What you need to know about the Anti-Discrimination Bill

What you need to know about the Anti-Discrimination Bill

Note: Read a revised and updated version of this post on Esquire Philippines

Several Anti-Discrimination Bills were re-filed this 17th Congress by tireless champions and LGBT allies in the House of Representatives and the Senate. Here’s a snapshot of the bills and what you need to know about them:

Continue reading “What you need to know about the Anti-Discrimination Bill”

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The missing faces of Manila Pride

The missing faces of Manila Pride


I was enjoying the Manila Pride vicariously through photos posted by friends online, and was happy to see the turnout, when I realized what was disturbing about the pictures: the absence of familiar faces, of gay friends who passed away, most of whom gone because of an epidemic gnawing away our rainbow. 
It’s always good to remember them surrounded by colors, instead of being reminded of how they were suddenly gone. There was that boy who borrowed a shirt, and never returned it; he was last seen wearing the shirt at a Pride March, right before he disappeared, his name resurfacing on RIP posts flooding your timeline. Then friends who led dual lives, had two Facebook accounts, one with pictures of Pride parades, the other with words as solid and heavy as their closets. Friends who bravely marched with boa feathers, with rainbow flags, only to disappear in silence, muffled by AIDS, their second closet. 

Thousands marched in Manila Pride this year. #LetLoveIn, that was the theme, and many responded by going to Luneta, proudly, holding their partner’s hand, kissing in public. Let love in, and may pride may also bestow upon us the courage to fight against HIV, and not let the epidemic push us back into new closets. 


(Photos courtesy of The Adamson Chronicle)

What to do when Catholic Bishops offer an insincere statement on Orlando

What to do when Catholic Bishops offer an insincere statement on Orlando

You give it back, instantly.

I made the mistake of reading the statement once, twice, several times, and like the good Catholic boy that I was, tried to understand the wrath and anger I felt inside, to muffle it with compassion, to believe in good faith. I read it again today, and still it didn’t measure to the pain and outrage that Orlando has seared into our collective soul. In this time of grief, reading it felt like swallowing a burning piece of coal. Continue reading “What to do when Catholic Bishops offer an insincere statement on Orlando”

I know Omar Mateen

I know Omar Mateen

I know Omar Mateen. I have seen him before.

He was that classmate who constantly joked that I am into kissing boys, who sniggered behind my back and called me gay. First to push me in the school hallway, first to throw a punch when I was already down.

He was the father who never hesitated to teach his son that liking boys is wrong, after beating him senselessly for being too sissy, for being too weak. Continue reading “I know Omar Mateen”