Tin Bartolome

Posted at Feb 19 2016 10:11 PM

Bashing means assaulting physically or severe criticism. What do we consider “bashing”? When does expressing outrage or objection constitute bashing?

Gays have always been the usual victims of bashing. Lately, however, high-profile celebrities, especially actors, are also being bashed, especially on social media. Bashing is a form of bullying.

Bullying was initially regarded as “a way to teach boys accepted codes of masculine behavior… openness about homosexuality changed this picture to some extent, leading writers to understand bullying as a product of the bully’s repressed same-sex desires,” writes Andrew Wackerfuss, PhD in Homophobic Bullying and Same-Sex Desire in Anglo-American Schools: An Historical Perspective (Journal of Gay & Lesbian Social Services, Volume 19, Issue 3-4, 2008)

Maybe it doesn’t even have to be “repressed same-sex desire” that causes bullying but one’s insecurity or feelings of inferiority. Remember that rape happens not just because of lust but arises from a need to feel empowered or of having control over someone else. The same is true for acts constituting domestic violence or abuse.

Times have changed and not only are we against bullying, more and more are being vocal about their contempt—or at the very least, disdain, for gay bashing. The most recent example is, of course, Pacquiao’s statement and Nike’s withdrawal of endorsement deals.

READ: Pacquiao apologizes for anti-LGBT remark

People may not have reacted the same way if only he had expressed his opinion about gays and same-sex marriage without the comparison. I was as indignant as the gays who openly condemned the comparison. However, I also feel that those who hurled insults—especially about his physical appearance—were no better, even if they were telling the truth.

So, saying that gays are worse than dogs is bashing, but expressing outrage over that statement—without the insults—is not.

Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp.