Passing on 2nd-reading of RH Bill brings population control in the Philippines closer to reality!

Finally, the third major excuse for the country not progressing is on the verge of being crossed out from the history of this sad Republic. The passing on second-reading of the controversial Reproductive Health Bill (RH Bill) in theory paves the way for measures to be put in place to control galloping population growth in wretchedly impoverished Philippines. The first two excuses — subjection to colonial rule and lack of “democracy” were dealt with in 1946 and 1986 respectively. The Year 2012 marks the third major “victory” in Filipinos’ on-going “fight” versus the “oppression” they perceive to be hobbling their march to prosperity — freedom from the ravages of over-population.

In a country like the Philippines where every new child born is more likely a liability than an asset to the economy, the solutions are obvious. Though packaged as “reproductive health” improved access to artificial contraception is really all about reducing the birth rate — specially amongst people who are not in a position to honour commitments to raise productive citizens.

After all, the only real underlying principle behind poverty is quite simple:

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Poverty is the outcome of entering into commitments one is inherently incapable of honouring.


The RH Bill and the presumed existence of tenets within it that will make artificial contraception widely available to Filipinos is the Philippines’ biggest shot at arresting its people’s unfettered signing up to contracts they, for the most part, fail to understand and, as such, are likely to breach. Each child born, after all, involves its parents’ signing a hypothetical contract that said child will (1) not be a menace to society, (2) contribute a net positive added value to the economy and (3) be an overall nice, decent, and pleasant person.

In an ideal world where prospective parents are clear on the stipulations of this hypothetical social contract they’d sign up to as they set out to produce offspring, we’d rest assured that we are facing a future of progressively improving our chances of building a country that is free from crime, is prosperous, and populated by a great people worthy of earning the respect of the global community.

This of course is not an ideal world we live in and the country created by Filipinos known as “the Philippines”, in particular, is among the least-perfect of the lot. The moving forward of the RH Bill is a momentous achievement as it brings the prospect of controlling the impact of those among us who irresponsibly enter into commitments they consistently fail to understand on those of us who are more adept at thinking things through properly.

The moving forward of the RH Bill is a promising outcome as it proves that Filipinos and the politicians who represent them are showing tentative signs that they are capable of freeing themselves from the inbred primitivist ideology of the extremist brand of Roman Catholicism propagated by the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines. More important is the broader implications to Philippine society in this symbolic socio-cultural leap. It is a manifestation of a major crack developing in the shackles that have for so long held the Filipino mind captive to the influence of medieval institutions that seek to undermine her sense of personal responsibility.

The future of the RH Bill rests in the system — the process of getting it passed across the desks of Filipinos’ popularly-elected politicians. Time and again, the system has proven that where there is political will just about anything can be passed — including even the most shoddily-written, most ill-thought-out, and most irrelevant of legislation. The RH Bill may not be the best of its kind Filipinos will be getting but, hey, pwede na yan. It’s a start. The solution to chronic impoverishment in the Philippines is an obvious one, and the RH Bill in its current form is the single biggest shot at the moment to implementing that solution.

26 Replies to “Passing on 2nd-reading of RH Bill brings population control in the Philippines closer to reality!”

  1. The questions are: will it be implemented properly? Will this be less corrupt – I doubt we’d ever achieve a 100% no corruption on policies/programs/etc. – than the existing programs available? Will the Filipino people be able to make that “informed choice”?
    I doubt that we are mature enough to actually “reap” the seeds of this bill. Why can’t we just reinforce the existing programs we have? Would this mean we would scrape off those inefficient prograns of budgets so we can finally put them into good – no, not better – use, or this will just be another program with another budget – which it is?
    How can one actually say it is beneficial when these programs continuously fail? After this hype, this so-called congratulations and success, will Filipinos be more aware, more vigilant with its progress? Making contraceptives available to “everyone” is not a guarantee that people will use it or applying the concept of family planning will actually be done.It is a waste of time when congress could have focused on more important and urgent matters such as infrasture development, increasing and mordernizing calamities preparedness. Such a waste of time. And gosh! Our congressman can actually work overtime!

    1. “Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.”

      IMO, it’s always better in this country if there’s a law that would force the executive and LGUs to do anything.

      Loyalty and ideology only exists during elections for the popular majority of our public servants. For the rest of their terms, they’re just out there trying to win the next one.

      1. “Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.”

        I had a neighbor who felt he needed a power saw, a power drill, a power sander, an angle grinder, and other tools I had no idea of. “Ahh…a handyman, better yet a DIYer” I said.

        I would hear his tools in action….who wouldn’t the whole neighborhood would hear his power tools. Bothersome and noisy actually.

        One day I get a call from him asking for the number of a furniture repairman. He needed his sofa fixed, the wooden frame broke.

        So much for his power tools….but his garage looked nice with all of them tools displayed neatly on a wall.

        Better to know how to use what you have…better even, know what you need.

        Nathania makes sense.

    2. @Nathania: Agree, although as I said in the article, in this case pwede na yan will suffice following the principle stated by John Doe above that it is “Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.”

  2. Does somebody have some clue(s) how this will look “in the field”?

    Can I expect a person from the local health agency to visit me “today” and promote and encourage the use of all kinds of contraceptives?

    And “tomorrow” during church mass I will be crucified, condemned and ex-communicated by the priest if any of his flock will start using those god forbidden (not my words) contraceptives.

    1. That is the challenge “in the field” actually. In this “field” the Catholic Church has a direct communication line into the minds of the Filipino masses through the Sunday masses that Pinoys flock to every week.

      It comes down to how effectively the Church will able to compete with other outlest of information that Filipinos have access to and how well they are able to push the right emotional buttons (which in the case of the Church has traditionally been something to do with fear of what happens in the “afterlife”).

  3. This bill is most likely to piss off the catholic church to thr point of them dropping all their support for this government. It would definitely not end well for this government once the people realize how they had been hoodwinked.

    1. We don’t need the Catholic Church’s support to run the government. What we need are good, responsible officials that actually work.

  4. Forgive my cold rage. Inefficiency and Incompetence are truths that we have to live with. The grisly situation in Mindanao and other areas is tragic. “Population control” by means of super typhoons is a nightmare scenario. People in the devastated areas have little or no food! Medical supplies and water are badly needed! The people are exposed to the elements! The logistics distribution system sucks! While our Congress tackles the RH bill, they conveniently forget the people in the calamity areas. Political expediency and propaganda sucks! Where will they go when another category 4 or 5 storm blows in? Where can they shelter? Where are the designers of typhoon resistant infrastructure? In other words, what are the contingency planning options of the sleeping president? The RH bill and other legislation seem to be distracting the people in Imperial Manila! The clock is ticking for the affected people in the disaster areas. Mass loss of human lives through imprudence or negligence is happening. God help us all when the next big one blows in!

  5. I so agree with you @benigno esp. on parags 2, 3, 4. Precisely the reasons why I am pro-RH bill. Am a mother of 5 thus know that having children is a deep commitment to provide and nurture. And the sight of children roaming the streets to beg and hearing about street crimes perpetrated by children have convinced me long before this RH bill debate that something must be done. Call it population control, I don’t care. It always worried me that we are growing a generation a great proportion of which has little or no skills, no schooling. That’s a recipe for a disastrous future for our kids.

  6. Many congressmen managed to give a masterclass in intellectual stupidity and social ignorance – none more so than those who thought god’s plan is to “filipinize the world”, no wonder human trafficking is so high, with such archaic attitudes. Let congressmen become ofw’s for years on end in appalling and abusive conditions away from their family, because they have idiots ruining the country.
    What pious hypocrites.

    1. When I read that congresswoman said that she “… wish that in my [her] lifetime we will have enough Filipinos so we can ‘Filipinize’ the whole world,” I was thinking what is this, global invasion by operation “Spill Over”? This sort of reasoning made my head spin around.

  7. Pwede na yan bill so they can get our pork barrel in full.

    No jobs anyway, so control the population instead, since there’s no assurance the kids who will be born will be useful.

    These days, in Philippine society, the band aid is more important than the preventive measure.

  8. Hi guys, my sincerest apologies but I am an “alien” (aka a foreigner) but can somebody draw me a picture how everything works out now? Or in other words: can somebody inform me what kind of contraceptives are available today and if they are free of charge or at a cost? My Philippine partner didnt seem to have any problems in obtaining the contraceptive pill.

    Furthermore, here it is regarded as the parent’s duty and task to inform their own kids everything there is to know about sex. That includes all known and all available contraceptives (birth control) but also how kids are made (sperm cell, egg cell, ovulation) plus that “making love” is something beautiful and that it never should be done against somebody’s will. Last but not least that making kids is a big huge responsibility you cant think too light about.

    One doesnt need to be a rocket scientist to know and understand that an income of 100 unites divided by 2 parents with 5 kids or just 2 adults is a huge and big difference.

    Having said all that: so where did it go wrong for the Philippine society?

    1. Robert,

      If you look at the Philippine Budget, education and health are not on top of the “priority” list. Now they want to fund another policy that will chip away on the needs of both.

      Intelligent, healthy Filipinos is the key and not a small, mostly ignorant, sickly population.

      1. @Jose,

        I read about the low percentages for both. I think I read it on the Wikipedia website regarding the Philippines.

        If intelligent, healthy Filipinos equals critical than I do agree with you. On the other hand, there are so many platforms to gain and get information from that I would not be dependent on the educational system. And as long as the Filipino educational system is controlled by the CBCP then not much will change in the near and far away future as being THE source of good, true and reliable knowledge/information.

        Furthermore, if my kid (enrolled in the Philippine educational system) cant object a teacher (because objecing is against the Phili culture even when my kid has far more and far better knowledge of the subject) then whats the point?

        The Philippine society is completely focused and based on respect. Its not a natural respect but a dictated respect based on nothing. It reminds me of Stalinism. The intellectuals were killed by Stalin. I cant object the teacher, I cant object the doctor, I cant object the barangay captain, I cant even object to my parents. That makes me a prisoner in my own country.

        Are you sure and convinced the Philippines is a democracy and a free country?

  9. The Catholic obsession with sex is just off the charts. It would seem like, of all the sins named by the church, Satan’s favorite field for tricking humans seems to be sex. You don’t see bishops and priests campaigning this vigorously on any other, more pressing issues.

    People worry about possible mismanagement of funds in the RH Bill. Hey, we’ve let a lot of programs that have been mismanaged slipped through in the past. Why start now? I say give this bill a go, let people get into the dynamics of it, and see what happens. It’s not going to end the world, for crissakes!

  10. I just noticed that this year, the Legislative Branch has been cramming quite a number of bills that have been passed into laws, and it would most likely include the most talked about of them all, the long-awaited RH bill. Many of us would certainly expect (and it is indeed expected) that the funds being released through these laws can be certainly used for corruption. But then again, I think it’s already a normal thing here. It’s business as usual, and the catch is, elections are drawing near. We already know the drill, haha.

    Oh well, all I can say is that we, the public, should be ready for a bigger government that will have to assume an increasingly-bigger role in our lives. A government that seeks to legislate poverty and the general public’s morality and behavior is indeed a big thing. But the question is still the same, how well will all of these be implemented? Or is this just understood as another set of “rights” ((that many of us have been demanding, by the way) that will “require” government funding and an overall allocation of budget?

    Personally, I just hope that all of these things would be aimed and directed to have a more encompassing purpose, because I think we’ve had enough of the way we placed more emphasis on cure, rather than prevention, if you know what I mean.

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