Belmonte: Same sex marriage law in PH ‘impossible’
SAME sex marriage in the Philippines? Impossible, says Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. on Monday.
In a press conference, Belmonte said a legislation to legalize same sex marriage in the country has no chances of passing the House of Representatives.
“I really don’t know why anybody would want to do that,” Belmonte said.
This is because a law adjusts to the country’s predominantly Catholic culture, which frowns upon marriage of the same sex, Belmonte said.
“At any rate, I think from the point of view of our own culture, it’s an impossibility for the next few years,” Belmonte said.
“The law lives within the culture. It’s not yet within the culture. The law can’t create the culture. The culture creates the law,” he added.
Belmonte even said he thought it was a joke when he received the news that same sex marriage was legalized in the United States after the US Supreme Court ruled that same sex marriage falls under the 14th Amendment.
Asked why he disapproves of same sex marriage, Belmonte said: “Bakit pa ginawa ng Diyos ang lalaki at babae?”
The Philippines is largely Catholic, with over 80 percent of the population. The church also has secular control over a relatively conservative Congress, which has shunned legislation on same sex marriage, abortion, or even divorce, the issues that the Catholic Church has frowned upon.
It was a first when Congress approved into law the administration-backed Reproductive Health bill, despite stiff opposition from the church.
The United States Supreme Court decision, in a vote of 5-4, declared that same sex marriage falls under the 14th Amendment of their Constitution.
In the Philippines, a similar petition is pending before the Philippines Supreme Court nullifying the Family Code provisions that limit marriage to man and woman.
But Belmonte said the petition has no chances of getting favorable ruling from the Supreme Court.
Belmonte said gay marriage was legalized in the US because the debate has been going on for quite some time.
“I don’t think it’s going to prosper,” Belmonte said of the petition before the Supreme Court. “Let’s face it, in the United States it had been developing for quite some time. Matagal-tagal na yan… It had been floating around in the legal framework for quite some time,” Belmonte said.
Belmonte said he’d rather support the anti-discrimination bill which prohibits discrimination in the work place and other places based on gender identity.
The bill just hurdled the committee level in the House of Representatives.
“I want to make to make it clear that I am 100 percent against discrimination based on gender,” Belmonte said.
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