Oct 21, 2012

[Technicolor Musings] Spirit Day Reflections

Last Friday, October 19, was Spirit Day, a day dedicated to reminding the LGBT youth that millions of people are ready to be recognized to stand up against bullying. While you could argue that this is primarily an American event, like most things that reach the internet they can stand the chance of becoming international movements. And while wearing purple for a day does not seem like doing much, it is still a very powerful message solidarity, especially with respect to the younger members of the LGBT community at large.

It has often been said that children can be cruel at times. The culture of bullying is something that happens all around the world time and time again, and this is especially true for LGBT youth. And it somewhat reflects the greater society as a whole as well given many times the bullies feel justified that they are in the right based on some religious principle or teaching derived from their parents. Intolerance does not appear out of nowhere after all.

Many might say that bullying is not a major concern here based on their perceptions of how children are or false notions that the supposed religion of majority of the country automatically turns people into saints. But in truth we still see the subtle signs of LGBT bullying and discrimination everywhere - and these are things that funnel down to the behavior of children.

For as long as we live in an environment of inequality where members of the LGBT community are perceived to be abnormal, immoral or whatever you want to call it. As long as the community is being judged based on who we are under the false impression that this is just some willful choice, then our children will follow in our footsteps and try to follow this worldview in their own way.

Bakla! is still an insult, more often than not, just as we see American teens depicted in popular media using gay as an insult or slur. Parents continually stress the importance of following the Word of God or the need to have children as passive aggressive reminders for their children who have started to exhibit possible indicators of homosexuality. And the fact that many Filipino gay men and women continue to hide the truth about their lives from their family just stresses how things aren't equal yet.

So enough with the jokes. Stop making fun of people who are different from you. Stop teaching your children to perpetuate a cycle of hatred.

Open your minds. Celebrate diversity. Spread love all around.
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