Pro-RH Supporters Celebrate Death of Philippine Democracy

Friday, December 14, 2012
Pro-Life lobbyists throw their hands in the air to applaud courageous Pro-Life congressmen 
who voted "No" to the RH Bill (Photo courtesy of CBCP for Life)

December 13, 2012 was the day democracy died (again) in our country.  And it is ironic that it was the very son of the hero who once restored democracy in our land, who actually put it to death.  This is even scarier because at least when Martial Law was declared 40 years ago, people were aware of the dictatorship, but now it is a silent one.  What's worse, some people-- many of them probably unsuspecting-- even celebrated it.  It is such a pity that they did not know they were not really celebrating the passage of the RH Bill, but the resurrection of Marcos.

I am against the RH Bill and although I felt sad that it was passed on second reading, what made me sadder was the process by which it was passed.  "Sad" is actually an understatement as I was already on the verge of tears out of anger as I witnessed how the Pro-RH people railroaded the bill at the House of Representatives in the wee hours of the night.  Aside from the public knowledge that our congressmen were bribed with P280 million worth of pork barrel by PNoy, we also learned while the five-hour nominal voting was going on, that Malacanang sent Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda, Secretary Ricky Carandang, and Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad, to pressure the congressmen to either vote yes to RH Bill or just go home and abstain from voting.  This is nothing but sheer corruption and abuse AND misuse of authority.

One of my Facebook friends tried to justify this, saying that what Malacañang did was just the same as what the Church is doing to the congressmen as She "threatens" them with the Catholic Vote.  However, this is an illogical analogy.  LOBBYING and BRIBING are two different things.  On one hand, the Church (composed of both lay and religious people) came to the House of Representatives as ordinary citizens exercising their right to lobby, and they stayed on the second and third floor galleries of the Batasan Building.  On the other hand, these people from Malacañang were operating inside the South Lounge of the building, looking for congressmen to send home as the fight between the votes became very close, as reported by the Inquirer.  If  Roxas, Lacierda, Carandang, and Abad came as ordinary citizens exercising their rights, they should have also stayed in the gallery where they would have been visible to all.  But wherever they stayed that night does not change the fact that they destroyed the integrity of the Philippine Government as the Executive Branch violated the independence of our legislators.  Nothing can justify that.

Contrary to what another one of my Pro-RH friends said, we are very far from a "politically mature Philippine legislative system," but we are definitely still stuck in a corrupt one.  However, I believe there is still hope-- and a huge one at that.  Considering the tally of votes: 113 allowed themselves to be bribed and dictated upon, 104 stood their ground and kept their integrity, and 3 abstained, those are 104 sparks of hope we got there!  And they could be more come Monday as the 63 absentees cast their vote on the Third Reading.

This fight is far from over.  What our congressmen need most right now is our moral support and assurance that if ever they do decide to go against the wishes of our President, they have the Filipino people to fall back on.  So be with us on Monday (December 17, 2012) either at the House of Representatives (Quezon City) or at the Senate (Pasay City) and show our love and support for our courageous legislators.  This is no longer just a fight for LIFE but a fight for our DEMOCRACY as well.  See you there!

Updates: The RH Bill passed on third reading on December 17, 2012. Of the originally 104 pro-life/anti-rh votes on second reading, only 79 maintained their position. The third reading vote was 133-79-7. In the Senate, the vote was 13-8 (affirmative-negative). Despite his promise to not sign the RH Bill into law until after Christmas, President Aquino still did so (and even secretly, at that) on December 21, 2012.


Cool Catholics Says:
February 23, 2013 at 6:46 PM

Something happened to sway the decision of Congress during that decisive moment. We can forgive the people. But we cannot overlook the error. Most importantly, that error needs to be corrected at the society level through a process of renewal, starting from individuals all the way to the systems that run the world today.

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October 5, 2013 at 7:48 PM
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