Straight Filipinos are Protected Under the SOGIE Equality Bill

There are a lot of misconceptions about the SOGIE Equality Bill and I’d like to tackle some of those and hopefully improve your understanding of what the bill is actually for.

Myth #1: The bill will allow same-sex marriages.

Nowhere in the bill will you find the word marriage. Don’t believe me? Check for yourself: Senate Bill #1271. Also, the bill filed by Risa isn’t necessarily going to be the final output. The House version (check Section 4. g. of House Bill #4982) explicitly excludes marriage licenses. A separate bill will need to be filed for same-sex marriages because this bill doesn’t cover it.

What is the purpose of Section 5. g. (Section 4. g. in the HB) then?

Did you know? Trans women are often asked to cut their hair, remove their make-up and asked to look like men for their government licenses which doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. IDs are supposed to reflect how we look like day-to-day. Obviously, most trans women don’t go around looking like men everyday. So asking trans women to look like men for their IDs runs contrary to the purpose of using these IDs to identify them.

So all Section 4. g. does then is prevent government agencies from using our appearance as a reason to deny an application for or to revoke a professional or other kinds of licenses, clearances, certifications, etc.

Myth #2: Systemic discrimination of LGBT people does not exist.

It does. Ask any LGBT person and they will say it does. And, no, it’s not because we’re all liars. It’s just true. If you don’t believe it, it’s because you’ve never seen it, you’ve don’t realize that certain acts count as discrimination, or you’re utterly blind to it. Your brain filters it out because you refuse to believe it. I’d call you an ass but I won’t.

Everyday, people are denied equal work opportunities not because they aren’t qualified but because of how they are perceived by employers. You can hold a Master’s Degree or a PhD but you’d still be rejected in favor of someone who only holds a Bachelor’s Degree if the employer just doesn’t hire gay people even if it has nothing at all to do with your qualification to work in the position you are applying for. LGBT employees also experience being passed over for a promotion for someone who has less experience and less credentials but isn’t gay.

I know there are people who ONLY hire other people with the same or similar religious affiliations. Well, I can tell you that every person who has ever stolen from our company has a religious affiliation or believes in a god. Let that sink in for a while. Maybe you’ll realize that religiosity or lack-of-it has nothing to do with work ethic and morals.

Student applications can be denied if during the interview, the priest/interviewer perceives you to be gay. There is a school that actually asks what your favorite basketball team is. And if you took a while to answer that question, well, the priest will probably tag you as gay and reject your application.

At the airport, a transgender man was asked to SHOW HIS CHEST to immigration to prove that he is “female”. Straight cisgender guys, do you think that it would be acceptable for the immigration officer to ask you to remove your briefs because you look “kinda like a girl” and your passport says male and the officer just won’t believe it until he sees your penis? Straight cisgender women, would you show your boobs to the immigration officer to prove that you’re female? Shouldn’t the immigration officer just look at your face and make sure it matches the picture on your passport? It’s not like pictures of penises, boobs and vaginas are on the passport and need to be verified.

Myth #3: The bill will discriminate against religious sectors.

It won’t. In fact, you’d still be free to call us sinners, spawns of the devil, and whatever else you can think of. You can reject to officiate weddings for same-sex couples. You can still kill us over and over in your heads. You won’t go to jail for it.

And you have to understand that freedom is not absolute. Your religious freedom, as well, is not absolute. Everybody’s freedom ends where another’s begins. You can swing your fist around in every which way as long as it doesn’t hit another person’s nose. You can scream faggot, sodomite, homosexual, and sinner all you want but you cannot deny persons of diverse SOGIE substantive equal access to education and work opportunities. The bill just wants to make that clear.

Myth #4: The SOGIE Equality Bill is only for the LGBT community.

Wrong! In California, a US state with anti-discrimination protections, a straight, I repeat, STRAIGHT cisgender man was awarded $17.4 million in a gay discrimination lawsuit. He was discriminated against by his employers because his employers thought he was gay. That’s because the sexual orientation or gender identity of the victim does not matter at all. (Surprised?) What matters is what is in the mind of the person discriminating.

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