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Friday, December 9, 2011

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”.

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