added.
“As far as we are concerned, a dead NPA rebel or a dead soldier is only as bad and tragic as a dead Filipino. For we see no difference at all except probably the cause that they fought and died for.” – Sen. Ping Lacson, at the start of the third Senate committee hearing on alleged red-tagging.
Sen. Lacson is part of the Philippine delegation that participated in the 141st Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union and related meetings in Belgrade, Serbia. Other members of the Philippine delegation include Senate President Tito Sotto, Ralph Recto, Juan Miguel Zubiri, Franklin Drilon, Imee Marcos, Nancy Binay, Sherwin Gatchalian, Bato dela Rosa, Joel Villanueva and Sonny Angara; and Reps. Ferdinand Hernandez and Carlos Zarate.