A fun, yet informative video tackling the common misconceptions about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people has been making the rounds of social media as soon as it was released on YouTube Monday.
“Bekitaktakan: Normal ba ang pagiging bakla?” features the star of Maxie the Musicale, Jayvhot Galang, as he answers five questions that are commonly asked of the LGBT community.
“My son loves to play with dolls. Is he gay?”, “Is homosexuality a disease?”, and “Is homosexuality just a phase?” are among the queries Galang answers, sometimes with sarcasm, but always with playfulness and charm.
Some gems such as “Ang mag-stereotype ay (To stereotype is) very wrong,” and “Do not judge a book by its bookstore” are among the nuggets of wisdom he imparts.
The video was created by TLF Share (Sexuality, Health and Rights Educators Collective), a non-profit organization founded by former officers and volunteers of The Library Foundation. It is one of the oldest LGBT organizations in the county, and is focused on providing HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) prevention services for members of the LGBT community.
The organization also conducts activities to raise awareness on sexual orientation and gender identity, according to TLF Share executive director Jonas Bagas.
This is, however, their first time to come up with a video for public consumption, funded by their savings from the production of another video financed by the Commission on Human Rights for the education of its officials.
After TLF Share trained the CHR officials last year, they used the questions raised during the exercise to create “a tool that can be used to unpack our issues about human sexuality”.
Sexuality, said Bagas, is not as simple as “boy” and “girl”. Other elements that come into play are gender identity, sexual attraction, and sexual orientation.
What may seem to be abstract concepts are concretized in the video, which also considers the Philippine context, with “several generations” of Filipinos having no background on sex, gender, and sexuality.
The production also banked on how members of the LGBT community often become a source of comic relief in Philippine entertainment, and so used “Bekingese” humor to educate the public. In the end, said Bagas, they were able to come up with a “nonthreatening tool” that is still “grounded on evidence and human rights”.
He added that they were able to convey the message that homosexuality was normal, and had been in fact depathologized by the scientific and medical community.
Reception for their guerilla production was “very positive,” which Bagas attributed in part to how the questions answered resonated among many Filipinos.
He added that Galang was “an excellent talent” who had “a sense of humor flowing through his veins.”
There will be more videos of its kind, with a series coming out in the second or third quarter of the year for LGBTs who are still in the closet. This will help them understand their sexuality, their rights, and the health services they have access to, said Bagas.
Most likely they will take off from the commonly asked questions about LGBT people, or solicit questions from the public.