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I FIRST saw the movie “Ang Pagdalaga ni Maximo Oliveros” in 2005 when it premiered at the First Cinemalaya Film Festival.
Set in the slums of Manila, the coming-of-age comedy-drama film is about a gay teenager (Nathan Lopez) who is torn between his love for a young policeman (JR Valentin) and his loyalty to his family.
Directed by fellow UP alumnus Aureaus Solito, I saw it again during CCP Cinema Under the Stars (CUTS) last week in celebration of Pride Month, along with two short films “Pasilong” and “Geegee and Waterina”, the latter is about a comfort gay. .
The film is the official entry of the Philippines in the 79th Academy Awards. It has been included in various lists of the best lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA+) films.
Pride Month every June commemorates the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan, New York where LGBTQ+ individuals protested against police harassment and persecution commonly experienced by the community.
Rainbow flags were raised as thousands of members of the LGBTQIA+ community, advocates, and allies marched for justice and freedom during the simultaneous garbo festival in Quezon City and Makati City on Saturday, June 24.
The “Love Laban” Pride Festival was held at the Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City, while the “Tayo Ang Kulayaan: Pride March and Festival” was held at the Circuit Events Grounds in Makati City. There are other events in other parts of the country that serve as the culminating event of the month-long Pride Month celebration.
In the message delivered in Makati, Gabriela Women’s Partylist Rep. Arlene Brosas promised to continue pushing for the passage of the sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and sex properties (SOGIESC) Equality Bill.
“It’s been a long time coming. Every person, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression, deserves the same rights and opportunities as everyone else,” said Brosas. The bill was first filed in 2000 by former Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago.
The bill lists practices that can be considered discriminatory and illegal, which include denying the rights of the LGBTQ+ community based on their SOGIE, such as their right to access public services, the right to use establishments and services including housing, and the right to apply for a professional license, among others.
The bill also considers as discrimination the difference in treatment of an employee or anyone involved in the provision of services, denial of admission or dismissal from an educational institution, and denial or revocation of accreditation of any organization because of SOGIE of an individual.
The act of forcing any person to undergo any medical or psychological examination in order to change his SOGIE, the publication of information intended to “release” a person without his consent, public speaking aimed at Harassment of LGBTQ+, harassment and coercion of the latter by anyone especially those involved in law enforcement, and gender profiling will also be punished.
“LGBT discrimination has a long history and serves as a remnant of the colonial era when the most powerful countries used laws as mechanisms to control morality and standards of behavior,” said the Supreme Court in the case of Jesus Falcis III vs. Civil Registrar General (GR 217910. September 03, 2019).
Written by my UP Law professor and SC Senior Associate Justice Marvic Leonen, he emphasized that the SC “is not blind to the fact that, over the years, homosexual conduct, and perhaps homosexuals themselves, have suffered the brunt of and the disapproval of society. It is not difficult to imagine the reasons behind this criticism – religious beliefs, convictions about the preservation of marriage, family, and procreation, even the reluctance or distrust of homosexuals in themselves and in their perceived lifestyle. “.
Falcis requested that the SC declare unconstitutional due to the similarity of certain provisions of the Philippine Family Code that define marriage as a union between a man and a woman.
Justice Leonen added that the SC “understands the desire of same-sex couples to seek, not a moral judgment based on discrimination from any of our laws, but rather, a balanced recognition of their real, authentic, and responsive choices.”
However, the SC dismissed the petition as granting it would amount to the SC arrogating its own quasi-legislative powers as the laws would have to be amended to accommodate his petition.
The SC stressed that the request is very limited in scope, since there are many different laws other than the Family Code that equally treat marriage as a heterosexual institution.
Leonen emphasized that it is in the wisdom of the Congress to “act with dispatch to respond to the suffering of the majority of people who choose to love differently, unique, but less authentic and passionate.”
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