PIECES OF ME - Equality Issues

In an article published yesterday by Philstar.com, TV host/personality Christine Bersola Babao is discussing parenting styles about raising a child who might be gay. And for her article she sought the expertise of Dr. Camille Garcia, a psychologist who is a family counselor and part of TV5's Face to Face. According to Dr. Garcia, a child exhibits true gayness at the puberty stage and that encouragement given by parents about it is wrong. Dr. Garcia also said that when a child exhibits gayness, parents should arrest the situation and that parents should explain to their child who happens to grow up as gay that if their choices are not corrected, they could not accept it.

Christine Bersola Babao pointed out her views as a parent of a three year old boy. She said she would not encourage her son's behaviour but as the boy's mother she would accept him because she loves him no matter what.

Dr. Garcia and Christine Bersola Babao are both receiving flak from netizens and social media because of this article. And personally, I don't think Christine [I'm just going to use Christine since her full name takes time to type] should. That's how she is raising her child and who are the people to contest that? Based on her statements, she is doing nothing wrong. Also, Dr. Garcia's opinions are hers and hers alone. Even if it is based on scientific studies or by her experience as a psychologist. It may be the most "Christian and appropriate explanation" that she can give, it does not mean it is true and it is correct. It's her opinion so there's no point in attacking her or Christine for that matter. Should we be all sensitive and defensive about this article? NO. There's no point in it.

But then why am I writing this? Well, it's because the problem is that, in our country, gender is still an issue. We still think that being gay or lesbian or bisexual is unnatural. We still think that gayness is something that we should differentiate.

Morgan Freeman was once asked how to stop racism and he said "Stop talking about it." The producers and casting director did not chose him to play God twice for no good reason. Same is true with the gender issue. Until we can say that there is no issue then I don't think that there will be gender equality. Until we recognize people by their names, their talents, the goodness inside of them instead of knowing them as a girl a boy a lesbian a transexual or anything, there will be no equality. Until we stop thinking that men should act tough like men should or that women should be treated gently like any woman should or that gays should not be discriminated because of their gender then there will be no equality. Until we stop thinking that anyone should act, think, talked or be treated in any manner because of their gender preferences, there would be no equality.

What am I driving at? Gender should never be an issue to anyone. Shouldn't we just treat people based on the goodness or the badness of their hearts? Isn't it right to think a person is not just a man, a woman, or gay but a human being?

You might say it's ridiculous since men and women have different physical capacities or that both are physically capable of very different things. Yes, physically they are different but should that matter? No. In our country, we treat women more kindly because they are girls. Men are inclined to pursue women. Men are expected to be gentlemen especially when around women. Is there a law or bill that states this proper decorum and conduct? These are just society's norms but really I see this as an inequality.  If a girl is disrespectful and mean and rude, should she be treated kindly and gently because she's a girl? If a man is being pursued by a girl, should she be classified as aggressive because she is the pursuer and not the man?

In the Philippines, the LGBT community is running for a congress seat through the party list LADLAD. A party list is defined as a representation to the House of Representatives of Filipino citizens belonging to marginalized and under represented sectors, organizations and parties (R.A 7941). I don't know anyone from the political party. I don't know about their work or their goals but one thing I know is that the LGBT being a party list is one big step towards more inequality in our country. This just proves one thing. That they in fact are marginalized and under represented. If equality is sought for then they should never feel that they are marginalized and under represented. They should never feel that the rights and responsibilities stated in the law does not include them.

Is the Philippines ready to accept the fact that gays and homosexuals are indeed part of our society?  We say we are. But right now, society dictates otherwise. I feel bad that the LGBT community had to feel under represented just so they could fight for their rights. They never should. Each person has their rights and responsibilities once they are born in this world. No one should have to fight for it. We say these are modern times and that we should accept everyone for who they are but are we really doing that?

 Take it like this: a nerd who gets bullied then stood up to the bully and fights back and suddenly everyone knows him for standing up for himself. He's made friends, gets popular and all that. But people still know him as the nerd. Yes people will know that he fought back  but he's still a nerd. He just fought back. The label he had on had just gotten an addition. instead of being "the nerd" he's now just known as "the nerd who fought back" If you ask me, there was no equal treatment.

What I think is true equality is when labels don't exist. Does every person who's smart and wears glasses have to be called a nerd? Does every guy with huge muscles and is good at sports have to called a jock? Does every person with a penis have to be called a man? Or that every person with a vagina have to be called a woman? Does every person who has desire or love for the same sex have to be called gay or lesbian? True equality is when we regard a person as a person. When labels, even of those we think are the norms of the society, do not exist and we treat a person the way a human being should be treated that is when I think true equality is achieved.

Unfortunately, these labels are present since time immemorial. But is a world without labels possible? Who knows? The generation we are living today might not be even alive when it happens but when it does, I will be glad that it did.

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to post them below or on twitter @iamthebluedevil