Starting September 8, 2012, anonymous comments -- whether for or against the RH bill -- will no longer be permitted on this blog.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Former Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban: the RH bill erodes the right to life

From an article written by former Chief Justice Artemio Panganiban in honor of the enthronement of Msgr. Luis Antonio Tagle as Archbishop of Manila (emphases mine):
So, he (Tagle -- CAP) exclaimed, “…when we pray, we are transformed, we see differently. A child, especially the unborn, is no longer seen as a burden but a gift, the youth are not a problem but a promise, women are not objects but persons, laborers are not machines but partners, the poor, the differently abled are not nuisance but our jewels, and creation is not an object of manipulation but a sign of God’s sustaining love.” 
Clarity of mission. How well indeed he articulates the theology of faith, life, marriage and social reforms; so simply worded, but so deeply meant; so humbly said, but so loftily aimed; so directed at old problems but so transforming with new solutions. I do not think he will be a fire and brimstone orator; he is more effective with his soft eloquence; he speaks from the heart. 
I think he will be firm on social issues, like the right to life that is being eroded by the Reproductive Health bill; or the sanctity of marriage that is being vilified by a creeping divorce mentality.

A prolife nurse refutes a pro-RH nurse

Isahel N. Alfonso

A friend of mine a fellow nurse and a Pro-life pointed out to me the website entitled Filipino Nurses in which it has become a bastion and safe haven for Nurses who are in favor of the so called RH Bill. I am now writing not only as a Catholic apologist but also as a health professional. I am invoking my authority as a licensed nurse and an educator to correct the erring opinion of nurses who choose to betray their oath and support the RH Bill. It is my obligation both as a Catholic apologist and as a nurse to oppose error and to expose it because failure to do so would imply that we are tolerating erring opinions. As what St. Pope Felix III said,

Not to oppose error is to approve it; and not to defend the truth is to suppress it; and indeed to neglect to confound evil men, when we can do it, is no less a sin than encourage them.

Continue reading HERE

Monday, December 19, 2011

The latest parody on "Downfall": Hitler's mad that the RH Bill won't be passed this year!

Wikipedia notes regarding Der Untergang (Downfall) that One scene in the film, in which Hitler launches into a furious tirade upon finally realizing that the war is truly lost, has become a staple of internet videos. In these videos, the original audio of Ganz's voice is retained, but new subtitles are added so that he now seems to be reacting instead to some setback in present-day politics, sports, popular culture, or everyday life. Other scenes from various portions of the film have been parodied in the same manner, notably the scenes where Hitler orders Otto Günsche to find Gruppenfuhrer Hermann Fegelein, and where Hitler discusses a counterattack against advancing Soviet forces with his generals. By 2010, there were thousands of such parodies, including many in which a self-aware Hitler is incensed that people keep making Downfall parodies.

A group of young pro-lifers recently made the latest of these parodies. Enjoy!

For those who think that the claims made in this video are exaggerated, please read the following:

Fact References:

1. 350 pesos per hakot -- see Inquirer article: -- The group scheduled the "peak" of its pro-RH rally for September and set aside P1,750,000 to organize a rally of "at least 5,000 people." Each participant was supposed to receive P350.

2. More Pro-life People than Anti-Life --

3. RH Bill can be defeated at Senate:

4. Million of dollars of funding --

5. Pro-RH Groups back abortion --

6. Cabral admitted that pills cause breast cancer -

7. TV Debates won by Pro-life:

8. Pro RH stats are wrong (maternal death, abortion) - /

9. Non-existent lobby groups (not registered or revoked) getting massive funding --

10. Pro-Life Victory of 2011 -

11. Population Control connection with Hitler- /

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Why the hurry to pass the RH Bill?

From Bobit Avila's latest column entitled Foreign agents funding the RH bill? Hmmmm (December 13, 2011)

A very impatient Pres. Benigno “P-Noy” Aquino III has tasked House Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr. to push harder for the passage of the Reproductive Health (RH) bill, but the House Speaker pointed out that there are still a lot of people who want to interpellate this in the plenary hall. 
Now why is the President so much in a hurry to push the RH bill? Is he under some kind of outside pressure? If so, who is pressuring him? Surely, it is not the Americans pressuring him because last week I met with US Ambassador Harry Thomas at the Cebu Country Club and he told me in no uncertain terms, “The United States does not have a policy regarding the RH bill in the Philippines.” With that statement, then there must be others who are pressuring the President to speed up the passage of this bill. 
P-Noy should also show some kind of respect to House Speaker Belmonte; after all, he is also the head of a co-equal branch of the government, which should not be subservient with the Executive Branch. Having said that, I can understand why Speaker Belmonte told the President that there are still many Congressmen who have questions in their minds to ask especially who are the foreign backers of the RH bill? 
Does the President even know that there is a law dubbed Batas Pambansa Bilang 39, An Act Regulating the Activities and Requiring the Registration of Foreign Agents in the Philippines” or the Foreign Agents Act of 1979? Why am I mentioning this? Well, I gathered that there’s a group called the Forum for Family Planning Development who I heard was trying to recruit prominent or celebrity Catholics to back the RH bill. 
Just a week ago, I saw a vehicle with a loudspeaker going around the streets of Cebu espousing the need for an RH bill. Where did this people get the funding for this? Come on guys, we were not born yesterday, someone is paying the tab for this and it surely isn’t the Catholic Church! So could they very well be funded by those so-called “foreign agents?” 
In section 3 of BP No. 39, a “foreign agent” refers to any person who acts or agrees to act as political consultant, public relations counsel, publicity agent, information representative, or as agent, servant, representative, or attorney for a foreign principal or for any domestic organization subsidized directly or indirectly in whole or in part by a foreign principal. The term “foreign agent” shall not include a duly accredited diplomatic or consular officer of a foreign country or officials of the United Nations and its agencies and of other international organizations recognized by the Republic of the Philippines. Ask where is the headquarters of the Forum for Family Planning Development and you will know if they are foreign agents or not. 
So now that we are clear on this, we should allow our Congressmen and Women to interpellate in the plenary session as to who are the principal backers of the RH bill and why there’s so much money being poured into this controversy and this country, Gads, even ABS-CBN came up with its own RH promo. So now let’s ask them who paid the bill for that promo? 
There’s also a group called the Wallace Global Fund or the Catholics For Choice that gave $75,000 in the year 2009 for a pilot program dubbed “Translating Research into Action” in support of the advocacy for Reproductive Health Rights in the Philippines. Is this group registered under BP No. 39 or the Foreign Agents Act? There are many other such organizations that have apparently targeted the Philippines for funding in support of the RH bill and I shudder to think that some members of the House of Representatives could have gotten a piece of this fund, which is why they are so rabidly promoting the passage of the RH bill.

Monday, December 12, 2011

(UPDATED) IMPORTANT, HOT OFF THE PRESS! Congressman Pablo Garcia claims existence of massive lobby fund for the RH Bill

(The original post was published on December 5, 2011)


Rep. Garcia says he can prove US lobby claims
Cebu Daily News
Friday, December 9th, 2011

AFTER claiming that some United States firms are lobbying for the passage of the controversial Reproductive Health (RH) bill in Congress, Rep. Pablo Garcia (Cebu 2nd district) said he could prove his claims.
He cited the National Security Study Memorandum-200 as his basis.

Garcia said that under that study, it was the interest- strategic and economic factors that the population growth of certain countries in the world was controlled.

It included the Philippines as one of the 13 countries with which their population growth must be controlled.
Garcia said that this was a top-secret document but was declassified in 1989 and published in 1990.

“Aid or any assistance to these countries are subject to a condition that they will institute some population control measures,” he said.

He also named Nigeria, Brazil, India and Bangladesh included in the 13 countries.

Garcia noted that these 13 countries belonged to the less developed ones.

He named USAID (United States Agency for International Development), World Bank and United Nations Population Fund Activities as some of the firms who have been implementing these measures.

“I have the records. I was waiting for them to ask me questions,” he said.

“I preferred to have their questions because actually there are countries and foreign institutions interested in the population control of other countries,” he added.

Garcia earlier accused his colleagues of being bankrolled by a US lobby and cited the P20-million lobby fund for the passage of the RH bill.

He named Minority Leader Edcel Lagman’s committee on population and development as the main vehicle of the US lobby.

Lagman, however, said that Garcia’s allegation was an old yarn and that it was an allegation with no proof. Correspondent Carmel Loise Matus


From today's Philippine Daily Inquirer:

Philippine Daily Inquirer
Monday, December 5th, 2011

The oldest lawmaker in Congress has accused his colleagues of being bankrolled by a huge United States lobby in pushing for the adoption of a population control measure in Congress.

The privilege speech of Cebu Representative Pablo Garcia, 86, in which he claimed the existence of a P20 million to P50 million lobby fund for the passage of the reproductive health (RH) bill had prompted one of its proponents, Bayan Muna party-list Representative Teodoro Casiño, to ask whether the US government was indeed meddling in Philippine affairs.

“I think Congressman Garcia’s accusations are too serious to be ignored and we should look at this closely,” said Casiño in a phone interview.

Garcia said the US lobby’s main vehicle in Congress was the Philippine Legislators Committee on Population and Development led by Minority Leader Edcel Lagman.

“This committee is funded and maintained by foreign agencies and institutions in the service of a foreign power. This committee receives P20 million to P50 million a year from its foreign benefactors such as Usaid, Ford Foundation, Packard Foundation, United Nations Fund on Population and other institutions engaged in world population control.

“For several years and until 2009, this committee held office in the Batasan complex, whether in the north wing or south wing. Now it is holding office somewhere else after its presence in the Batasan complex was denounced by a member of the House on the floor,” said Garcia.

Garcia described the panel as the “unelected de facto committee on population.”

Some of the efforts of the US lobby to rush passage of the RH bill, he said, included referring the measure to the House committee on population and family relations instead of the committee on health (Garcia said the bill was not primarily about population); letting Lagman instead of the committee chairman, Biliran Representative Rogelio Espina sponsor the bill, and allowing the sponsors to take first crack at the floor debates on the bill.

Lagman did not return the Inquirer’s calls or text messages.

In his privilege speech last week, Garcia said he wanted to speak out against the “conduct of some of our colleagues that in my judgment raises questions of potential conflict of interest or the possible transgression of the boundaries of appropriate ethical conduct.”

Garcia said the United States was working to “seduce, manipulate or coerce” the state into passing the RH bill, or House Bill No. 4244, so that not even leftist and hyper-nationalist groups know that they had aligned themselves to the interest of a foreign power.

Garcia said the Philippines was only one of 13 countries that the US had targeted for “aggressive and coercive population control” using millions of dollars “ostensibly as benevolent funding assistance but actually in pursuit of its own global population-control strategy.”

Friday, December 9, 2011

Pro-Life Caravan Convergence in Lipa and National Marian Rally on December 11 at Luneta

This article will stay on top of the blog until the end of December 11, 2011. Newer posts below -- CAP

From the CBCP for Life article, Nationwide Caravan for Life to culminate in Dec. 11 Luneta rally (emphases mine):

The nationwide pilgrimage and caravan will culminate in Manila on Sunday, December 11, in what is expected to be a grand prayer rally with thousands – faith-based and civic groups, the youth, family and life advocates, laity and clergy – participating and uniting in prayer. 
“This is meant to ask for God’s mercy to spare the Philippines from the onslaught of the culture of d.e.a.t.h. (which stands for divorce, euthanasia, abortion, total population control, and homosexuality), particularly the reproductive health bill,” Acosta said. 
“At the same time, the caravan aims to bring a strong message to the whole country – especially our legislators, that we say no to the culture of death, and rally the Filipino people to unite with the Catholic Church in actively opposing the reproductive health bill and other death bills, now threatening to pass in the Congress of the Philippines,” she explained. 
The reproductive health (RH) bill has been the subject of public debates, both in and out of the halls of Congress, with House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte expressing his desire to put the measure to a vote before the end of the year. 
Over a dozen more solons are on the list of those scheduled to interpellate the bill’s sponsors at the House of Representatives. At the Senate, on the other hand, debates continue, with the most recent session zeroing in on documentation that revealed massive funding of RH lobby groups by foreign agencies, including pro-abortion and population control groups. 
Acosta pointed out that the pilgrimage and Sunday’s prayer rally are meant to draw attention to another legislative measure that stands to ruin the fabric of Philippine society. 
“This pilgrimage also comes providentially at a time when same-sex union is on the verge of legalization, with the approval on third reading on November 21 by the Senate, through Senate Bill 2814, titled “An Act Prohibiting Discrimination, Profiling, Violence and All Forms of Intolerance Against Persons Based on Ethnicity, Race, Religion or Belief, Sex, Gender, Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, Language, Disability, or Other Status,” which provides on Section 7 among others that “All persons shall have equal rights in matters related to marriage, adoption……” the HLI official said. 
“The same bill’s house version, House Bill No. 4807, has also been passed on third reading, and both houses will have a bicameral session on December 13! Thus, people of God need to unite and storm the heavens with prayers.” 
Ongoing pilgrimage 
The lead vehicle of the Caravan will carry a 7-foot statue of Our Lady Mary Mediatrix of All Grace, as well as a big image of the Divine Mercy, “to hopefully bless the whole country as the caravan travels through the different provinces and cities,” Acosta said. 
Following the images are vehicles of the different contingents from the participating dioceses, parishes, lay groups and individuals, who pray the rosary, the Chaplet of the Divine Mercy, and Prayer of Reparation during the travel. 
After passing through identified convergence points in Mindanao and the Visayas such as Butuan, Surigao, Tacloban, Catbalogan, Calbayog City, and Matnog in Sorsogon, the Caravan will move to Lipa City on Saturday, December 10 for another day of intense prayers and reflections at the Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church. 
Participants from Northern and Central Luzon, as well as from Central Visayas, are requested to converge in Lipa City on this day as Lipa is the main convergence point for participants from these regions. 
Among the day’s activities at the church will be a talk by Acosta at 10:45 a.m.- 12:00 noon. 
The Caravan will leave Lipa City at 8:30 a.m. on December 11 and proceed to the Quirino Grandstand, Manila, for the culmination of the week-long pilgrimage. 
Manila details 
Participants who wish to enjoy the decorated floats that are part of the Caravan are advised to be at the Quirino Grandstand at 1:00 p.m. for the parade and judging of these floats. Program featuring pro-life speakers including legislators will start at 4:30, followed by a concelebrated Mass at 6:00 with Bishop Teodoro Bacani as main celebrant. 
For more information about the “National Marian Pilgrimage for Life: No to RH bill, no to same-sex union,” please contact Lorna at the Pro-Life Office at tel. nos. 733-7027 or 734-9425 or mobile no. 09192337783. You may tune in to Radio Veritas for updates on the ongoing pilgrimage. (CBCP for Life)
The line-up of activities for the National Marian Rally that has been received by this blog is as follows:


1:00 PM - Arrival of Delegates/ Floats of Mama Mary
3:00 PM - Divine Mercy Chaplet
3:20 PM - Bible Enthronement
3:25 PM - Joyful Songs

4:00 PM - Speeches
• Senator Vicente “ Tito” Sotto III
• Sis. Francisca Regancia (Soldiers of Christ)
• Sis. Lydia Salazar (Soldiers of Christ)
• Cong. Dax Cua (Lone District, Quirino)
• Cong. Michael Velarde (Buhay Party List)
• Cong. Amado Bagatsing (Manila, 5th District)
• Cong. Bingbong Crisologo (Quezon City, 1st District)
• Cong. Mitos Magsaysay (Zambales, 1st District)

6:00 PM - Celebration of the Holy Eucharist

Soldiers of Christ
7:30 PM - Sharing of Testimony
9:00 PM - God’s Healing Message by
Bro. Ting Arcadio

Cebu Daily News comes out swinging versus the RH Bill

A real surprise, given its affiliation with the Philippine Daily Inquirer, which tends to support the RH bill.

Cebu Daily News
8:31 am | Wednesday, December 7th, 2011 
Debate on the Reproductive Health bill continues to rage in Congress. 
Rep. Pablo Garcia of Cebu’s 2nd district dropped a bombshell earlier this week, charging that the non-government organization that includes members of the Lower House called the Philippine Legislators Committee on Population and Development receives funds from foreign organizations based in the United States who deliberately want to put the number of Filipinos under control. 
Let us for a moment leave Garcia to spar with staunch RH bill advocate Edcel Lagman and visit related realities on the ground. 
Like that other bombshell, celebrity DJ Mo Twister’s allegation that his ex-girlfriend actress Rhian Ramos, under pressure to stay relevant—read: single—in the domestic entertainment industry, had an abortion, and that he was father of the unborn child. 
Or the fact that an Internet search of key words “Cebu,” “fetus,” “found” and “2011” will return links to a long series of news items about aborted fetuses found in Cebu this year. 
Last Nov. 25, a fetus was found in a vacant lot behind the Cebu International Convention Center in Mandaue City. 
Last Oct. 11, a fetus was almost put through a shredder in the Inayawan Sanitary Landfill in Cebu City. 
Last September, one fetus each was found in barangay Apas and barangay Sambag II, Cebu City. Twin fetuses were found floating in the Butuanon River last August. 
The world celebrates Human Rights Day on December 10. The United Nations states that “Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.” (Article III, Universal Declaration of Human Rights) 
Our country’s Bill of Rights states that the State shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn from the moment of conception. 
This makes us wonder why so much energy is being spent on the Reproductive Health bill, several times resurrected in Congress, while nearly nothing has been said about Senate Bill No. 2635 or the Protection of the Unborn Child Act of 2011 that Sen. Ramon Revilla Jr. authored. 
There’s to much fudging among those who say that the Reproductive Health bill will promote the well-being of women. (Any doctor will acknowledge that chemical contraceptives increase a woman’s risk of contracting cancer, intra-uterine devices tear wombs and that condoms don’t remove the risk of the spread of sexually transmitted infections; and there are “contraceptives that actually induce abortions.) 
The Protection of the Unborn Child Act of 2011 is a direct way to stem the rising tide of abortions and consequently reproductively compromised women (which RH bill advocates point to as justifications for passing that bill). 
Come to think of it, we rarely hear or read reports about the arrest of abortionists. Could this be because among the abortionists are doctors and compliant pharmacists who lead women to use abortion-inducing drugs or abortive procedures?

"The bill was not written by Filipinos for Filipinos, but by international population control groups in secret"

From LifeNews:

by Fr. Peter West 

People of good will throughout the world should be aware of a great threat to the children and families of the Philippines. Filipinos are overwhelmingly Catholic (81%) and pro-life. Because of this fact, and because they are still having children, they have become a target of international population control organizations and pro-abortion groups. According to the UNFPA, outside organizations based in the United States and Europe have spent $962 million dollars to promote population control in the Philippines from 1991 to 2010.

Since 1998, Filipinos have been fighting the Reproductive Health (RH) Bill, which mandates, among other things, comprehensive sex education, government funded contraceptives and aboritfacients and forced participation for doctors regardless of conscientious objection. The bill also labels contraceptives as “essential medicines.” With limitless funds aiding in its promotion, an increasing number of individuals and groups have fallen into the trap of thinking that the RH Bill is necessary for economic development. Many of them have also been convinced by the propaganda that paints the Catholic Church as the enemy of progress. With the unyielding support of the “Catholic” current president of the Philippines, Benigno Aquino, there is great danger that the bill could pass soon. So far, the Filipino people are holding strong. HLI has been part of a successful effort to educate the public about the dangers of this bill, including the production of a documentary that is being distributed throughout the Philippines, including to all of the Filipino Bishops.

It is crucial to note that neither the enormous amount of money nor the language in the RH Bill comes from the Philippines. The bill was not written by Filipinos for Filipinos, but by international population control groups in secret. For a poor country, offers of enormous amounts of money are difficult to refuse unless people are well-grounded morally, and aware of the devastating effects that contraception and other anti-life practices can have on a country. For the time being, the RH Bill is not written to legalize abortion, which is still highly restricted in the Philippines; but it is widely understood that legalized abortion will follow soon after the RH Bill is passed – if it is passed. Fr. Paul Marx, OSB, founder of HLI, often said that in all his travels he had not seen one country where the widespread use of contraception did not quickly lead to widespread abortion.

Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago, the principal author of the bill, has claimed that opposing the RH Bill is tantamount to opposing religious freedom. However, contraceptives are legal and widely available in the Philippines, despite their harmful effects. The Church’s opposition to the RH Bill is based on natural law which is accessible to reason, no matter what faith one holds.

Rather, it is the RH Bill which is a threat to religious liberty. It forces medical professionals and businesses to promote and perform a full range of “reproductive health services,” against their consciences. It also mandates immoral Planned Parenthood-style sex education courses starting in the fifth grade, establishes population officers to pressure poor women to have fewer children and requires couples to undergo RH training with certification before they can obtain marriage license. Perhaps most onerously, the bill threatens imprisonment and fines for anyone who spreads “malicious disinformation” (a term that is ambiguous at best), and thus threatens to muzzle free speech and the freedom of choice that RH promoters claim to support.

While the bill does not make abortion legal, the phrase a “full range of reproductive health services” is found throughout the bill, which is understood internationally as services including abortion. For example, during a 2010 visit to Canada, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, “You cannot have maternal health without reproductive health, and reproductive health includes contraception and family planning and access to legal, safe abortions.” The elites have made a temporary concession to staunchly pro-life Filipinos by not pushing for abortion to be included in the bill, but the history of other countries show that they will be back to press for repeal of laws which ban abortion and protect unborn children. Once a contraceptive mentality has taken hold, it is always easier to promote abortion.

The bill is officially entitled “The Responsible Parenthood, Reproductive Health and Population and Development Act of 2011.” Despite its title, the bill does not promote responsible parenthood. The experience of many other countries shows that widespread contraceptive use leads to rampant promiscuity, higher teen pregnancy rates, more STDs and more abortion. Contraceptives provide a false sense of security that erodes natural moral inclinations to restrict sexual activity to situations where people are open to children.

Further, contrary to one of the most common taglines used to promote the RH Bill, it is not “pro-woman.” Overwhelming evidence show the link between hormonal contraceptives and various cancers. Manufacturers even concede that it can cause potentially fatal blood clots and strokes.

Economic problems in the Philippines are not caused by over-population, but by high levels of poverty, mostly in urban centers. Many of their economic problems could be solved by eliminating rampant corruption, which is estimated to cost Filipinos 400 billion pesos annually. Unless the real causes of poverty are addressed, poor Filipinos will remain poor.

Those of us who are concerned with the sanctity of life cannot afford to be indifferent to the situation in the Philippines – it would be a terrible blow if this very pro-life and pro-family nation were to fall. We need to influence government leaders in our countries to offer real assistance to our brothers and sisters in need, and not false solutions and aggressively imperialistic threats, like those posed by the RH Bill. Note: Reprinted with permission from Human Life International’s World Watch forum.

What RH promoters don't want you to know - an infographic

The facts about the RH bill that our citizens need to know

A LAW EACH DAY (Keeps Trouble Away) 
Jose C. Sison (The Philippine Star)
November 07, 2011 

Every time I express my stand against the RH bill I only state the established facts and the laws applicable to those sets of facts.

For instance, as I have repeatedly stressed, the most basic established facts proven by science are: (1) that life begins from the moment of conception or the fertilization of the ovum by the sperm to form a new, unborn baby; and (2) that there are certain chemical products or the so called birth control pills like “morning after pill” and RU 486, and vaccines like “depoprovera” and “norplant”, as well as the intrauterine device (IUD) which impede the implantation of the unborn baby in the uterine wall thus causing abortion or the expulsion and death of the baby.

Based on these established facts, I have likewise pointed out time and again that the laws applicable to these facts clearly provide that the State “shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn from conception (Section 12, Article II, Constitution) and that therefore abortion is a crime punishable by law (Articles 256 and 257 Revised Penal Code).

In view of these established facts and applicable laws, I have thus repeatedly contended that the RH bill violates our Constitution and the Revised Penal Code because it appropriates 3 billion pesos simply to afford women another choice aside from the natural family planning method which cost nothing, by making available to them the entire range of artificial contraceptives including the above mentioned pills, vaccines and IUD that cause abortion.

I have likewise stressed that even if the purpose of the bill is to enable couples especially the poor ones to plan the size of their family so that they can properly raise their children within their means purportedly in the exercise of “responsible parenthood”, such purpose cannot justify or be used as a disguise to hide the unconstitutionality and illegality of the bill.

Unfortunately however, despite sticking only to those facts and applicable laws, supporters of the bill resort to personal attacks against me and my Catholic faith. They always drag the Catholic Church into the controversy to refute my stand. They insist that I am just expressing my belief in the teachings of the Church against contraceptives, which, they say, no person or institution can impose on others with different beliefs especially in a pluralistic society such as ours.

This stance implies that truth depends on the beliefs of particular sects or religions rather than on established facts and applicable laws; and that there are as many truths as there are religions. Apparently this is a dangerous stance that has rendered the bill as controversial as to cause a deep division in the nation; why the bill divides rather than unites us.

Now that the debate on the RH bill has resumed, all sides to the controversy should see to it that they stick to the real issues, meet them squarely and refrain from using diversionary tactics. This is the only way that the people can be properly informed of the true nature and purpose of the bill and why it should or should not be passed. This is the only way to remove the harmful discord besetting the nation because of this bill.

The citizenry will therefore be better informed and united in their search for answers to the issues surrounding the RH bill if:

First, they are not repeatedly told that the bill does not legalize abortion when it has provision appropriating billions of pesos for the acquisition of contraceptives including those already proven to cause abortion, just to give women an alternative choice in the exercise of their reproductive health rights and in planning the size of their family;

Second, they are not misled into believing that contraceptives in general have no harmful effects on the overall health of the women and children when there are already many incidents of serious ailments including cancer arising out of their use.

Third, they are adequately informed that based on what is happening in other countries which allows the use of contraceptives, the contraceptive lifestyle necessarily ensuing with the passage of the bill, weakens marriages and destroys families;

Third, they are not continuously intimidated to favor the bill because of the alleged world population that has reportedly reached 7 billion already. Instead they should be properly advised that the country’s poverty problem is not due to our growing population but mainly to the inequitable distribution of the country’s wealth and resources because of poor governance, graft, greed and lack of adequate education especially of the poor families;

Fourth, it is sufficiently explained to them that while our population is still growing our population growth rate is already declining as will eventually bring us to the same situation of countries that adopted population control where the population is aging and dwindling prompting a complete reversal of their population policy from population control to population promotion; and

Fifth, it is fully disclosed to them that the RH bill is really backed up and supported by foreign countries and international organizations to control the population of developing countries like the Philippines even to the extent of promoting abortion under the guise of reproductive health, for their own economic interest and security; that lobby money in millions of dollars have been put up to pressure our Congress into passing this bill.

As Congress therefore resumes debate on the RH bill, Filipinos should know more about this incontrovertible information which can be considered more as “truths” than mere “beliefs”.

Teddy Locsin: Politics without religion is just power

It is about believing

CONGRESS ended its session with birth control hanging fire, or rather hanging high and dry. It won’t be taken up until next year.

That is a pity. In my last term, when the bill was introduced, I wanted the bill brought to the floor where it could be saved or slain. The sooner dealt with the better. The House leadership thought it was best to give it the Mona Lisa treatment, and just let it lie there, and die there.

It did not. It slept like a snake. Now it is awake, dragging irreligion in its wake.

Advocates of birth control say the issue is politics and not religion, a private and not a public affair.

Why, that’s just like sex and government have no more place in a bedroom than in a chapel.

Advocates insist that religion has no place in politics, especially democratic politics, which mandates the separation of church and state. It does that, indeed, but so as to keep the state away from religion and a life informed by religion, as much religion from the way the state is run. The separation was meant, in the first place, to keep the state out of a man’s conscience, though never human conscience out of matters of state.

That was the soul of the highly religious New England polity that became the United States. Protestants fled old for New England to establish theocracies, where men were free to live strictly Protestants—or flee deeper into the wilderness to live as they pleased.

The intensely religious character of the American republic explains why it is so natural for Americans to argue so intensely about schoolroom prayer and why, despite their bias for the 1 percent who own 95 percent of the country’s wealth, conservatives win election after election in a country of mostly poor Americans.

Indeed, no religion may use the state to impose its beliefs but neither may the state impose a notion of progress—such as that the fewer Filipinos the better all around; the less life is born, the better the life of those already around—on those who do not believe it. Some things cannot be legislated, even by a Congress representing the vast majority of citizens. In the Bill of Rights, paramount is freedom of religious conscience.

Politics without religion is just power. Government without conscience is just organized crime. Public administration without morals is stealing. And politics without faith will use people for politics, like Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union.

Religion is the core of the person. It tells her what she is, alive, and alive is better than not.

Religion tells him where he stands in this life; political geography just tells him where he can vote.

Religion tells people where they are going. If religion did not step into the anti-Marcos struggle and the Snap Election campaign, no case could be made for the importance of that struggle, for its merit as a subject of international interest and diplomatic action, and we would still be marching around in circles against the same government. Marcos would have been buried in state and his widow or a crony or the Army would be ruling us today. The Arab Spring in Egypt has returned the military nakedly to the helm of state.

Religion stepped into Edsa because our religion, in particular, dictates that the kind of society we live in shapes the kind of person we become, whether deserving of salvation or not. It is a Catholic as much as Muslim imperative to demand a society that respects the tenets of the dominant faith even if it should tolerate a diversity of other beliefs. For religion is the road we take through this life to the bridge that crosses over to the next—which may be hot or heavenly, depending on how seriously we lived our faith. Even secularism has its roots in religion, sprouting from the Reformation, which was not a revolution but its founders claimed a restoration of the original Christian faith.

The debates in the House missed this key point. Birth control is a thing of religious conscience and not of naked choice.

The issue is freedom, not of choice, but of belief.

The inviolable belief that the government cannot increase or reduce life, propagate or eradicate it, even if ardently held by just one citizen, should be enough, by itself, to stop the government, which may not violate her religious conscience by stepping across the line between what the government can do and what the people believe.

The debates also miss the point that belief is nothing if it does not go along with action because even just to think is already to act. Ours is a government of limited powers delegated by the people, who may not themselves venture into matters of faith, not just doctrine but ways of life informed by particular religions.

This is why we are enjoined to oppose eugenics, which is the state policy of propagating the smart and eradicating the stupid, even if we need such a policy desperately right now.

A policy that imposes condom or pill as the only alternatives is not choice but dictation. It is mental dishonesty to say a third choice is provided, for which nothing shall be paid: the nonpractice of birth control by conservative Catholics through the rhythm method or the morally superior route of sexual restraint. Not choosing one or the other, condom or pill, is not itself a choice if that choice costs nothing to the government.

It is wrong to think that the Catholic Church has never seriously thought about or practiced birth control. As early as the 10th century, churchmen worried over the souls of children born into poverty who will not get the religious instruction to be saved. Celibacy was one answer, which kept down the birthrate while achieving, through the monastic life of prayer and study, the ideal outcome of a proliferating race without increasing its numbers: The preservation of the best of what human mind has thought and human hands have wrought so that further advances in thinking and doing might be built on them. (The uniqueness of individual DNA may have eroded this argument; every child not born is another potentially new and freshly creative permutation destroyed.)

If the government believes in choice, it should hand out pesos not pills. Let people decide what to do with the money.

Only the ignorant still think that population control will be achieved by covering one organ rather than by opening another, the eyes. It was telenovelas showing small families in a flattering light that dropped the birthrate radically in Brazil, which never adopted birth control in deference to the Catholic Church, say the authors of Poor Economics.

Seeing is believing and Brazilians in the favelas watched television and believed what they saw: Life is easier, not to say elegant, when there are fewer in a family. The stylish have one child, the others have hordes of children.

You see, it is not about rubbers but rumination, which is to say thinking. It is not about choosing but believing.

Believe it is better to be fewer, and a man and a woman will find, on their own, a way to keep their family small.

Which may be a catastrophe for the few children born because statistics show that after China successfully adopted the One-Child Policy, Chinese couples spent less on their child or children than on saving up for their retirement when they would, most likely, be left to themselves in their vulnerable old age.

The Philippines and the realiites of depopulation

From the Philippine Daily Inquirer:

By: Ma. Esther Salcedo - Posadas
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Saturday, November 19th, 2011

Imagine this scenario: The only child of two aging and sickly parents faces deep pressure to provide for all their needs since there are no siblings to help carry the burden.

The same thing happens in an aging economy where few workers support a bigger number of dependent retirees.

Demographers call it an inverted pyramid. It’s an economy that has declining population growth, where there are more old people than younger ones.

It is the situation currently faced by many European nations plus a few Asian examples such as Japan amd Singapore.

This scenario causes a strain on businesses and their workforce because it also means fewer people to join the action, especially as seniors start to retire.

According to one population study posted on a United Nations website: “Fertility in the Philippines has experienced continuous decline from the 1950s to the present.”

From total fertility rates (TFR) of more than six births per woman in the 60s, the TFR has declined to excess of 3.5 births in the mid-nineties. The CIA Factbook estimates more than three births per woman in 2011.

The above data points to the fact that the country is actually already approaching the replacement fertility rate of more than two births that is essential to ensure the survival of the race.

In certain developed economies, births have fallen below the replacement ratio and certain so-called developed nations are now trying to reverse the population trend. If the Philippines will follow their lead, the consequences can also happen here.

An aging economy is a problem for government because it usually means that there are lesser workers earning a living to support or take care of older people.

In a 2004 discussion paper entitled “Australia’s Demographic Challenges,” the Australian Government’s Treasurer released the following information: “In 2002 there were more than five people of working age to support every person aged over 65. By 2042, there will only be 2.5 people of working age supporting each person aged over 65.”

An economy starts to age when there are fewer people capable of replacing those who are getting older, also in consideration of present health trends that have allowed more people to live longer. Usually, there is also reference to people who still have the capacity to work vs those who are retired and are in need of care. Government pensions systems are usually based on worker contributions that are later redeemed upon retirement.

So if there are fewer people and lesser monetary contributions to the fund, it means that there will be a smaller pot to divide when the retired seniors start claiming their pensions. It could lead to fund bankruptcy if the claims are not met.

Demographers calculate what is known as the “replacement fertility rate” to estimate how many daughters it would take to replace the previous generation of women.

A 1998 paper written by John Bongaarts of the Population Council in New York explains, “Currently, replacement fertility equals 2.36 births per woman (bpw) in the developing world. This level exceeds two because children who die before reaching the reproductive ages have to be replaced with additional births, and because the sex ratio at birth slightly exceeds one (typically 1.05 male for every female birth).”

For economies like the Philippines who still have a positive (albeit declining) fertility ratio, it is important to learn from the experience of developed economies with shrinking populations.

A 2007 study entitled “Global Aging: The New New Thing” by Dr. Adele Hayutin of Stanford Center on Longevity projected that by the year 2030-50 both Japan and Italy will have negative working age population growth rates at -16.9 percent and -5.4 percent, respectively. The data suggests that in order to regain more workers, the economy would need to rely on immigration or other corrective measures to encourage more births. While negative growth may be hard to imagine, the frail figure of aging populations already haunts many economies today.

Ed’s note: Currently on Congress’ drawing board is the passage of the RH bill which aims to promote women health care and teach contrapection to students. The pro-RH bill advocates believe that the Philippines is over populated and the growth of babies should be limited. The anti-RH contends on the other hand that the growth of PH population is already declining and what is needed is better education for Filipinos.

A bill we can't afford - literally

October 6, 2011

NOW it can be told. And it needed Senator Lito Lapid who is supposed to be not known for his speaking prowess to get this data. The budget for the implementation of RH for the year 2012 alone is – hold your breath – P13.7B!

According to experts, that figure is even higher than the individual budgets of the departments of energy, finance, foreign affairs, justice, labor, science, tourism and trade. It’s even bigger than those proposed for the Office of the President and Congress, and the entire Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

OMG! What a waste of tax money that would be! What distorted sense of priority! And to think that the RH Bill does not even pass the preliminary smell test of morality, and the fact that many of its provisions are redundant since they are already covered in many other laws of the land!

We cannot help but suspect there’s something serious that is hidden under the beautiful features with which the RH is marketed to the public. We have to look more closely at this initiative now forcefully pushed by women senators with radical feminist agendas.

We already know that US Secretary Hillary Clinton admitted that RH by definition includes abortion. So even if our version does not include abortion yet, we can suspect that it would just be a matter of time before this evil gets legalized under RH. In fact, there are now many people in the country openly voicing their support for abortion.

We also know from some declassified document that the US has been eyeing the Philippines for quite sometime now for birth control. It’s part of the geo-political game that the US is playing.

That’s why our Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile is suspicious about the RH Bill as being not so much for reproductive health as a tool to effect birth and population control.

And under the current American leadership, there is also a strong lobby for RH not only in the US but also all over the world. In the US alone, part of the Obamacare program forces everyone to get medical insurance that includes paying for sterilization, contraception and even abortion – all against Catholic moral teaching.

This has led American bishops to call this Obamacare provision as an “unprecedented attack on religious liberty.” It is forcing Catholics to support something that is against their religion. It is not anymore tolerating people to do what they like, even if it is against religion. It is forcing them to support what is against their religion.

The current American scene seems to be drifting toward creating a welfare state, with the government taking a bigger role in people’s lives, clearly going against the social principles of common good, solidarity and subsidiarity. It is not only spoiling people. It is forcing people to get spoiled.

And to think that the American political leaders pride themselves of being the first promoters of democracy and religious freedom and teach other countries to follow them! They have to be clear about these in their own country first.

The Philippines would be in a funny situation if it would just blindly follow the American model of RH. That is why, we need to closely monitor the proceedings of the proposed legalization of the RH Bill. This issue has gone beyond the field of group advocacy. It has become a concern for all of us.

I would suggest that the true picture of the RH Bill be shown, discussed and, if need be, debated upon in schools, parishes, offices and even in families. We have to be warned about a subtle but persistent campaign to change the concept of morality itself and to recast the social principles that should govern our national life.

We are now entering a stage of world history where the issues that we need to resolve are not anymore strictly social, economic or political in nature. They now have a fundamentally moral character and they call for a fundamentally moral resolution.

We need to stop and reverse this slippery slope to a deeper secularized world culture that tackles human affairs from a restrictive frame of economics and politics alone, and ignoring the most basic aspect of religion and our inner beliefs.

I must say that we have been had for a long time by this questionable kind of culture that tends to separate reason from faith, science from religion, our human affairs from God. The state is made to conflict with the Church.

While there is distinction, there is also inherent connection between them!

The duty of women senators to fight the RH Bill

A letter to the editor published by Philippine Daily Inquirer on October 12, 2011:

This refers to the news item titled “RH backers warn of Senate plot to derail bill” (Inquirer, 9/25/11), which reported on the views of RH supporters, Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago, author and principal sponsor of the RH bill, and Sen. Pia Cayetano, co-sponsor and chair of the Senate committee on women, children and the family.

It is sad to note that these women-senators themselves are rooting for the bill. They are mothers themselves who know the uncontainable joy of bringing forth a baby into the world! And yet now they want to disregard this and deprive others of the wonderful experience of beholding and cuddling a baby in their arms?

The mother’s womb is the safest place for a baby to live but now, with the women senators and congresswomen eagerly working to pass the RH bill, alas, it will become the most dangerous place for a baby. This is a gross disservice to women, children and the family whom these women-senators and congresswomen have vowed to protect.

These recent findings should be wake-up calls for Filipinos: A recent study of the University of Washington in 181 countries disclosed that maternal mortality rate in the Philippines had dropped by 81 percent from 1980 to 2008. Moreover, the World Health Organization has confirmed anew that oral contraceptives can directly cause cancer.

Our women senators and congresswomen are duty-bound to take the lead in protecting women, children and the family.



The Varsitarian Editorial on the misunderstood PMA position paper

For more information on the PMA position that is referenced here, please read this post: 
Setting the record straight on the Philippine Medical Association's stance on the RH Bill

The Varsitarian, October 4, 2011

WHILE staunch supporters of the Reproductive Health (RH) bill naively rejoice over the Philippine Medical Association’s (PMA) position paper that they seem to have misunderstood, they have been overwhelmed with the first clause of the first sentence without reading the entire passage.

The PMA expressed its support in the RH bill, but only because “it is founded strongly on the principle that ‘life begins at fertilization’”—a pro-life stance. Furthermore, the group of doctors said it “abhors any procedure, machination or scheme or medication that will interrupt any stage of fertilization and prevents its normal growth to adulthood until the stage of natural death.”

Dr. Bu Castro, chairman of the PMA Commission on Legislation and a signatory of the statement, confirmed the pro-life position himself, and said that the problem arises with the inclusion of contraceptives in the bill.

RH bill supporters have always said that contraceptives—particularly morning-after pill, IUD, and the like—are not abortifacients, and that this matter should be left to health experts. Castro himself confirmed that these contraceptives may indeed cause early abortion.

There are three things why the argument on abortion in contraception continues up to date: Either people do not know that life begins at fertilization, they don’t know what fertilization is, or they pretend to be health experts that they create their own definition of fertilization.

Of course, who would not want to support a health or family planning program? Every family desires a particular family size, but what pro-life groups say is that family planning could be achieved within moral grounds.

Like the PMA, we will support the RH bill if and only if its authors will remove its immoral, inhumane, and unjust ideas.

Immoral, in a sense that, as mentioned in previous Varsitarian editorials, RH bill makes us look like sex-starved rabbits; inhumane that it kills human life, and unjust that it is highly against other people’s rights.

It is not enough that provisions be altered. As long as the core principle of the RH bill is anti-life, it will never get any support from us.

In fact, the PMA fights for the rights of doctors because the RH bill impinges on physicians’ conscience and professional and ethical practice.

Doctors do what they think is best for their patients, but the RH bill dictates that if a doctor refuses to give RH services to his patients, he will be penalized.

It is even more stupid for the RH bill, which we may now call an “anti-doctor bill,” to say that in such case a physician cannot give RH services, he must refer his patients to another physician. Conscience-wise, asking someone to do it is like taking part of the action yourself as the mastermind.

This reminds us of a related issue in the Senate, wherein Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago lectured about conscience alongside with her efforts to promote the RH bill last August 1. Not only that, she also lectured on Theology.

The senator, who discussed as if she is an expert in Theology, said one could follow his conscience even if it is against the moral teachings of the Church.

If that is so, then where would someone base his conscience? In pop culture? In fascist ideologies? What is wrong remains wrong even if everybody does it.

Santiago also classified Theology into two: “traditional,” which sees the Church as a superstate governed by the Pope, and “progressive,” which looks at the Church as a fellowship of spiritual communities who recognize Papal primacy.

With these naïve ideas that she has, no doubt that she presents misinformation. “A little learning is dangerous,” poet Alexander Pope said.

Former senator Francisco Tatad, on the other hand, said Santiago’s classification is political.

“Theology is either good or bad, [or] sound or unsound,” Tatad said in an open letter to Santiago.

We see the words “traditional” and “progressive” in a different perspective. Traditional as being timeless and timely in keeping the values the Church has, while progressive as a state of development. In this sense, the pro-life position against the RH bill is founded on traditional values, but the intention of the opposition is progressive.

For the record, contradictory to Santiago’s claim that the Catholic Church is not the only religion opposing the bill, Muslim and Evangelical groups were also present at the State of the Soul of the Nation Address last July 25 to show their opposition to the said bill.

Also, non-Catholic religions acknowledge the fact that contraceptives being promoted by the RH bill kill life and violate their religious convictions.

Last Sept. 26, nine young congressmen expressed their opposition to the RH bill in a statement, saying that the proposed P3-billion fund for contraceptives could be better used for education, livelihood, and healthcare services. One of the young congressmen is Lanao del Norte, second district Rep. Fatima Aliah Dimaporo, a Muslim who stands firm against the RH bill.

It is odd that the national government underspends on more important services, but is willing to spend billions in buying contraceptives. The PMA statement says that “providing adequate facilities and qualified staff for maternity and pediatric cases” is needed to address the problem of maternal and child deaths in the country.

Being pro-life is not only a Catholic belief, but a Filipino value as well. Blessed John Paul II himself had said without specifying it to Catholics alone: “The Filipino family is pro-life.”

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Says a lot.

WET AND HORNY FOR THE RH BILL! That was the code name for a pa-cute protest action held for the RH Bill by a bunch of Student Councils in front of the Ateneo De Manila University sometime in November of this year. 

Promoters of the RH Bill are forever telling us that the RH Bill is not about promoting sexual promiscuity. That it is not about encouraging the young to act on their incipient lusts. That it is not about importing into this country the culture of mindless sexual hedonism that has ravaged the moral fiber of the much of what was Western Christendom. Oh, no, it's not about these!

AND YET, they just HAD to call this action, this single-mindedly and intentionally pro-RH action, WET AND HORNY FOR THE RH BILL. 


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Emil Jurado on why the RH bill is unnecessary

From Emil Jurado's November 22, 2011 column, What scares me most:

There’s a lot of truth in the position of Senate Majority Leader Tito Sotto that there may be no longer any need for Congress to pass the controversial reproductive health bill in the wake of the fact that the Aquino administration has already earmarked P7.7 billion for reproductive health programs in the 2012 national budget. 
The P7.7 billion appropriated for reproductive health programs for next year could well be implemented without Congress enacting the controversial RH bill that has divided the country. 
Logically, as Senator Loren Legarda asked: “If the resources are available anyway to fund the RH bill, why would we need to enact a bill? This was in answer to Senator Franklin Drilon’s comment that the allocation for reproductive health in 2012 would only benefit 50 percent of the women belonging to the lowest quintile of our economic strata. 
What is important to consider is that if the budget for 2012 already included reproductive health programs contained in the controversial RH bill, it would be foolish to enact the latter, isn’t it? 
Note that the allocation of P7.7 billion for reproductive health programs would include the DoH giving away condoms and intrauterine devices, which the RH bill intends to do.

See as well the following news article: RH bill duplicates health program

Tidbits from Bobit Avila

From his October 6, 2011 column entitled, Now it can be told: Contraceptives kill!

Finally, despite his problem in communicating in the English language, Sen. Lito Lapid entered the controversial debate in the Senate on the controversial issue of the Reproductive Health (RH) bill, coming up with a stinging question directed to its principal sponsor Sen. Pia Cayetano about the possible side effects of contraceptives. Sen. Lapid apparently revealed that his wife took such pills after she gave birth to their second child. Yet she still got pregnant and bore a baby with a heart disease who later died at the tender age of nine years old. What a tragedy for Sen. Lapid. 
Speaking in the Tagalog (they sometimes call this Filipino) language, Sen. Lapid asked his wife if she was taking birth control pills and she answered him with a “yes.” By some divine revelation, suddenly, the pro-RH Senators were faced with someone among their peers who took contraceptives in the hope that it can stop pregnancy. But this totally failed and worse of all, the baby was born with a birth defect, thanks to that contraceptive. 
When she was asked by Sen. Lapid whether contraceptives can cause physical deformities, Sen. Pia Cayetano dismissed them, saying that no research shows that contraceptives can cause birth defects. Come now Sen. Cayetano, there are countless research studies that prove that contraceptives do not only kill (as in the case of the baby of Sen. Lapid), it also causes birth defects, and yes for mothers they cause breast cancer. 
Incidentally, the month of October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. If Sen. Pia Cayetano truly wants to help our womenfolk, she must instead warn them of the dangers of the use of contraceptives as they are not a guarantee that it prevents pregnancy, but also maim babies if they get born. Worse of all, they can cause breast cancer to women or mothers who use them. If Sen. Pia Cayetano truly cares for our womenfolk, she should instead warn them of the dangers in the use of abortifacient contraceptives.

From his October 25, 2011 column, Coming soon: A city region called Mega Cebu

While the Senate already decided to move the debate on the Reproductive Health (RH) bill to next year in January, this elicited a reaction from Sen. Pia Cayetano who wanted to close the period of interpellation and proceed to the period of amendments and the eventual passage of the bill. But like it or not, there are still a lot of Senators who wanted to interpolate this on the session floor after they resume their session. As Senate Majority Leader Sen. Vicente “Tito” Sotto pointed out, “Anyone who wishes to interpolate this bill can do so; hence we cannot close the period of interpellation.” 
As expected, Sen. Pia Cayetano wants the debate closed because the truth about the RH bill is just coming out of the woodwork and the public needs to know whether this bill should be passed or junked on the Senate floor. The RH bill entails the use of billions of pesos to dole out contraceptives to the poor, when this same money could very well be used for other more important issues like poverty alleviation or the like. 
The Senate also needs to unmask the international groups strongly lobbying for the RH bill, which seek funding from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). Little do Filipinos know that this is the group behind China’s “One Child” Policy? How many times do we have to remind those pushing for the RH bill that they are proposing something against the 1987 Constitution that protects the unborn. If on a worse case scenario this bill gets passed into a law, I guarantee you that cases will be filed for its unconstitutionality. In short, this money-making venture (after all, this law benefits foreign pharmaceuticals) is a waste of our time and resources and worse it is divisive.

Monday, December 5, 2011

A former Filipino anti-Catholic on young Filipino anti-Catholic netizens

From Pepe Alas' article on the appointment of Msgr. Luis Antonio Tagle as the Archbishop-elect of Manila: A famous theologian will be Manila's next Archbishop:

Catholic theologians such as the new Manila Archbishop should deftly explain that the Church’s stand against the RH Bill is not solely rooted in faith and morals alone. In the end, it all boils down to logic. And this is one of the first challenges that the latest Prince-Cardinal should tackle. 
Speaking of logic… 
Many young Filipino “intellectuals” today who love to make a punching bag out of the local Catholic Church claim to be “lovers” of ideologies and “champions” of liberalism. And that the Church is “out of logic”. They love to “philosophize” and display the many witty quips that they learn from tomes of books they claim to have read. They proclaim themselves as “the new Rizals”. They claim a hatred for mediocrity and “religious superstition”, clamoring for a more intelligent and “freethinking” Filipino. But many of them do all this for the mere heck of it, and not for the purpose of a better society. And now we have social networking. Through these new media they rant and multiply and increase, and they spend hours upon hours in front of their PCs than they do with their pet lizards because they could not get a real job nor could they maintain contact with physical friends (but to them, the words “contact” and “physical” could mean something else). Unfortunately, these kids, for all their intellectual hogwash, have already revealed their characters and self-worth by the choice of words that they use in various online forums. Wittingly or unwittingly, what these bunch of “sucks-to-be-you” kids are doing will only lead this country to anarchy. If they ever win, within a decade or two we will certainly have a transsexual president who will legitimize pole dancing as a school subject. I dare say all of this because I used to think like them — been there, done that. I’ve mingled with so many of these book-toting crybabies back in the 90s. And just thinking about it makes me supersick. 
What these “lemme-give-y’all-an-iota-of-my-superb-brain” jactanciosos claim to know about the Catholic Church is so superficial to say the least. All I can say is this: looking back at my brief anti-Catholic self, I just couldn’t believe how stupid I was (a long story that I’ll share one day). 
I’m glad that I dealt a lot with logic whenever I flip a page out of a dusty book. Gracias a Dios por este regalo de sabiduría. 
So here’s hoping that Manila’s new archbishop will also tackle the increasing number of “pseudo intellectuals” from elsewhere. Not for the Church’s sake actually, but for these proud but hapless kids’.

Remarkably enough, the author of these lines began his return to Catholicism from agnosticism as he struggled against the temptation of aborting his second child. As he relates in a blog post he made more than two years ago:

I was brought back to the Catholic fold last 2003 due mainly to personal researches about my country’s Spanish past. Along the way, I was able to discover and realize the leyenda negra (black legend) being hurled against the Spanish clergy. Ironically, I ended up defending the Spanish friars against everyone attacking them although I was still an atheist! Little by little, my “reconversion” was on its way. I soon became an agnostic. And one September night of that year, as I was pondering whether to have my wife abort our second child or not, God gave me a sign. 
You see, 2003 was the worst and arguably one of the best and memorable years of my life. I was jobless, disowned by my folks and various relatives, living in a decrepit bodega, penniless, you name it. It was during this year when I did nothing but read, write, ponder, steal books, ponder some more, dream. And since I was (surprisingly) having difficulty in getting employed, I thought that having another baby was too much (I was already then an agnostic during this time). I was goading my wife for days to give up the baby. I was giving her horrible scenarios of what might happen to us if she doesn’t accept abortion as a solution: poverty, poverty, and lotsa poverty. Finally, I was able to make her say yes. We planned of going to Quiapò to buy an infamous pill (Cytotec) to kill the fetus. 
I admit, however, that I felt uncertain and very afraid of doing it. So before committing the crime, I prayed to God for the very first time in years. While walking desolately along Chino Roces Avenue one night on my way home, I muttered, “Lord, if you are indeed real, show me a sign —any sign— that you disapprove of this abortion”. 
The sign came that very night. Upon arriving home, I talked again to my wife (without telling her that I prayed). I told her that we have to abort the fetus soon, the next day, while the it is not yet in human form (an infamous argument by “pro-choice” advocates). Quietly, she agreed. And as we slept together, I thought of my prayer – I had no idea what kind of sign I would receive… if God were ever real. After a few minutes, we drifted to sleep. 
But moments later, my wife woke me up. I was surprised — she was crying! In between sobs, she said she’d rather not have an abortion. She said she’s willing to face anything —EVERYTHING— just to keep the baby. I embraced her, and broke into tears as well. 
It was no coincidence or anything like that. It couldn’t have been any clearer: that was the sign I’ve been waiting for… 
And so a few months later, a very handsome José Mario Guillermo II P. Alas —Momay— was born. And my stupid fear of poverty-ridden-days-ahead was just that: plain stupid. Because now our kids are four, and we’ve never been better than before!