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With intellectual aristocracy comes unmitigated hubris

12:19 AM June 03, 2015

Please allow me to react to the column of Oscar Franklin Tan (“Stop lawyers’ intellectual fraud, fear-mongering,” Opinion, 6/01/15). I heard it said somewhere: With intellectual aristocracy comes unmitigated hubris—or something like that. Tan sounded upset that this paper was “polluting… the marketplace of ideas” by publishing ditzy opinions from two-bit lawyers (aside from him). And he claims to be a champion of constitutionally guaranteed “free speech”? Who the heck died and made him the final arbiter of what opinion deserves airing or burying?

I am not a lawyer but I feel somehow also alluded to because, as a plain citizen, I keep opining on matters of importance to me (whether legal or nonlegal). There are so many things lawyers (Tan not excepted) cannot see or simply pretend not to see. For instance, from my own simple way of thinking, I saw something terribly wrong with the Supreme Court’s “collective wisdom” in making the “conditional temporary restraining order” (i.e., lifting the hold-departure order on former president Gloria Arroyo subject to certain conditions) “immediately executory” (i.e., effective at once—without waiting for her compliance with those conditions)!

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Then Supreme Court spokesperson Midas Marquez lectured everyone that those conditions were not “suspensive” but “resolutory.” He made it clear the Court meant that Arroyo should be immediately allowed to leave pending compliance with the conditions. If she failed to comply, the TRO would then be deemed of no effect. So, as Arroyo did in fact fail to make good one of the conditions, was Marquez saying that the Supreme Court would have just issued another order to beg her to please return to the country due to such noncompliance? Seriously, how wacky was that? Apparently, that did not insult the intelligence of lawyers; but it did mine, horribly! To me, that was the grossest and foulest of all judicial rulings!

Yes, legal eagles like Tan saw nothing wrong with that ruling. I Googled past issues of newspapers but found nothing written by Tan to tell us what he thought of it then. In fact, no lawyer came out openly criticizing the Supreme Court for having gone to such grotesque extent to demonstrate the eternal gratitude of its Arroyo-appointed members! Only nonlawyers (who cannot be “disbarred”) dared to speak their minds out and decried what a miserable excuse this country had for a Supreme Court under then Chief Justice Renato Corona! Thank God, he is gone, and his cohorts are retiring soon and will be gone, too! Hopefully, a breath of fresh air is just what this country needs for a more “honorable” judiciary!

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—CARMELA N. NOBLEJAS, [email protected]

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TAGS: Lawyers, midas marquez, Oscar Franklin Tan, Renato corona, Supreme Court
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