Stop the intensified red-tagging in the ongoing presidential campaign

Stop the intensified red-tagging in the ongoing presidential campaign

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Why this petition matters

Red-tagging has intensified in recent weeks especially after President Duterte made malicious remarks about so-called communist infiltration in the ranks of the opposition.

Our statement aims not just to denounce this but to create a strong pushback and show that we are not going to simply shrug off this latest irresponsible and baseless speculation.

We should make a stand now by rejecting red-tagging. Let us ask our people to show courage and continue to support the clamor for meaningful change.

Red-tagging is disinformation enabling fraud and violence. 

We are deeply concerned that authorities are aggressively using red-tagging to sow disinformation, fear, and violence ahead of the presidential elections. 

We remember how red-tagging became the de facto state policy which unleashed hate and terror targeting critics of the Rodrigo Duterte government. We fear that it is now weaponizing the narrative aimed at derailing the popular campaign of Vice President Leni Robredo and other progressive candidates. 

Red-tagging reflects the paranoia of those who equate tyranny with democracy. They raise the specter of a communist conspiracy when citizens are merely showing solidarity. They warn against Leftist destabilization when opposition parties are gaining greater public support. 

But red-tagging is more than just name-calling. It normalizes the persecution of citizens based on their supposed links to the communist movement. In the past six years, we saw how ordinary citizens were arbitrarily red-tagged for simply exercising their right to free speech. This was accompanied by vicious online trolling, state-backed vilification, and even physical acts of harm and intimidation.

We are worried that the recent wave of red-tagging is a portent of a brutal election-related crackdown on opposition forces. This could be part of a desperate ploy to undermine the clamor for a Robredo presidency.

We reject red-tagging today as we vehemently resisted it in the past. It has no place in our politics especially at a time when we are uniting all democratic forces to defeat Duterte’s tyranny and the possible return to power of the Marcoses.

Campaigning for Leni Robredo is not a crime. 

Supporting the opposition and other progressive candidates is not a crime. 

Stop red-tagging, stop the attacks, stand up for our rights.


*This statement was initially signed by more than 600 individuals from various sectors and institutions across the country last March 30, 2022, expressing concern over the intensified red-tagging in the ongoing presidential election campaign. See the list of initial signatories here

1,698 have signed. Let’s get to 2,500!