Losing the nation’s dignity
As a history teacher, I must object to President Duterte’s order to quit the International Criminal Court. With it, we lose our dignity as a nation.
The ICC is part of the United Nations, and the Philippines is part of the United Nations. Back in 1945 when the UN was founded, there were only three other Asian nations that participated. Our officials signed the original charter, hoping that we would become an upstanding member of this important organization. The UN and the Philippines both grew up together.
Since 1945, our soldiers have been actively involved in peacekeeping missions. Our dues have helped other nations, and during catastrophes, the UN has helped us. We have gotten advice from Unicef on Filipino child health and welfare. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea backed us up in the West Philippine Sea dispute with China.
Our government and nongovernment officials have become leaders in the organization. Carlos P. Romulo was elected president of the UN. We have been president of the Security Council seven times.
The UN and its judicial wing, the ICC, put pressure on nations to uphold human rights. We agreed to these human rights. We agreed to uphold the goals of this body. Yet now, President Duterte wants to pull out of the ICC, and put our good reputation in the trash bin. If he does not have anything to hide, why is he afraid? Why must we tear up our agreement with the rest of the world? Obligations are obligations and should not be thrown away, just because of the bad behavior of one president.
JONATHAN C. FOE, [email protected]
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