Inamin ng chief of staff ni Senator Tito Sotto na kinopya nila ang bahagi ng akda ng American blogger na si Sarah Pope para sa “turno en contra” speech ng senador, kaugnay ng mainit na pinag-uusapang Reproductive Health Bill o RH Bill.
Nag-post ng comment si Atty. Hector Villacorta sa comment page ng pinakabagong entry ni Sarah, sa kanyang blog na The Healthy Home Economist, na may titulong “On Plagiarism, The Pill, and Presumptuousness.”
Nagpakilala si Atty. Villacorta bilang chief of staff ni Senator Sotto.
Sinabi nito na ang staff ng senador ang kumopya sa isinulat ni Sarah nang walang proper attribution.
Humingi rin ng paumanhin ang chief of staff ni Senator Sotto sa nagawa nilang pagkakamali.
Narito ang kabuuang mensahe ni Atty. Villacorta kay Sarah:
"I understand you felt slighted that your blog was not attributed to you which became part of the speech of the senator. let me say that after asking my staff, indeed, your blog was used but only in quoting also from the same book of dr campbell-mcbride.
"we are both indebted to the book’s author but if you wish that you also be credited with the contents of the book, let this be your affirmation.
“I can do it and by this message, I am doing it. hope it satisfies you. but if it does not, what would you want us to do?
"what have we done to deserve your incriminating words. the senator did not lift it himself, we did.
“did you want us to tell him to admit what he did not do? who would you like to crucify for this oversight?
“all the unborn wants very much the right to be born and they need everybody’s help, including yours.
“remember, rizal was the seventh child of 11 children of teodora alonso and francisco mercado.
“be on or side please, and don’t deflect the debate to this matter of plagiarism. it is so out of sync in this great debate. join us in the side of life and truth.
"forgive us our single trespass. we had no malice, we thought you would be happy about it. there was no injury. hope this makes you feel better.”
Kinumpirma ni Atty. Villacorta sa ABS-CBN News at sa ANC na nagpadala nga siya ng mensahe kay Sarah.
SARAH’S RESPONSE. Sinagot naman agad ni Sarah si Atty. Villacorta sa comment section din ng kanyang blog entry.
Aniya: “I don’t like the fact that my blog was used without my permission against the education of the women of the Philippines and their reproductive rights. That is the issue and it was indeed plagiarism.
“If his staff did it, he condoned it. He is responsible for your actions.
“My BLOG was quoted, not Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. I put her work in my own words and you copied it.”
Dagdag ng American blogger tungkol sa isyu ng reproductive rights: “A woman needs to know that the Pill can indeed harm her but this is NO REASON to take away this choice from her in the first place.
“I do not agree with Senator Sotto’s position on this issue and he twisted the message of my blog to suit his own purposes against the women of the Philippines.”
Sagot pa niya kay Atty. Villacorta: “No, your lame comment does not make me ’feel’ any better.”
SARAH’S NEW BLOG ENTRY. Sa pinakabagong blog entry ni Sarah, dated August 16, 2012, inihayag nito ang kanyang pagkadismaya sa pagtanggi ni Senator Sotto sa bintang na pangongopya o plagiarism.
Kahapon ay nagpa-interview ni Senator Sotto kay Karen Davila sa programang Headstart ng ANC, ang cable news channel ng ABS-CBN.
Sa interview ay itinanggi ng senador na kinopya niya sa blog ni Sarah ang pangalawa sa huling talata ng “turno en contra” speech niya sa Senado.
Sabi pa ni Senator Sotto, “Ba’t ko naman iko-quote yung blogger? Blogger lang yun. Ang kinu-quote ko, si Natasha Campbell-McBride.”
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Sa kanyang blog entry ay binuweltahan ni Sarah ang senador:
“Nice touch Senator. You almost had me convinced you were a nice guy with tears and all. Many of your citizenry have emailed me assuring me that was a put on, and I’m starting to think they are right.”
Mabigat at malaman ang sumunod na binitawan niyang pahayag:
“A thief is a thief, Mr. Senator. Denying it doesn’t get you off the hook; it just makes you a lying thief.”
Sa kabilang banda ay ikinatutuwa naman daw ni Sarah na ang “lapse of moral judgment” na ito ni Senator Sotto ay nagbigay-atensiyon sa masamang epekto ng paggamit ng pills sa kalusugan ng mga kababaihan at maging sa kanilang mga anak at apo.
“It was indeed brave of you to take this controversial position. Kudos to you on that,” sabi ng blogger sa senador.
Nakisimpatiya rin si Sarah sa pagkamatay ng unang anak na lalaki ni Senator Sotto, na binanggit ng huli sa kanyang emosyunal na talumpati sa Senado noong Lunes, August 13.
Hindi rin daw magsasampa ng kaso si Sarah laban sa senador dahil “I’m moving on as I’ve got work to do."