BACOLOD CITY – It is redundant, unconstitutional, and violates freedom of expression, conscience, religion and speech.
This was the contention of Lyndon Caña, a lawyer and one of the founding members of the Coalition of Concerned Families of the Philippines-Bacolod Chapter as he explains why he opposes the bill.
The former councilor cited several laws and provisions such as those in the Revised Penal Code, the Constitution, the Labor Code, etc. which already protect the rights of individuals, making the SOGIE bill “unnecessary”.
“Before they are gays, they are persons and their rights are also protected under a lot of laws,” Cana said, citing among others measures against bullying, domestic violence, and violation of basic rights.
He also calls the bill “discriminatory, unequal, unconstitutional and violates fundamental freedoms”, pointing out that it is unfair to legislate against “feelings” or “beliefs”.
“If your beliefs go against same-sex activity, that is already discrimination or hate speech,” he argues.
It is discriminatory, it is unequal, unconstitutional, it violates fundamental freedoms, and above all is “anti-truth”.
A transgender woman, he says, will insist to be called “ma’am” and would claim discrimination if somebody else argues otherwise.
The person’s SOGIE – or Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Expression – would always win out, since the actual sex could not be used as a defense, he added.
He warned that should the bill push through, it would lead to destruction of society and family.
Ideal marriages should have traditional father-mother roles.
“But in same-sex marriage between two men, who should be the father; who should be the mother? And if somebody refuses to respect that because of their beliefs, they would be imprisoned.”
He also considers the penalty too steep — six to 12 years in prison and fine of up to P500,000 –compared to mere six months imprisonment and P20,000 fine under existing laws, specifically oral defamation and slander under the Revised Penal Code.
“That is why we are making it clear: we are not against LGBTQIP+, because the reality remains that there are lesbians and gays among us. What we are against is the bill,” he said.
The former councilor was one of the participants during the Negros Interfaith Against Sogie prayer rally held at the Bacolod Public Plaza last September 30.
The gathering was
Based on research by the DNX team, the following are areas covered by the SOGIE Equality bill and are considered discriminatory: promoting stigma on the basis of SOGIE in the media, including educational textbooks; disclosing sexual orientation, in work, including areas both private and public sector, including military, police, and other similar services; refusing admission or expel a person from any educational or training institution on the basis of SOGIE;
imposing harsher disciplinary sanctions and other penalties that infringe on the rights of the student on the basis of SOGIE, including discrimination on a student or trainee due to SOGIE of their parents or legal guardian; revoking the accreditation of any organization or refusing plans to organize a group in educational institutions, workplaces, communities and other settings, on the basis of SOGIE;
denying a person’s access to health services, and health insurance on the basis of SOGIE, denying application for or revoke any government documents that are necessary to exercise a profession, business, or any legitimate calling on the basis of SOGIE; denying a person access to or use of establishments, facilities, utilities or services, housing, open to the public on the basis of SOGIE;
subjecting or forcing a person to undergo any medical or psychological examination to determine or alter the person’s SOGIE, without the person’s consent, subjecting any person to profiling, detention, or verbal or physical harassment on the basis of SOGIE; subjecting a person to any analogous acts that shall have the effect or purpose of impairing or nullifying the enjoyment, recognition, and exercise of a person’s human rights and fundamental freedoms.
For more information about the SOGIE Equality Bill, click on https://www.senate.gov.ph/lisdata/2517921693!.pdf