The De La Salle University (DLSU) pep rally on September 28, 2022, went viral after rookie members of the Green Archer’s basketball team utilized a cross-dressing event, making several netizens and LGBTQ+ community uncomfortable, including Holy Angel University (HAU) students.
In a recent post by Gabriel Togonon, Secretary General of Bahaghari – HAU, an organization that fights for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community, the recent pep rally show was regarded as an event that “further perpetuates gender expression discrimination and queerphobia,” comparing it with the “Aguman Sanduk” tradition of HAU-School of Engineering and Architecture (HAU-SEA) where heterosexual male students also do the same presentation.
“Trans folks are getting hate crimed and murdered for their SOGIE, femme presenting gays are being discriminated & cat called, butch lesbians being insulted, and the cycle goes on,” said Togonon on his Facebook post.
“I just hope they would learn to be gender sensitive with these events because we even initiated an open discussion and even offered SOGIE talks from our organization yet that lame “tradition” still continued,” he added.
“Stop making our whole identities a joke and protect us and allow us to express ourselves freely instead. Y’all never learn,” said an Angelite on Twitter, who requested anonymity.
Togonon further called out the attention of student leaders, stating that they should do better when it comes to promoting gender equality, inclusivity, and safe space in schools and universities, including the HAU-SEA Student Council.
“I’m calling out the council who misrepresented, maligned, and in context wise portrayed the festival in a sexual, gender expression discriminant, and blatant insult to the feminine & LGBTQ+ community,” stated Togonon.
The Angelite tried to reach out to the College Student Council (CSC)- SEA Chairperson Hannah Bettina Miranda to express her statements regarding the similar event with their department and her response to Togonon’s call, but has yet to receive a response.