Clash of tweets: Lacson, Locsin take sides on Recto Bank issue online
MANILA, Philippines – It wasn't just ordinary Filipinos with clashing opinions on the sinking incident in the West Philippine Sea. Foreign Secretary Teodoro "Teddyboy" Locsin Jr and Senator Panfilo Lacson seemed to be butting heads over the issue as well.
Both Locsin and Lacson have been very active in voicing their opinions on the issue on Twitter. (READ: Has the sinking incident in the West PH Sea polarized Filipinos?)
Locsin’s tweets focused on telling people to not vent their frustrations on China, reminding them that everything has to go through proper investigations before giving out judgement. But this investigation, according to him, has to be done separately by the two countries. (READ: Despite Duterte openness, Locsin rejects joint PH-China probe)
China understood me. 'The Chinese side proposed that both sides conduct respective comprehensive investigations, and should there be "inconsistencies", both sides should establish a "joint investigation group" and exchange information directly rather than through media.' TY China— Teddy Locsin Jr. (@teddyboylocsin) June 22, 2019
Meanwhile, Lacson’s tweets implied that the Philippines should take a strong stance in asserting its rights over the West Philippine Sea. In his latest posts, Lacson cited the 1987 Philippine Constitution to emphasize the state’s duty to protect its territory.
Somebody please help me find the word “friends” below:— PING LACSON (@iampinglacson) June 25, 2019
Art XII. Sec 2 (para 2) - The State shall protect the nation's marine wealth in its archipelagic waters, territorial sea, and exclusive economic zone, and reserve its use and enjoyment exclusively to Filipino citizens.
A quick check of each official's Twttier accounts shows how both men are on the extreme ends of the issue. Here’s a sampling:Locsin's tweets - Curated tweets by rapplerdotcom Lacson's tweets - Curated tweets by rapplerdotcom
While social media has long been a platform for people to air their politicial opinions, there are debates over whether public officials should bare their thoughts on policies out in the open, as opposed to taking them to more formal venues. The clashing opinions between Locsin and Lacson, for instance, could be good in that the public is given a wider perspective on the issue, but on the other hand, such sensitive issues would likely not benefit from the court of public opinion. (READ: [OPINION] Social media and the changing nature of diplomacy)
What should be done? How do you feel about government officials airing their thoughts so openly online? – Rappler.com