Why Jessica Zafra fails in her crude attempt to defend ‘LGBT rights’

Jessica Zafra, in her recent Interaksyon.com article Shut the f-ck up, idiots fails to elevate the debate. Sure, perhaps she might feel she is surrounded by idiots who hold supposedly bigoted views about the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community. However Zafra loses, because she had launched herself into an amusing tililing rampage against them and, in the process, said a lot of things without carefully thinking things through first.

For one thing Zafra presumably addresses Manny Pacquiao telling (presumably) him, “you are [an] insult to your own religion.” She then goes on to point out that “the scripture you quote dates back to a millennium where the tribe had to reproduce as a matter of survival […]”. Well, Ms Zafra, how could Pacquiao who quoted from the very scripture that is the foundation of his very religion have “insulted” his own religion? Pacquiao (presumably) was just being a good and true practitioner of his chosen faith.

Well, that’s what happens when you write an angry article. You just forget to think things through.

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But the real gem of a fallacy in Zafra’s piece is when she wrote that “LGBT rights are human rights. They are not open to debate.” Oh, but they are, Ms Zafra. In modern times everything is open to debate. That is how knowledge evolves. In fact, the only thing not open to debate is the Holy Scripture of a religion — a position one takes if one is a practicing member of said religion, that is.

So then by saying that “LGBT rights” is “not open to debate”, did Ms Zafra just found a new religion?

That simply does not make sense. Even as I write this, “LGBT rights” are being debated by legislative bodies all over the world. Indeed, the fact that same sex marriage remains illegal in the Philippines is proof that this notion is, itself, undergoing the rigours of debate amongst people who have been elected to do just that.

Funny enough, Zafra also is an expert on evolution. Here is Zafra again ehibiting this expertise…

Our species did not go through millions of years of evolution only to surrender to morons. Or do you not recognize Evolution anyway, you dumbass creationists?

Evolution, Ms Zafra, does not follow any particular pre-set purpose. It just is. And it just happens. Random mutation is at the heart of Darwinian evolution. What decides which mutation survives is the environment and the survival and competitive pressures it puts on organisms.

So, Ms Zafra, you’re right. Evolution did not happen only for us to “surrender to morons”. Thing is, it did not happen for us to surrender to geniuses like you either. One way or another, all individual members of our species ended up hard wired in the head and in our physiology to favour one gender or the other — and at the same time be repulsed by one form of sexual practice or the other. It was nothing personal. Those urges — and revulsions — are just products of the evolution you fancy yourself an expert on.

Just as homosexual attraction is a physiological condition, the physical revulsion heterosexual people feel about homosexual sex is also physiological in nature. Does that justify vilifying and discriminating against homosexuals? No, it doesn’t; just as our hardwired instinct to kill people who harm our loved ones does not justify murder. It’s called being a modern human being. But part of being a modern human being is having the brains to also recognise that our reptilian impulses still exist and, more importantly, recognising that pretending they don’t exist or willing them to not exist is plain and simple moronic. What makes us human is our ability to overcome them even as these base instincts exist side-by-side with our uniquely-human reasoning faculties.

Unfortunately, Ms Zafra, you do your cause no favours by writing in the infantile way you do, and on a platform provided by an esteemed media organisation like Interaksyon.com at that. You just become part of the bunch of chattering shills whose cerebral cortices have failed to overcome the urge to say and write what you just wrote here.

If the issue is “not open to debate”, then what’s the point in your writing this piece, Ms Zafra? You ended the conversation even before it got started.

[Photo courtesy Interaksyon.com.]

54 Replies to “Why Jessica Zafra fails in her crude attempt to defend ‘LGBT rights’”

  1. Whenever a person argues from the point of view of his/her belief of an eternal absolute truth, expect the expected twisting of truth to suit his/her concept of a conceived absolute eternal truth which is the very reason of any religion.

    1. “Whenever a person argues from the point of view of his/her belief of an eternal absolute truth, expect the expected twisting of truth to suit his/her concept of a conceived absolute eternal truth which is the very reason of any religion.”

      So if there is no absolute truth, how can I even believe your statement to be true?

  2. benign0

    These lines also appear in Zafra’s column:

    “Oh excuuuuse me, are you holier than your pope? You do know that the scripture you quote dates back to a millennium … Don’t wave your dusty tomes at us, we’ve actually read them and placed them in their proper historical context. Have you?”

    Zafra must be reminded that the SSM issue is not only about religion, for it also concerns provisions on Marriage and the Family in our laws and the Constitution, among them:

    — The opening paragraph of Art. 1, Chapter 1, Title I (Marriage) of the Family Code of the Philippines (1987) stipulates that:

    “Marriage is a special contract of permanent union between a man and a woman entered into in accordance with law for the establishment of conjugal [or relationship between a wife and husband] and family life. It is the foundation of the family and an inviolable social institution …”

    –The above provision is in line with Article XV (The Family), particularly the following:

    “Section 1. The State recognizes the Filipino family as the foundation of the nation. Accordingly, it shall strengthen its solidarity and actively promote its total development.

    “Section 2. Marriage, as an inviolable social institution, is the foundation of the family and shall be protected by the State.”

  3. Uhm, human rights are not subject to debate, no mattee how modern your thinking. That was a very dumb statement. In fact, human rights IS a modern invention, created with the United Nations after World War 2, through the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Prior to that, there are only rights that were given to certain citizens and were subjective and selective. Mabilis lang to igoogle really.

    The statement that human rights are debatable is archaic because its modern definition is that any human right is inalienable and granted to you upon birth. No one decides if you can have it or not; no one debates about it or takes it away. You can assert it anytime. It is yours. Period.

    In fact, to say that “everything is open to debate” and human rights are not absolute and other people can deprive you of it, means that youre saying the same exact things to your other human rights. Your freedom of speech becomes debatable. Your right to be treated equally becomes debatable. Your right against torture and slavery becomes debatable. Your right to a trial and presumption of innocence becomes debatable (ikukulong ka na lang agad if talo ka sa debate, nevermind kung may kaso haha). Your right to privacy and travel is debatable.

    Also, “physiologic” means it involves a natural process of the body. If it involves revulsion, then that already includes mental faculties. The things that happen when you are digusted by something are the things that are physiologic – like vomiting, dizziness. But the very process of being disgusted is not necessarily phtsiologic, it is affected by our experiences, emotions, and attitudes. You can love chocolate now but if you keep eating it for 5 days, youd feel disgusted by it after.

    Last, at least we know who wrote Zafra’s article. His one we dont.

    1. The fact that the notion of human rights is “a modern invention” proves that it is debatable… because the human species and its civilisation not just existed but flourished for millennia without it. It was a product of a slow, long, and often bloody process of debate that progressively challenged the status quo for hundreds of years. As a product of debate, it therefore remains subject to debate, see.

      We enjoy its “modern definition” today by virtue of the laws our particular lands are subject to. But it and other rights and privileges we enjoy exist solely on the basis of a critical mass of people who choose to be governed under those laws. More importantly, the state (and its armed services) itself also opts to respect the tenets of said law to govern its citizens under those laws and opts to limit its capacity for violence and control on that basis.

      So you see, there is nothing “natural” or “god given” about human rights. It is as much a man-made construct as the idea of being governed by an absolute monarch. Nature does not favour any particular governance approach. Our species multiplied and dominated the planet long before the idea of “human rights” was conceived.

      1. My reaction to this topic is, humanity existed for thousands of years, and only in recent times they decided to universally (well, getting as much of the world as they could) agree that they should respect each others’ lives, thoughts, freedom of speech and movement, etc. Respect for people would have worked in the same way if it had been done back in those times. But for some reason, humans, being the stupid, selfish beasts that they are, delayed recognition of this for so long. Humans have known the need to respect each other for a long time… but didn’t want to do it simply because they’re selfish brats.

      2. @Chino, yeah, it’s evolutionary psychology. For most of the history of our species 300,000 years if I recall right, we lived in communities that numbered no more than a hundred odd (which is why our minds are programmed to competently track no more than 150 close social connections unaided by technology). It was in that social environment where much of our sense of ethics evolved. Formation of human communities that numbered more than that was a fairly recent innovation and is no older than 10,000 years or so. 300,000 years of evolutionary wiring of our brains easily trumps 10,000 years of ethical progress. Whereas tribal or clan thinking is hardwired and “burnt” into our brains, ethical thinking (as we know it today) is mere software that needs to be constantly maintained and upgraded.

        Our modern ethics (which includes the notion of “human rights” as one of its key principles) is a figment of our minds that needs constant and deliberate maintenance by our higher (and more resource-intensive) thinking faculties. Compare that to our base instincts to compete, dominate, fornicate, and kill that we share with the rest of the animal kingdom and, as such, we are total naturals at (i.e. we can resort to these without the need to think) reverting to that mode of living without much effort.

        This is why when we are drunk or under the influence of mind-altering drugs, we become more violent, aggressive, promiscuous, and unscrupulous. Mind altering drugs like alcohol and most narcotics impair our higher brain functions and, as a result, impair our ability to suppress our reptilian instincts.

        In short, being an ethical person is a high-maintenance undertaking. Being a brute is our natural state. And, thus, being human means ensuring our thinking is top-notch — no matter how taxing this activity is to us.

        1. For one thing, the laziness of Filipinos will tell them, “high-maintenance, mahirap pala, so let’s not do it.” What a contrast to what U.S. president John F. Kennedy said: “We do these things not because they are easy, we do them because they are hard.” And often, what is necessary and important to do is hard.

  4. “Uhm, human rights are not subject to debate, no mattee how modern your thinking. That was a very dumb statement..”

    There was nothing in there that said human rights is debatable. Read again. And what is your beef with anonymous authors? It’s simple. Either you agree or not. That’s it.

    1. Uhm yes, there was a part where the writer said human rights are debatable:

      “But the real gem of a fallacy in Zafra’s piece is when she wrote that “LGBT rights are human rights. They are not open to debate.” Oh, but they are, Ms Zafra. In modern times everything is open to debate.”

      Just setting the records straight. 🙂

      1. Here, just in case you post a comeback, take your cue from this passage in the above article and try to understand it better this time:

        “Even as I write this, “LGBT rights” are being debated by legislative bodies all over the world. Indeed, the fact that same sex marriage remains illegal in the Philippines is proof that this notion is, itself, undergoing the rigours of debate amongst people who have been elected to do just that…”

  5. Ms. Zafra, please think, before you open your mouth; or write an article about the issue of homosexuality. It is an “incendiary issue”. Please consider , also the people (heterosexuals), on the other side of the issue. They have Rights, also…and they are not morons.

    Let us all Tone Down the Rhetoric; and let Civility prevail…we can all present our arguments and rebuttals, without shouting down the other side.

  6. Everbody is always trying to attempt something in the Failippines, without thinking of the consequences to others and/or the environment.

    Just look at what happened when the Failipinos traded in millions of acres of agri/aquacultural land into condominiums and shopping malls.

    The transformation turned Failipinos against each other and destroyed fertile land, while the elites (the Chinese and politicians) laughed at the masses’ predicament all the way to the bank.

  7. There’s only one verse I can think of to sum up what’s been going on with this cyber civil war:

    As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

    Romans 3:10

    1. No one might be rigtheous, but let’s make the effort anyway. Instead, what I see in the Failippines is everyone believes he or she is rigtheous, and no one is trying to do what’s rigth.

  8. Zafra has gone ballistic, churning out an article that is such a disappointment and an embarrassment to people of her intelligence. Another sign that emotion-fueled thinking can even cause great minds into brain-shits such as this.
    As for benign0, geez, man, try to be a lot more empathic. This article gives the vibe “i’m better than her”. Take note, “GIVES THE VIBE”, not actually saying it. “Not open for debate” is most likely a euphemism for her conviction on how important lgbt rights mean to her. That is the problem with pinoys, nitpick the words, take everything literally.

  9. I thought Jessica Zafra’s article was ballsy and spot on. Having been a longtime reader of hers, it is exactly the sort of piece one could expect from her, fiery nostrils, high emotion and all. But as usual , her articles and books are always written well. Hence the Palanca and other accolades. She’s the sort of writer who puts everything on the line, including her face and name. It means, whether you agree with her or not, she can stand by what she writes. So really, your little review, while absolutely written within your rights, is a bit petty, altogether irrelevant. And I guess your anonymity doesn’t help matters. It just says you talk a big game and you can nitpick a real writer’s articles but when it comes down to it, we don’t know if you actually have the credibility…..

    1. Got your point, AJ. “Petty”, you found the word. If benign0 cant take criticism (OK, figure of speech coming through) “like a man”, i guess his views are (ironically) “not open for debate”.
      But i still think zafra’s rant was a tad bit over the top, 1 notch above vice ganda standards (just because it was,as expcted, articulate). I find it really sad when usually rational people break down and become all feel-sy.

      1. Yeah, it’s not to everyone’s liking, this kind of ranting. Her stand is passionate on a matter that in her view is non-negotiable, a no-brainer — and her style is pretty much ‘fuck all of you’ if you don’t agree. Which is why I thought it was kind of funny how someone would take it upon themselves to declare that the argument “failed” because anyone’s approval is obviously the furthest thing from the aurhor’s mind. Like you I would be more comfortable if smart people didn’t get so high strung in most cases but I kind of got why she went this route. You can lose your patience with bible beaters really quickly.

        1. It’s too bad Zafra is not open for dialogue with Manny and his supporters. She doesn’t want to understand why some people hate homosexuals. Like I said in my recent article, LGTB and their supporters should fix their image problem by speaking out against gays like Vice Ganda and stop them from promoting promiscuity and overall appalling behavior in public. If the public sees that there are gays who are against vulgarity, the public will eventually realise that there are decent homosexuals as well.

          Excerpts from my article: Vice Ganda’s vulgar behavior damages the image of the Philippines’ gay community

          In a lot of progressive countries, homosexuals are not exclusively represented by what some call in derogatory terms “screaming faggots”. The Americans have fashion designer and movie director Tom Ford; the United Kingdom has highly-acclaimed actor Sir Ian McKellen, among other prominent folks. You wouldn’t even realize some of them are homosexuals because they are very discrete. There are homosexuals in the medical and law professions – they are professionals who lead quiet and respectable lives and do not deserve to be lumped in the same mold as Vice Ganda.

          It’s a shame that the LGTB community in the Philippines is represented by such characters like Vice Ganda. Some homosexuals actually don’t want him to represent the gay community. Goes to show that it’s not only Pacquiao who is taking the country in the wrong direction. The best way to fix this dilemma is to meet halfway. Pacquiao should promote tolerance of homosexuals and the LGBT community should speak out against people like Vice Ganda and stop them from promoting promiscuity and overall appalling behavior in public.

    2. …we don’t know if you actually have the credibility…..

      A credentialist is in the building.

      A realist can focus on the message instead of the messenger. GRP subscribers don’t care about “Palanca awards” and other so-called “accolades”. They only care if the writer makes sense or not. Too bad you allowed vanity to get in the way of understanding a very good article.

  10. Manny Pacquiao is really a world-champ boxer. His punch-lines went straight to the heart. #IStandWithManny for the preservation of the family and of humanity.

  11. nice benign0, LGBTs rights are debatable, but not their human rights.

    my thoughts…

    LGBT’s, as they continually grow in number, gain power and influence – changing the minority landscape forever where they are no longer marginalized. Their rights to equal job opportunity, respect by community, and marital status are finally recognized – in the States and some other parts of the world, that is. But it’s not the case here in the Philippines, given the guidance from our faith and clear stipulation of family and marital union in our constitution, there is no concensus on the state of same sex marriage.

    In today’s world, it’s no longer about one’s principle or belief when it comes to LGBTs and the rights they carry. It’s about recognizing the rights that are given to them in the country they are in. You have to honor that right, else it would be a disrespect both to them and to the society that accepted them. Poor Pacquiao.

    But not in the Philippines, same sex marriage you cannot because you have no right. Church marriage of same sex would be total disrespect to the church, and to the people who honor God’s words and civil marriage of same sex would be against our constitution.

    Thus, as the saying goes, “When in Rome, do what the Romans do.”

  12. Ahhh, riding the LGBT/Pacquiao issue for a much needed publicity. Typical “angry” letter from an “empowered” “intellectual” feminist… errr… woman, who I doubt has a happy boyfriend.

    Wag tularan yan si Zafra. She’s miserable, unfulfilled and will probably spend her life alone with a cat. Kaya kayo mga babae, magpaganda, alagaan ang katawan, kumilos ng mahinhin para magka boyfriend/asawa. Wag i-prioritize ang trabaho, unahin sa listahan ang pagbuo ng pamilya. Yan ang nangyayari sa mga babaeng unfeminine, at walang alaga sa katawan… walang nagkakainterst na lalaki. Have a husband. Make babies. Be happy.

    1. Hahaha.
      Magpaganda at siguraduhin mag-asawa ng may pera at hindi palamunin. Kawawa naman pag anak ng anak at tapos walang mapakain at walang pampa-aral sa mga anak.

    2. @kwag
      Kung yan lang ang nakikita mong rason para matawag na “fulfilled” at “happy” ang pagiging tao ng isang babae, nakakaawa ka.
      Ang unang bagay na kailangang matutuhan ng mga babae ay ang mahalin ang sarili nila. Magpaganda para sa sarili nila, gastusan ang sarili nila. Hindi para maging takaw-paningin sa kung sinong Herodes na lalaking bubuntis lang sa kanila.

  13. she’s right, it’s evolution. they are the experimental ones who will control population and spread sexually transmitted illnesses.

  14. I still don’t think, at its most basic sense, that Marriage is a a human right.

    It is an institution between a man and a woman. Ceremony is optional but is usually the norm. Ceremony is called a wedding. Man bringhs his side of family, woman brings her’s, the union is blessed by a seer, a priest, a judge, and the community cheers and blesses the union because out of them comes the next generation. Natural Marriage is beneficial for the community. That is why it is promoted. Youtube this. Singapore National Night Rap.

    The LGBT community then needs to rephrase their rhettoric regarding fighting for marriage as a right. They should also prove that there is something beneficial from the union.

    I mean, I haven’t asked anyone but I’m sure people who are married don’t feel like they just claimed one of their inalienable rights. It’s more like a chore, hence the benefits. What benefits? Exactly!

    I’m sorry to put it this way, but sometimes I feel the LGBT community is just angry because they feel like Marriage is a party, a club, or prom where they will never be invited. And even if they have the ceremony called the wedding, they feel like they bought a fake Fendi because their wedding is not recognized. And that is sad.

    But you know, leave the marriage nalang to straights.

    How do you consumate gay marriage?
    What is the definition of gay adultery?
    What happens in gay…….. let us just not. okay lang?

    Peace out

  15. Zafra’s emotions did overtake her best interests. But this is a very eloquent way of derailing the issue. Other humans get to share health benefits with their partners, enjoy tax exemptions and make sure conjugal properties remain in their union or that they be able to decide to whom such will go to. That’s the issue. You can call any LGBT person “masahol pa sa hayop” but trust me, we’ve had worse. Imagine having to work for the same things everyone else gets, and maybe even having to work harder – then being told you don’t because some people playing God say so. There are kids out there struggling growing up with their sexuality and now they’ll hear their sports hero and legislator saying there’s something wrong with them and implying they should be treated with less respect just because of the blind faith of a few.

  16. I find Ms. Zafra’s thoughts to be very disturbing. Isn’t she insulting the majority of Filipinos by discrediting the Bible (where the faith of Catholics and Christians is anchored to), implying that it is not relevant anymore? Or probably she really is a product of evolution, err, is it from a non-living thing, or from an ape? Oh wait, did Charles Darwin himself succumbed that his theory cannot provide appreciation to the creativity and awesomeness of God, stating in p. 155 of “On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life,” written in 1859 the following:
    “To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree.”

    Ms. Zafra, God is not dead and the Bible is not extinct. Proofs are all around us, from the air that you breathe to the complexities of the systems in your body. Even your brain that you use in your writing is given to you by God. Now, how to use it is a freedom given to you as well. I pray that God will open your heart to experience Him.

  17. The author of this article may be excused of dishonesty only on the grounds that before deceiving others, he has taken great pains to deceive himself

  18. Zafra believes that she is a product of million years of evolution, chales darwin’s theory was man evolved from an ape, what is an ape? An animal right, please understand her, she just behave like where she came from…

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