I Am A Catholic and I support RH Bill

As a family of Catholic Christian, it’s a norm for us to attend mass every sunday as means of practicing our christian faith. We usually attend the 2nd mass since it’s not that early and not too late. Last sunday was an experience for me, because of the way the mass was conducted.  I felt like I was in a political rally and not on a church attending mass, ok i may be exaggerated on that, but I was really dismayed by the instance that they inserted politics during the mass particularly their stand against RH Bill. Ngayon alam ko na yung naging feeling ni Carlos Celdran nung nagattend sya ng mass sa Manila Cathedral and hinuli sya afterwards. At one point gusto ko na rin sana tumayo at sumigaw ng stop the misinformation aginst RH Bill, but I realized I should control my temper and remain respectful to the occasion. I know it’s the right of the church to lead their flock, to teach them, to preach them, but to force something on them and categorically denounce those who do not agree with their opinion is I think too much.

Isa pa, the priest forcefully related the homily with the RH Bill, eh marami pa sana syang subject nairalate sa gospel na mas maipapaintindi sa mga tao. He kept on saying na RH is a crime bill, that it will violate the sanctity of life. Pero hindi naman idinetalye pano sya naging ganun, puro vague claims at puro generic statements ang kanyang binanggit. Na pag daw naipasa ang RH Bill it will permit abortion, it will permit killing innocent lives, it will permit premarital sex. My question is, have they read the provisions of the bill on its entirety? Cause based on my reading I don’t see any provisions that will allow or legalize abortion. He also kept on comparing  it to the laws in other countries, but hey, this is Philippines we are a sovereign country and we cannot be governed by the laws of other nations. Our own legislators will craft the law and not lawmakers of US, Australia or others. You cannot say that just because abortion is legal in US, it will also be legal here. I cannot see why they are so afraid to make this law be passed, because it seemed that they’re creating an RH bill module on their heads which are not present on the real bill. Drafting of a law cannot be implied, it should all be directly written because implementing it will be so much hard if it will be based on assumptions.

My disappointment climaxed when a pastoral letter was read with the content tagging RH Bill proponents and supporters as “criminals” and “evil”. Dito na ko napa-iling, kasi feeling ko kasali ako sa mga kriminal na binabanggit nya because of my stand for the bill. To collectively tag supporters of the bill as criminals and evil is I think an irresponsible statement. I believe we have the right to choose our own beliefs and it is not their right to impose anything on us and what we should believe in. Yes it is the church moral obligation to teach and lead their flock but to forcefully impose their beliefs or stand on a political issue is a think over board. It brings us back to the days when Jose Rizal fought and rage against the friars who intentionally meddled in the affairs of state dictating what should be the law that will prevail. But were already in the 21st century, even the Pope allowed the use of condoms as a health precaution measure. Are they saying the Pope is also criminal and evil? I understand their stand on the sanctity of life, I am also Pro Life and believer of the bible verse to go and multiply.  Ngunit ang rule ng pagpaparami ay hindi lamang nangangahulugan nang basta basta pagpaparami ng mga supling bagkus ay responsableng pagpaparami. Kung pinapayagan nga ng simbahan ang ilang method ng family planning, bakit napakatindi ng pagtutol nito sa ibang pamamaraan gayung iisa rin naman ang hangarin ng mga ito, ang tamang pagpaplano ng pamilya at pagiwas sa pagbubuntis. Why would they go for the calendar and rhythm methods and assail the use of contraceptives and condoms? Hindi ba pareho lang naman ang layunin ng mga ito, ang makaiwas sa hindi planadong pagbubuntis? In the realms of morality, I think it is but moral to have a little family with good life rather than having huge one with no lives at all. 90+ million Filipinos and a large rate of birth per year is definitely a problem to be solved. Economic gains will surely not reach the poor if the population rises bigger percentage than the rise of the economy. Even if corruption will be lessened , if the birth rate will double or triple, the rise in our economy will be useless, because the distribution of our country’s wealth will still not be proportionate. So I believe this is the right time to start curving solution for this problem and having a good reproductive health and population development program will certainly helpin solving this problem that is facing us now. Imbes na utusan at pilitin ang mga estudyante ng mga catholic school na magrally against RH Bill at iflood ng anti-RH remarks ang facebook account ng mga proponents nito, bakit hindi nila hayaan na pagaralan ng mga ito ang totoong essense ng panukalang batas.

No one will ever win the hearts of the people by mere forceful imposition of what they should stand, so better for them to just teach the people on careful examining of their conscience and whatever decision and stand they come out, reciprocate with respect and acceptance. Anyways religion is not about the building you attend every sunday, or the name of the congregation you’re in, it’s your personal relationship with God whom who are accountable with. I am a catholic and I will always will, but I will retain my stand for the RH Bill.

Related Links:

RH Bill Full Text
INC Supports RH Bill
The Final Round for RH Bill? Full text.

“To impose something attracts resistance, to allow freedom of choice attracts assistance”

EDSA 25:Where are we now, and where are we heading?

This year marks the 25th anniversary of an event which inspired numbers of countries in the world. An event which put our country in world history as a peaceful revolution successfully toppled a dictator of more than 2 decades of rule.  A touching event in our history when people’s power subdued the power of armed forces. Up until now whenever I watch videos of that popular uprising, I can’t help but get goosebumps still. Even though I was only 3 yrs old back then, I can still remember I was watching it on TV and I remember I too flashes the “L” sign whenever I see people on TV flashing it. EDSA People Power is really an inspirational story showing that people can really make a change. People holds the power to move and demand for reforms. But where are we now after 25 years? Five presidents have passed since it happened, wherein one also end up subjected to the same fate as the former dictator Marcos and two being from the same family, the Aquinos. What have we gained from that historic event of 1986? What changes did it brought to our lives after then?

Some people claimed EDSA is a failure. They’re saying it was just an orchestration of the oligarchs and the rich businessmen who wants to grab power. But hey I beg to differ, EDSA in its truest essence is not a failure but the “People” who constituted it are. From common masses, the middle class and the richest citizens up to all the leaders who assumed post after it have failed to live the spirit of EDSA. Yes we have regained freedom and democracy but we failed to make it work. Samahan pa ng mga leaders na hindi tumalima sa totong diwa nito at sinamantala lang ang pagkakataon na sana’y maiangat ang kabuhayan ng ating bansa. As I always said, EDSA is not all about the personalities, yes Cory maybe an icon of it, but she cannot make changes without the consensus of the constituents. She may have failed to redeem our country after her ascension but people also failed to use that gain and use to make our country move forward. We just relied on the democracy being back to us, but did not worked on making it work for the best interest of all of us. We failed to worked together to achieve democracy’s greatest potential. We have failed to make the democratic institutions work. Sinayang naten ang malaking oportunidad na maiiangat ang estado ng ating bansa by mere entrusting our future to the government. As what Maria Ressa said, she came back in 1986 in the hope that 10yrs after, our country could have been much progressive as compared then, but look at our situation today, two and a half decades already and yet were still stacked to poverty and corruption issues. The iconic integrity-based leadership of the then EDSA icon Cory was succeeded by presidents who was toppled because of plunder (and later on convicted), and an almost toppled president who up until now is hounded also by corruption allegations. Who are to blame now? Yes we can easily blame our leaders for inability to implement reforms that will uphold the standard of living of our people. For their inefficiency to use what we have gained from the peaceful revolution. For being successor not of the spirit of EDSA but the culture of self-centered leadership and system of corruption. But it’s not only about the leadership, but we the people. People power did not fail, but we Filipinos failed to live up to its promise. We failed to effectively use our power of mandate in choosing right leaders who will govern us. That is why we can be easily abused by those greedy leaders whose only intention is to serve themselves while in power and not serving the people who gave them the mandate. We easily forgot the lessons learned in EDSA, that the power is within each one of us and we failed to use that in our favor of advancing the future of our country. Dahil sa pagtake advantage naten sa kalayaan at demokrasyang hatid ng people power nakalimutan naten na may obligasyon din tayo bilang tao at mamamayan ng bansa, at ang resulta ay ang pangaabuso ng mga lider na tayo mismo ang naghalal. Ngayon nagrereklamo tayo bakit hindi tayo umuusad? It is because we Filipinos collectively (the government leaders, judiciary, armed forces, journalists, and simple citizens) have all failed to use our power to move this country up.

Now another Aquino is in power, I cannot say it was only coincidence that after two and a half decades the son of the EDSA 1 icon is at the top herald of this country. Many have put their hopes (including me) on this person knowing he can continue or possibly do what his mother failed to do 25 yrs earlier. People have entrusted him to make the changes that our country needs, after all 25 yrs is long enough for the change that we all need. We cannot afford to wait another 25 years and celebrate EDSA 1′s golden anniversary with this same situation. His being president is a signal, a queue, a reminder to fully implement what we have gained then. He has now the opportunity to lead us to where we should have 10 or 15 yrs ago and it’s a challenge for him by me and all those who have put their mandate on him. Make the spirit of EDSA work, make democracy work in our society. Live the gains of the revolution that inspired different parts of the world. But as I always believe, a country will not move forward if the people are tied on the same virtues and values that we have. This is also a challenge to us Pinoys, be the Filipino we ought to be. We have inspired people all over the world with our unity, it’s now time for each one of us to inspire fellow Filipino to move forward, to act together in making changes for our country. As what Harold Geronimo said in one of his tweets “No amount of investigation can erase corruption in our government, its all about values and culture”. We may have inherited the system of corruption but we can stop it by none participation and exposing those who are doing it. There is really hope for change if only we are really eager and determined to see changes. Wag tayong masanay sa kulturang, “hayaan na, wala din naman mangyayri eh”. We should always think that in every action big or small something will happen in effect, lalo na if it’s a collective effort, just like what happened in EDSA People Power.

“Power will intoxicate the best hearts, as wine the strongest heads. No man is wise enough, nor good enough to be trusted with unlimited power”.  – Charles Caleb Colton

“It is the people who holds power, let the power be use for the good of the people”

The Day Called Valentine’s

Flowers, chocolates, heart shaped objects, cakes, red colored prints, these are some of the common things we usually see around when this day comes. Couples wearing partner shirts, walking and strolling around with matching holding hands, restaurants filled with lovers having their lunch date or dinner with candle lights. So sweet to see and so envious also for someone who is alone on this 14th day of the 2nd month of the year. But come to think of it, isn’t just economics to have this as part of the annually celebrated occasions? Isn’t just part of the business minded people’s gimmick for them to earn? I may sound bitter but I’m just pointing a theory, because having this day celebrated would mean huge earnings for the flower shops, great sales for the chocolate and cake factories, large income for the restaurateurs and we cannot discount the fact that it’s also a great day for hotels and motels all around. Yes they all benefited from this day and I bet they’re wanting to make everyday valentines day just to sustain their cash registers with great sales.

Ok ok, I’m really sounding bitter here (maybe yes, haha) but on the other side, this day is really a celebration of love for those who have already found their partners. It can be tagged as the culmination of something special with their relationship. Although many can say why not make everyday a valentine’s day, for the couples yes that’s possible but celebrating it on a calendared or specific date would add to the magic and sweetness of their relationship. It’s like you’re one with the whole world in celebrating your love on that very special day.

Well for those who have no special “one” to celebrate this day, lucky for us we don’t have to spend extra amount from our income on flowers and restaurant treats (hahaha). Kidding aside, it may look that heart’s day is only for those romantically attached, but single persons can also enjoy this day by giving their self a treat, or giving other single friends a treat, it’s just a matter of perspective. Let your mother’s or fathers, brothers or sisters, single girl friends and boy friends be your valentine. It wasn’t said that valentine’s are only for couples, it can also be for groups. So to those who claim this day as Single Awareness Day, let it be Singles Making It Lovely and Entertaining Day.

“Let the world know that you’re in-love and let your love know he/she is always part of your world”

A Week of Mixed Emotions

The Mourning

This week started as an ordinary week for everyone. In the world of politics the same is happening with the ongoing investigation of the House of Representative and the Senate on the AFP corruption allegations on the merits of alleged bogus plea bargaining agreement of Gen. Carlos Garcia. Although there are new exposes and evidences coming up and new names implicated, it was not until tuesday Feb 8,2011 that the country was again shocked by a big news. Yes it was the 51st birthday of the president but the shocking news isn’t about him but the one allegedly involved in the corruption in AFP, the former AFP Chief of staff and DND Sec. Angelo Reyes who was found lying and blooded on his mother’s grave in Loyola Memorial Park Marikina. Official reports confirmed that the late general committed suicide by a gun shot on his chest damaging his heart.

The suicide incident followed amidst the ongoing senate and house of representative investigations on the alleged corruption in the AFP which implicates Angie Reyes as one who benefited from such. People close to him are implying the the investigation caused him so much shame and humiliation that led to him taking his own life. One of his close friends Rex Robles said he was able to talk to the former Sec during the course of the Senate investigation and told the he is very down and depressed at how the investigation went thru. He felt he was being singled out and that it was intended to character assasinate him. But the more damaging is his fear that his family will soon get involved.
Up to now the family and his close allies are still puzzling what really transpired that led to his suicide, because they knew the him as strong person and would not easily resort to being suicidal. Angelo Reyes will be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani and expected to be given the 19-gun salute as honor for his being former AFP chief and Sec.of Nationa Defense.

The Celebration

Just 2 days after the death of Angelo Reyes the gloomy news in the country was transformed into a festive and celebrating mood for the Pinoy everywhere. This is because the rising sports favorite Azkals won over the Mongolian team. Panaad Stadium in Bacolod is jam packed as Filipino Futbol fans cheered for our very own Azkals. With the inception of new coach Hans Micheal Weiss, the team is expected to be more on offensive attacks and continuing to solidify its defense.

The fans were not dismayed as the team played good ball on the field. on the 42nd minute of the game, the crowd went wild as the Azkals got their first goal courtesy of #13 Chieffy Caligdong. Fans over at Panaad and everyone watching on television celebrated the goal that went so precise under the legs of the Mongolian goalie. First half ended with 1-0 score in favor of the Azkals.

At the 2nd half, PH team’s defense continue to dominate the Mongols as they’ve got only 2 goal attempts compared to our team’s 8 goal attempts (2 successful). On the 61st minute of the game another goal could have been marked for the Azkals courtesy of James Younghusband but the referee waive it due to hand ball violation. But on the 93th minute seconds away from the final buzzer, Panaad goes screaming again as the crowd and fan favorite Phil Younghusband scored the 2nd goal for the team. This sealed in the Azkals win over the Mongolian team for the 1st leg of the pre-qualifying games of the AFC Challenge Cup. Panaad Stadium was highlighted by the fireworks display after the game and victory celebration was expected to came after in Barotac Nuevo, Bacolod to celebrate the team’s win. Next stop for the Azkals is their game in Mongolia, hope they will win again in this next game.

This week is really a roller coaster of emotions but as they always say we Pinoys are very resilient, we can adopt to anything that come our way, may it be sad news or good news. Like this week’s events, at the onset we were shocked and saddened by the news of the death of Angie Reyes, thereafter we were brought to high elation and festive mood by the victory of the Azkals.

It was really an emotionally charged week for our country, but the more important thing is, we should not forget that no matter how bad the news that is bannering in our eyes there will always be good news that will flatter our hearts and mind.

“Every day may not be good, but there’s something good in every day” – Author Unknown

Makati: Accident Prone City?

Last Jan 25,2011 is the birthday of the late former Pres. Corazon Aquino, but the nation was bannered by news not about the celebration of her birthday but by another tragedy. A Newmann Goldline bus exploded in EDSA – Buendia Ave. At first there were claims that it might be mechanical error on the part of the bus, but as investigators looked in they’ve discovered that IED (Improvised Explosive Device) was used to cause the explosion triggered by a cellphone. Six people died and several were injured from the tragic event.

While the family of the bus blast victims are still mourning and searching for justice, 2 days later, another tragedy happened again in Makati, 10 construction workers of Eton Residences died by falling from 38th floor down to the 7th floor of the building. Based on the statements made by the investigators, the said people were riding a service elevator or gondola when it collapsed and fell down. Makati City officials meanwhile have immediately aided the victims and their families. The management of Eton residences also have offered financial help to the families of the victims.

Two tragedies in a week in the same city? Very sad for the victims or should I say to the families of the victims and very creepy for an observer like me, especially that the city’s battlecry is “Ganito Kame sa Makati”. If that’s the case I wouldn’t want to share the what they have in Makati, which seems to be an accident prone city.

If we’ll try to look back, this city had been in the news several times involving accidents, tragedies and mishaps. On Feb 2005, a Royal Transit bus exploded in EDSA – Ayala Ave (near SM Makati) and was tagged as Valentine’s Day Bombing. It has left 4 people dead and left 60injured. This tragedy was linked to a muslim extremist based in mindanao.

Another tragic accident happened on this central business district is the Glorietta Blast in 2007. Shoppers and mall goers were shocked that this popular & posh mall complex in Ayala Avenue exploded. The blast intially killed 11 people and injured more than hundreds. Based on the initial reports the explosion was caused by accidental ignition of an LPG tank. There were speculations also that the blast was caused by terror bombings, but rigorous investigations brought to the conclusion that the main reason was an explosion of methane gas deposit.

Not only accidents have made this city in the news, there were also scandals and revolt. Notable for this are the Oakwood Mutiny and the Manila Peninsula Siege caused by the disgruntled military officials who cried corruption in the Armed Forces. Led by then Lt. 2nd Grade Antonio Trillanes and Gen. Danny Lim, this uprising caused damage not only to the government and country’s image but also damage to physical properties. Manila Peninsulas main door was wrecked when an armored tank forcibly entered the hotel lobby.

The military officers involved were held captives and was jailed for the case of rebellion. Lucky for Lt. Trillanes the incident became his vehicle for running and winning a senate seat. While he was jailed he is a seating senator of the republic until the current Pres. Noy Aquino granted him conditional pardon.

Lastly on the list of Makati’s mishaps is the gas leak of FPIC pipeline in Bangkal, posting danger to the nearby West Tower condominium and its tenants. FPIC worked on digging the pipelines to source out where the leak is so that they can repair the damaged pipes. The incident prompted the residents of West Tower condo to issue writ of kalikasan against FPIC, for the damages it caused them. It also prevented Bangkal residents from celebrating the new year with fireworks.

Makati may be progressive and one of the riches cities in the metro but why is it that they are hounded by many accidents. Could it be prevented by tightening their security? Could it be that the local government didnt implement tight measure to possible avoid this things. Or could it be just plain accidents? I may not have the right to adhor their officials but as an spectator and a frequent visitor of the city, I think I can say my view. As what their patriarch say “Ganito Kame sa Makati, Sana Ganito rin sa buong bansa”,but knowing this kind of accidents in their city, I might want to shout “Wag naman Sana”.

“Accidents can be prevented by avoiding unsafe circumstances”