Gender discrimination, nonetheless, is evident everywhere around the world; whether it be the most liberated country there is, there will always be people opposing other people. In their defense though, as a species, we were made to be superficial. It is one of our evolutionary defense mechanisms that enable us to decide whether something or rather someone, might be harmful or beneficial. But to think that a bunch of well-rounded people from our generation, a generation full of eye-opening thoughts and open minds, still carry the thought that a particular gender is superior to others, or people from the Third-Sex should not exist (or be isolated from the society), that’s a bit frightening.
We Filipinos, being from a highly religious Catholic country, are indifferent to the religious upbringing. It is just… natural to us in a sense. Because of this, the idea of patriarchy and fear of homosexual relationships tend to withhold us from being liberated and free. In retrospect, it makes the idea of discrimination a bit normal to us. Just like in other parts of the world, the idea seems to be opposed due to heavy religious beliefs. On the contrary, considering that our generation seems to welcome that idea of gender equality (or just the plain idea of opposing any kind of discrimination), it serves as a vivid light in a pitch-black tunnel: full of hope and potential, but at the same time, the light must glow even brighter before the emptiness swallows it whole. Many people have different sides on the issue, and this is our side.
Discrimination is a chaotic game of Russian Roulette. It’s all fun and games until the unsuspecting person fires the only bullet in the gun. We tend to humor ourselves with the idea of someone being gay, but in reality, there are a bunch of people out there who are afraid to come out because of the embarrassment (or pity, in other cases); Come to think of it, just the idea of being embarrassed because of coming out, that’s one of the main roots of homophobia. There are a lot of people out there that still think that men are superior to women; thinking that women are your average run-of-the-mill 1950-esque housewives that have the main purpose of being servants to their dominant husbands. There are a lot of people out there that think that homosexual couples influence hatred. There are a lot of people out there, feeling pity to themselves because other people think that it is disgusting to not feel complete on the inside. There are a lot of aged people out there that want to support their families, being end up disappointed because no company would hire them due to their age. There are a lot of people out there that are laughed at because of the color of their skin, the shape of their nose, the size of their eyes, or just because of the race/ethnicity they were brought from. This kind of discrimination (or perhaps any kind of discrimination), must be STOPPED.
We mean no harm to any religion or their beliefs, but that we are pointing out is the fact that everyone can coexist in a world full of love; after all, one of the main purposes of religion is the reassurance that everyone is being loved. One’s belief cannot undermine the feeling of hatred, and thus love should prevail to hatred imposed not just to LQBTQ+ people, people of different races, suppressed women and people with disabilities, but to EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US. True, we may still feel like we are living in a box. True, some stereotypes still exist. But that doesn’t mean that it is all true to every person. The unlikable trait that we all have is that we always judge a person on the outside, rather than judging by the personality and opinions. That is the common flaw of all of us. A single hamartia. We side on what we think is right without even double thinking to whether it is viable. We treat everyone differently based on our impression. We always come up being biased to something. If you really think about it, we are all made equal; it is just our perception and expectation that divides us into a jumbled mess that we are.
We can live in perfect harmony if we have the urge to try. Seeing the various Pride march and Women’s march nowadays, we can safely say that we are steps closer to reaching our ultimate goal of peace and harmony in a world full of love. In a world that you can love anyone without being judged. In a world that you can be whatever you want to be. In the end what truly matters is that we respect everyone. It’s better to live in a world where you can proudly shout out to the world of your sexuality without being judged. It’s better to live in a world wherein women are respected and appreciated as much as men do in whatever field. It’s better to live in a world where you can freely show the world of whoever you are on the inside. It’s better to live in a world wherein people’s competencies are measured by their skills, and not be their age. It’s better to live in a world wherein no stereotypes can be used against you; that no one can judge and look at you menacingly because of the color of your skin. It may be a long way to go, but we are sure that the future generations will be filled with love, respect, and kindness – so let us now start opening our eyes to the world. Respect, love and understand everyone because it does not only benefit you and the society, but it also benefits the humanity as a whole.
An Advocacy by ELE151 Team Arizala