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Aug 21

Oblivious in Cloud Cuckoo-land

It’s going to be any day now, insists the Legion: ChaCha advocates bring case to Comelec. So the two top stories will be the plenary voting on impeachment, and the announced filing-to-be.

But that’s for later this week. As for today…

Twenty three years, which is how long ago Ninoy Aquino was killed, is a lifetime for most Filipinos. I was 13, and my father and I had just arrived in America where I was supposed to go to school, when Aquino was killed. I had to ask, “who is Ninoy Aquino?”

The late Peter Jennings that day mistakenly referred to Aquino as “Niño Aquino.” That was funny. The situation itself, of course, was not. My father was very sick with a stomach bug he’d picked up on the flight; yet he was constantly on the phone to family and friends in Manila. At times we knew more overseas than people at home were being told or could find out. There were only really two papers, then: the Bulletin Today was as it is now, as the Manila Bulletin;: generally, vanilla. The other paper, the Times Journal was to those times as the Manila Standard-Today is in our time. There were no other real papers, basically no independent radio, and certainly no alternative sources for news and views like the Internet. Eggy Apostol recounts what it was like to wait for him, and hear he’d died. Billy Esposo pens a memoir of that day, too.

My impression of those confusing hours and days was plain and simply, the shock that my elders felt; and after the feeling of shock, the inner turmoil Ninoy’s death provoked: had he been rash? Was Marcos a lunatic, or in a coma? Would anyone care? What did his undelivered arrival statement mean?

People did care. People started smuggling around his undelivered statement; and if you watch the documentaries and read recollections of the time, as breathtaking as the manner in which Ninoy was murdered, was the decision of individual people to do something that should have come easily under normal circumstances: attend a wake, and march in a funeral procession. Newsstand recounts what it was like.

I remember the debates in the late 70s and early 80s: “Let’s unite,” we should “move on,” there “is no qualified successor,” the opposition “is hopelessly divided,” better “the SOB we know than an SOB who might be worse,” not to mention “things are getting better,” at least “there is firm leadership and discipline,” and “if the people really don’t like it why aren’t they showing they care,” as well as “if you’re not a Communist you have nothing to fear.”

Shot Dead On Arrival
(photo from Wikipedia)

The killing of Ninoy and the economy’s collapse set those arguments aside. I hear them now -have been hearing them for a year- which makes me wonder if people rally want to wait for the economy to collapse or a new martyr to be produced, as if we haven’t learned to nip dictatorship in the bud rather than wait for it to flower, first.

But then I suffer, perhaps, from romantic notions.

On Ninoy’s death anniversary, the President decides to appoint a commission.

To mark Ninoy’s death anniversary (ExectoRants says he’s a saint), here are some readings. Those by Teodoro M. Locsin, Sr. profoundly influenced me, and I think they help explain why Ninoy was a hero.

Papa%20With%20Ninoy
(image from Berby’s World)

In 1971, the Philippines Free Press made Ninoy Aquino its Man of the Year. Fifteen years later, Teddy Locsin, Jr. reflected on his interview with Ninoy for that article.

Teodoro M. Locsin, Sr. was close to Ninoy -considering him a friend. In The Conscience of the Filipino: The Sacrifice, Locsin pondered Ninoy’s being jailed, his continuing resistance to Marcos, and his decision to come home. He observed,

Soon after the imposition of martial law, a high American official reportedly described the Filipino people as composed of 40 million cowards and one son of a bitch. Otherwise, they should have risen as one against the destroyer of their liberties, the American must have reasoned. Yet, six million Jews went like sheep to the slaughter, stopping only to bicker over an extra crumb of bread that might keep one alive an extra day. The Nicaraguans swallowed 40 years of indignity and official thievery from the Somozas before putting an end to their rule. And the Poles, to date, have done nothing but picket. The Hungarians, after a brief spasms of prideful revolt, have traded the hope of liberty for that extra roll of toilet paper in the Soviet showcase of a consumer society.

The Filipino people rose in revolt against Spanish rule again and again through 350 years until the Revolution had cornered the last Spaniards in Manila. Then they fought the Americans, who had suddenly snatched the freedom that was almost in their grasp. Ten percent of the Filipino people died in that war. When the Japanese drove out the Americans, the Filipinos fought the Japanese.

Then came martial law, if not with American fore-knowledge and approval, definitely with American support after the event. First, submission. (Cowardice?) Resignation. (Not the Communists, for sure.) Almost 11 years after that, August 21, 1983, and Ninoy’s body bleeding on the tarmac.
The Filipino people are themselves again. And it took less than 11 years for a nation of “cowards” to be the men and women they are now.

In an editorial, titled If, Locsin asked what might have been, had Ninoy come home -and lived, offering up this meditation on power:

So, Marcos was brilliant – at the start. He did not have a gun, then: martial law enforced by the Armed Forces of the Philippines with his Number 1 hood, Ver, as chief-of-staff. Then, martial law! Brilliant he was, okay, or just cunning, unprincipled, a thinking son of bitch? All right, brilliant Marcos was. But the intellect deteriorates not meeting real challenge. The gun makes all challenge ineffectual. The mind becomes dull. Absolute power does not only corrupt absolutely, it stupefies. There is no need for intelligence when the guns serves. The blade of the mind rusts. Absolute power brings absolute stupidity. Such is the lesson of all dictatorships.

And in another essay, Is he? Locsin offered a reflection on Ninoy’s statement that “The Filipino is worth dying for.” Wrote Locsin,

There was, of course, no lack of apologia for venality and cowardice… But nobody cared.

Except a few. The unhappy few who found their cries against the death of liberty met with indifference if not scorn. Scorn for not being practical, for continuing to dream of freedom. Or boredom — for being so right but ineffectual. Even social hostility, for reminding the submissive or collaborator of virtue. What it means to be human, not a dog, glad for every scrap that fell from the table of the dictator and his family and partners in robbery and murder. Ninoy and Cory would afterward speak of how those they thought their friends pretended they did not know them!

There was no demonstrations of any consequence for years and years. While the Opposition dwindled into insignificance — except the Communist rebels in the hills — business boomed. With borrowed money much of which the dictatorship stole. National economic growth rose with national foreign debt. The future of the Filipino people was morgaged more and more to foreign banks greedy for interest on their Arab deposits. The children will have to pay, but the parents did not care. The dictatorship was riding high on the back of the Filipino people and they did not feel the weight.

Today, of course, there are still those who deny Ninoy was a hero. I suspect they do not believe anyone is capable of heroism, period. Skepticism, when it plunges a person into an inescapable refusal to recognize anything they have not defined in a manner that reinforces their conviction that only they possess virtue, is a horrifying thing, because it denies everything (except, perhaps, the self-assurance of self-satisfaction) and achieves nothing.

Other readings: on Ninoy, from the Inquirer editorial on officials lacking his sense and principles; the Black & White Movement is one year old;
Bunker Chronicles is irked by official commemorations that ring hollow; Sassy Melbournite asks for something many will overlook: a moment of silence.

Luis R. Sioson on the vanishing landscape of memory.

In the punditocracy, Newsstand broadly hinted at what was coming, which was Justice Isagani Cruz’s response to my reply. And so, today, my reply to his response: Oblivious in Cloud Cuckoo-land.

A reader (Filipino Catholic) who commented previously has additional comments (click on thumbnail image):
Reaction To Your Tv Appearance-1
(Hat-tip to Clever WoT for the Holmes Quote which mentions Holmes’s support of eugenics and in turn, to my reading the decision in Buck v. Bell (here’s an abstract; and here’s the decision penned by Holmes); there’s also this letter to the editor on Voltaire, and further explanations of the letter’s point can be found among the reader’s comments, here.)

Patricia Evangelista had many skeptics in the past, concerning her being an opinion page columnist, but with her last column, In contempt, and her column yesterday, Rage against the dying of the light, I don’t think anyone can deny she has come of age.

As Randy David puts it, emergency rule has become the President’s paradigm of governance. Bong Austero issues a reminder: the opposition must purge itself.

Fr. Joaquin Bernas, SJ delves into the power struggle between the Senate and the Palace. Sylvia Mayuga’s lyrical look at the Santo Niño. Jojo Robles observes 30 years in the profession. Rita Linda V. Jimeno writes on libel, the Palace’s current flavor of the month.

Overseas: Karma gradually catching up with Thaksin. A gathering of Thai Magsaysay Award recipients says Thais told they must get more involved in politics.

In the blogosphere, some thoughts on opinion writing by Catherine Seipp in Politics Central. Thoughts on contending ideas in down to the wire & squirming.

Jim Paredes in his blog, objectis to an Inquirer story that claimed Finally, Apo’s Jim Paredes gives up on RP. He says it’s a misleading story to say the least. His daughter is furious.

A sampling of blogs on Justice Cruz over the past week or so: baratillo@cubao is inclined to be satisfied with the Justice’s assertion of his freedom of expression; The Bystander says the Justice was justifiably exercising his rights, and Livewire’s Law is also of the opinion that criticism has been excessive and unhealthy. Iloilo City Boy believes there’s a clash of generations. There’s leaflens‘ blog, which argues the disagreement is larger than two contending columnists. saludagabre believes what has been missed out is a larger advocacy of a “struggle for economic redistribution”. Vissi d’arte also says I missed out on something and takes up the slack. prickster is surprised the Justice hasn’t been accused of sophistry.

jamesjimenez writes crimson. Bryanboy raises an eyebrow but plans a fab outfit for the Justice’s permanent retirement. Spunk thinks John Silva’s reaction was good. Random Thoughts reproduces an open letter. Here is another response and here’s another readers sent in.

See also letters from kamijo, and ragnarokette and Hippie Bourgeois, and a sarcastic response from I’m a devil in haste (Pulsar also pens an open letter, someone else explains why they won’t respond beyond their blog). mcvie: Isa Granny makes a brief statement. Bridget Jones is A Man… and I am Her recounts his family’s reactions. Pinay New Yorker, who has a gay brother, explains what bigotry is. Awful Things also reacts, as does jcv000. sunfish is particularly pithy.
true north strong and free and me examines the example of Canada as a case in which diversity works. pixie debunks misconceptions.

Seriously? at in transit doesn’t condone homosexuality but doesn’t condone Justice Cruz, either.

On the other hand, Cutting Against the Grain commends Justice Cruz for establishing a beachhead in the War for Christian Civilization.

At this point, with his permission, I’d like to reproduce what Mario Taguiwalo wrote to members of an e-group that he belongs to:

Friends,

You may have read or heard about Justice Cruz’ unfortunate column on PDI (“Don we now our gay apparel”) and the reactions of many to it, including John Silva, Jonathan Best and Manolo Quezon. Justice Cruz has a rejoinder to Manolo’s own column today (“Neither here nor there”), which I think only deepens the hole he dug for himself.

I re-read Justice Cruz’ original column and tried to understand what made it so infuriating for some people. What I discovered may be useful to many of us who are called upon to express an opinion about something in the public arena. Here are some occasional notes that might be entitled “Anatomy of Bigotry”.

Justice Cruz starts his column in Paragraph 1 with an apparently neutral observation: “Homosexuals before were mocked and derided, but now they are regarded with new-found respect and, in many cases, even regarded as celebrities.” He then offers a caveat in Paragraph  that his “observations against homosexuals in general” do not apply to those who have not violated his preferred standards of behavior. In Paragraph 3, he cites a general global “change in the popular attitude towards homosexuals”, which have led to a belief that they are “a separate third sex with equal rights as male and female persons instead of just an illicit in-between gender that is neither here nor there”. He then recalls the good old days of his elementary schooling in Paragraph 4, when homosexuals were rare, submissive and mildly amusing.

His alarm begins in Paragraph 5 when “homos dirtied the beautiful tradition of the Santa Cruz de Mayo” by their participation, which he referred to as a “blasphemy”. His alarms escalate in Paragraph 6, when he sees homosexuals everywhere in “alarming and audacious number”. His alarm boils over in Paragraph 7 when he points to schools being “fertile ground for the gay invasion”, which would not have happened if “certifiably masculine” students like his own five “macho sons” mauled them like they used to do in the 70’s.

Finally, he climaxes in Paragraph 8 in these rhetorical questions: “Is our population getting to be predominatly pansy? Must we allow homosexuality to march unobstructed until we are converted into a nation of sexless persons without the virility of males and the grace of females but only an insipid mix of these diluted virtues? Let us be warned against the gay population, which is per se a compromise between the strong and the weak and therefore only somewhat and not the absolute of either of the two qualities.”

In his 8 short paragraphs, Justice Cruz took the trouble to use all emotionally laden words he could conjure about homosexuals: gay, pansy, siyoke, queer, binabae, fairies, lady-like directors, bading, sexless persons, effeminate bearded hairdressers. He offers the behavior of couturiers as deserving his admiration and respect; and points to vulgar members of the gay community as having degraded and scandalized that community. In his world, homosexuals “dirtied” and “cheapen” whatever they touch. In his latest column he defends his piece as his own opinion and that “it depends on what and whom you hate” that matters. He then says he hates grafters, murderers, rapists and other criminals, implying therefore that his hate for homosexuals is on the same basis. Contrary to his caveat in Paragraph 2, it is not some behavior of some homosexuals that he attacked, it was in fact all homosexuals and whatever claims homosexuals may have as human beings that he wishes to deny.

Let us reflect on what Justice Cruz [would] have us do with homosexuals.

For those of the homosexual persuasion, Justice Cruz wants you to: (a) stay in the closet; (b) if you have to be outed, behave “decorously” and (c) above all, do not blaspheme religious festivals with your visible participation. For the rest of us who wants to stem the rising tide of homosexuality, Justice Cruz wants us to: (a) avoid being amused by their antics as this only encourages them; (b) if necessary, maul them back to the closet or towards more decorous behavior.

Reading Justice Cruz, one can replace “homosexuals” with many other groups who have been discriminated against such as “women”( it is not women I hate, but loud aggressive women), “Negroes” (I do not hate Niggers, it’s uppity Niggers I want dead), “Jews” (Jews are not bad, just those bloodsucking ones), “Muslims” (Muslims are fine but Muslim zealots should be exterminated), young people with long hair in the 60’s, the developmentally disabled, etc.

One has to ask Justice Cruz and people like him who think that there are groups deserving condemnation for simply being who they are and for acting in accordance with what they believe is right even when it is different from our own beliefs: what damage have they done to our society? what harm are they inflicting on our lives?

A bigot is a person obstinately devoted to his own opinions and prejudices who regards or treats members of a group with hatred and intolerance. Justice Cruz’ column is an example of bigotry.

Have a good weekend.

Mario

Jessica Zafra makes a political prediction: Danton Remoto is going to Congress.

Bunker Chronicles makes some observations about the excuses tend to make to justify their hold on power.

Manila News on how the days of the generals has returned. As in the period leading up to 1986, this serves the purposes of the upholders of the status quo. For the military to be a decisive factor in the political impasse would require one of two things: their repudiating the ongoing offensives in the provinces, or an absolute enforcement of similar methods nationwide.

Iloilo City Boy: rare red shrimps among casualties of Guimaras oil spill. Read also, of the personal tragedy his uncle’s facing because of the disaster.

New Economist on why the UK is so expensive.

Leon Kilat with a nifty entry on backing up cellphone information.

As above me, so below me on an email from the Dash Media Project.A viewing:, just for fun: How computerized elections might work.

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  1. julsitos

    For the record, they way he defends his “macho sons” is already indicative that one of them is a closet case or one of his grandchildren is already gay.

  2. The Bystander

    1. “I never said and certainly don’t think you advocate any such thing -my argument is that I have a genuine apprehension that Justice Cruz has condoned that kind of hurting. My assertion is that an unintended consequence of what he wrote is that it will provoke confusion (at best) and at worse, will convince some he thinks assaulting gay people is ok -no effort was made to condemn such behavior as a wrong solution to anything. and nostalgia for such behavior is wrong.”

    –With this assertion of yours, I’m afraid we’re back again at square one. Besides that article, can you show me anything in his nostalgic past showing precisely that he condones physically hurting gays as a matter of personal policy? Otherwise, that article, standing alone, miserably falls short of the requirement. Just because you cannot find in that particular article any condemnation on gay mauling, does not mean he approves of such acts. Virtually non-sequitur.

    2. “I don’t know if we will agree on what is scandalous or not, and blowjobs in a classroom is a far cry from a man in women’s clothes. and he was careless, because he should not have done any gay bashing at all. Now what Justice Cruz implies is that unless vigorous steps are taken about gay people he finds obnoxious, then the next step is people humping in the streets and in church, which is again, a slander on gay people and the kind of leap in logic based on a totally inaccurate understanding of gay people, the various subcultures at work, etc.”

    –As I said, I will know one when I see one. And I do not depend on Justice Cruz to define for me what is and what’s not scandalous. Probably, if he finds men in women’s clothes as already scandalous, then with more reason he would find it scandalous for a vulgar gay giving a handjob or a blowjob to a male classmate inside an empty classroom.

    And why do you find it so objectionable that he criticize some gays which he finds obnoxious? Does being gay, vulgar or not, exempt one from being criticized by a person who abhors same sex relationships? Of course you will again say that this type of thinking might promote gay assaults and I’ve practically said my piece in regard to that in an earlier thread. I don’t want to repeat it again here.

    Moreover, this is the essence of free expresson my friend. People, regardless of their beliefs, must be given a free hand what and who to criticize, provided he does not violate the law prevailing in that jurisdiction. If you and your group are really aggrieved by his statements, then by all means take whatever action under the law is necessary to protect your interests. Unfortunately, some gays resort to needless name-calling and wishing his death rather than take positive action to engage him head on.

    3. “and as i said, i have opposed those demanding he resign or be fired. he proposes a view; i contest the view; he can defend and i can defend though i’d hoped he might pause and consider if there’s another way. he did not. now, if you leave him unopposed, it will simply strengthen a dangerous frame of mind.”

    –Equally dangerous is the blatant attempts by some to silence and project him as an evil man which he is definitely not. To me that is totally unfair and disproportional. I will not allow myself to be conviced by name-calling masquerading as principled objections. Now, he is being used, wittingly or unwittingly, as a form of propaganda by gay groups wanting to gain seats in Congress.

    4. “i disagree that those who seek redress must do so with clean hands. a human being is a human being and this is precisely the nature of human rights. it does not depend if one acts in a socially acceptable manner or not -those are conventions that change and are subject to challenge and amendment, as the fashions of women and even men demonstrate. it is precisely the person who belongs to a traditionally marginalized, and persecuted, threatened minority, wh you find obnoxious or reprehensible who deserves protection, even to the extent it might temporarily upset or impinge on the rights of the dominant group. after all, the dominant group is more than capable of defending itself and has the dominant point of view; but the minority at times must be protected and vigorously so. otherwise human rights is reduced to “a numbers game.”

    –Don’t get me wrong, Manolo. I’m speaking in the sense that those who accuse Cruz as a senile old bigot should not be bigots themselves. That’s what I meant when I said that they too must come with clean hands.

    The issue of human rights is altogether different. Okay, for being bigots themselves, they may not deserve my sympathy and understanding but it does not mean they shouldn’t be protected within the context of the applicable laws. The law (except in marriage) doesn’t discriminate whether you’re straight, gay, lesbian or somewhere in between.

  3. The Bystander

    “Am I to understand that in this act, the gay fella alone, the blowjobber, is acting scandalously, while the presumably hetero blowjobee is not?

    And by the way, I think cvj’s definition is better than the presumably well-researched work.

    Jeg said this on August 21st, 2006 at 11:11 pm”

    –Both of them, actually. But for purposes of this discussion, the emphasis is on the blowjobber.

    As to cvj’s definition, it’s your call whom to believe. Rest assured I won’t be intolerant of your opinion.

  4. The Bystander

    CORRECTIONS:

    *And why do you find it so objectionable that he CRITICIZES some gays which he finds obnoxious?

    *Equally dangerous ARE the blatant attempts by some to silence and project him as an evil man which he is definitely not.

  5. The Bystander

    “Bystander, it’s the indivisible combination of prejudice and intolerance of opposing views. So see the definition of bigot and that of prejudice. A person who holds views that won’t budge is merely stubborn; it’s the combination of stubborness and prejudice that produces bigotry.

    mlq3 said this on August 21st, 2006 at 11:11 pm”

    –Ok, we’ll proceed from your given definition of what a bigot is. Granting for the sake of argument that Cruz exhibited prejudice towards what he called the vulgar among your kind, is the article, by itself, sufficient to engender a conclusion that Cruz was also intolerant of the opinions of the gay community? If not, then he cannot as yet be called a bigot.

  6. mlq3

    with the first, clearly. with the second, most definitely. he is intolerant of a significant portion of the gay population, period, and only accepts the other portion if it is according to his terms, regardless of the implications -“That pansy would have been mauled in the school where my five sons (all machos) studied during the ’70s when all the students were certifiably masculine. Now many of its pupils are gay, and I don’t mean happy.” Which means, if there were less gays, and more burly manly he-men, things could be settled the good old fashioned way: a good mauling. So yes, it’s an endorsement of mauling as part of the good ole days when men were men and beat up gay people.

    And his call to arms is precisely that: “Must we allow homosexuality to march unobstructed until we are converted into a nation of sexless persons without the virility of males and the grace of females but only an insipid mix of these diluted virtues? Let us be warned against the gay population, which is per se a compromise between the strong and the weak and therefore only somewhat and not the absolute of either of the two qualities.” He calls for obstruction. He believes there is a conversion taking places and wants it reversed; he considers the influence of gay people corrosive, emasculating, etc.

    as for your other questions, i believe these blog entries should be helpful:

    http://hastydevil.wordpress.com/2006/08/14/raise-your-voice/

    http://hastydevil.wordpress.com/2006/08/22/word-womit/

    http://spreadingthesky.blogspot.com/2006/08/to-isagani-cruz-bigotted-old-fart.html

  7. julsitos

    manolo, thank you for standing up for civil liberty.

    Ika nga ni Edward Burke, “Evil triumphs when good men do nothing.”

  8. Edd.d

    A big thankyou from the UK, for taking action and publicly standing up for what is right.

    We must all stand up against the many Cruz’ of the world, fear breeds fear, and leads onto hate. What we need is more communication between cross sections of comunity inorder to gain better understanding and inturn compassion.

    Out and proud.
    http://insidethegaygate.blogspot.com

  9. Paenggoy

    Bystander asks,

    “Did he say that his five sons would have mauled the poor gay had the latter been studying in the 70s?”

    Given the fact that all of his sons were “macho” and studied in a time where all students were “certifiably male,” then that is possible.

    “Or did he say that he would have allowed his five sons to maul the homo?”

    Given the sentences that came after that statement, with phrases like, “Must we allow homosexuality to march unobstructed until we are converted into a nation of sexless persons without the virility of males and the grace of females but only an insipid mix of these diluted virtues?,” that is also possible.

    Finally, “Or better yet, wasn’t Justice Cruz merely stating an opinion (which you could either reject or not) that gay bashing in the 70s was the rule contrary to what he has observed at present?”

    That is possible, but given the sentences written after that statement, probably not.

  10. Paenggoy

    Many of the phrases are disturbing:

    “certifiably male”
    “gay invasion”
    “Now homosexuals are everywhere”
    “population getting to be predominantly pansy”
    “converted into a nation of sexless persons”
    “Let us be warned against the gay population”

    One gets this implied message that if all gays are not stopped then everyone will become homosexual, and that to “certify” his sex a man must become “macho.”

    And what about heterosexual pansies, homosexual machos, and masculine lesbians?

  11. Paenggoy

    One minor point. There appears to be no evidence that Voltaire wrote, “I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

  12. Jon Mariano

    So in this discussion, what is our definition of the word bigot? Is it: “a person who has preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or experience and unwilling to tolerate differences in opinions, practices, or beliefs, especially religious beliefs of others”? (combining the meaning of prejudice and intolerant)

    What if Mr. Cruz’ opinion is based on his experience (his time)? Does his intolerance of some gays’ ways still make him a bigot? According to the definition, he’s not. Right?

    It’s interesting but isn’t it that saying “he should not have done any gay bashing at all” sounds intolerant too?

    I say there’s a difference between being intolerant and not approving of something. e.g. “Mr. Cruz can’t make himself to accept same sex relations” is different from “Mr. Cruz doesn’t want you to have same sex relations, if you don’t stop, he’s going to maul you!”. I thought Isagani wrote in the line of the first statement. He stated something he doesn’t approve of and in so doing, our gay friends put further meaning to it (e.g. “Which means, if there were less gays, and more burly manly he-men, things could be settled the good old fashioned way: a good mauling. So yes, it’s an endorsement of mauling as part of the good ole days when men were men and beat up gay people.“, “One gets this implied message that if all gays are not stopped then everyone will become homosexual, and that to certify his sex a man must become macho.“).

    Can I say then that the gays are intolerant of Mr. Cruz’ intolerance?

    What is the proportionate consequence of Mr. Cruz’ original article? (Our host says firing from PDI shouldn’t be one).

  13. jackryan68

    Now that everything seems to have been said about this much-debated issue, is closure possible between the two main protagonists who are united in their opposition to GMA?

    Or will this be their own “Hello Garci” that will prevent their moving forward?

  14. Jon Mariano

    I agree though that Mr. Cruz’ statement “Must we allow homosexuality to march unobstructed until we are converted into a nation of sexless persons without the virility of males and the grace of females but only an insipid mix of these diluted virtues?” is like a call against the gay people that could lead to actual physical gay bashing.

  15. iniduro ni emilie

    mlq3,

    “now, say you assert it is ok to condemn noisy, flagrantly provocative gay people; and knowing that such people tend to be on the recieving end of physical if not mental abuse from the “normal”;

    right you are in putting quotes to the word “normal”. being straight is not the norm, they just happen to be common. quote and quote.

    gays are harmless; homophobia can kill. quote and quote.

  16. krick2

    check the word “specie”
    its like the third sex – “no here no there”. what cruz really is appalled to is the prospect of seeing congressmen wearing lipstick or justices with well sculptured eyebrows or policemen sensousely directing traffic or teachers slapping each other in front of the class- figure it out!

  17. vic

    Since there is no law that covers Gay bashing or writing or publication of materials that could be in a court of law consider inciting hatred toward an identifiable group (in the case of Isagani Cruz, people who has of different sexual orientation), the jury of public opinion has thereby in the majority declared that the essay of Isagani Cruz is a violation of the Rights of the Such Group ( the Gay community). Intolerance to a single one member and specifying the group, is intolerance to the Whole. There is no such thing a ‘little pregnant”. Your either one or not.

  18. Realistic

    I once lived in a neighborhood where many gay people live. In fact, there were quite a few in my own building. There was paul (a librarian)from Canada, who was very kind to me. He was a terrific cook and would now and then share some of his favorite dishes, knowing that I lived on fried chicken wings and campbells chicken noodle soup.

    He knew that I am a straight man, but nevertheless invited me to a dinner party with a few of his gay friends(all male). I went and met his friends. Yeah, a couple tried to hit on me. I simply told them I am straigh, and that Paul is a friend. They stopped, although one invited me to dinner at his place. No, I did not accept the invitation.

    My next door neighbor, a war veteran is also gay. Same story there. However, he has lesbian friends in his group. Very pretty women too. No, I did not hit on them. No point in that. They really prefer women.

    I have gay and lesbian relatives. I never thought of them to be any different from any other people. In fact, I find some of them to be more understanding and kind. And, yes, very sensitive, but also artistic.

    I do not like the word gay and the negative connotations that come with that word (loud, vulgar, etc). Of course, it is true of many gay people. But it is also true of many straight people.

    It is very possible that Justice Cruz and many of you here have gay relatives, just like me. Now, ask yourselves, are they really that different? I bet that you will agree that the answer is no and that it is what’s inside a person that counts.

  19. Realistic

    Correction. fourth paragrah should read:

    I have gay and lesbian relatives. I thought of them to be a little different from any other people. In fact, I find some of them to be more understanding and kind. And, yes, very sensitive, but also artistic.

  20. mrabello

    There are many who still hold on to the very same values and sentiments held by the retired SC justice, and not just from his very own sunset generation.

    Radical gay rights groups may be using the “Cruz is a bigot” issue as a springboard for their political ends…but the “senile old coot” is getting his fair share of mileage out of the issue–if only that there are many who read his column and do agree with his views and will faithfully continue doing so..and others who will now refuse to because they think he has crossed a line.

    Cruz has expressed his opinion and he will still have a sizeable readership base intact–in my opinion–after all the smoke clears.

  21. john marzan

    kalokohan na naman yang Arroyo-appointed commission na yan. hindi dapat si Arroyo ang gumawa ng isang “independent” commission kundi isang bipartisan group para mas credible.

  22. Mita

    gee….to much ado about what one person wrote, which is his personal opinion, not a supreme court ruling.

    politically correct…we all have to be so politically correct now that we cannot say what we truly think and feel. isagani cruz is of my parent’s generation. while it’s true my parents will never go public with how they feel about homosexuals. even if they are very accepting and liberal members of their generation, i think i know how they feel deep down about this openness about sexuality. i’m not talking about homosexuality – just sexuality. sexuality is the one thing i cannot discuss with my parents who are of isagani cruz’s generation. think about that. it’s a generation thing. they have something to say, and if they want to say it, we can listen so we can better understand and decide for ourselves – whether it’s to be as they are or to be something totally different. they do have to listen to our unrelenting screeching about how we want the world to change…as if we exclusively had the answers. it’s a generation thing…take it easy. do you prefer honesty to political correctness…always being on edge about what you can and cannot say?

    btw, what happened to anna de brux? she used to be a fixture here…

  23. john marzan

    I have made clear my own personal disagreement with those who express themselves a particular way. and how i think certain “solutions” (such as violence and assassination) don’t solve anything. i banned one person from this blog, because they were making death threats against a private individual; as for death threats on public individuals, i beleive there are even supreme court decisions that state it’s within the permissible freedom of speech. and considering how freedom’s being assualted, i’m comfortable with someone venting venom against officials when those officials wouldn’t even permit demonstrations.

    and those who dislilke or object to what i write express themselves here, too, and those who agree -and go beyond what i’d ever say- express themselves here, too; better they say what they want to say than not be able to say it at all.

    which is why i objected, too, to those demanding justice cruz be fired. he writes, i write, you write, we might find something to agree on or understand how deep our divisions are, but i’d never advocate someone losing their forum because someone’s mad.

    Katulad rin yan nung Mohammed Cartoons controversy. Yes, some of the cartoons are offensive, and they were rightly criticized, but I don’t want the cartoonists to be beheaded by extremists for this.

    Criticize yes. Assassinations (or getting somebody fired), a big no.

    Cathcath:

    This is the same as one commenter who wanted GMA to be assasinated.

    Funny cathcath, but i don’t recall you criticizing the anti-eraps for making similar calls to assassinate erap too 5-6 years ago in forums where we used to frequent.

  24. The Bystander

    MLQ3 said:

    1. “with the first, clearly. with the second, most definitely. he is intolerant of a significant portion of the gay population, period, and only accepts the other portion if it is according to his terms, regardless of the implications…. Which means, if there were less gays, and more burly manly he-men, things could be settled the good old fashioned way: a good mauling. So yes, it’s an endorsement of mauling as part of the good ole days when men were men and beat up gay people.”

    –You are making conclusions that go beyond the intendment of that particular paragraph. He was, I repeat, merely stating an OPINION about the situation of gays in the 70s, particularly in the school where his macho sons studied. Such opinion could either be true or not and would only be validated if there was a scientific “study” for example about the situaton of gays in that era. To draw conclusions out of that article that tend to picture the man as if he was actually condoning gay mauling is plainly non-sequitur. It does not follow. Can you show to me, beyond this article, any action in his public and public life that promotes gay mauling as a matter of personal policy? Were his decisions as a former Supreme Court Justice discriminatory against homos in general or scandalous gays in particular? Or if you are still not satisfied, was there any instance in his macho past where he was accused of gay mauling? or could you present to me any incident where his macho sons actually mauled a gay classmate of theirs back in the 70s? I think that would be the better measure before we make any attempts at making a mountain out of a molehill.

    2. “And his call to arms is precisely that: “Must we allow homosexuality to march unobstructed until we are converted into a nation of sexless persons without the virility of males and the grace of females but only an insipid mix of these diluted virtues? Let us be warned against the gay population, which is per se a compromise between the strong and the weak and therefore only somewhat and not the absolute of either of the two qualities.” He calls for obstruction. He believes there is a conversion taking places and wants it reversed; he considers the influence of gay people corrosive, emasculating, etc.”

    –Calling for obstruction (assuming it was) and actually obstructing are two different things. His personal belief about reversing the homo trend is just that — a belief — which you could always reject with equal fervor. But to castigate the old man and picture him as if gay mauling was all his fault is totally exaggerated. You condemn the old man for promoting/condooning the mauling of scandalous gays but did I ever hear you denounce the public calls of some bloggers (straights and gays alike) to lynch this man to death? And you call that self-defense? What’s the difference, Manolo. Tell me.

  25. mlq3

    Bystander, read my previous answers, above, to you and Cat. I’ve adequately addressed them.

  26. The Bystander

    What positive thing did Cruz’s two essays contribute towards understanding and bridging the differences among us?

    manuelbuencamino said this on August 21st, 2006 at 11:14 pm

    –To quote Justice Cruz: Criticism is normal in the free society and is available to everyone right or wrong. The ideas that may be expressed under this freedom are not confined only to those that are sympathetic or acceptable, for that would make the freedom more shadow than substance. To be really meaningful, it should permit the articulation of even the unorthodox view, though it is hostile to or scorned by others. One of the purposes of this freedom, in fact, is to invite dispute.

  27. The Bystander

    “Bystander, read my previous answers, above, to you and Cat. I’ve adequately addressed them.

    mlq3 said this on August 22nd, 2006 at 9:09 pm”

    –Oh, I thought you haven’t.

  28. Simon

    Manuela, who died and made you queen?

  29. The Bystander

    To better clarify my point, paenggoy, let me take you back to our earlier threads:

    1. You said: “What I found disturbing isn’t Justice Cruz’s dislike of vulgar gay people but his remark about allowing his five sons to beat up a gay person. I don’t see anything right about that.

    Paenggoy said this on August 21st, 2006 at 4:35 pm”

    2. I countered: “This is what Cruz actually stated in that article: “That pansy would have been mauled in the school where my five sons (all machos) studied during the ’70s when all the students were certifiably masculine.”

    Let’s be more accurate with our statements Paenggoy before we even stress a point. See the difference? Did he say that his five sons would have mauled the poor gay had the latter been studying in the 70s? Or did he say that he would have allowed his five sons to maul the homo? Or better yet, wasn’t Justice Cruz merely stating an opinion (which you could either reject or not) that gay bashing in the 70s was the rule contrary to what he has observed at present?

    The Bystander said this on August 21st, 2006 at 5:25 pm”

    3. You said: “Bystander asks,

    “Did he say that his five sons would have mauled the poor gay had the latter been studying in the 70s?”

    Given the fact that all of his sons were “macho” and studied in a time where all students were “certifiably male,” then that is possible.

    “Or did he say that he would have allowed his five sons to maul the homo?”

    Given the sentences that came after that statement, with phrases like, “Must we allow homosexuality to march unobstructed until we are converted into a nation of sexless persons without the virility of males and the grace of females but only an insipid mix of these diluted virtues?,” that is also possible.

    Finally, “Or better yet, wasn’t Justice Cruz merely stating an opinion (which you could either reject or not) that gay bashing in the 70s was the rule contrary to what he has observed at present?”

    That is possible, but given the sentences written after that statement, probably not.

    Paenggoy said this on August 22nd, 2006 at 6:28 am”

    4. My reply: I’m not asking you to dwell on possibilities. I’m only asking you to state categorically if what you accuse Justice Cruz of can be found, expressly or impliedly, in the above-quoted statement. Let us not blow-up the issue just to make it appear that Justice Cruz condones such a criminal mindset (mauling, physically assaulting people is a crime). He merely stated a nostalgic OPINION which he thought was prevalent during the 70s.

    If he really did, he would have said so. But he did not.

  30. The Ca t

    “Funny cathcath, but i don’t recall you criticizing the anti-eraps for making similar calls to assassinate erap too 5-6 years ago in forums where we used to frequent.”

    Funny, because there is a moderator in the forum whom I can request to delete the comment or reprimand the poster without having to post my observation.
    Mlq3 is the blog-owner and moderator at the same time of this forumslashcomment box.

  31. The Ca t

    Simon,
    that comment has no place in this forum. Eto ang dollar, humanap ka ng kausap, hane.

  32. aboy

    sassylawyer was right….

  33. Paenggoy

    To Bystander, the problem is that you are isolating that statement from the rest of the essay. If you do that, then it will obviously look like a “nostalgic opinion”.

    Follow the last sentence in my reply to you or read Mario Taguiwalo’s comments above and see for yourself.

  34. The Bystander

    No, I’m not. It was you, just like MLQ3, who alleged that Justice Cruz condones the physical assault of gays for their “scandalous” behavior based solely in that article. As I said, it is simply a case of exaggeration which is clearly beyond his intentions.

  35. rego

    Manolo,

    Thank you so much for championing the rights of LGBT community as well as other minority goups..

    I ve been folowing closely ypur responses and I believe you missed to point out one thing. That this is not the first time that Mr Isagani Cruz resorted to gay bashing in column. I remember the firts one becuase it was one of the topic that were posted in our e group and I responded to it. I was trying to retrieve it from the message section of our egroup but its just difficult because yahoo groups has very limited features on retreiving old topics. And I dont have that much time.

    The first one obviously did not get as much reaction from the LGBT community unlike the second one. The community just let him get away with it. And maybe that is the reason why he did it the second time.

    And I am very sure that this is the reason why the the LGBT community is now reacting like hell about what he wrote this time. As a matter of fact I suggested in our egroup ( membership is 7,000 around the world) that if we will not rise up and the deliver the message to Mr Cruz this time , Im sure he will continue to smash us even more.

    More power to you, Manolo!

    P.S. Sayang hindi ka na available. May friend kasi ako sa LA na patay na patay sa yo… he he he….

  36. anna de brux

    It is quite disconcerting that Justice Cruz should write about Filipino gays in the way he did.

    If it’s true that there are Filipino gays who move about in society in a manner that disturbs him profoundly, he should also denounce the disturbing behaviour of non-gay individuals or so-called virile men who show off their machism with offensive vulgarity and odiousness in Manila society and elsewhere in the Philippines.

  37. Harassed

    It may be easy to rebuke the aging man for his “bigotry,” his old -school views, because being open-minded and accepting of the emergent genders these days is “cool.” Tell me, Mr. Quezon, have you ever been harassed by homosexuals?

    I am a heterosexual male, and I’ve always had to endure the flirtatious come-ons of homosexuals whenever I come near their orbit.

    When I was younger, one tried to grab my privates. Now that I’m older, they don’t seem to dare do the deed (since I can fight back), but their kind seem to take an inexplicable liking for me.

    Maybe I inadvertently get their attention because I’m straight, I don’t know for sure. But whatever the reason, I dislike this “third gender” a lot.

    It’s so easy to defend gay people when you have no bone to pick with them, but I suggest you walk a mile in my shoes before you say any more. Despite my respect for all people–gay or not–I must endure their constant harassment.

    Cruz may be a bit blunt, and even tasteless, but I actually felt good reading his views. Am I a bigot? After what I go through? I think not. Give Cruz a break, even if I can’t seem to get mine.

  38. mlq3

    harrassed, the question of sexual harrassment and making a target of an entire community are two separate things.

  39. Harassed

    Tell that to a traumatized child who experienced worse. I got off “relatively” lucky because I was able to run away.

    The “coarse” homosexuals that Cruz is aiming at are the kind that I run into. He is not singling out the entire gay community. Just the kind that give their fellow homosexuals a bad name.

    Let me say that again: Just the kind that give their fellow homosexuals a bad name.

    This is why reading his piece felt good.

    I actually know respectable gay men, and I feel no ill will towards them because the respect we have is mutual.

    It was so easy for you to dismiss what I aired. Like I said, walk a mile in my shoes FIRST before you start defending disrespectful people who enjoy grabbing genitals similar to their own.

  40. alann

    If there are etiquette standards for men and women, I think it is about time we also have one for gays.

    nani banaticla said this on August 21st, 2006 at 1:58 pm

    so very true. homosexuals can be crass and vulgar, just like some heterosexuals. let us just avoid the blanket statements.

    its up to society to dictate acceptable mores, but it should never tolerate violence. yes, let’s respect opinions, including Cruz’s, but his hateful words can translate into REAL PHYSICAL HARM- and that is just irresponsible.

  41. Arman Jones

    Harassment is harassment regardless whether one is straight or gay. Those who harass (whether straight or gay) deserve disdain, resentment and yes even, anger.

    Standards must be applied equally to all.

    Harassment and bigotry are despicable. Justice Cruz did a despicable job writing a very bigotted article. And that made me angry.

  42. Paenggoy

    Why does Bystander continue to ignore the rest of Cruz’s esaay? He keeps repeating his argument: it is “merely” an opinion or the writer is being “nostalgic.”

  43. Julius Pilapil [usc law]

    Freedom of expression covers not only the thought we like but also the thought we abhor. So leave “the lyricist of the Court”[Chief Justice Teehankee] and the “perfect jurist”[Chief Justice Narvasa] alone.

  44. John

    In these times of protest I think that talking about quack journalist Patricia Evangelista is timely.

    Reading her columns, I see in her a glimpse of someone in the bourgeois trying to incite the proletariat.

    But for what?

    Social justice?

    Maybe.

    But why speak out inflammatorily against the prevailing social order and everything that the government represents?
    She is sliding into the pit of anarchistic communism. She wants social change as she says in the column she writes on. But does she have any idea on what will happen if the government she always denounces falls? Maybe this is the right time to tag her as “ REBEL WITHOUT A CLUE”

    Little that she knows, that when the flames of rebellion occurs and our government falls, she won’t be able to enjoy what she enjoys now…Starbucks Frapuccino, McDonalds Burger.

    Maybe she’ll get a little thinner when she is already on a Soviet-type Gulag queing for soup , or even worse, dead ala Auschwitz-Birkenau.

    Ms.Evangelista, I think is not conscious that when the governement she denounces in rallies and in paper falls, the ones who will replace it will not be the middle class or those involved in rallies.

    They will be the hardline communists supported implicitly by Satur Ocampo and Prof. Randy David.

    They will kill all intelligista when they descend on the mountains and subdue the cities since there’s no effective fighting force to prevent them.

    Pol Pot’s Philippine Excursion.

    Think again Patricia, think again before you denounce the “fascists”, you might be dead in the hands of your “hero communists”.

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    […] I do not have the writing prowess of MLQ3 to continously debate the issue with Justice Cruz. I will definitely lose in the basis of writing and debate skills. […]

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