Of course, I am running for senator of the republic in the May 9, 2010 elections. That was the question asked by a schools superintendent whom I met at the premiere of Jay Altarejos' latest movie, Big Boy, Little Boy. That is the same question asked by one of my readers. And that is the question that my detractors wish I would answer "no" to. Manigas kayo.
If I have my way, I will file my senatorial papers on Nov 27. But this big political party that wants me in their slate will file their presidential, vice-presidential and senatorial papers on Nov 30, National Heroes Day. The two other parties who want to include me in their senatorial slates are still looking for other viable candidates to complete their slate of 12 strong names.
And I do not mind being called a commodity, or a brand, as one reader commented. That is the language of marketing, which sees candidates as goods or products that can be remembered with the proper advertising or publicity. But remember that LGBT issues are hot now not because it suddenly became like that.
It took us 20 years -- from the time we set up our LGBT groups in 1990 to the present -- to have our voices heard. Books, magazines, newspapers, movies, telesines, indie films, paintings, songs, the Anti-Discrimination List that Akbayan and Ang Ladlad pushed, our columns in the country's top publications -- all of these did not come easily. We had to work hard for them, to gain space and rooms for us, day by day. And over the years, we made sure we will be visible, we will be here, and we will be ready to take the country by storm in 2010 elections.
If I were you, please register now and vote. 2010 will be a historic election, and I am sure you want to tell yourself, or your kids, or whoever cares to listen years later, that you were there, you voted wisely and well, and helped the young and the fearless vault into positions of governance.
Good luck to us all.
--Am in Bali for the HIV-AIDS Conference of Asia-Pacific gay, bisexual and transgender men. No wonder we are called gay and happy -- sparks fly in the air, but there is also fabulousness and fashion sense and lots of vintage wit.