Remoto’s dilemma and Comelec’s Political Homophobia
December 16th, 2009 by Patricio Mangubat
Now, let me write about Danton Remoto. Remoto, as you know, is the chairman and founder of Ang Ladlad, a partylist organization.
Remoto has just been dealt with two devastating blows—his partylist org was disqualified and just yesterday, he was also stricken out of the list of qualified senatorial candidates. The second division chaired by no less than Commissioner Nicodemo Ferrer handed a fatal blow to Ang Ladlad when he disqualified the organization for being “redundant“. Now, Remoto was also disqualified as a senatorial candidate because of his alleged lack of organization and resources.
This is clearly a sign that the Comelec is suffering from homophobia. How in the world did they determined that Remoto does not have a machinery to use for a national campaign? Remoto’s name alone attracts millions of votes.
Remoto, undeniably, has already established a name as a gay rights activist. His exposure is definitely beneficial for any campaign. His name has been published in most broadsheets and tabloids and people know him by name and by the cause he espouses. Why consider a name such as Yasmin Lao eligible when a Remoto is not?
Lao, pardon me, is a relative unknown, though she is a Liberal party candidate. Remoto can actually launch a campaign all by himself, since he already established political stock.
Do you mean to say that people will vote for a Lao or an Ocampo (a senatorial candidate of the Bangon Pilipinas) instead of a Remoto? I will definitely vote for Remoto rather than waste my time shading that box next to these two names: Lao and Ocampo.
This surely is a justiciable question—whether or not the Comelec has the power to define what a “national campaign is” and what qualifications an individual must possess to be eligible to run for a national post like the Senate.
This decision to strike out Remoto’s name is a clear case of political homophobia. People who love the law must contest it before the Supreme Court and allow Danton Remoto his day in court.