Panagbenga Festival 2013

While I was organizing my photos, I realized that I have not developed some of these which were taken when I went back to the Philippines for a short vacation. I could not remember what was the occasion, it could be that I got bored here in KL.

I asked my mother if she could come with me to Baguio since the plan to drive north to Baguio with Armel was not happening. She mentioned that we could stay in her friend’s house and it all went hell that I had to immediately find a room for two as soon as we arrive in Engineer’s Hill in Baguio.

Nevertheless, this is the first Philippine festival that I captured on camera. There were some that I have witnessed but I still didn’t have my camera with me.

As you could see, that the Ifugao culture is very rich. It roots down to their ancestors. I would want to go to the mountains and see the Ifugao Rice Terraces first hand – maybe soon.

The intricate of design hand-woven or hand-painted were designed on their clothes and costumes struck me the most. Although I didn’t have the time to take pictures of the flower gazebos and floats because it was already full of mob as the local celebrities presented themselves along the famous street of Session Road, much to my surprise after going to the market that morning with my mother, the people were already taking their places to witness the procession of Panagbenga.

You could read of why they celebrate this festive occasion somewhere but I’d like to show you how colorful they are.

What Happened to LGBT Rights Bill in the Philippines?

Just awhile ago, I posted about a House Bill passed in Congress and Senate regarding the Cybercrime bill in the Philippines. And now, after three hours of sleep, I shall write another politically-driven post.

LGBT Philippines

LGBT Philippines

This pertains to the LGBT Rights Bill. To date, two bills are both in reading by the two houses:

The Anti-Racial, Ethnic and Religious Discrimination Act of 2011 by the Lower House; and
The Anti-Ethnic, Racial Profiling and Discrimination Act of 2011 by the Senate.

Both of these bills do not include the sexual orientation and gender identification (SOGI) provisions in which Cong. Teddy Casiño, Bayan Muna representative, authored Anti-Discrimination Act of 2010.

United Nations Human Rights Council released a Landmark Report and Panel on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity last March 7, 2012. It was mentioned that human rights are equal. “Therefore,  that means, that everyone, gay, lesbian, transgender and heterosexuals, is entitled to the full range of all human rights, including the rights to life, to be free from arbitrary detention, to security of person and protection from torture”.

It is just a disappointment that the two houses are pushing the two former bills without including the equal rights to LGBT community. How can it be fair and just if another minority is not protected against these abuses?

Tito Sotto

Tito Sotto and Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012

You might have heard or read that Senator Tito Sotto is warning its critics that the The Philippine Cybercrime Bill, HB 5808, has been approved both houses and it is just currently waiting for the President’s signature for it to become a law.

Tito Sotto

Upholding Honor

What’s in it for me and you?

This is actually good because cybercrime that includes illegal use of network and computer resources, unsoliciated e-communications, hacking and cybersex. But comes with this is that people can sue you of libel from an online defamation, regardless of which media: blogging, social networking sites or anything transmitted electronically.

This is what the senator is pertaining when he claims that he is cyberbullied by my fellow netizens in relation with the alleged plagiarism during one of his privilege speeches in regards to the RH Bill.

Below is the full transcript of the 3rd reading from the House of Congress.

HB 5808 Cyber Crime_ 3rd Rdg.

Disclaimer: I am not legally capable to discuss the bill is about and this is plainly based on my mere understanding using my English comprehension. If you find my opinions contradicting, please consult a legal adviser.

Davao City's San Pedro Cathedral Incident

This picture has been going viral today and the uploader’s description on his Facebook account:

FILTHY HYPOCRITES. As I was shooting in Davao City’s San Pedro Cathedral during the observance of Good Friday, I noticed a Tagalog speaking man instructing this security guard to throw out a half-naked man who is silently kneeling and praying inside the church, saying that the churches in Manila prohibit persons with mental disabilities and vagrants to enter its premises. The security guard then assaulted the poor man without any warning poking him in the ribs several times using a “ratan” truncheon…I immediately took several burst shots of the detestable incident. Suddenly, an old man with a Bible in his hand tapped me on my shoulder and told me that it is improper to take photos of the incident and that it is also improper to take photos inside their heavenly church. WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE??? Tama si Dong Abay. Banal na aso, santong kabayo. (Copyright: Karlos Manlupig)

NOTE: I opted to post this blurry picture to preserve the identity of the victim.

When I first saw the picture, I was in deep awe! Judging from the shot and the description, it could have been a legitimate incident where the guard dispelled the beggar away from the church. But realizing what may have happened, the beggar has mental disabilities, he might have been disturbing the devotees while they were praying. But then, again, it is hard to judge from one single shot. If this was taken with multiple shots or better a video clip, we can verify its genuineness.

Nevertheless, based on experience when I was attending some baptismal service at Our Lady of Abandoned Parish in San Roque, Marikina, there was an instance when the guard asked the beggar to leave the church premises because she was asking for alms. This is a different scenario because she was asking for money, on the contrary, from the earlier example, that the male beggar was praying silently.

As far as I know, there is no bible passage in the New Testament that Jesus gave money to the beggar. Please help me on this, I have not read the whole holy book nor I have been an avid fan reading the scriptures. This is from what I remember when I was still in a Christian high school. And please do not think I am writing this post because I have decided not to believe in religion. Me, being an aetheist, I still believe there is one supreme God.

So what do you think?