Netizens question Noli de Castro for 'discriminatory' remark
MANILA, Philippines – On Wednesday, May 11, veteran broadcaster and former vice president Noli de Castro earned the ire of many netizens after supposedly making a discriminatory remark on air.
During his morning radio program in DZMM, De Castro reportedly said, “`Di siya woman, `di siya man. Eh `di congressperson?”
(Neither a woman nor man. Should we refer to her as congressperson?)
De Castro was referring to Geraldine Roman who was elected representative of the first district of Bataan on Monday, May 9, becoming the first transgender to ever be elected to the House of Representatives in the country. (READ: Transgender politician poised for historic win in Catholic Philippines)
Her victory is historic in a predominantly Catholic country where members of the lesbian, gays, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) community have been told to go to another planet.
Because of de Castro's remark, some netizens appealed for a mandatory Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) 101 for members of the media.
Here are some of the tweets from netizens:
Some netizens, on the other hand, did not see anything wrong with De Castro's statement. According to them, instead of criticizing De Castro, netizens should educate him on the correct way to address transgenders like Roman.
Roman, of the Liberal Party, led the Bataan congressional race and won a landslide victory with 106,015 votes, beating her sole opponent, Danilo Malana, who got 64,643 votes.
“The goal of all LGBTs is someday, hindi pag-uusapan yung genders, but yung (we don’t talk about gender but) qualifications because we can contribute to the growth of our country,” Roman said during the campaign.
While some local government units – specifically Davao, Quezon, and Mandaue cities – have already pioneered the implementation of ordinances protecting the rights of the LGBT community, advocates say there is much work to be done to end discrimination. They want Congress to pass a national anti-discrimination law.
With Roman in Congress, many are looking to see if she will become a strong advocate against discrimination in the House.
Rappler has sought the side of Mr de Castro but has yet to receive a response. - Rappler.com