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"In the Philippines, the term gay has been used loosely to include homosexuals, bisexuals, transsexuals, crossdressers, and effeminate men. Filipino gays are mostly stereotyped as effeminate, crossdressers, hairdressers, camp and ridiculed.

Bakla or Bading, a derogatory Filipino word for gay, is commonly used. Tibo or tomboy has a similar function, and refers to lesbians, usually of the butch and masculine type. A more benign slang word for gay men is billy boy. For Filipino gays, the Tagalog phrase "paglaladlad ng kapa" (literally means "unfurling of the cape") refers to the coming-out process. Although gays and lesbians are generally tolerated within Philippine society, there are still widespread cases of discrimination.

Swardspeak is a vernacular language derived from Englog (English-Tagalog) and is used by a number of gay Filipinos. It uses elements from Tagalog, English, and Spanish, and some are from Nippongo, as well as celebrities' names and signature brands, giving them new meanings in the context of this unique language. A unique trait of swardspeak is that it immediately identifies the speaker as homosexual, making it easy for people of that orientation to signal to each other in a place where such tendencies are not easy to display (ie in the Philippines). This creates an exclusive world among its speakers and helps them to resist cultural assimilation.

By using swardspeak, Filipino gay men are able to resist the dominant culture of their area and create a space of their own. The language is constantly changing, with old phrases becoming obsolete and new phrases frequently entering everyday usage, reflecting changes in their culture and also maintaining exclusivity. The dynamic nature of the language refuses to cement itself in single culture and allows for more freedom in expression among its speakers. Words and phrases can be created out of reaction to popular trends and create alternatives to a strictly defined lifestyle. By these...
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