Washed-Up Filipino Actor Carlos Agassi Releases Controversial Song ‘Milk Tea’, Trans Activist Mela Habijan Responds

Twitter is abuzz as has-been Filipino actor and rapper(?) Carlos Agassi released a controversial song and music video called ‘Milk Tea’ and trans activist Mela Habijan has a few words to say about that.

Habijan on July 18, Tuesday, released a statement on Twitter slamming the actor for his transphobic lyrics, specifically pointing out the line “gay with a venti milk tea” which was a play on a transwoman who has not undergone a gender reassignment surgery.

The trans activist lambasted the actor for “trying to revive his career” and suggested that he does it right with the proper ingredients which she said are “real talent, hard work, charisma, and treating people right.”

Aside from calling the song and video “of poor quality,” Habijan called out Agassi on his “attempt to be funny at the expense of trans women which is of low, inhumane standards.”

Habijan added that “only the desperate will make fun of others to make them look good. Nothing beats kindness. I hope and pray, @amiragassi, that you start practicing it.”

The music video and song poke fun at supposedly mistakenly picking up random women who turn out to be transwomen, something that trans people had been killed for in the past.

In 2014, Jennifer Laude, a Filipino transwoman, was drowned to death by Joseph Scott Pemberton, a Lance Corporal in the United States Marine Corps in the Philippines. Pemberton later admitted that he murdered Laude after he found out she was transgender.

Additionally, a 2021 study published by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law found that trans people are four times more likely to experience violence and abuse, including rape, sexual assault, and aggravated or simple assault.

Despite the criticisms of his song, the self-proclaimed “multi-hyphenated celebrity” responded to Habijan with scathing remarks, saying  “I already became famous once, you’re washed up when you haven’t even reached fame. Cry all you want and why look for people who will take your side?”

The 43-year-old actor first ventured into the world of music as a rapper back in 2000 with an album called ‘The Amir of Rap’ followed by ‘C.A.R.L.O.S. (Can Agassi Rap Like Old School?)’ in 2003. Agassi’s last album was an EP in 2012 called ‘Kapayapaan’ which translates to “freedom.”

 

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