Pride month may already be over but our love and support for the LGBTQIA+ community runs deep all-year-round. In Manila, we celebrated Pride March last June 30 with 25,000 people (from last year's 8,000 attendees) gathered as one. They paraded all the colors of the rainbow at the Marikina Sports Complex.
Many celebrities and personalities showed up in support of the community, but what further caught our attention was the aftermath. Blogger and TV host Mari Jasmine, who also attended the event, made a heartwarming revelation via an Instagram post: "Pride is about celebrating love, equality, and owning your truth. So here’s mine: In the little time I’ve spent on this earth, I’ve had the privilege of being in love with both men and women."
She revealed her dream for Filipinos to show the same kind of love, compassion, and understanding to the LGBTQIA+ community that she experienced as a foreigner who moved to the country five years ago. "My dream is to live in a world where I feel safe walking down the street holding my girlfriend’s hand," she wrote, pertaining to her relationship with film maker Sam Lee. "A world where I have the same fundamental human rights that I would be entitled to if I were in a straight, heteronormative relationship."
In the same post, the blogger asked for those who don't have any friends or family in the LGBTQIA+ community that they reach out and start learning. Mari explained, "We are often only afraid of the things we don’t know or understand. To reach equality, we need our allies to be as passionate and vocal about our rights as we are."
She concluded her coming-out post with a positive note. "You are wonderful, worthy, and loved. Don’t let any person or any institution let you think otherwise. I stand by you and I will fight with you forever!" Cheers to you, Mari!