The commissioners of Commission on Elections are intellectually brilliant persons who can interpret the laws with such ease, you cannot help but wonder if their brains are actually composed of 20 Intel Core i7 processors.
The Comelec Second Division, headed by Commissioner Nicodemo Ferrer, with Commissioners Elias Yusoph and Lucenito Tagle as members, has just rejected for the second time the application of Ang Ladlad Party for accreditation in the next year’s party list elections because it “tolerates immorality”.
Yes, you read that right. Our intellectually brilliant commissioners disqualified Ang Ladlad, a party representing gays and lesbians, because (according to the Philippine Daily Inquirer report) the practice of homosexuality offends morals.
Absolutely brilliant! Magnificently well thought of! A decision worthy of making required reading in all law schools in the world! And every bar examinee should be tested about that groundbreaking decision! This decision will establish a lot of precedents, and debunks other precedents!
Let me explain why this decision is brilliant.
* In deciding this case, the Second Division has marvelously forgotten (intentional or not, it does not matter) that the 1987 Philippine Constitution has two provisions regarding religion.
Article II, Section 6 states “The separation of Church and State shall be inviolable.”
Article III, Section 5 states “No law shall be made respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. No religious test shall be required for the exercise of civil or political rights.”
By this decision, the Comelec has reaffirmed these two provisions – except that it does not apply to Filipino citizens who are gays and lesbians. Brilliant!
* The decision is based on the Second Division’s interpretation of Article II, Section 13, which states “The State recognizes the vital role of the youth in nation-building and shall promote and protect their physical, moral, spiritual, intellectual, and social well-being. It shall inculcate in the youth patriotism and nationalism, and encourage their involvement in public and civic affairs.”
By this decision, the Second Division has explicitly defined morality as to be sexual in nature. In short, there is nothing immoral in lying! There is nothing immoral in cheating! There is no immorality in stealing! Murder is not immoral! As long as what you are doing is not sexual in nature, it is not immoral!
* This decision should give comfort to parents everywhere – yes, including parents who beat and/or rape their children with impunity – that their children will be safe from moral degradation. This should give comfort to parents who beat and/or molest their children – they are not doing anything immoral! Physical abuse is not immoral since it is not sexual in nature! Molestation is not immoral as long as they are not homosexual!
* The decision liberally quotes from the Bible and the Q’uran, establishing two facts: (1) that religious literature is part of jurisprudence, and (2) that our system of government is really theocracy in bad disguise. The decision encourages the political elite to shed this hideous disguise and be upfront about the theocratic leanings of the State. But don’t panic! As long as you are moral, the Pope will bless you seventy times seven (just make sure you don’t forget to donate)!
* The case at bar is about accrediting a party for participation in the party list elections. The decision cited provisions of the Revised Penal Code in deciding to dismiss Ang Ladlad’s petition. This decision sets the precedent that the Revised Penal Code applies in accrediting party list organizations. This will have a wide repercussion going forward. But don’t panic! As long as you are moral, it should not be an issue if your party is involved in corruption!
With all these reasons, there is no doubt that this decision will withstand the test of time. It is indeed a landmark decision! Volumes will be written praising this decision! And these brilliant and intelligent commissioners will be declared saints soon!
Seriously, you might want to read the decision. Here is the PDF file of the said decision. Here it is online. Read it.