Comedian and television host Vice Ganda on Thursday lashed out at Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III for his controversial remark on the transgender community, calling the statement “unfair.”
“I believe this statement is just not fair. There are people who pretend to be feminists to hide their being misogynists,” Vice Ganda, Jose Marie Viceral in real life, wrote on his Instagram page.
Sotto drew mixed reactions from netizens on Wednesday when he shared his belief that men can “never become women” because they can’t reproduce.
“You cannot give birth. You do not have ovaries. You’ll never be a woman,” Sotto said on the same day the Senate conducted a hearing into the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) Equality Bill.
Viceral slammed the actor-turned-solon for belittling the community, adding that womanhood is not measured only through the biological aspect.
“Sila ay BABAE dahil sila ay BABAE. At MAY HALAGA sila may matris man o wala, magbuntis man o hindi, may anak man o wala dahil sila ay TAO at sila ay BABAE,” Viceral added.
[Translation: They are women because they are women. They have value even if they cannot reproduce, because they are humans and women.]
“Sinubukan ninyong maliitin ang konsepto ng pagiging TRANSGENDER sa paraang tinapakan nyo rin ang dignidad ng mga tinatawag nyong TOTOONG BABAE.”
[Translation: You tried to belittle the concept of being a transgender in a way that you also stepped on the dignity of those you call ‘real women.’]
Sotto earlier said that the proposed SOGIE bill, which he had tagged as “unconstitutional” is unlikely to pass in the Senate. He said the proposed measure violates religious freedom, academic freedom, and women’s rights.
The proposed anti-discrimination measure aims to penalize discrimination against the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) community. It also seeks to give equal access to employment, education, and social services to LGBT community members.
Other celebrities have also expressed support for the SOGIE Equality Bill.
“I am a straight woman, and I believe the SOGIE Bill does not in any way hamper my rights as a woman and human being,” host Bianca Gonzales wrote on her Twitter page Wednesday.
“Equality is everything… A little goes a long way. Our support means the world,” actress Heart Evangelista said.