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  • ANG LADLAD PARTY-LIST IN 2010

    ANG LADLAD (formerly Ang Lunduyan) was formed on September 1, 2003 as a network of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Filipinos. The members can either be LGBT organizations or individuals, or their heterosexual supporters. In Filipino, "magladlad" means to unfurl the cape that used to cover one's body as a shield. It means to come out of the closet, to assert one's human rights as equal to that of the next Filipino. Thus, it means to take one's place in the sun, with dignity intact. ANG LADLAD might run for party-list elections for Congress in 2010 national elections. Thus, it is bound to to make history. It will be the first political party composed of LGBT Filipinos that will claim -- and reclaim -- the rights we have lost from centuries of homophobia and discrimination. Platforms 1. Support for the Anti-Discrimination Bill that gives LGBT Filipinos equal opportunities in employment and equal treatment in schools, hospitals, restaurants, hotels, entertainment centers, and government offices. 2. Re-filing of the bill to repeal the Anti-Vagrancy Law that some unscrupulous policemen use to extort bribes from gay men without ID cards; 3. Setting up of micro-finance and livelihood projects for poor and handicapped LGBT Filipinos; 4. Setting up of centers for Golden Gays, or old and abandoned LGBTs, as well as young ones driven out of their homes. The centers will also offer legal aid and counseling, as well as information about LGBT issues, HIV-AIDS, and reproductive health. These centers will be set up initially in the key cities/metropolitan areas of the Philippines -- Baguio, National Capital Region, Cebu and Davao. The platforms of ANG LADLAD are like laser beams -- clear and focused only in one direction. We aim to restore our pride and dignity as LGBT Filipinos as well as give ourselves a chance to lead kinder and gentler lives. The only way to shape history is to make it. Be part of history.
  • DANTON REMOTO FOR SENATOR IN 2010

    Danton Remoto was born on 25 March 1963 in Basa Air Base, Pampanga. He was an ASEAN scholar at the AdMU where he obtained his AB Interdisciplinary Studies in 1983. With his Robert Southwell scholarship, Remoto obtained his MA English Lit., 1989; then, on a British Council fellowship, another MA in publishing studies, 1990, at the University of Stirling, Scotland. He was a Local fellow for poetry at the UP Creative Writing Center, 1994. He was at Hawthornden Castle, 1993, and later, at the Cambridge Seminar. Remoto teaches at AdMU where he manages the Office of Research and Publishing. He is also studying for his Ph.D. in creative writing at UP. He was an associate of PLAC and a member of the Manila Critics Circle since 1989. He has won various awards, among them, the ASEAN prize for the essay, 1979; the Palanca for the essay in 1987; the CCP literary award for poetry; the Stirling District Arts Council award for poetry and the short story. Among his works: Skin , Voices , Faces , Anvil, 1991; Black Silk Pajamas / Poems in English and Filipino , Anvil, 1996. He edited Buena Vista [Alfrredo Navarro Salanga's poems and fiction], 1989 and co-ed., Gems in Philippine Literature , 1989. More importantly, he has co-edited the Ladlad series with J. Neil Garcia. He might run as senator in 2010 National Elections.

GAY RIGHTS GROUP HITS VATICAN ON PSYCH TEST FOR SEMINARIANS

danton1

A group advocating gay rights on Friday rejected a Vatican ruling to conduct psychological tests on young men who are about to enter priesthood amid cases of sexual abuse involving homosexual priests and minors.

“Kasi yung parang sinasabi nila diyan, ang psych test para makita kung may sakit, na ang homesexual tendencies ay sakit (It seems what they want to happen here is to designate homosexual tendencies as an ailment),” Danton Remoto of the Ang Ladlad said.

Remoto, however, said that the truth runs counter to the Catholic Church’s position.

“Eh 1973 pa sinabi ng American Psychological Association na hindi iyan sakit. Pati World Health Organization nagsabi, hindi iyan sakit so paano mo mada-diagnose ang isang tao kung hindi sakit (The American Psychological Association said in 1973 that its not an ailment. Even the World Health Organization issued a similar verdict. So if it’s not an ailment, how can you diagnose it?),” he added.

Remoto, also a university professor, said the claim that homosexuality is an ailment come straight from the era of dinosaurs.

“Jurassic na iyan. Paano mo mada-diagnose hindi naman sakit (That’s from the Jurassic. How can you diagnose it if it’s not an ailment?).”

He said that homosexuality is part of the human nature that need to be understood and not judged upon by others. He added that there are gays among plants or crabs, for that matter.

“That’s part of nature, there are gay papayas, gay crabs,” he said.

Remoto cited loopholes in the Church’s stand on the issue.

He said that cases of sexual abuse allegedly done by priests on young boys and even on women have not been investigated properly.

“Maraming ganyan sa Cebu. Nalilipat lang ang pari na may kaso ng pangmomolestiya (Cases abound in Cebu where the accused priest only get to be transferred to other areas),” he said.

Stricter screening needed?

Remoto suggested that instead of a psychological test, the Church should implement a stricter screening for would-be priests.

“[Kailangan] stricter screening na mas scientific at hindi psycho test (What they need is a stricter screening done scientifically and not a psycho test),” he said.

Based on the Vatican order, young men who will enter the seminary will undergo a psychological test to determine if they are capable of being celibate. Another aspect of the test aims to gauge their homosexual tendencies.

“Gaya sa anumang kompanya, gusto mo naayon sa criteria ‘yung mga empleyado mo (Like in any company, you would want that your employees follow a certain criteria),” said Bishop Honesto Ongtioco, a member of the Catholic Bishops of the Philippines’ Commission on Seminarians.

The order, however, clairified that the test is voluntary since this would determine if the would-be priest had psychological trauma that may trigger acts of sexual abuse later on.

If a seminarian is found to be suffering from this condition, he would be treated and evaluated if he is still fit to continue the vocation.

But according to the University of the Philippines’ Center for Women’s Studies, the Church’s position on the issue is not based on reality.

It said that in the Philippines, most cases of sexual abuse allegedly committed by priests involved women as victims, not young boys, prompting the center’s Sylvia Claudio to say that the Church’s ideology as “junk.”

“Ang siyensiya ng Simbahan ay extreme, ideological at junk (The Church’s science is extreme, idelogical and junk),” she said.

The Church, however, countered by saying that it would not hinge its test solely on a person’s psychological capacity. It said that prayers and the person’s capability to change would also play a big part. (abs-cbnews-umagang kayganda)

AN EXCITING US ELECTION

David Plotke, a recent visitor courtesy of the US Embassy, said he didn’t rule out that George W. Bush’s secretarry of state Condoleeza Rice would vote for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama.

Plotke, professor of political science and chairman of the Historical Studies Department of the New School in New York, said this before Rice’s predecessor, Colin Powell endorsed Obama.

Powell’s endorsement was a huge boost to Obama’s candidacy not only because the former was a Republican but as former chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff and secretary of state, he has helped neutralized the propaganda of Republican candidate John McCain’s camp that Obama is naïve in matters of security and foreign affairs.

Powell said he is voting for Obama because he sees the 47-year old African-American presidential aspirant as “ a transformational figure, he is a new generation coming onto the world stage, onto the American stage.”

In his Nov. 2 interview with Jamaica Gleamer newspaper, Powell, who has Jamaican roots, said he sees in the young Obama “commander-in-chief” quality.

Powell, who had declined suggestions for him to enter politics in past elections, said he is impressed with how Obama has run his campaign: “I believe he has demonstrated in this campaign that he understands the issues that we face and he brings the leadership and organizational abilities that one needs to be a good commander-in-chief. If you look at the campaign that he has run, it has been almost perfect, and it has been run almost like a military operation. So, I believe he has the leadership and management skills as well as the substance and the style, frankly, to be a good commander-in-chief and a good leader of foreign policy for the American people.”

Asked how his endorsement would encourage military personnel and veterans, who are inclined to favor Vietnam war veteran McCain, to vote for Obama, Powell said,”Because I was a soldier, military personnel and veterans will take my view into account, but I find that so many of our soldiers now are exceptionally well informed through the Internet and television that they can make informed judgments. I hope they will look at my judgment and compare it to the judgment of others and make an informed choice.”

It’s a very close race with Obama enjoying a slight edge and appears within reach of becoming the nation’s first black president. The battle-scarred Mc Cain goes back into history hoping for a Truman-beats-Dewey-style upset.

The 1948 US presidential election, the greatest political upset in American history, is always a reminder to candidates and media publications the perils of over-confidence.

It’s useful to recall that in the 1948 US presidential the top two candidates were incumbent President Harry S. Truman (Democrat) and Republican Thomas E. Dewey.

Opinion polls, which at that time did not have today’s sophisticated technological tools, put Dewey very much ahead of Truman. So sure was Chicago Tribune of Dewey’s victory that it had for its morning-after issue a banner story “DEWEY DEFEATS TRUMAN.”

A photograph showing the victorious Truman grinning and holding up a copy of that issue of Chicago Tribune is a humbling reminder to media to keep its ear close to the ground and stick to what is the truth as you see it. Leave the fortune telling to Madame Auring.

This year’s election has generated excitement all over the world because of the possibility that it would produce the first black president, something unthinkable decades ago. But what is it to the Philippines, which long ago receded in the Washington’s radar screen?

Not much. Whether it’s Obama or Mc Cain, an American president will work for the interest of Americans. Which is what it should be, as that is what they are elected for. As David Plotke observed, both candidates don’t question each other’s patriotism.

One thing to be concerned of with Mc Cain is that even if he tried to distance himself from the unpopular Bush, another Republican administration would mean the same arrogant mentality that led to the invasion of Iraq using the lie of weapons of mass destruction.

It’s a continuation of the same policy of “either you are with me or against me” which Gloria Arroyo enthusiastically embraced in the aftermath of the Iraq invasion.

It’s a continuation of the same supercilious, shortsighted policy that look at other nations, especially the smaller ones merely as instruments for maintaining the U.S. status as the only superpower in the world, and not as partners in global development.

Obama is more for engaging those who don’t agree with U.S official policy, like Iran, in a dialogue. It’s not weakness. It’s wisdom.

It is hoped that the world will be better with a less insecure leader of the most powerful country in the world.

Personally, I like Obama because he was smart enough to evade the persistent efforts of Arroyo for a photo opportunity meeting with him last June. Just that simple. http://www.ellentordesillas.com

2008 MANILA PRIDE MARCH

Rainbow Greetings!

Task Force Pride would like to invite you and/or your group to participate in this year’s celebration of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride March in Malate on 6 December 2008, Saturday, 3 PM to 5 PM. The regis
tration and assembly time will be from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM at Remedios Circle.

Theme. This years Pride March pays tribute to our: Our rig
hts, our lives, our loves, our selves.

Route. The route of this year’s march is: Remedios Circle-Remdios Street-MH Del Pilar-Pedro Gil-Maria Orosa Street.

The march will be followed by a brief cultural program showcasing both LGBT and non-LGBT talents and will be concluded by a street party in Maria Orosa Street (by the Courtyard).

Significance. The Pride March is known for its overwhelming attendance. It attracts thousands of participants and generates extensive local and international media attention.

This year’s Pride March is particularly significant as it coincides with the celebration of the 60th year of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the launch in Manila of the Yogyakarta Principles (www.yogyakartaprinciples.org), an international declaration which affirms sexual orientation and gender identity and expression as fundamental human rights.

Please confirm your participation by contacting me or Bruce Amoroto, head of our Participation Committee at +63-916.282.6781 or via email bruce.amoroto@gmail.com. U may visit http://www.manilapride2008.com. For international participants interested in joining the March, you may refer to ‘International Delegates 2008 Manila Pride March’ facebook group

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=29662023955

or register at InternationalDelegation08ManilaPride@yahoogroups.com

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/internationaldelegation08manilapride/

to keep you posted on details about flights to Manila, accommodation, things to do in Manila during the Pride March week, etc.

We hope that you will choose to make this year’s Pride celebration a more festive, colorful and meaningful event with your participation.

IS THERE A STORM ON THE HORIZON?

by Joel Rocamora
Akbayan Chairman

The bishops did it. Their call for a “new government”, then building hope around “liberators” who are “just around the corner” got everyone worked up. A “new government” in advance of the 2010 elections, of course, means the extra constitutional removal of the Arroyo administration. Everyone assumes the bishops are not talking of the Second Coming. Maybe those knights in shining armor who are a long time coming.

Conspiracy theorists are having a field day. The impeachment initiative, chacha, and the arrival of Jocjoc Bolante primed the public for the bishops’ statement. Are these moves linked? Is there a master conspiracy behind these linked moves? Did the bishops light the fuse for a coming explosion? Is it a short or a long fuse? The nice thing about conspiracy theories is that we can enjoy dramatic tension even if we cannot find out if there’s anything to the theory.

Whether or not the bishops are, consciously or unconsciously, part of a conspiracy, what they’ve done is important because it reminds us that moral outrage does not recognize the political calendar. Practical politicians on both sides of the pro-anti-Gloria divide say talk of liberation have to make way for preparations for the 2010 election, only a year and a half away. The moral sensibility asks why we have to wait. If we can, let’s get rid of her now.

Which bishops set the impact. Bishop Oscar Cruz, the constant warrior, tilting endlessly against jueteng. Bishop Angel Lagdameo, president of the CBCP, perennially frustrated by the CBCP’s conservative majority. Bishop Socrates Villegas is bishop of Balanga-Bataan, but he is well known to Manila reform circles from serving as the late Cardinal Sin’s able assistant. Two others signed the statement, Masbate Bishop Joel Baylon, and Legazpi Bishop Emeritus Jose Sorra.
Who was not with them might also be revealing. The bishops of KME who were not there have in the past been accused of supporting coup attempts. If the KME bishops have been the more public of the Catholic church’s progressive section, the AMRSP has more resources. AMRSP sisters have been Jun Lozada’s bodyguards for most of the last eight months. The bishops’ initiative was apparently at the behest of the AMRSP.

Whether intentional or not, the bishops also weighed in on the 2010 elections. Two presidential contenders, Vice President De Castro and Senate President Villar, are clearly not in the bishops’ support list. The two leaders they prefer, Chief Justice Puno and AFP Chief-of-staff Yano, are not running for elective office, but could come in as leaders of an extra-constitutional post-GMA leadership.

On its own, the bishops’ initiative is not likely to result in the kind of change they hope for. But it does raise the incendiary potential of other ongoing developments. Bolante’s return has been avidly anticipated. His attempt to avoid having to talk, resulting in two years of imprisonment in the US, indicates the explosive potential of his telling the truth. But early indications are that he’s not going to talk.

There’s an apparently coordinated effort to prevent his testimony in the Senate. Even before he returned, his lawyer petitioned the Supreme Court to prevent the Senate from reopening hearings on the fertilizer scam, arguing that the investigation is finished. This argument is backed up by administration allies in the Senate led by Sen. Angara who says that the Senate long ago submitted its recommendation to the Ombudsman for Jocjoc’s prosecution. For two years, the Ombudsman did nothing, acting only on the day after Jocjoc returned.

The positioning of administration lackeys in the Senate is understandable. What needs explaining is the hesitation of Senate President Villar who only moved to have Jocjoc arrested by the Senate the moment he arrived after LP senators threatened to attack him. Villar is also problematizing what committee would investigate. Since the Committee on Agriculture is headed by Sen.Angara, the only logical committee is the Blue Ribbon Committee headed by Villar party mate Senator Alan Peter Cayetano. Senator Mar Roxas has proposed that the Senate convene as a committee of the whole.

Maybe this is where the explanation for Villar’s hesitation lies. He does not want to give Mar Roxas a platform. Villar supporters might also be worried that a Bolante expose would put some life into the impeachment complaint. In the unlikely possibility that GMA does get impeached, it would greatly strengthen the position of another Villar competitor, Vice President De Castro, who would become president. A combination of administration senators and Villar allies, together with the more than one week lapse before the Senate reconvenes could defuse the Bolante issue, even if the Supreme Court refuses to act on Bolante’s petition.

The competing political calculations of 2010 election coalitions is also likely to determine the fate of the impeachment complaint. The minority in the House has not, so far, endorsed the complaint. While there is no such thing as impossible in the shifting coalitions of Philippine politics, the complaint is not likely to get the one third of House members needed to move the complaint to the Senate. If its proponents succeed in at least debating the substance of the complaint, that will, under current circumstances, already be a victory.

The administration’s move to advance its chacha agenda is potentially more explosive. The attempt, whether it succeeds or not, is proof of opposition suspicions that GMA intends to stay in power beyond the end of her term in 2010. Led by House Speaker Nograles, the administration is mobilizing to secure charter change without involving the Senate. Quite openly, administration stalwarts are saying that if they can get three fourths of the members of both the House and the Senate, they can pass constitutional amendments.

For now, the amendment would only remove the prohibition on foreign ownership of land. If Nograles succeeds in getting the 196 votes of House members he needs, the issue will then be raised to the Supreme Court. If GMA allies in the SC affirm the constitutionality of this mode of amending the constitution, there will then be no legal obstacle for GMA and her allies to make the kinds of changes that would keep GMA in power past 2010. The conditions for maximum polarization will then have been set.

These kinds of conditions should facilitate the revival of the mass movement. Whether they like it or not, the anti-GMA opposition will be forced to reunite as the likelihood of 2010 elections recedes. It will also force leaders of key political institutions, in particular the SC and more importantly, the AFP, to decide whether their allegiance to the constitution extends past its being mangled. If the Chief-of-staff decides he has no obligation to obey a mangled constitution, the door will be opened for “liberators”. It could then be “a walk in the park”.

BISHOPS CALL FOR PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT’s OUTER

That was one great statement that the Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo, president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines, released yesterday. He practically called for the ouster of Gloria Arroyo.

Not in 2010 but now.

In a statement he read flanked by four other progressive-thinking bishops namely, Lingayen Archbishop Oscar Cruz, Bataan Bishop Socrates Villegas, Masbate Bishop Joel Baylon, and Legazpi Bishop Emeritus Jose Sorra, Lagdameo said: “The time to start radical reforms is now. The time for moral regeneration is now. The time to conquer complacency, cynicism and apathy and to prove that we matured from our political disappointments is now. The time to prepare a new government is now. ”

In the open forum, Lagdameo said Gloria Arroyo is not capable of instituting reforms because he said, “I believe that the President is corrupt.”

The question and answer portion with Bishop Cruz was fascinating. Asked if Arroyo can lead the radical reforms, he replied, “Siempre hindi.”

Q: How about Vice President Noli de Castro?

Cruz: Walang ganyanan.

Q: How about Senate President Manny Villar?

Cruz: Walang ganyanan.

Q: How about House Speaker Prospero Nograles?

Cruz: Walang ganyanan.

Q: How about Chief Justice Reynato Puno?

Cruz: Pwede.

Q: How about AFP Chief Alexander Yano?

Cruz: Okay yun.

Q: Have you met with General Yano?

Cruz: Tama na. tama na.

It is about time that leaders of the Catholic Church whose consciences haves not been numbed by Malacañang’s cash donations, do what they preach. They cannot be preaching “Thou shalt not steal” while closing their eyes on the thievery of Arroyo and her cohorts. Worse, accepting the fruits of Arroyo’s crimes.

Many Catholics have already given up on the CBCP when it comes to giving them guidance at this time when democratic institutions are degraded to protect Arroyo’s hold on power.

Lagdameo and the four bishops seriously doubt there will be an election in 2010 despite Arroyo’s pledge there would be one.

Cruz said their sources say “Elections in 2010 is a big dream. In short, elections in 2010 up to this time that I’m talking, is a moral impossibility.”

He asked the media to be on the alert when Congress opens on Nov. 10. “Charter change will be an open, public and well funded move in the Lower House. Whether it will triumph in the Senate is still debatable. But then I repeat, no more camouflage, no more double-talk, no more indirect insinuations. Charter change will be an honest-to-goodness agenda for Congress,” he said.

Arroyo’s Cha-cha, Cruz said, will be through a constitutional assembly. “The moment it passes the Lower House, and the moment it passes Senate and there is a plebiscite, then it is done, because the local governments are all at the command of Malacañang.”

Cruz said the charter change that Arroyo is crusading “is not for patriotic reasons.”

“It is intended principally, basically and fundamentally to extend the term of office of the incumbent. I hope to God and I pray very dearly that I am wrong but that is what I know,” he said. ellen tordisillas

CREEPY PAST: READ THIS!

Have a history teacher explain this… if they can.

Abraham Lincoln was elected to Congre
ss in 1846.
John F. Kennedy was elected to
Congress in 1946.

Abraham Lincoln was elected President in 1860.
John F. Kennedy was elected Presid
ent in 1960.

Both were particularly concerned wit
h civil rights.
Both wives lost their children
while living in the White House.

Both Presidents were shot on a Friday.
Both Presidents were shot in the h
ead.

Now it gets really weird.

Lincoln ‘s secretary was named Kenne
dy.
Kennedy’s Secretary was named Lin
coln.

Both were assassinated by Southerners.
Both were succeeded by Southerners named Johnson.

Andrew Johnson, who succeeded
Lincoln, was born in 1808.

Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded Kennedy, was born in 1908.

John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated Lincoln, was born in 1839.

Lee Harvey Oswald, who assassinated Kennedy, was born in 1939.

Both assassins were known by their three names.
Both names are composed of fifteen letters.

Now hang on to your seat.

Lincoln was shot at the theater named ‘Ford.’

Kennedy was shot in a car called ‘Lincoln ‘
made by ‘Ford.’



Lincoln was shot in a theater and his assassin ran and hid in a
warehouse.

Kennedy was shot from a warehouse and his assassin ran and hid in a theater.
Booth and Oswald were assassinated before their trials.

And here’s the kicker…

A week before Lincoln was shot, he was in Monroe, Maryland
A week before Kennedy was shot, he was w
ith Marilyn Monroe.

Creepy huh?

Now i’m not really too sure if the facts are accurate, but i’m way too lazy to google it. So if someone’s got the time, let me know how accurate it is.

A DREAMGIRL’s NIGHTMARE:JENNIFER HUDSON’s MOM, BRO FOUND DEAD

At 2:44pm Friday afternoon, Jennifer Hudsons brother, Jason Hudson, and her mother, Darnell Donerson, were found dead by shotgun blast in Jennifer’s mother’s Chicago home. The bodies were discovered by Jennifer’s cousin, who lived nearby. Additionally, Darnell’s 7-year-old grandson, Julian King, was reportedly abducted from the scene–possibly by the suspect in this tragic double murder.

This news comes at a time when Jennifer should be enjoying the happiest time of her life–she just released her debut album, she’s about to hit the silver screen again in the highly anticipated The Secret Life Of Bees, and she just got engaged to her lawyer/reality-star boyfriend, David “Punk” Otunga. But now, just as the dreamgirl is about to have all her dreams come true, she is instead facing this ultimate nightmare.

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