Suspension of Disbelief

#89

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First published in Outrage Magazine, Issue 16
**********

 

Larry Arciaga
William Castro
Larry Estandarte
Father Robert Tanghal
William Castro
Melchor Vergel de Dios
Joselito Siervo
Epi Ramos
VJ Rubio
Winton Lou Ynion
Enrique Esguer

They were (few) members of the LGBT community who have been murdered and their cases were unresolved and forgotten.
They’re crying for justice past their graves.

***

Sass Rogando Sassot
Nicole Evangelista
Xtina Superstar

They are members of the LGBT Community who were refused and turned away by bar owners, saying that they don’t allow people wearing skirts, a man wearing a woman’s outfit and gays who are in drag; to enter their respective bars.

They are successful; they are respected by their friends and their officemates. The have decent jobs. They were maltreated and shamed.

***

JC de los Reyes; he is the presidential bet of Ang Kapatiran. His party believes that “the future will be different if we make the present different.”

It was 8:10 in the evening of March 22, Strictly Politics’ just finished interviewing JC de los Reyes for their miting de avance series. I went to their studio to congratulate the Strictly Politics’ team for a wonderful episode. I saw JC and approached him to say Hi and introduce myself.

“Hi Councilor JC, I’m Patrick from an online magazine.” He smiled and said “Hi” in return.

“What’s you stand re Ang Ladlad’s campaign for the 2010 elections?”, I asked.

“We’re already supporting a different party-list, and if Ang Ladlad will ask for our support, we’ll say no,” JC answered with a sarcastic smile. Before I left, I introduced myself as a member of Ang Ladlad. He turned blank. I walked away from him.

After a few minutes, I went out of the studio. I saw Ellen Tordesillas, blogger and a journalist from Malaya; I approached her and had a little conversation with her.
JC went out of the studio (walked along the hallway where Ellen and I were standing); he saw Ellen and approached us. He interrupted our conversation and talked to Ellen a little, with his back on me. I didn’t mind. And when JC said goodbye, he reached for Ellen’s hand and shook it, he even gave campaign paraphernalia to her. He didn’t reach for my hand; instead, he looked at me from head to toe. Then he left.

He made me feel different; I was offended.

***

In May 10, 2010, the Philippines will have the chance to shade a piece of paper that translates – “change” and “new hope” for a better tomorrow.

Every eight years, we practice our privilege to vote for people who will lead the country in different departments and vote for a party-list group to represent a marginalized sector. And after casting our votes, we hope that tomorrow or the coming years will be better than yesterday. That this time, everyone will be treated equal. But, come next election, nothing has changed, nothing has been done.

Ang Ladlad is an LGBT organization which thrusts equal human rights for everyone, LGBT or not, and focuses in eliminating indifference, discrimination and rejection of LGBT’s from whomever.

The Ang Ladlad pledges:

  1. Support for the Anti-Discrimination Bill that gives LGBT Filipinos equal rights and opportunities in employment and equal treatment in schools, hospitals, restaurants, hotels, entertainment centers, and government offices. The bill makes discrimination versus LGBTs a criminal act.
  2. Support for LGBT-related and LGBT-friendly businesses.
  3. Setting up of micro-finance and livelihood projects for poor and physically-challenged LGBT Filipinos;
  4. Setting up of centers for old and abandoned LGBTs. The centers will also offer legal aid and counseling, as well as information about LGBT issues, HIV-AIDS, and reproductive health. These centers will be set up in key cities of the country.
  5. Support for the the bill repealing the Anti-Vagrancy Law that some unscrupulous policemen use to extort bribes from gay men;

Ang Ladlad will represent the LGBT in Congress. Our voices will be heard. We will not be treated as second class citizens anymore.

It is not an overnight change. Eight years won’t even make everything different as to what we’re experiencing now. But choosing the right candidate-representation, campaigning for it and voting it – will be the biggest step an LGBT individual can do to himself and to the whole community.

And as Bemz posted on her FB wall: “I bleed…I bleed…I bleed…but I continue fighting for LGBT rights no matter how sad and disappointing is the road that lies ahead.”

We need to fight and stay strong.

There will be lesser hate crimes that were not given justice.

Transgenders will be welcomed in job interviews.

LGBT’s who are HIV Positive-AIDS, can come to school and their respective offices without the fear of being mocked.

Politicians, who do not respect people just because he’s an LGBT – will be fewer.

Equal rights for everyone.

Justice for slain LGBT’s.

Ang Ladlad.

Vote No. 89.

 

(Outrage Magazine remains the only publication for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in the Philippines.)

***

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