Wednesday, May 16, 2012

cc on Same-Sex Marriage

It all started when i read this article and watched the video. It finally drove home a point I have ignored for so long: that a same-sex union should have a legal entity, and that we should make a case for that. Even if I may not make use of such ceremony myself.

This issue seemed so far from me. And anything which is far and alien I would rather be silent about. I remember encountering The Jonas Bagas for the first time 3 years ago, maybe. He was someone's date at a party. And unfortunately, I haven't heard of his activist persona yet. I engaged him briefly on conversation about this issue, but taking a contrarian perspective.

Again, it seemed so alien to me. At that time, I was thinking: why rock the vote and invoke the ire of so many people by fighting for issues like same-sex marriage? Even though I had been in many relationships, I never felt compelled to formalize my union or even legalize it. I was perfectly fine with being boyfriends forever and ever, amen. As I know a lot of gay couples were.

That being a party, Jonas didn't debate nor argue. And he so calmly just explained why that was needed, not for himself, but for the community. I can't remember now what he actually said. But I just knew that the issue remained alien to me.

PC and I would talk some time about whether we wanted to 'formalize' the relationship further with marriage, should the option be available eventually. Of course, we would laugh about who wears the gown. Or discuss the beauty of garden weddings. But again, we didn't feel we would go through that. He was so sweet to tell me, though, that if I wanted it and it mattered to me, he would gladly get married to me.

But after watching that video, tearful and emotional, I realized how real suddenly the need to be 'recognized legally' as a couple. A partner's death seemed to have erased a significant part of his life because the partner's family refused to acknowledge the relationship. All that was material between them seemed to have been brought to the grave.

Like it or not, as a couple, there will always be a physical, material and even financial dimension to the relationship. Sooner or later, there will be joint ownerships in real assets. Because these are manifestations of a deepening attachment to one another. Yet without the 'security' of a legal recognition of these 'joint acquisitions', why would couples even start to build a real, tangible 'us' rather than just 'you' and 'me'? Of course this is only the material aspect of marriage. And there are many other reasons why same-sex unions should be legalized. But this particular argument, or dimension, was what got me thinking about this on a real level.

And with Obama coming out, finally, for the issue...

, I believe that the issue has finally turned a corner. Finally.

But we in the Philippines, are advised to hold the celebrations that it would happen here soon. Read this thoughtful article by Jonas Bagas. I totally agree with him on. And I love the way he framed the argument as a constitutional rather than biblical battle. Even for gay Catholics like me.

So now, I do have an opinion on Same-Sex marriages. We must have that option available to us.


joelmcvie said...

Despite my apparent disdain (hihihi!) for "happy ever after" and "'til Death do us part," I too believe that the (legal) marriage option should also be allowed for homosexuals. (I'm not even thinking of a marriage in church; for now, "gay marriage" is an oxymoron as far as the Church is concerned.)

Having said that, I too remember how Danton said that while it may take a long time for gay marriage to be legalized here in the Philippines, there are other legal options that a gay couple can take to approximate a legal union. It's just an approximation, but if those options are already available, then gay couples should know about them. (But hush-hush, just-amongst-us-gurls, otherwise those opposed may make things even harder.)

Anonymous said...

My two cents on the subject.

I will concede, first, na matatagalan ang 'Pinas sa pag-redefine ng marriage in the same way na ma-redefine ang concept ng "family." That said, if the general attitude of the [minority who impose their views on the greater majority of] people remains a man+woman marriage, siguro pwedeng i-allow, as an interim measure, ang isang legal set-up where any two persons, seeking to live under the same roof and sharing the same ideals, can enter into such a union that is not unlike a legal partnership (pero medyo business-like) in that it can last in perpetuity or until the demise of one of the parties. 'Yun nga lang, marami pa ring so-called moralists sa Congress na tutol dito, no further questions asked.

The French have such a setup, they call it the "pact of civil solidarity." While it's not a marriage, it confers some benefits similar to marriage. Walang say ang Simbahan sa setup, kasi kahit sinung dalawang tao, be they straight or other, can enter into the union.