‘Pride is compassion’: Gender equality groups hit CFC-FFL’s anti-LGBTQ+ remarks

Nicolas Czar Antonio
‘Pride is compassion’: Gender equality groups hit CFC-FFL’s anti-LGBTQ+ remarks
Gender equality groups clap back with facts

MANILA, Philippines – Gender equality groups condemned the “malicious and untrue assertions about the LGBTQ+ community” by the Couples for Christ Foundation for Family and Life (CFC-FFL) in its statement on Wednesday, June 19.

The CFC-FFL publicly condemned Ateneo de Manila University’s “One Big Pride,” the university’s Pride March, which was held on March 15.

It called the march’s message and celebration of homosexuality “contrary to the Catholic faith and thus injurious to the faithful, especially the young.”

CFC-FFL also said that “the continually evolving LGBTQIA+ genders have no basis in nature and reality” and that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered and contrary to natural law.”

Pride is compassion

Various gender advocacy groups were quick to defend the LGBTQ+ sector and pointed out the errors in the CFC-FFL’s statement.

The Ateneo Sanggunian’s Gender Equality Commission defended the Ateneo’s celebration of a Pride March and condemned the CFC-FFL’s statement, saying that it “[disrespects] the core values of our beloved Catholic and Jesuit institution that has stood strong and stood proud for 159 years.”

“We have been taught to exercise the value of cura personalis or care for the entire person that includes loving both ourselves and the other, standing with our faith that does justice for the marginalized and oppressed in acts of inclusivity,” said the Sanggunian in a statement.

“[The CFC-FFL’s statement] perpetuates not just conscious persecution, but the systematic violence committed against good and productive members of this nation by invalidating their experiences of gender identity, gender performance, and sexual orientation,” it added.

UP Babaylan echoed these sentiments, pointing out the contradictions in CFC-FFL’s statement. 

“This statement completely disregards that Pride’s message of love, acceptance and equality does not clash with their Catholic values. To preach about love and compassion in the same statement that spouts hate is not only hypocrisy, but also a perversion of the very values they claim to defend,” said UP Babaylan’s John Paul Aves to Rappler.

Metro Manila Pride frowned upon CFC-FFL’s excuse of using religion to discriminate against and exclude the LGBTQ+ community.

“Standards of ethics are not the monopoly of fundamentalists who use religion to impose prejudiced beliefs and encourage the systemic discrimination and exclusion of the LGBTQIA+, especially those who live in the margins of society,” Metro Manila Pride said.

“Pride is compassion,” it asserted.

Get your facts straight

Meanwhile, the Philippine Anti-Discrimination Alliance of Youth Leaders (PANTAY) called the CFC-FFL’s remarks a “hate statement” and debunked its supposed erroneous views.

In a Facebook post, PANTAY provided scholarly works to rebut the CFC-FFL’s claims. 

Citing a medical study, PANTAY noted that “[a] binary view of sex and gender does not capture the truth of nature and reality. For there, in fact, exists multiple matural instances of intersex possibilities. To claim that other sexualities and genders are fabrications is not only preposterous, it is also false.”

PANTAY was also quick to point out that homosexual activity and same-sex attraction have been observed in over 1,500 species of animals, and in humans. “Homosexuality is not contary to natural law, it is a part of it. Denial of the truth is what is unnatural,” it said.

“‪The future of our children should be founded on love, respect, and acceptance, not ignorance, hate, and discrimination.‬ May the Couples for Christ Foundation for Family and Life find that love and acceptance in their hearts,” concluded PANTAY. 

Meanwhile, militant LGBTQ+ group Bahaghari raised the possibility that instead of outright condemning the CFC-FFL’s stand on the issues, advocates can help educate them on the matter and even invite them to the Metro Manila Pride March and Festival on June 29. (READ: LIST: 2019 Pride activities

“Perhaps it is faultier to ridicule or shade CFC for their already faulty statement. Hence, they are more than welcome to Pride for a possible peaceful discourse. Maybe they may realize a thing or two about the LGBTQ+. At the end of it all, members of the Church should also be our allies,” it said in a statement. – Rappler.com

Nicolas Czar Antonio is a Rappler intern and a Psychology student at the University of the Philippines Diliman. He tweets at @Nicolas_Czar.

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