Observations from a different culture – the issue of gay marriage

The gay marriage issue has gripped North America so passionately that it had dictated the outcome of elections, divided believers of the same religion, challenged governments, particularly local governments that, within their limited powers, fiddled with legislation to show support of the issue. Case in point, the Ontario provincial court went ahead with approving gay marriage without waiting for federal sanction. The city of San Francisco did the same only to be rebuffed later by the state , calling the statute unconstitutional and declaring the entire proceeding a sham.

What is the real deal with the gay marriage? Gays who are in live-in relationships already avail of the spousal tax and social insurance benefits afforded to heterosexuals who live together as common law – meaning husband and wife but without a marriage certificate to show for. If a common law partner dies, the surviving partner is now legally allowed to file survivor benefit claims. In other words, most of the tax and social security benefits are already covered – why insist on marriage?

Majority of heterosexuals are not averse to the same sex benefits gay couples enjoy but become defensive when asked about their opinion on same sex marriage. Often grasping for a sensible reply, they turn to religion and say that the traditional concept of marriage between man and woman needs to be upheld and given the ultimate respect. Marriage connotes procreation and should be left as it is – a union between man and woman. Gays on the other hand insist that the intent behind affirming the love for someone for life through marriage is pure and noble thus deserving the same sanctity bestowed upon heterosexual marriage. Politicians are equally befuddled, unsure whether they should approach the political issue based on their personal conviction, their party’s stance or the voice of the constituencies they represent. Politicians appear to be extremely wary of the sensitivity of the issue that they might simply leave the higher courts to decide or a national referendum for that matter and forgo with the arduous task of amending the constitution.

What about the gay marriage issue in RP? Is there such an issue in the first place? Do Pinoy gays go after their fellow gays or straights? In North America, gays have formed their own subculture where they can hang around with their own kind . They have gay bars, gay baths, gay hot lines, gay TV, gay organizations, gay everything ,etc. Gays in North America go for fellow gays while gays in RP go for straights. Why the difference? Aren’t homosexual feelings the same regardless of what part of the world you live in? Going for someone of your own orientation – is it a case of “delicadeza” and respect for those who are different? Might it be that extreme discriminatory practices and gay bashing forced North American gays to form their own little world? How do Pinoys perceive homosexuality and its societal implications? Do they take it seriously ?


8 Responses

  1. hi buffwings, sa tingin ko Pinoy gays have not reached the sophistication of the American gays. pinoy gay men still consider themselves as girls and not the third sex. siguro this is the reason why they are after straight men.tingin ko lang ha. kasi, girl and girl will be pompyang so, straight guy is the answer.

  2. Is this why most Pinoy gays are stereotyped as effeminate? Some people say that Pinoys in general find gays amusing and harmless and never a threat to society so we show more tolerance than the westerners who are more obsessed with the sense of propriety and tradition.

  3. it is sad that pinoy gays are not taken seriously. they are always being talked about as entertainers and not as professionals though there are gays who have made names for themselves.

    as to marriage of gays, i still cannot say yes… and even in the near future, am not sure if i can agree with the idea.

  4. Yes, gays are so predominant in the entertainment industry and have influenced greatly the Pinoy showbiz mentality.

    In as far as gay rights are concerned there seems to be no war drums beating on this issue as society has shown extreme tolerance to gays. Pinas is still so conservative that we can’t get over the hump on the issue of birth control – how much more the gay marriage!

  5. BW, it looks like the Canadian parliament is going to resolve this issue soon. The Liberal party is trying to pass the same sex marriage bill despite dissensions from within the party. This is going to be really interesting. Many Liberal MP’s who are against the bill have threatened to leave the party.

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