Thursday, July 24, 2008

House Bill 634 part 1

Last week, as I’m switching channels, I saw Korina Sanchez and Ted Failon. I forgot the title of the show, but definitely it was shown in ANC, and definitely they are the host. Now, what caught my attention is one of the guests of the show – Rep. Bienvenido Abante, Jr., which is also the Pastor of Metropolitan Bible Baptist Church in Sta. Ana, Manila.

With him is a Catholic Archbishop Oscar Cruz (I’m not a Catholic. Though I have lapses in my own faith, please do understand why I don’t call him “Father”). They have two other guests on “the other corner”, a lesbian and a gay (I forgot). The topic is about House Bill No. 634, if this bill is passed, this will be called “Anti-Discrimination Law” or “An Act Prohibiting Discrimination on the Basis of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Providing Penalties Therefor”.

I will leave the technicalities of the Bill to legal arguments of our legal minds. What caught my attention why I stopped switching channels is when Korina Sanchez humorously asked Cong. Abante. She asked him if he had bad experiences with gay people. He answered that back in his high school days, there are old gays who are doing this and that (he didn’t elaborate). Sanchez pinned him down in that part. If you’re watching the show, you’ll see that all of them are laughing in that part (even Cong. Abante), but you can feel Sanchez’ gut in that humor. Ted Failon is just more of a listener by the way. Moments later, Sanchez said that her staff has many gay members, and she said that they are creative. Now, I understand a bit. Moments later again, the lesbian/guest told Sanchez and Failon that she wants to marry the one she’s now with. The hosts admire her (the lesbian/guest) for doing such because, according to Sanchez, there are guys who don’t have the balls to accept responsibility (which I agree).

Now, like I said, I will leave the legal arguments of this Bill to the House of Representatives, Lawyers, and Law Students. Let me just tell you what I think on the following statements:

1) LGBT (lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transsexuals, and transvestites) performs well in their respective fields, sometimes even better with the heterosexual counterparts – that is true. There are successful LGBTs, and that’s because they are hard working AND motivated. The mere fact that there is, well, discrimination, the tendency is to back-out or rise to the challenge, prove them wrong. Usually, it’s the latter. It’s not their being LGBT that makes them successful. It is the inner motivation to prove the critics (mostly homophobes as other people say it) wrong. It’s no different to a Filipino who went to US or different parts of the world. Because of some sort of discrimination, especially to Southeast Asian like Filipinos, that Filipino will either bow down, prove the critics right, or rise to the challenge and excel in the field he chooses. Usually, it’s the latter. I know first hand two Filipinas who resides in Beverly Hills. Hard work and inner motivation, not sexual orientation, makes them successful.
2) There are other guys who don’t want to take responsibility to a girl – guys and gals, you know what that means. Again, it is true, a sad truth. Real man is responsible to his actions. Too bad there are those who do otherwise. However, a man being irresponsible is different from lesbian wanting to marry a girl. Both are wrong. Besides, those are two different entities. Yes, there are irresponsible guys, but that doesn’t mean same sex marriage is justifiable. It’s like giving a wrong medicine to a wrong patient!
3) The reason why a congressman will block House Bill No. 634 is maybe he has a bad experience on LGBTs – okay, if I’ll follow that statement, thus, all laws are written because of a bad experience of that congressman/congresswoman, or worst, for their respective self-interest (but that’s another story). Personally, I think that humorous statement is nearly below the belt (nearly, because Sanchez knows her limits).

Okay, let me get this straight: as a Baptist, I’m against homosexuality and lesbianism. The Bible is against that. Let me also tell you that I have gay, bisexual, and lesbian friends. Is what I am doing contrary to what I really believe? Not really. Being a non-Baptist, I have no control in their choice of orientation. The Bible discourages homosexual practice. Still though, go to any Filipino Baptist church. If you’re a visitor who is belongs to LGBT, you’ll be accepted as a visitor. Like the new church pastor usually says, “everybody is welcome, but not their sins”. In fact, there are 2 cases I know that a visitor came to a church drunk. Of course, we are on guard, but he’s not thrown out. Why? All souls are welcome, my friend. However, once you become a member (by accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and being baptized by a Baptist preacher authorized by a Baptist church), you must follow the rules of the church governed by God’s Word – the Bible. After all, you’re inside a private organization called church. If you didn’t follow, the church has the right to discipline that member, and it’s not only for homosexual practice, there are other cases like fornication, adultery, theft, drunkenness. Still, despite that discipline, Baptists are the ones who have the guts to approach a LGBT to win that person to Christ. Besides, no one loves LGBTs better than believers (whether Baptist or other Christians who believes in the assurance of salvation through accepting Christ as Lord and Savior) who share the Gospel to them. Passing Anti-Discrimination Bill as a law is just superficial. Yes, there may come a time that this will become a law, thus liberating LGBTs more than before, BUT…are they really free?

Jesus Christ is the real answer, not same sex marriage, not that Bill.

To the Representatives who made this Bill, I respect you and what you’re fighting for. But please, respect also the view I share with many Baptist people who agree with yours truly. I know you will. J

To Korina Sanchez and Ted Failon, I like your way of hosting, but what you did to Cong. Abante is nearly below the belt. You’re discussing a Bill here, the joke is quite personal (good thing Cong. Abante laughed at it). Cong. Abante is just standing on what he believes in. Besides, he has a Biblical basis on that.

To the lesbian and gay guests at that show, if our paths crossed, I’ll be the most polite and kind person you’ll come across. If we are friends, there’s a chance that you’ll be invited in my house for some snacks or dinner or lunch, but my principle is still the same. Why? Because Baptist guys are generally nice, not typical homophobes.

To all LGBTs, I don’t hate you…in fact, I never hated you…

More similar entries next time.

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