by John Vincent Manglicmot
The University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) Babaylan conducted a seminar titled “Closing our Ranks: What’s Next for the Gender Rights Movement” on September 26 at the UPLB new College of Arts and Sciences Auditorium. It featured five speakers namely Dr. Gerrighanim Dungan from Kapatid organization, William Villacampa from ProGay, Alek Weber from Pinoy FTM, Kakay Pamaran from Metropolitan Community Churches of Quezon City, and Yvann Zuniga from UPLB Babaylan.
The first speaker, Dungan, discussed their organization’s advocacy to seek for gender equality among all genders. Weber, on the other hand, differentiated transgenders from transsexuals. He also discussed various terminologies about gender and sexuality such as cisgender, gender expression, and sexual orientation.
The third speaker, Zuniga, talked about the goals and activities of UPLB Babaylan as an organization that aims to promote gender diversity and equality among UPLB students. He was followed by Villacampa who discussed the history of LGBT and what LGBT is. According to him, there is nothing wrong with being gay.
Lastly, Pamaran explained how it is to be a part of the LGBT community and at the same time, be a Christian pastor. According to her, being a member of the LGBT community is not a sin, discrimination is.
The seminar aimed to educate its audience about the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) community and the status of gender equality in the Philippines. It was attended mainly by students from the Los Baños National High School.