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Stupendous justification

In lowering the age of criminal liability, the House of Representative through its
highest official, the Speaker, stupendously justified their action claiming they only delivered
what the President wanted. The hilarity of the justification merited comments from netizens
who asked if the President wants them to eat shit, will they do it.

The ludicrous justification given by Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in the lowering
of the age of criminal liability from 15 to at first nine then finally to 12 expectedly did not in
any way help the cause of the Lower House in blindly giving in to the wishes of Malacanang.

Even the experts they invited as resource persons to enlighten them about a child’s
age of discernment for their actions were one in cautioning them from lowering the age of
criminal liability. But the advice just fell on deaf ears because the blind supporters of the
President among the House members refused to see the light.

They were bent on pleasing Duterte than being right. Apparently, they did not want
to incur the ire of the President at this point when the midterm elections are fast
approaching. In other words, they’d rather be fools than wise. Pathetic.

Pro-Duterte trolls in social media are peddling the information, perhaps to cushion
the negative impact of Arroyo’s admission that it was the President who pushed for the
lowering of the age of criminal liability, that a sizable number of countries have a lowered
age of criminal liability. Another argument that instead of clearing up the uproar against
such action only muddled the issue even more.

It is of no moment to us if other countries have a lower age of criminal liability. What
matters to us in reaching a decision on the matter is the expert opinion of academics and
professional practitioners about our very own Filipino kids. These experts were one in saying
that our kids, as a general rule, are able to discern between the ages 15-18 hence the
pegging at 18 the age of majority.

Some experts even say that a sizable number of Filipinos display some ability to
discern late at age 24. Given the controversies the President plunges himself into due to his
public claims and stories that clearly do not reflect any discernment on his part, unarguably
the Filipinos’ ability to discern must be at a higher age compared to their counterparts in
other countries.

By the way, passing a law, House members should be reminded, is not a matter of
what the President wants. It is for this reason that the framers of the Constitution separated
the three branches of government with equal powers so that no branch should ever
capitulate to any of the other two branches.

If House members can’t have respect for themselves as a co-equal branch to the
President’s Executive Branch, what compelling need do we have to keep them? Why not
abolish the House of Representatives and just let the Senate as the sole body entrusted with
the task of formulating laws of the land?


Abolishing the House of Representative would enable the government to save more.
These savings could be used for other programs and projects of the government that are
beneficial to the people. An institution of the government that easily allows itself to be co-
opted by another co-equal branch doesn’t deserve to continue existing even for a minute.
The stupendous justification articulated by Speaker Arroyo about why they passed the bill
lowering the age of criminal liability proves beyond any iota of doubt the House of
Representatives’ lack of discernment on when it should resist Malacanang’s importuning.

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