DECLARATION OF STRONG OPPOSITION TO THE PASSAGE OF THE RH BILL INTO LAW: AN OPEN APPEAL TO THE PHILIPPINE LAWMAKERS Prof

. Marvin Julian L. Sambajon, Jr., Ph. D. Cand. Author, Lecturer & Researcher In light of reason, the enactment of the RH Bill into law should be rejected on the following grounds: a.) The RH Bill promotes contraception in all its unnatural methods necessarily including abortifacients and sterilization; Contraception destroys the “order of existence of things” demonstrated in the course of the natural functions and processes of the reproductive system. It positively and directly frustrates the procreative potentials and arbitrarily dissociates the unitive and procreative meanings of the marital act. It cripples the language of marital sexuality and divests the conjugal union of its innate affective dimension. Moreover, numerous contraceptive methods are abortifacient. They work to alter the normal functioning of the endometrium to prevent the implantation of the zygote or the fertilized ovum thereby getting killed along the process. It was already scientifically proven that human life begins to exist at the completion of fertilization 5-7 to 10 days before its implantation. Thus, preventing it from implanting into the uterine lining (endometrium) by means of Pills, Depo-Provera, Norplant, Intra-Uterine Device (IUD), and others causing its termination constitutes what is called chemical/medical abortion. The act is both immoral and unconstitutional. Sterilization does not only arbitrarily thwart the natural faculty of the marital act to generate life but it also destroys the functional integrity of the human body, particularly, of the reproductive system incapacitating it of performing organic functions vitally inherent to its nature. b.) By the promotion of contraception, abortifacient, and sterilization, the RH Bill does more harm than good. In its concern to prevent proliferation of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), unwanted pregnancy and even abortion, the RH Bill promotes condoms paving the way to opportunities of indiscriminate and unrestricted sexual activities and multiple sexual relations. The likelihood of such activities and relations is highly proximate considering the moral pluralism, particularly along sexuality, our society is beleaguered with, and the trends for the freedom of sexual revolution among teenagers. The use of condoms would only offset the reduction in infection and unwanted pregnancy rates resulting in a net increase in the incidence of persons infected with HIV and cases of pregnancy.

c.) As per the findings of numerous biological and scientific researches and studies, contraception in all its diverse methods predisposes the consumers to the possibility of developing variety of serious pathologic conditions, such as blood clots, cancer types, heart disease, and the like, along with human immunodeficiency virus/ acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) and other sexually transmitted infection (STI) transmissions. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), condoms are not 100 percent effective in the prevention of STIs and HIV while contraceptives, particularly the combined estrogen-progestin pills, are carcinogenic. d.) The RH Bill proponents contend that the Bill would help the government address pressing social problems such as, unwanted pregnancies, abortion cases, maternal mortality, human immunodeficiency virus/ acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) and other sexually transmitted disease (STD) transmissions, poverty, overpopulation, and others - geared towards its envisioned sustainable human development. However, the various elements of the reproductive health care embodied in the RH Bill specifically meant for maternal and child care, have obviously been subsumed in the provisions of R.A. 9710 - An Act Providing for the Magna Carta of Women which has been in place since 2009. The latter could even be deemed more attuned to the care and welfare of women simply because the health services and programs it provides cover all stages of a woman’s life cycle and address the major causes of women’s mortality and morbidity. By fully recommending the use of contraceptive and abortifacient methods, the RH Bill implicitly predisposes men and women to the affirmation of an existing social paradigm that they can freely exercise their “sexual rights” whenever they wish while adhering to contraception as an expression of such rights. In short, sex without pregnancy is the ‘menu of the day.’ This further enriches the cultivation of the so-called ‘contraceptive mentality’ so prevalent in the postmodern society. Furthermore, considering sexual adventurism among individuals, particularly the young ones nowadays, having access to contraception would only amplify their curiosity, fondness, and appetites for flesh. Like the dreaded AIDS, premarital and unintended pregnancy rates reduction attempt would just be compensated by the frequency of contraceptive coitus and increase in the number of individuals who may indulge in sex thereby inducing pregnancy cases just the same. The Bill is founded on wrong premises; poverty is not directly attributable to high population; fertility growth rates have already been declining; condoms are not 100% effective prophylactic measures against sexually transmitted infections and diseases; etc.

e.) Sex education will be taught in basic education which necessarily includes the use of condoms, contraception, and others. The implications are as follows;  It is the teachings of the school which the teen-agers will hold on in the spirit of what the RH Bill calls “exercise of adolescents’ rights,” and not the teachings of their parents; It is the State that will become the primary educator of children in this vital part of their human formation and not the parents; So, in effect, the natural rights of parents are seized by the school/State and the role ought to be, fundamentally, played by parents is at the hands of RH teachers and sex-educators; Besides, it cannot be refuted that since, adolescents are still in their formative years, the kind of “formative program” that seems palatable to their senses may take an advantageous position no matter how disastrous it may be to their moral fiber. This is the existentially-feared situation to set in. Teen-agers are taught about ‘safe-sex,’ contraceptive methods use, pregnancy avoidance, and the like so that when they exercise their ‘sexual rights,’ they know what to do, which in effect, would lead to sexual promiscuity and sex-related problems fostering more harm than good. Of course, teen-agers, considering their developmental stages, do not yet realize the harmful repercussions so that the pre-occupation only delves into the ‘enjoyment’ the said program yields.

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Hence, what is contemptibly repugnant, at this point, is the RH Bill’s promotion of a program under the guise of adolescents’ rights, to appear ‘edible’, which, in a way, exploits and spoils their juvenile minds and formative phases in life, in what could, otherwise, be a morallyrooted values formation program along human sexuality in light of Filipino cultural religious heritage. Once they internalize the ‘culture of sex-education’ imparted by the school, the adolescents would tend to have and exhibit attitudinal and behavioral changes compatible with what the imbibed culture suggests. And if their changes are found contrary to the moral standards and religious convictions of their family, there would be breaking of shared values, principles, and ideals usually binding the family before. Thus, not only the rights of parents but also the family’s binding moral heritage would be jeopardized, by reason of which, the RH Bill is, truly, an anti-family bill. With all the aforesaid contemptible repercussions should the RH Bill be enacted into law, I am appealing to you, anti-RH Bill Legislators, to be steadfast in your pro-life principles and advocacy without having to succumb to whatever pressure, be it the withholding of your pork-barrel, derail in the release of your needed funds for your projects or deprivation of key positions or privileges in Congress, the administration may inflict on you.

Likewise, I am appealing to the pro-RH Bill Legislators and proponents to withdraw and pull out the RH Bill from the roster of bills for enactment for it is not directed towards the common good. I am appealing to the undecided Legislators to support the pro-life advocacy and help in the rejection of the RH Bill for it is not a solution to the existing socio-demographic and economic problems in the country. Rather, it will only complicate problems such as, HIV/AIDS, abortion and premarital pregnancy cases due to sexual adventurism and promiscuity; radical drop in fertility rates which have already been declining; and others. I am appealing to all Filipino people of good will and right reason to help in opposing the Bill. Let us all be behind the anti-RH Bill legislators in this noble fight against the culture of death. Let us be praying for one another.
A graduate of Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), a graduate of Philosophy, a former theologian seminarian, a former associate professor, and a silent pro-life advocate, Professor Marvin Julian L. Sambajon, Jr. has just made use of his pen to come up with this opus conveying a resilient message that springs from his thorough studies and reflection on the fundamental moral principles governing human life in its various aspects, the controversial Reproductive Health (RH) Bill, and the inviolable dignity of every human person. He obtained his Master of Arts in Education (M.A. Ed.), in Guidance and Counseling at the Universidad De Santa Isabel (U.S.I.), Naga City, in 2003. At present, he is finishing Doctor of Philosophy (Ph. D.), in Educational Foundations at the Bicol University (B.U.), Legaspi City, where he is also on the process of writing his doctoral dissertation. His first book, Health Care Ethics - a college textbook for nursing, medicine, and other health care-related courses - published in 2007 by the C&E Publishing, Inc. has just been revised in its new title, Bio-Ethics in Health Care Practice. His second book, Ethics for Educators – a college textbook for teacher-education and educators in all areas of discipline – was published last year (2011) by the same publishing company. His third book, In Light of Reason, is a reference book consisting of a rational and scientific exposition of arguments and facts about contraception and the controversial RH Bill. He has also been a resource speaker/lecturer in numerous lecture-fora and symposia on various themes in many colleges and universities in Bicol Region and even in other regions in the Philippines. Currently, Prof. Sambajon is involved in three (3) new book projects: Contemporary Corporate Ethics, Ecological Ethics, and Compendium of Social Philosophy along with research and lecturing. Next school year, he will continue and finish his Master of Arts in Theology, major in Moral Theology.

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