There are many controversies that are still being debated by scholars whether they are true and valid:
1. One of the major controversies regarding Rizal is about the Retraction Document. This document is one of the proofs regarding the friars' claim that Rizal retracted a few days before his execution. Retraction means that he is taking back what he said against the catholic church in the Philippines and the friars. If this were true, it would mean that Rizal went back to become a Catholic again after being a mason in Europe. Some say he did this in order to marry his Irish partner, Josephine Bracken, which leads us to the next controversy...
2. Another controversy with Rizal is whether or not he actually married Josephine Bracken after being a Catholic again. Scholars say that there were no written accounts of the marriage between Rizal and Josephine, but Josephine claims that Rizal actually married him a day before his execution.
3. Another controversy that questions the authenticity of being a national hero of Rizal is whether Rizal was actually in favor of the revolution during that time. Was he a Revolutionist or a Reformist. Did he really wish to free the Philippines from the colonization of Spain, or did he just want to make Philippines a province of Spain?
There are many more minor controversies of Rizal during his time: 1. Rizal was a ladies' man or he is a womanizer.
2. Rizal did not take a bath for 3 months during his stay in Spain. 3. Rizal was gay(?)
4. Rizal was stingy
5. Rizal went to casinos and was a drunkard.
6. Rizal as the "Brown Messiah" (there is a group of people called Rizalistas that worship him and claim he was a reincarnate of Jesus Christ and that he would someday live again in this world...)
There are also some controversies about the true personality of Josephine Bracken: 1. Her mother was a prostitute.
2. She was a spy of the Spanish government.
3. She was abused by her step father and that the baby she was carrying was not Rizal's but her step father's
Was Rizal a Gay
Filipino historians, particularly those who take pride in their machismo, would perhap cringe. Jose Rizal is, after all, the pride of the Malay race. His writings against colonial rule sparked the revolution against the spaniards and galvanized the imagination of an otherwise fragmented nation. Was he gay? The article by Ambeth Ocampo does not really make such a conclusion, but it raises questions on Rizal’s sexuality. Conservative Filipinos would rather de-sexualize the image of Rizal, but would not refuse to grin everytime they talk about Rizal the womanizer. But gay? Never.
One of his controversy also is about his height.
There were also unresolved or unclear issues:
1. he was a freemason
2. he had several love affairs and fathered a child
3. he admitted to the charges against him and begged for clemency 4. he was not for independence but only for reforms and more liberties. 5. he was chosen by US as phil. natl hero because he didnt advocate armed struggle as against andres bonifacio who did. Source: