Rule of Law 101
“The Constitution is the supreme law, but it is the Supreme Court that says what it means.” —Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes
THIS IS why the decision of the Supreme Court allowing Sen. Grace Poe to run for the presidency in the May 9, 2016, presidential election should be respected. If the decision of the high court is not accorded respect, the alternative would be chaos and anarchy.
Some quarters who think of themselves as do-gooders criticize the decision and even ascribe ill motives to the justices who cast their vote with the majority. Of late, some law organizations are reportedly meeting to consider what steps to take vis-à-vis the decision to which they have expressed strong objection.
The members of the Supreme Court are lawyers. Our law schools teach adversarial law and our lawyers perform in an adversarial judicial system. So it is rare for lawyers to be on the same side of a controversy or point of law. Among opposing advocacies, it is the courts that decide which one is correct.
A Filipino expat in the United States once told me “Ang mahirap sa atin sa Pilipinas, napakarunong natin.” Leave well enough alone. We can have our own opinions in the Supreme Court ruling, but “huwag tayong masyadong marunong” and let’s follow the Supreme Court decision.
—JOSE J. FERRER JR., Roll No. 12709
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