Though every freakin’ day should be a day to appreciate the beauty, bravery, strength, tenacity, and fabulousness of LGBTQI+ people, this month is extra special. ICYMI, June is Pride Month! Here are a few ways you can celebrate and stay #woke when it comes to the plight of the LGBTQI+ community.
SOAK UP THE ART
“Hope springs eternal,” wrote Alexander Pope; as from the human condition, art will always and forever spring forth. From love, death, joy, pain, excitement, fear, loss, and liberation, amazing things can be birthed by the creative mind—something which we have no shortage of in the Philippines.
The stories and experiences of members of the LGBTQI+ community are rife with these themes and more, so it’s no surprise that there is a treasure trove of amazing works of film, visual art, music, and literature to express them all. Get your fix with the following exhibits and happenings.
- Pride Month at Cinema Centenario (June 8 – July 2)
Cinema Centenario, Maginhawa St., QC
All month, Cinema Centenario will be screening LGBTQI+ films such as the classic Nora Aunor and Vilma Santos headlined T-Bird At Ako and more recent ones like Ang Huling Cha-cha ni Anita, 2 Cool 2 Be 4gotten, Changing Partners, and Baka Bukas.
- IpagLOVEan #RiseUpTogether (June 16)
Mow’s, Matalino St., QC
It’s a Pride-themed open mic night and artists (or even you!) can sing or perform spoken-word pieces in celebration of the LGBTQI+ community. Part of the proceeds will be donated to the 2018 Pride March and Festival, so this event is as Pride-centric as it gets.
- Palma Tayona: Reyna Elena, Libertad and Other Stories (June 13 – June 30)
NCCA Gallery, Intramuros
Come through and check out the bright and vivid works of Palma Tayona showcasing his exploration of life as a member and keen observer of the LGBTQI+ community and proudly proclaims, “I’m here, and I’m queer.”
- Make ‘Em Laugh: Broadway Open Mic (June 16)
Staple and Perk Cafe, Makati
Okay, this is technically not a Pride-specific event, but we all know how much of an impact musical theater has on the LGBTQI+ community. So a Broadway-themed open mic night? We can’t leave that out of this roundup!
IMMERSE IN THEIR WORDS
It’s not enough to hear out the stories of LGBTQI+ persons. It’s important to take to heart what they have to say so we can understand what it truly means to be LGBTQI+ and to be able to take pride in that:
- TEH TALKS – “Pride is Power” (June 16)
DuloMNL, Poblacion, Makati
Filmmaker Samantha Lee and fashion legend Rajo Laurel are just two of the speakers who will be sharing their LGBTQI+ experiences on this afternoon. Who wouldn’t want to be able to listen to THE Rajo Laurel’s stories and insights over a few drinks or so?
STAND WITH THEM
Pride Month isn’t just about rainbows and festivities. (Although they are a big part of it and we love it!) It is a time to educate and advocate for equal rights that have been denied the LGBTQI+ community.
Though we’ve made strides to address some of the concerns of LGBTQI+ persons in the Philippines with the passage of the HIV Bill, the continued growth of organizations like LoveYourself Inc., and efforts like the Safe Space Zone initiative, we still have a long way to go.
We’re still awaiting the passage of the Anti-Discrimination or SOGIE Equality Bill and Safe Spaces Bill, for one. And the fight to erase the stigma against genderqueer and transgender persons continues. As an ordinary (yet #wokeAF) citizen, you can contribute by letting your voice be heard. Participate in fora and workshops that aim to discuss relevant topics and spread awareness of LGBTQI+ issues and go out and join movements like the following:
- Rally and Vigil for Marriage Equality (June 19)
Supreme Court, Padre Faura, Manila
Oral arguments for the legalization of same sex marriage will be held at the Supreme Court on this day, and you can show your support by signing this petition as well as participating in the rally right in front of the SC.
And lastly—but certainly not the least…
- 2018 Pride March and Festival #RiseUpTogether (June 30)
Marikina Sports Center
Admission: FREE FOR ALL!
The Pride March finally made it to the ~*East*~ last year, and they’ve come back for more! After last year’s call to be #HereTogether, Metro Manila Pride now urges us to #RiseUpTogether with and for our friends in the LGBTQI+ community.
Come through and be counted, ladies!