A Reaction to "Scared to speak one’s mind" by Ramon Tulfo of the Philippine Daily Inquirer: Bigotry Has Friends

A Philippine Daily Inquirer online editorial posted on February the 18th, 2016 entitled "Scared to speak one’s mind" by Ramon Tulfo posted caught my attention. This editorial piece is all about the author's condescending opinion about homosexuality, the whole Manny Pacquiao bigoted opinion, and the LGBT community. Let's break it down and share a different and more rational take on it.

A Reaction to Scared to speak one’s mind by Ramon Tulfo of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

Let me get this out of the way first, I am for the equal civil rights for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community or more commonly known in the shorthand LGBT or LGBTq. Now after that statement, you have either click out of this opinion piece because of (1) your mind is so closed off that you no longer welcome any other opinions disregarding if there is any merit or logical reason behind such opposition; (2) you share the same mentality that discriminates and dehumanize the LGBTq as exhibited by Pacquiao or as he simply put it *is the only 'absolute' truth as seen from the Bible and God'; or if you are still here, then congratulations for having an open mind willing to hear what other people has to say about the matter.

What I will be doing here is I will be quoting Ramon Tulfo's editorial piece online entitled "BScared to speak one’s mind" in the February 16th, 2016 Editorial section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. I will be addressing the article and present my reaction as if I was talking directly to Ramon Tulfo, thus the use of the second-person pronoun 'You' in the entirety of the "Editorial Reaction". A littler disclaimer, I do not own nor claim ownership of the article and this will simply be a commentary that aims to dissect, provide rebuttals, and hopefully a more rational take in this condescending Inquirer opinion piece as protected by the Fair Use and Freedom of Expression. I will be addressing him. Let's get started.

I was laughing and nearly fell off my chair as I was reading a story about world boxing champion Manny Pacquiao being driven to the ropes by a flurry of jabs, hooks, and uppercut and straight punches from various groups for his comment about homosexuals.

Hala, bay, ayuha ug panagang sa mga bayot ug tomboy (You have to reel from the punches of homosexuals, my friend)!

You started out strong by laughing at the backlash received by Pacquiao in his 'Bilang Pilipino' political series interview that asked him 'What is his stance on the issue on 'same sex marriage' which Pacquiao made his controversial seemingly demeaning and dehumanizing remark that 'LGBTq is worse than animals'.

Manny Pacquiao on same-sex marriage

"Mas masahol pa sa hayop." Senatorial aspirant and Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao had this to say when we asked him for his stand on same-sex marriage. #BilangPilipino

Posted by Bilang Pilipino on Monday, February 15, 2016

In your local dialect, you stated that you find it humorous that Pacquiao is receiving punches from 'homosexuals'. We have not gone far and you already committed an mistake. The criticism thrown at Pacquaio did not only came from 'homosexuals' but from straight individuals who has better understanding of their plight and the cause they are fighting for. But you could argue that this is just a 'figure of speech' and I'll give you the benefit of doubt. Let's continue....

Pacquiao said two persons of the same sex who copulate are worse than animals.

“Would you see any species of animals engaging in male-to-male, female-to-female (sexual) relations? Animals, then, are better than humans. They know how to distinguish males from females,” said The Champ.

I said I was laughing not because I find his comment outrageous or hilarious—it’s not—but because he’s getting flak for speaking his mind.

What is so funny for receiving flak for reacting to something? As far as we are all aware, there is nothing in the constitution that limits us from reacting negatively from anything. If Pacquaio can share his negative opinion, then why can't we. PAcquaio did say something 'negative' right or don't you find anything inherently 'wrong' with such dehumanizing remarks? Do you also find it true, then?

Most full-blooded males and females would find sex between two men and two women repulsive.

But they are just too scared to speak their minds.

I have to commend you for not falling to a fallacious generalization when you used 'Most'. Although I find it quite interesting and curious as to where did you get that 'interesting fact of "Most full-blooded males and females would find sex between two men and two women repulsive." do you have any scientific journal or at least reference that documents such statement?

Well here is an actual scientific reference for your consideration which does not assume without proper evidence - An article entitled "All Women Are Attracted To Other Women, New Study Says" which shared a US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health research on Sexual Arousal and Masculinity-Femininity of Women.

They are too scared to speak their minds? What are you saying, man? Just a quick glance at every social media 'news' post that pertains to Manny PAcquiao's 'same sex marriage' debacle will give you a ridiculous amount of people freely speaking their minds that Pacquiao is right'. I shouldn't even cite links. Just go on and check your preferred local news channel social media page and you'll see that you are terribly mistaken, Mr. Tulfo.

To gays, lesbians and transgenders: The public understands you because ours is now a tolerant society.

By “public,” I mean the majority of the population, that is straight or heterosexual.

But being tolerant doesn’t mean our society encourages same-sex marriage or passionate kissing between two men or two women in the open.

The first two lines was passable, but then you went down with "But being tolerant doesn’t mean our society encourages same-sex marriage". Wait, okay so what is the limit of your 'tolerance' towards the LGBTq, what made you become tolerant towards them in the first place? Why is it not tolerable for society to encourage same sex marriage?

Then you continue with an equivocation (fallacy) "...or passionate kissing between two men or two women in the open". The cause of same sex marriage is not the same as passionate kissing of LGBTq in open so don't lump them in one statement as if that is what is the issue here. The issue here is same sex marriage or the state recognized civil union among the members of the LGBTq. They are not asking for tolerance or approval to kiss "in the open" they can freely do that now whether you approve of it or not. Remember, what you said earlier, Tolerant society? This is one of the sneak peak of how ignorant and uninformed you are to what the LGBTq are fighting for.


A little lesson about Equivocation. Additionally from our dear good old 'partially' reliable Wikipedia, Equivocation ("to call by the same name") is an informal logical fallacy. It is the misleading use of a term with more than one meaning or sense (by glossing over which meaning is intended at a particular time). It generally occurs with polysemic words (words with multiple meanings)...


If most Filipinos are scandalized by straight couples kissing passionately in public, more so gay couples petting in public.

They find the latter an abomination.

Please do your thing in the privacy of your bedroom.

This is a classic form of 'slippery slope' fallacy (see definition below). How did it became a slippery slope? Well, The topic we are talking here is about 'same sex marriage' and now you have stray away from he topic and imply that the LGBTq is actually asking for approval to commit sex in public.Then you went on blabbering about most Filipinos being scandalized by public display of affection (PDA), then connects that with PDA that may be practiced by the LGBTq, which you then say an 'abomination'.

I ask you again. Why do most Filipinos get scandalized by couple passionately kissing in public? What is your basis? Where are you coming from when you made such 'prejudice' that the LGBTq's version is an 'abomination'?

"Please do your thing in the privacy of your bedroom.". Again that is not the issue here Tulfo. Oh, another fallacy, 'non sequitur" or "it does not follow".


Slippery slope fallacy'. Wipedia states, A slippery slope argument (SSA), in logic, critical thinking, political rhetoric, and caselaw, is a consequentialist logical device in which a party asserts that a particular result will probably (or even must inevitably) follow from a given decision or circumstance, without necessarily providing any rational argument or demonstrable mechanism for the likelihood of the assumed consequence....

Non sequitur. Wikipedia states, Non sequitur (Latin for "it does not follow"), in formal logic, is an argument in which its conclusion does not follow from its premises.[1] In a non sequitur, the conclusion could be either true or false, but the argument is fallacious because there is a disconnection between the premise and the conclusion. All invalid arguments are special cases of non sequitur. The term has special applicability in law, having a formal legal definition. Many types of known non sequitur argument forms have been classified into many types of logical fallacies....


You cannot and should not impose your homosexual norms on a society which is still “primitive” by your standards.

Oh hey, look you are trying to be sarcastic by doing the "QUOTATION thing". Cute, but not smart or proper. Philippine society is truly primitive in the sole basis that amidst having The 1987 Constitution of the Philippines declaring The separation of Church and State shall be inviolable, here we have church and religion having a hand in state affairs. Of having no fangs against the violations pertaining to religious organizations. Why is divorce, medically-assisted abortion, medically assisted euthanasia, and legalization of prostitution not being considered or comes close to passing into laws? Who are the usual opponents of such progressive laws? What are their usual basis? Isn't that NOT in violation of separation of church and state? What is holding that back? The answer, a primitive source which is now being questioned by the critical thinkers something that you might not relate to.

If you can’t stand our primitive society that frowns upon same-sex marriage, you should migrate to the United States and Europe where most states now allow same-sex marriage.

What a very 'mature', 'rational', and 'understanding' remark; 'zero-bigotry'. See you are also not the only one who can use sarcasm and quotations effectively. Let's see, historically there was a time when women do not have any rights to vote or held positions in the government. There was also a time, when 'Blacks' or any darker skinned race where considered as slaves. Now, did any of them leave their country to fight for their rights: Right to vote or hold position; rights to be free men? Did the Filipinos simply left the country when Colonizers occupied the country and commit all sorts of atrocities in the name of the Roman Catholic church? No. They fought for it in our very own freaking country, which bigots like you would probably have exiled them or issued statements like "If you don't like how we ran things here, then leave".

Please do not display your homosexuality like a badge of honor because it’s not.

The same applies to you, Pacquiao, and some religious fundamentalist conservative's bigotry and discrimination which dehumanize fellow human beings for being different from what you think and believe is true, when in reality it is now a subject for debates and discussion. No religion, deity, or ancient scripture is free from criticism and analysis.

Haven’t you noticed?

Lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender have formed themselves into a party-list group led by Danton Remoto, a professor at Ateneo de Manila University.

The public loves gays because, well, they’re happy and gay.

What is your point when you cited LADLAD and the leadership of Ateneo de Manila University Professor? The public love gays? It is kind of inconsistent in your 'book' given that all your previous statements seem to antagonize the LGBTq or dehumanize them. Let me help you by saying that "Most of the public loves gays..." which you are in the minority.

Gays make good entertainers and beauticians.

Many of them are talented and intelligent.

This is you trying to save face by simply stating the obvious. Cute, but of course nothing good will come out of pretentious and hypocritical bigotry.

But has the LGBT party-list group ever won in any election? No.

Why? Because our society still can’t accept homosexuality as normal, pardon my saying so.

Pouring salt in a wound. How very understanding of you. You ask the question"Why". I ask you back "Why can't society accept homosexuality as normal"? What is its sole basis? By now I think you know where I am getting at.

And lest I be misconstrued as a bigot, I have many gay friends.

I respect them as much as they respect me.

Well, at least this time, you didn't commit a fallacy. Just a hypocritical argument. Ladies and gentlemen, I present you with the "Friend Argument"...


The friend argument is an argument used by people who want to claim knowledge about and/or sympathy with a group, by referring to their "friends" belonging to this group. It is commonly used to clear and absolve oneself from suspicion of racism, xenophobia or other kinds of prejudice. It is a particular form of the "Not prejudiced, but..." statement.

It is one of the easiest ways to try to worm out of accusations of prejudice. The thinking is that someone cannot be prejudiced if they have friends of that demographic; if they had a real prejudice against a full group, then none of them would be okay to hang around. In a rather absurd example, someone can cite a specific example that excuses their general behaviour, for example "how can I be a misogynist, I love my mother."- or, in an even more absurd example "I'm not sexist- after all, all of my girlfriends have been female." While this line of reasoning might be true for someone who genuinely doesn't have a general prejudice, it isn't a good argument to prove it - and it certainly doesn't absolve someone who actually does hold such a belief. Such argumentation can be used as 'evidence' that someone is not prejudiced, but this alone does not amount to 'proof'. The underlying fallacy is that one single point of data, this one "friend," completely overrides any other bits of evidence we have to assess someone's views. This is simply not valid reasoning. The presence (or not) of a prejudice is determined by what follows the "But..." in those above examples, not what comes before.


And we don’t talk about their sexuality.

I don't have that many close gay friends. I have that former co-worker who I think is gay or probably transgender. Never really ask how he identified himself. We also don't talk about their sexuality or what they do in their intimate moments with their chosen partners, but guess what, I am for giving them civil rights and the option to be protected by the Philippine constitution just like any straight couples out there.

To also educate your ignorance about the 'Same Sex Marriage, I will leave you with a very informative post from Ella Espinosa:

Ella Espinosa Same Sex Marriage Education


Same Sex Marriage:
Ano bang akala niyo mga te? Gusto naming makasal dahil gusto lang naming mag gown at lumakad papunta ng altar? Very wrong po kayo dyan. Uulitin ko, Maling mali po.
Unang una, hindi namin hinihiling ikasal sa simbahan. Malinaw bo ba un.
Bakit nga ba gusto namin ikasal?
1. Puede na naming ideklarang dependent yng partner para naman nde malaking tax ang kinukuha ng gobyerno. Kakahiya naman, mas malaki yng tax na babayran namin kasi pareho kaming single ang status?! Nasan ang hustisya!
2. Sa health insurance, kasama mo ng halos 10 taon pero nde mo din sya puedeng maging dependent kasi nga nde kayo magasawa sabi ng batas?! Makatatungan ba un?!
3. Mga desisyon pang financial. Pareho ninyong pinundar ang kabuhayan niyo. May di inaasahang mangyaring masama sa partner mo. Sino makikinabanag?! Yng magulang, na baka itinakwil pa nya dati yng anak nya?!
4. Nde ka puedeng magdesisyon para sa partner mo kasi nde ka immediate family sabi ng batas. Eh sino pipirma kng sakaling kailangan ng desisyon tulad sa hospital?!
Huwag po kayong makasarili. Huwag ninyong ipagdamot kung ano man ang nakukuha ninyo benepisyo kasi kinikilala ng batas ang pagsasama ninyo.

Let's defining Bigotry..

Bigotry is intolerance toward those who hold different opinions from oneself:

Well, Bigots have families and friends who they they think does not deserve to have equal civil rights for the mere basis of their limiting divisive and questionable belief system which they have never questioned all their lives; even amidst such claims, they are still bigoted.


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