In the Philippines last week well-known lawyer Ferdinand Topacio, who has held government positions and represented clients in high-profile cases, called the former president’s grandson and current press undersecretary a ‘faggot’ on Twitter.
The tweet was directed at Manuel Quezon III, grandson of former president Manuel L Quezon who is thought to have angered Topacio by describing him as ‘Hitler-loving’ in a blogpost.
‘If he calls people names he should also be ready to be called names. If he can dish it out. He should be able to take it as well,’ Topacio said to Rappler when asked about the tweet.
Quezon stood by his description of Topacio, saying the New York Times reported in January that there was a painting of Hitler in Topacio’s office.
Topacio denied he was being homophobic in his tweet. He told Rappler:
‘I was not referring to his sexual orientation but to his personality. No one will believe I’m homophobic. I have so many gay friends.’
Filipino gay rights activist Jonas Bagas accused Topacio of inciting hatred. He said:
‘If Topacio has anything against a public official like Manolo Quezon, then he should just stick to the issue. He shouldn’t use his alleged support for the LGBT community to pinkwash his homophobia. His gay slur is not just a personal attack against Manolo Quezon. He’s inciting hatred against our community.’