President Rodrigo Duterte’s stand against same-sex marriages has been hailed by House Senior Deputy Minority Leader Lito Atienza.
“President Duterte is correct in saying that same-sex marriages are not for us because we are a Catholic nation, aside from the legal aspect where the Civil Code provides for marriage between a man and a woman. Marriage should be for founding a family,” Atienza said on Tuesday.
The lawmaker from Buhay party-list was reacting to the President’s statement during his meeting with the Filipino community in Myanmar over the weekend.
“I respect the rights of two people sharing affection and material things but to allow them to get married by law is not okay. Same-sex couples can share affection even without marriage,” Atienza said.
During the hearing of the House Committee on Women and Gender Equality, he had moved for removal of the phrase “of any other kind of license” from section 4E of the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) bill, saying this would have allowed the granting of a marriage license for same-sex couples.
The amendment was accepted by the bill’s proponents.
“The rights of every person are already guaranteed and protected by the Constitution and [are]something that we recognize and respect. But the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman must be upheld and protected as an institution as it is the most basic foundation of the family. I have always considered people belonging to the LGBT community as some of my best friends. In fact, I grew up with them belonging to one dance troupe. I know that many of them don’t approve of same-sex marriage. And I have always looked at the LGBT community with respect. But same-sex marriage is against the Constitution, existing laws and especially the natural law. We Filipinos should not really be copying Western culture. Even if they approve of it, majority of Filipinos don’t. It’s time Western countries look at us and start copying our culture,” Atienza said.