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Now that the Supreme Court has ruled that the controversial Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Law is “not unconstitutional,” save for eight provisions, what should pro-RH advocates do? There are legal, practical and political next steps to consider, but we think the immediate task is to spread a sense of affirmation: The great majority of Filipinos support the law. Everything else should proceed from that.
I do not agree with lawyer Romulo Macalintal’s opinion that threats from some members of Congress to impeach members of the Supreme Court tend to diminish our people’s faith in the judiciary (Opinion, 4/3/14). I see them as wake-up calls to the gods of Padre Faura, who sometimes behave like tyrants.
By Ambeth R. Ocampo
Dramatic indeed was the closing of the International Congress on Jose Rizal in 1961, when news leaked that the original manuscripts of Rizal’s “Noli Me Tangere,” “El Filibusterismo,” and “Mi Ultimo Adios” were stolen from the National Library and held for ransom. These historic manuscripts were recovered piecemeal by then Education Secretary Alejandro R. Roces in an amazing story that should be made into a film someday.
Constitutionalism is taking a severe beating under the Aquino administration.
Just recently, we saw on TV popular local singer Aiza Seguerra offering her girlfriend an engagement ring which the latter accepted with tears of joy. Behind them could be seen Aiza’s mother, all smiles in obvious approval. The two plan to get married in some US state where same-sex marriage is now legal. Other celebrities who are into gay or lesbian relationship have also opted to marry their partners abroad, unmindful of public opinion and the sanctions coming from our local Church.
There is a way to bring down power costs for consumers and at the same time redeem Congress’ bad image in the public’s eye as a result of the pork barrel scam. I would like to propose that lawmakers recommend to Congress that their pork barrel allocations be spent in purchasing solar panels that can be used to power light posts in their districts.
I agree with lawyer Romulo Macalintal: Congress should be abolished. It is only a waste of money and time (“Election lawyer: Abolish Congress,” Opinion, 1/24/14).
I am writing you in the name of the million members of the Senior Citizens Party-list which was duly accredited, qualified and voted into Congress in the last elections.
Way back in 2011, Sen. Miriam Santiago gave us hope with her Senate Bill No. 1967 proposing to put the kibosh on the most shameless habit of politicians: taking personal and undeserved credit for projects wholly funded by tax money. This was the “anti-epal” bill, a word play on “mapapel”—meaning role- or scene-stealer, credit-grabber or garapal! But last we checked, nothing has happened—zero, zilch, nada! After all the sound and fury, she seemed to have totally forgotten about it. The people continue to suffer in silence in the face of the unending test to their patience and insult to their intelligence.
By Edilberto C. de Jesus
Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago estimates that senators legally get P1.4 million a month in compensation and allowances. What do we get? Lately, allegations that some senators get much, much more in criminal pork barrel scams and serious questions about the integrity of the institution.
By Neal H. Cruz
Do you know that we taxpayers spent P35.2 billion last year for just one insignificant law? That’s how much we spent for Congress, including the Commission on Appointments (CA) which is composed of senators and congressmen, and their pork barrel, which had not yet been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court last year. In return, Congress last year passed only one minor law: the one-page Republic Act No. 10632, which suspended the 2013 Sangguniang Kabataan elections. For that one law, Filipino taxpayers spent P35.2 billion! That merits a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.
The very dismal performance of our legislators in 2013 is enough justification to call for the abolition of Congress. Last year, Congress passed only one law, the one-page Republic Act No. 10632 which suspended the 2013 Sangguniang Kabataan elections.