UP students celebrate pride month with LGBT community

MANILA, Philippines - It’s pride month and some student groups in the University of the Philippines celebrate with the LGBT community.

Buena Bernal reports.

Over 50 gay rights advocates gather in a display of pride at the University of the Philippines.
Marching in campus with a rainbow-colored flag, advocates send the message: we’re proud of who we are.
The celebration comes at a historic time a day after the United States Supreme Court overturns a ban on gay marriage.
Do advocates see it happening in the Philippines too?

Film student Peter says there is increasing tolerance but no genuine acceptance yet.

I'm still in the closet because there are two things: number one, I fear rejection from my family
And number two, the disappointment they will have if I can't be a normal straight guy.

Organizers say today's pride march is meant for people like Peter -- to make them feel they are not alone.

Kasi ang sarap maging malaya, ang sarap ipakilala kung sino ka. As one author puts it, “why fit when you can stand out?
(Because it feels great to be free. It feels great to show who you are. Sabi ng ng isang author sa isang quote, “why fit when you can stand out?”)

But not everyone accepts gays, even in liberal UP.
With the country's strong Catholic influence, not every Filipino LGBT is as out as they would like to be. Most closet gays fear the conservative backlash.
These UP students brave the rain to make a statement. They say they will strive to make this campus a place where you can be out and proud.
Buena Bernal, Rappler, Manila

- Rappler.com