Muntinlupa City strikes down Ayala Alabang anti condom ordinance

The ordinance, “An Ordinance providing for the safety and protection of the unborn child within the Territorial jurisdiction of Barangay Ayala-Alabang; Fixing Penalties for its Violations, and for other purposes,” which made “Ayala Alabang” trend on Twitter was struck down by Muntinlupa City.

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Cocoy Dayao

Cocoy is the Chief Technology Officer of Lab Rats Technica, a Digital Consulting company that specialises in DevOps, iOS, and Web Apps, E-Commerce sites, Cybersecurity and Social Media consulting. He is a technology enthusiast, political junkie and social observer who enjoys a good cup of coffee, comic books, and tweets as @cocoy on twitter.

Cocoy is also the Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of the ProPinoy Project.

Cocoy considers himself to be Liberal.

  • UP nn grad ,

    bert: IUD, condom balloons, barrier methods — prevent sperm cells from saying “… hi, pleased to meet you!!!” with the egg cell.

    clotheshanger.. maybe with a flashlight to allow greater precision, then insert clotheshanger, twist and twist and guide clotheshanger. Pilipinas has many of these operations — bloody mess. Uggghhhh, bloody mess. Makes one wonder why Pilipinas allows the operations to be held in unsanitary places when there would be scores of Pilipinas doctors who would be willing to do them in clinics or hospitals.

    • Bert ,

      Ahh, UP n, you are advocating for an abortion law. Me, too, though for a different reason. I want it for cases exclusively when the life of the mother is in grave danger, while you want it for the whims and pleasures of everybody, though your logic is quite ambiguous. You’re saying that because some uncaring and unconscientious people are using clotheshanger to abort their child illegally in underground unsanitary places you’re saying that abortion should be legalized, aren’t you?

      Well, that’s what you want, not what I want.

    • Bert ,

      Why is it that Twitter denizens mostly are rooting for the use of abortifacients? I’m just hoping that’s not a reflection of their regards for the value of human life that they themselves created, :).

      • Cocoy ,


        Contraceptives are not “abortifacients.” The church describes them as such because it sees 1) Sex as something that should only happen between a married man and woman; and that 2) When one engages in sex, it is for the primary purpose of procreation.

        Condoms for example prevent contraception but is not an “abortifacient” because it never lets the sperm travel to the uterus to go meet up with the egg. It is not abortion because NO fertilization takes place. Condom merely collects all the semen and all the sperm in plastic, so it doesn’t enter the woman’s body. You can not “abort” something that never took place.

        The sperm— so far as we know, is not sentient. It merely represents the male half of DNA. The Egg on the other hand represent the female side of the DNA.

        Abortion becomes abortion when the sperm fertilizes the egg. There is a debate at exactly what moment life happens. As Roe versus Wade apt tells us, it had to perform a balancing test. It hinged life and abortion based on a woman’s trimester of pregnancy. But the RH Bill is silent on abortion, so that discussion is moot for now.

        The bill does not advocate abortion. It does not legalize abortion. What it does though, is “force” government to offer ALL forms of family planning to a couple— including Natural Family Planning. The bill doesn’t even stop the Church from teaching its flock to go for natural family planning. It doesn’t prevent anyone from advocating one choice over the other, except that it requires government to present all of them. The couple then decides base on their faith, their personal beliefs, their values. So the choice to use is up to the couple.

        • Cocoy ,

          And may I add, that Family planning as per DOH order is being mentioned in all public health clinics and hospitals. Part of the reason why the alabang ordinance was struck down was because it can not prevent Public health centers from not giving out condoms or advocating family planning. Truth be told, RH will merely formalize something that has been happening already, and provide for more funding to fight against a population problem.

          The bishops simply do not want a formalize set of rules because it will look bad on them with respect to the Vatican. It will also show that their political might gets reduced if they can not prevent this bill from being made into law.

          • Jeg ,

            Truth be told, RH will merely formalize something that has been happening already, and provide for more funding to fight against a population problem.

            I think youve hit on the crux of the debate. Forget about the CBCP for a moment and ponder the above statement. One side sees the population as a problem, and the other sees the population as an untapped resource. One side sees a population problem, and the other side sees an economic policy problem. One side admits that government will not change its economic policies which have been lucrative for it at our expense and therefore we should reduce our population, and the other sees the government should implement policies that would make the population productive (like attracting more investment from both local and foreign entrepreneurs that would make the population produce more.)

            The CBCP is hogging the debate on the anti-RH bill side because the media gives it more airtime. There are legitimate causes for concern with the bill that are not CBCP-inspired. These have to do with rights and have to do with economic policy and not religious faith.

            I believe the bill is a bad bill despite my support of the right of individuals to determine when to reproduce and their freedom to choose which technology to use. But I know I am on the losing side because as a famous open letter once said, “We are prepared to lose our freedoms and our rights just to move this country forward.” That has been the middle class’s battle cry. Anyone who adheres to that motto does not have an appreciation of rights and has a profound misunderstanding of the direction in which giving them up will take us. (Hint: it is not ‘forward’.)

            • GabbyD ,

              what rights will be lost if the bill is passed, you think?

              • Jeg ,

                what rights will be lost if the bill is passed, you think?

                Thank you for making my point on the middle class’s general lack of appreciation of rights. Anyway rights can’t be lost. We always have them. The proper question is what rights are in peril of being violated.

                Aside from the increased tax burden on the productive members of society to fund this proposed law to the tune of 3B pesos a year according to Rep Lagman, an amount he considers small, there are these:

                The proposed bill is pretty ambiguous when it comes to defining what birth control methods and technologies are permitted but for this purpose Im assuming items generally recognized as safe but including items that can be controversial in light of the State’s declaration that it will protect the right to life from conception which includes items that prevent a fertilized egg — ergo, a human according to the law and if I may add, science — from being implanted in the uterus such as IUDs and certain pills.

                Under the proposed law, any business owner with 200 employees or more is compelled to provide reproductive health services to all employees in their own respective health facilities, and those with less than 200 employees should partner themselves with health institutions to provide same. Failure to do so is punishable by imprisonment, fine, or both. Any business owner who because of conscience refuses to provide employees with birth control pills, IUDs, or other prophylactics will be violating the law. (The economic impact of this is that employers are to incur higher production costs. This shifting of the responsibility of family planning to employers instead of the individuals where it rightly belongs will have the effect shrinking the number of entrepreneurs willing to go into business.)

                A healthcare worker who because of conscience refuses to perform a procedure is violating the proposed law and could be fined or imprisoned or both. The word ‘procedure’ here is a bit ominous. Procedure means anything from prescribing a drug, inserting an IUD, or performing a ligation.

                In its declaration of policy, the proposed law declares that reproductive health is a basic human right. It follows from this that any institution who does not or refuses to provide these services is a human rights violator and because of this could lose its accreditation and even its license to operate. Any health care worker who refuses to provide these services can also be declared a human rights violator and could lose his license. Granted that this loss of license is not covered under the proposed law but the declaration of reproductive health as a human right has profound implications. All health care facilities are compelled to provide RH services and all health care facilities are subject to accreditation such that any facility who refuses to provide such services (Catholic institutions) will not be accredited.

                The proposed law also calls for a common RH curriculum for public and private schools. In other words, a private institution not funded by the State may not formulate its own RH curriculum according to its own philosophies and belief systems and could violate freedom of religion clauses in the basic law. (Im all for providing education on basic biological functions and making children aware of their rights. I think this section of the bill should be cut from this present bill and presented as its own independent bill.)

                And probably the most insidious because of its immediate consequences, any person who ‘maliciously disinforms’ others about the law is threatened with imprisonment. There is no definition of what malicious disinformation means and, like libel, it could be foisted on anyone who criticizes the law in public. This is a serious curtailment of freedom of expression and could set a dangerous precedent wherein future laws are written with their own malicious disinformation clauses thereby making it practically illegal to publicly malign or criticize any law.

                There is also the part that says all previous laws not consistent with the present proposed law are repealed or modified automatically. Automatically. Without hearings and debates. This bill assumes that it is the bestest bill ever such that all previous laws must bow to it no questions asked.

                (Ive deliberately left out pointing to which specific provisions Im referring to, partly because Im too lazy and partly because I encourage you to read it yourself and make up your own mind. 😉 )

                • GabbyD ,

                  “hank you for making my point on the middle class’s general lack of appreciation of rights. Anyway rights can’t be lost. We always have them. The proper question is what rights are in peril of being violated.”

                  ha? if ur implying this is what i’m thinking, mali po.

                  i’m just using your words (or interpretation of what the middle class said)

                  also, semantic note: if your rights are always “violated” (i.e. the proper term), then your rights are as good as “lost” (i.e. the improper term).

                  so i dont see any practical difference between “violated” vs “lost” rights. (here, practical means — “does it impact on actual rights one may excercise?”)

                  but other than that, thanks for your reply. its quite comprehensive. i like it.

                  i’d question the following:
                  1) production costs — it depends on the bargaining power between labor and owners of capital. it could be that the total cost of labor is the same — only that labor takes home lower money wages in exchange for more “in-kind” services.

                  the key issue is whether, macro-economy wise, its efficient for employers to bear the fixed costs (some of which may be monetary) of making services available. if the fixed cost is large, then its better for “groups” of people to make it available– either the govt, or the firm; vs say individuals.

                  2) individuals disagreeing with it –> ultimately, in a society with different people, SOMEONE will not like a policy.

                  i think/believe that part of the social contract is that we live (accept) with policies we do not agree with, to the extent that we cannot ignore it.

                  society is RIFE with things that individuals and groups do not agree with, but live with/accept anyways.

                  further, i do not believe it is accurate (or helpful!) to call this social contract that i’ve just defined is “violating rights”.

                  i believe that part of the social contract is to regulate what happens when one person’s preferences clash with anothers’.

                  i also believe that “clashing” happens alot. i believe that clashing preferences are resolved politically primarily, in policy secondarily.

                  so, for specific examples u cite, like medical practitioner beliefs clashing with the RH bill, the student learning about it, etc… the issue is political first and foremost. once it passes the political process, then, if differences cannot be accomodated in policy, then its over. just deal with it.

                  example: i am muslim. i disagree with the war with MILF. I think PH shud be an islamic state. i am also a soldier. i have no choice but to do my job as a soldier, IF i still want to be a soldier. i cannot “disagree” and sue for my “violated” rights.

                  i may sue if the phil army forced me to eat pork in the times i am not executing my duties as a soldier.

              • GabbyD ,

                unless he means the pill, which may destroy a fertilized egg.

                • Cocoy ,

                  The pill prevents ovulation. Ergo, it prevents fertilization from occurring in the first place.

                  • GabbyD ,

                    “The pill prevents ovulation”

                    not all the time.

                    • Cocoy ,

                      no system is perfect. *shrug* the pill if i’m not mistaken has a label on it describing its side effects. a doctor presents those side effects and it is up to the woman/couple to decide whether on not to use it.

                      • GabbyD ,

                        even if the “side effect” is to destroy a fertilized embryo?

                        maybe not. if you, for example, did action A, which leads to a x% probablity that a random person somewhere in the world will die, will you do it?

                        • Cocoy ,

                          Women all over the world are already using it. That is their choice. All the bill does, again, is present all options so people can make an informed choice.

                          Again, it doesn’t demand that every woman take the pill; nor does it demand that every couple take natural family planning. The bill does not force Catholics for example to use a condom. The choice is left in people’s hands. Let them choose what is right for them.

                          • GabbyD ,

                            “Women all over the world are already using it”

                            yes. thats NOT the point of contention.

                            the question is: are birth control pills possibly abortifacient?

                            i believe that everyone/anyone who looks into this question, and is honest with themselves, will answer “yes”.

                            just because “everyone is using it” doesnt mean it’s correct. “everyone” in the US once said that slave owning is acceptable, burning witches is acceptable, etc.

                            doesnt mean it’s right.

                        • Bert ,


                          Please read again my comment, I did not mention ‘contraceptives’, I said ‘abortifacients’, and most of the Twitterers are complaining against the Brgy. Ayala Alabang’s directive against the use of abortifacients, ‘di ba? I took that to mean that the Twitterers are for the use of abortifacients, aren’t they?

                          Please take note, Cocoy, of this statement of yours: “Abortion becomes abortion when the sperm fertilizes the egg.” See? I agree with you on that. That means that when one aborts a fertilized egg, meaning killed the fertilized egg, the person has committed abortion. Hormonal pills can kill a fertilized agg hence it is an abortifacient, if we go by your statement, right? IntraUterine device (IUD) prevents a fertilized egg from reaching the uterus thus killing the fertilized egg on its travel for survival. Isn’t that abortion, too?

                          And so, am I wrong when I said that most twitter denizens are for the use of abortifacients?

                          • UP nn grad ,

                            Bert: if you believe all devices that can be an abortificent should be banned, then clotheshangers should be banned because clotheshangers very effectively is an abortificent.

                            • Bert ,

                              UP n: I just said that Twitterers are for the use of abortifacients, and am just hoping that being that way does not reflect how they value human lives they themselves created though I’m not sure because how could one be for abortifacient and care whether their child live or die.

                              As to the banning of materials, abortificent or not, let’s wait for Cocoy to write about that. I’m sure you can enlighten us on how to use clotheshanger for abortion as you seems to be an expert on that.

                          • Manny ,

                            Cocoy, contraceptives do not only prevent conception. Many of them have a secondary backup mechanism that prevents the implantation of the already fertilized egg. Implanation occurs 3-8 days after fertilization.

                            When contraceptives fail to prevent ovulation (and for some contraceptives the failure rate is between 30%-60%), this secondary backup mechanism kicks in. With nowhere to implant, the fertilized egg (already a human being) is eventually destroyed. This is an early-term abortion.

                            Although there are no exact figures as to how often this actually takes place, it is estimated that this abortifacient action happens once every 77 cycles. Thus, if 77 women regularly take abortifacient contraceptives, we can probably expect one early-term abortion to occur every monthly cycle.

                            Abortifacient contraceptives include all hormonal contraceptives (pills, injectables, implantables), IUDs, and so-called “emergency contraceptives.” The plain untreated condom, however, is not abortifacient.

                            HB 4244 funds and forces persons to dispense such abprtifacient contraceptives. If they refuse, they must still make referrals which is tantamount to cooperating in a morally objectionable act. Those who stuck with their conscience and do not comply will be unjustly punished with fines and imprisonment.

                            HB 4244 is an RH/Abortion bill. It violates freedom of conscience. Filipinos who cherish life are quite right in opposing it.

                        • Bert ,

                          Hurray, this must be a good day for pro-abortion advocates! 🙂

                          • UP nn grad ,

                            I hope Ayala-Alabang takes this to the Pilipinas Supreme Court — that a baranggay can make its own interpretation of Pilipinas Constitution and Pilipinas laws.

                          • GabbyD ,

                            if you read the Munt city ordinance, they IGNORE the pharma law entirely…

                            the pharma law is the law that enables AAV to do it.

                            strike downthe pharma law if u must. but follow the law as it is written.

                            • UP nn grad ,

                              This is called bottoms-up democracy.

                              Baranggay makes a pronouncement.
                              City makes a pronouncement.
                              Next — province of Rizal.

                              And then, maybe Malacanang will step in. Put up the Yellow Buntings, Robredo says!