Popular folk-pop band Ben&Ben’s Paolo Guico expressed his dismay over how Filipino netizens received his call to break gender stereotypes.
In a social media post, the vocalist wrote about how netizens reacted to The STAR’s LatestChika.com article about how he’s making a statement against gender stereotyping.
“Minsan, nagpopost ako tungkol sa pagchallenge ng gender stereotypes sa pamamagitan ng pagsuot ng damit ng nanay ko. Tapos nabalita pala siya sa Philippine Star. Ayun. Puno ng comments ng *surprise* gender stereotypes. Hahahayy,” he wrote on Facebook.
Paolo then shared that it is wrong to assume an individual’s gender based on the clothes they wear.
“Kasi ang gender, napaka personal na bagay niyan para sa isang tao. Walang sinumang iba ang may karapatang mag-define nito.
“Higit pa rito, mali ang mag-assume na ang isang bagay o gawain ay panlalaki o pambabae lamang. Hay Pilipinas, ang layo pa natin. Tulungan tayo,” he stressed.
He then asked Filipinos to move on from using “bakla” or “gay” as a way to insult someone.
Paolo said that he might not be in the position to speak for the LGBT community, but he vowed to fight for them as an ally.
“As a heterosexual male, I may not be in the place to speak for them, but I will fiercely fight for our LGBT friends and listeners. Let’s grow up!!” he said.
“Kids, be free to be yourselves. Don’t let anyone bring you down,” he ended.
Paolo has recently been styling his mom’s dresses and sporting winged eyeliner looks to challenge gender norms and empower his followers to be comfortable with themselves.