Would the signing of the reproductive health bill into law really help control population growth, protect human rights especially of women, and decrease poverty in our country? Or is it just another law that would create more corruption opportunities for unscrupulous government officials?
The primary purpose of the RH Law is to make contraceptives available and within the reach of people, especially the poor. That way the growth of our population would be regulated, which supposedly would redound to the benefit of our people, particularly the masses, as these would presumably result in fewer mouths to feed and fewer brains to educate.
Even before the enactment of the RH Law, local government units were already endorsing reproductive methods for couples who wanted to manage the size of their families. These couples were given easier access to contraceptives.
Also, during the Arroyo administration, there were policies that successfully managed population growth without the need for contraceptives. They promoted, for example, breastfeeding and women empowerment programs to support mothers and mothers-to-be. Given this experience versus the yet indefinite and uncertain outcome of the RH Law, which appears to be unneeded anyway, we cannot but harbor some doubts about the new law’s usefulness. For all we know, the law may just be a smokescreen to cover other agendas, interests and objectives that only its authors and fiercest advocates would know.—SYLVESTER CASTRO, [email protected]