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When UAAP Meets the RH Bill: It Means More Than ‘Academic’ Tension!

October 8, 2012
  • NOTE: I first posted this note as a Facebook status. 

Here’s my comment on this UST Varsitarian blog article that is now circulating on Facebook and other social network sites. The oped writer calls La Salle and Ateneo academics “lemons and cowards. Of course, ‘academic tension’ is very much expected.

Apparently here’s the red button that now stirs what I call UAAP-triggered ‘academic tension’ between conservative UST and DLSU-Ateneo tandem:

It’s quite shocking that Ateneo and La Salle professors should harbor naive and misguided thinking about health and social problems. How could they argue that an RH measure would be needed to lower maternal mortality when the Philippine government not too long ago had told the United Nations that it was on track to meet the Unesco millennium development goals by 2015, one of which was the lowering of maternal deaths? How could they argue that alleged high mortality must be checked by an RH measure when pregnancy complications are not in the Top 10 causes of women’s deaths? How could they argue that contraceptives which allegedly worth billions of pesos must be given to women to avert pregnancy risks when contraceptives have been known to cause cardiac problems, which are the No. 1 cause of death of Filipino women?

When UAAP meets RH Bill...

When UAAP meets RH Bill…

I agree that the UST, which is a catholic university or institution, has all the right to oppose- and it’s justified to do so- the RH bill. Here’s one thing that many pro-RH bill folks fail or refuse to understand: THE RH BILL SEEKS TO FORCE Catholic doctors and hospitals, including employers and the entire private sector, to breach their FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE and religious freedom. You don’t have to be a catholic or religionist to oppose the bill… and I am a rabid ATHEIST. There are many atheists or agnostics who oppose the RH bill on secular, non-religious grounds. We oppose the bill on the ground that it would violate or negate people’s rights and freedoms. We believe that rights and freedoms should not clash with each other!

A number of Catholic priests previously said, or clarified, they’re not against public consumption of birth control per se; it’s government funding of birth control they’re against. I thank them for making that point. With that, I find them to be MORE RATIONAL and LOGICAL than the self-confessed atheists and leftists who naively support the bill.

The writer said: “How could Ateneo and La Salle professors dismiss the medically established dangerous side effects of contraceptives when they are not even physicians?”

Please do not focus on that particular issue. The point is, everybody must have a right to use contraceptives. Any person- or any woman- must have a right to take contraceptives. What we should focus on is the government’s attempt to finance contraceptives through people’s money and to violate doctors’ (both catholics and atheists) and private hospitals’ freedom of conscience and freedom of religion. I repeat: the RH bill was designed to put the entire medical industry and private sector under a HIGHER DEGREE OF STATE CONTROL! That’s why I consider the bill to be as evil or immoral as the recently passed Cybercrime Law!

Should the government force/coerce a person to support things or programs that he/she considers to be against his conscience or belief? The answer should be NO. If pro-RH bill politicians argue their proposal is all about a poor woman’s ‘freedom of choice’, what about the freedom of choice and rights of catholic and atheist doctors? Focus on that issue and we’ll WIN this debate!

Let me address that disgusting LIE perpetrated by pro-RH bill politicians that without such a program Filipino women and poor people would be deprived of their right to RH services. That today they’re deprived of their ‘freedom of choice’.

Filipinos have that freedom of choice, and there is NO SUCH THING as a right to RH services. A right does not impose any form of obligation on others. Many people who have this ‘entitlement mentality’ believe their right to RH or food means the State must provide them the RH services and food they need. But who will pay for all these services? Who will be immolated or sacrificed to serve some people’s right to RH care?

A ‘right’ simply means freedom of action in a social context. Here’s a phrase or statement that proves the intellectual precision of America’s founding fathers: “The right to PURSUIT of happiness”. The keyword here is PURSUIT. They didn’t say people are entitled to ‘happiness’, because that would mean some people are obliged to make you happy. They said everybody has a right TO PURSUE happiness. This should give our intellectuals an idea that a ‘right’ simply means freedom to act.

Your right to LIFE means you have a right to PURSUE things or certain activities that would serve your well-being. That you have a right to work and to practice the profession of your choice. It does not mean the state or your neighbor is obliged to feed you.

Your right to property means you have a right to keep and spend the fruits of your labor. It does not mean the state must seize your neighbor’s property to serve your needs.

Your right to liberty means you are entitled to due process and protection of our laws. That you cannot be jailed without being found guilty by a competent court.

Contraceptives are available almost everywhere. Men and women still have the right and freedom and free will to undergo vasectomy or ligation operations. That’s what freedom and choice is all about. But if you want something, you must be ready and willing to pay for it.

P.S.

I think UST Growling Tigers’ and Ateneo Blue Eagles’ Game 2 face off is going to be more exciting…

RELATED BLOG ARTICLES:

Rights Versus Entitlements

To RH Bill Sluts: Pay for Your Birth Control!

Ateneo must FIRE its Pro-RH bill Professors!

If UP, Ateneo Profs Really Read the RH Bill Yet Still Support It, Then They’re A Bunch of IDIOTS!

Filipino Freefarting Hippies for Palamunin Culture

I’m an Atheist and I Oppose the Fascist RH Bill

Singapore’s PM Lee Hsien Loong to PH’s Malthusian Economists and Intellectuals: ‘You Got it All Wrong, Stupid!’

The Utter Hypocrisy of the Pro-RH Bill Fascists

In Defense of the Troublesome, Meddlesome Catholic Church

The Catholic Priests have a Right to Influence the Government!

How to Spot a Pro-RH Bill Moron

Sotto is Right, ‘Overpopulation’ in PH is a MYTH!

Fr. Bernas’ Egregious, Sanctimonious Misunderstanding

Fr. Bernas: More of a Pro-RH Statist than Religionist

To NEDA Chief Balisacan: Demographic Transition Follows Economic Growth, Not the Other Way Around

5 Comments leave one →
  1. October 8, 2012 3:38

    I always admire your views, without easily joining the prevailing or bandwagon of thoughts. I’m Pro-RH only in a way we must lessen our population especially with the poor people, but I understand completely the stand of the Church and what they are protecting – basic right to live for every human being – both born and unborn.

    • October 8, 2012 3:38

      I would like to think they’re protecting their freedom of religion and freedom of conscience. Like I said, the bill tries to up the degree of state control over all hospitals in the country. This means that private Catholic hospitals and doctors would be forced by this proposed legislation to violate their freedom of conscience. I say, there should be no coercion against private hospitals. I somehow understand the ‘good intention’ behind this bill, but good intention is never a virtue at all. You cannot serve justice by violating the rights of others or by using force against certain unarmed/disarmed citizens.

      I do get it. Many people would like to help the poor who cannot afford to pay for their RH services. If you want to help, do it privately. But you cannot help these people by forcing others, or by coercing them to breach their conscience and their freedom of religion.

      The RH bill issue is all about poverty and individual rights. Why are we now in this situation? It’s because we’re poor. And we’re poor because of our failed economic and political policies. There are not enough jobs in the Philippines because of our protectionism and regulations that discourage investors. I understand that a popular economist (Winnie Monsod) once claimed foreign direct investment only has minimal impact on a nation’s economy and “that Not all FDI will result in inclusive growth or in sustainable development”. If that’s the case, then why do more progressive countries like China, UAE and Saudi Arabia, which have more dollar reserves, still encourage FDI. For example, Saudi Arabia is very much willing and ready to upgrade to TRIPS-plus to attract more FDI and technology transfer. The Saudi government clearly understands the role of TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER in their country’s economy.

      RP’s unemployment rate continues to rise and the government’s patch-up, temporary solutions are Conditional Cash Transfer program and the RH bill.

      But why are we poor? Why are there not enough jobs in this impoverished country? It’s because of our failed economic policies. Thus, this makes the RH bill issue an ECONOMIC ISSUE. You cannot solve poverty by passing more laws. You cannot help the poor by forcing other people to be generous.

      The solution is: FREE MARKET REFORMS. We should follow in the footsteps of the Asian tigers that achieved economic growth by embracing free market reforms, NOT by adopting neo-Malthusian policies as what many UP economists have previously suggested in their so-called economic studies.

      Singapore’s PM Lee Hsien Loong recently made a statement that should debunk the alleged studies made by these UP economists. He said:

      “We have started with very minimal welfare and we’ve gone on the basis of growth and high employment and low unemployment. If you’re out of a job you can find a new job. You will get help but the help is not something you’re absolutely entitled to.”

      The solution is not more welfare spending. The solution is lesser government spending. That we should live within our means. That we cannot simply throw money at the poverty problem. The solution is FREE MARKET REFORMS. And by economic reforms I mean the following:

      – Eliminate certain taxes or lower tax rates. Taxes that can be eliminated are income tax, estate tax, capital gains tax, property tax, community tax, and corporate income tax. The government may focus on consumption tax as its source of revenue. However, the elimination of taxes should be done in a gradual, cautious manner.

      – Lower government spending

      -Privatization. It is time to privatize all government-owned and controlled corporations.

      – Legalize gambling and lottery. Allow both foreign and local entrepreneurs to run gambling and lottery businesses. Let them compete with each other.

      – Allow 100% foreign ownership of land and business.

      – Allow foreign professionals to practice their professions here.

      – Allow foreigners to put up schools, media, public utilities, etc.

      – Allow foreign investors to put up power companies and compete with Filipino-owned power utilities.

      – Decontrol or deregulate by repealing economic regulations and restrictions.

      – Allow private insurers and social security companies to compete with SSS and GSIS.

      -Abolish certain government departments and agencies like DepEd, CHED, DSWD, DOH, national housing authority, NFA, DPWH, DoE etc. But this should be done gradually.

      -Abolish certain welfare programs like PhilHealth, government loan programs, subsidies, etc.

      -More focus on our judiciary or court system, police, and military.

  2. October 14, 2012 3:38

    “How could Ateneo and La Salle professors dismiss the medically established dangerous side effects of contraceptives when they are not even physicians?”

    Ateneo and La Salle both have medical schools and have already produced licensed physicians. A lot of the doctors who are faculty of the Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health signed their support on the RH bill. They are obviously physicians. The writer in the Varsitarian did not have proper research. Pitiful.

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