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Minsan lang sila bata is a documentary film featuring the lives of random children from different parts of

the country, confronting the same challenge of living a laborious life and surviving the unsympathetic
veracities of poverty. This is one of those films that can truly move everybodys hearts because of its
unfailing power and genuineness to capture and present the humbling truths in the society nowadays.
The film documented various faces of child labor in several phases of the country. The people behind
this film succeeded in capturing the struggles of young children to work in slaughterhouses, sugarcane
fields, and ports, albeit voicing their desire to be sent to school to eventually make better lives for their
Undeniably, child labor is a social problem. There are many reasons as to why it was considered such.
First, it is illegal. The law strongly prohibits such act that it only mandates children the right to live as
children and to obtain proper education. It is a social problem because the constitution forbids it yet the
circumstances continue. Second, on a geographical viewpoint, it is a social problem due to the fact that
it applies to large number of people. The documentary highlights this condition by not rolling only in a
fixed place but in the entire places around the country (rural or urban) in various forms. Third, it
provokes violation of the societal norm. Children should not be exploited; children should be supported
and not the ones supporting; children should be protected and children should enjoy life as how normal
children do. For us, those are normal because that is what our society made us to believe. We regard
child labor per se as abnormal because it does not paint the image that our society imagined his children
to be.
Fairly, I cant imagine myself to be a child laborer. Besides the financial problem being associated with
this, I am uncertain if I can survive the emotional and psychological distress. Based on the film, being a
child laborer is not easy, at all. The work is strenuous which is not suitable for their small physique. The
environment is toxic for their young breaths. It takes heaps of sweat, blood, and tears to earn only a
small amount of money under severe conditions.
This documentary film, Minsan Lang Sila Bata, is a poignant depiction of the realities in our society. This
serves as a wake-up call for me as a business student, that is, I dont only have personal and familial
duties but social responsibilities as well. I definitely have a role to play to rebuild the nation.
The children in the film should be given the sympathy they truly deserve from the viewers. It comes to
me not anymore as a shock because this societal problem is rampant. It is more of a saddening thing
since only a few people seem to care to alleviate this impoverishment.
There is one great realization that I got from these children: that is, never take anything and everything
for granted. For I am very fortunate to be sent to school, that I get to be dressed in fancy clothes, that I
can eat sumptuous foods on time, that I get all my needs including my whims, that my parents are
working so hard just to give me a bright future, that I have a loving family to look after me, and
countless reasons.
Dr. Jose P. Rizal once said, Ang kabataan ang pag-asa ng bayan. Clich as it is, but a very fitting theme
to the film. Looking back from 18 years, the children expressed their desire to have a formal education.
They wanted to be someone. I remember a boy who works in port dreamed to be a lawyer to solve
problems. Where are they now? Did they succeed in achieving their dreams? Did their family give them
the support that they need? Did the people at pedestal intervene to help them in their course to achieve
their dreams? If they failed in achieving their dreams, we can never say that children are the hopes of
the motherland. As a viewer, I feel the need to know what happened to these children after this
documentary was shown. There must be a response to this and its now long overdue.
Indeed, child labor is a social problem. But in reality the burden is not shared at all because of
obliviousness, others the lack of power to help, and disinterest for a few.
Theres a reason why humanitys battle against such issue never ends: humanity, in its entirety, remains
unmoved and indifferent. Sure, everyone desires to change the world but few are the ones who walk
the talk. We cannot reason that we are powerless to do so because we are not. Wise men say to change
the world; we need to start change within ourselves. We dont have to be superheroes to save lives. If
there is a will, there is always a way.

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