Faith and the #RHBill

source Manila Cathedral
Free will. Choice. Faith. Science. Words easily uttered these days leading up to the vote in Congress of the Reproductive Health Bill. The most vocal opponent of the bill is the Catholic Church, led by the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines.

The bill, like many laws of the land is complex. The issue is not simple. So its proponents have distilled it into the salient point: maternal health, and a matter of choice. It is on these points that it has gained much support.

The bill is far from perfect. But what law is? The sad truth is that this bill is made even more imperfect because of the lack of learned debate between those for it, and those against it.

The sad truth is that the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines sees this debate as about them. Passage of the bill signals a more secular society. The perceived power of the CBCP, to them dwindles. If on this moral issue, the CBCP fails, what on other issues of the day?

Another sad truth, because of the CBCP’s trolling behavior on this issue, real debate on the lack of, or the merits of this bill never came to pass. It’s a shame really.

On Twitter, @jeromegotangco points out, “Here is opinion. I agree with healthcare but I do not agree on subsidizing some else’s sex life.” Jon Limjap replied, “It’s a toss up between subsidizing someone else’s sex life or welfare of someone else’s kid. We’re doing the latter!” Both are valid points of view. And both should be part of the debate on the merits of the Reproductive Health Bill. Has it been?

The truth is, reproductive health isn’t about religion. The bill does not go against the prohibition on abortion. It does not prevent a Catholic from listening to church teachings on natural family planning. It doesn’t prevent a Catholic couple to plan their family, to spread their kids over a span of years, according to their capacity to take care of that child. It does prevent the Catholic belief on natural family planning to apply to everyone of different faith. It does try to prevent irresponsibility: that a couple can have kids, without giving a thought to the future of that person.

People are now rightly asking, “How will I feed my kid?” “How can I give this human being, proper education?” “how can I give this human being a good life?” If that is the case, how is this going against Jesus’ commandment of Love?

Without doubt, the reproductive health bill should be passed. Whether we argue or not on its imperfections, or the nature of the debate, the fact is, this bill will be better for everyone.

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.

  • UPnnGrd

    Hey…. ONDOY came early.

    The CBCP and some manghuhula should start passing on the word. SOMEONE is angry, either at Edcel Lagman’s cabal, or maybe at the continued corrup[tion in Gobyerno, or maybe at Mupas for releasing GuLLOO.

    • UPnnGrd

      OR… as benigno mentions, maybe the floods are because PersiNoynoy
      cancelled a lot of flood control projects that he inherited on the
      premise that the inherited projects have to be KORAP because they had
      GuLLOO’s signatures.

      No anger from UPstairs… just millimeters of rainfall poorly handled by facilities that never got improved upon…. because of mis-governance downstairs.,

      • cocoy

        Who is this benigno? Reliable source?

        • UPnnGrd

          benigno is the one right now who is extremely saddened that deLima’s name did not get included on the list to PersiBenigno-Aquino — from JBC.

          Too bad about deLIma. Malakanyang may be saddenedm, too, as de Lima in Supremo-Korte can be a great help to PresidentNoynoy’s efforts to SAVE THE REPUBLIC from the anomalies of previous administration and from other external threats.

  • UPnnGrd

    So Congress is already voting??? GuLLO’s vote for or against should not be counted.

    She is guilty according to Malakanyang, and travel and other privileges should be denied to those found guilty by Malakanyang.

  • UPnnGrd

    Amando Doronilla in his column mentions that …..
    …. the bishops have promised to campaign against the reelection of legislators who would vote for the bill.

    In last presidential election, did the bishops or priests carry placards saying “Vote for Noynoy!!” or “Vote for Binay!!” or “vote for Villar!”? Pilipinas “church/state separation” does not allow priests or imams or reverends or nuns from campaigning for specific candidates, does it?

  • UPnnGrd

    There are a number of nuns and priests who are ignoring the Vatican message about condoms. These priests and nuns who support use of (and who distribute) condoms are doing so because of HIV/AIDS.

    Pilipinas of today is well-recognized in United Nations as a county in trouble. United Nations pooint to PIlipinas sadly as …one of seven countries in the world where (HIV/AIDS) cases have risen by 25 percent or more since 2001.

  • It’s fascinating that the discussion has turned into a referendum on the Catholic Church.I’m reminded of the old saw that it is better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than open it and remove all doubt. The Church has opened theirs quite wide, I fear.

    • UPnnGrd

      There is reasonability in the Vatican’s position…. unfortunately, Pilipinas CBCP and members of Congress are very shrill as they speak of the Vatican position. The logic is simple — the primacy of LIFE over Quality-of-Life. This premise, to me, is universally accepted. Evidence : suicide is extremely rare among the most MISERABLE of humans whether they are from BASECO, from Pasay City, from the slums of Brazil or South Africa or among the Aetas and other neglected indigenous tribes of USA, Canadian, Mexico, Pakistan or India. Reasonability, too, in primacy-of-LIFE principle getting wackoed when BigGovernment or even “Social Norms” step in. Evidence : newborns getting discarded because of family-size-goals or “male-children much much much more important than female-children”.

      There is reasonability in the Vatican’s position. Too bad the shrill voices from the CBCP and members of Congress as they speak in favor of the Vatican’s position.

      Having said above — the reproHealth bill and the MDG goals are directed towards giving information and choices. Pilipinas Congress should pass the bill.

      • China’s one-child policy indeed produces unfortunate and tragic results. And indeed, life is precious. I myself don’t think sperm is life, any more than my spit, so it strikes me as odd that putting on a piece of rubber to block its path is considered damnable. It is simply a choice not to have a kid. The same choice a person makes when deciding not to have sex until it is a safe time of month. Only more certain.

  • manuelbuencamino


    The bill is about religion. We don’t have to go as far as abortion because the bishops and the bill’s supporters agree on its legality and morality. The disagreement is on artificial contraception. The Catholic bishops are against it. It is against their teachings. The bishops know their view about artificial contraception needs to be reviewed but they have taught their followers, for centuries, that the only acceptable methods of birth control are abstinence and calendars. Thus their teaching authority is at stake here. And teaching authority and moral authority go hand in hand. In short, the RH Bill is not the issue as much as it is the church’s moral authority which is what it stands on.

    • cocoy

      Perfect >> “the RH Bill is not the issue as much as it is the church’s moral authority which is what it stands on.”