froivinber, author of the Vincenton Post, posted a “friendly” letter last February addressed to “All Pro-RH Bill Freaks”. Given such a charming headline, I couldn’t resist reading said letter. He opens on a very friendly note indeed, congratulating “pro-RH crackheads” on giving out free condoms around the time of Valentine’s Day. He speaks for secular anti-RH Bill people in supporting this “altruistic- or charitable- move” (“altruistic or charitable move”, for the grammar sticklers out there). He then proceeds to offer suggestions on how to better their altruistic efforts without using the power of the state to steal from others to help the poor and the weak.
It is here, however, where I must interject my own opinions. I believe, with all due respect to froivinber, that his suggestions are lacking in foresight, laden with prejudice, and irresponsible in nature. They contradict the very spirit of living in an organized society, as well as his own thoughts at times. What follows from here is an examination and critique of his recommendations, each prefaced with actual text from his blog (in blue italics):
Have the courage to undergo mass ligation (for RH bill women supporters) and mass vasectomy (for men). We, anti-RH bill people, will shoulder your medical expenses.
It appears froivinber sees these surgical procedures as the next logical step to population control, and in a way, he’s right: nothing like making a few snips to permanently prevent unwanted pregnancies. The problem here, of course, is the permanence itself. Education on reproductive health – and as a result, contraceptives – doesn’t close the door on pregnancies; only those individuals feel they are ill-equipped to manage. A good number of Pro-RH Bill people want to have children and bring about the benefits of a flourishing population just as much as many anti-RH Bill people. They simply want the births well-spaced out, with parents willing and able to responsibly raise a child.
He also fails to realize the economic strain mass surgical procedures would put on the country, as well as on medical staff and facilities. According to Pulse Asia, 69% of Filipinos surveyed prior to December 2010 considered themselves pro-RH Bill. Give or take a few percentage points for errors in generalization, it’s still possible that over half of the population will be for the bill. That’s a fairly large pool to weed the courageous from, and even with majority shying away from the challenge, the number of ligation and vasectomy volunteers could number in the thousands; perhaps even more.
froivinber, I’m afraid there just aren’t that many available medical facilities to accommodate that request. We’re talking about hundreds of thousands of pieces of equipment being sterilized, a surgical crew attending to each procedure, and thousands of recovery rooms being reserved for pro-RH Bill individuals. The costs would be as astronomic as the suggestion is impractical.
If you’re so worried about overpopulation, go KILL yourself first or offer your lives to the poor and the weak until the day you die. That is, commit MASS SUICIDE as some anti-population freaks did in other countries.
Again, this is an impractical request. Take note, froivinber, that mass suicides among the RH Bill supporters would economically cripple the country. A 2008 SWS survey found that 77% of individuals belonging to socioeconomic classes A, B and C were in favor of the RH Bill. Granted, the results today may vary from a survey taken nearly three years ago, but if we were to follow the trend reported by the Pulse Asia report I referred to earlier (in which support increased by 6% from the previous year), odds are the SWS figure has increased as well.
We’re talking about 77% of our country’s main money-making force committing suicide. Even if only 20% of those individuals ended up offing themselves, that’s a significant chunk of our national economy going to the grave. This act could possibly doom the Philippines’ fiscal future for decades. That’s not even mentioning the land loss and possible pollution created from burying and cremating the thousands of dead.
I must editorialize for a moment – and I hope you’ll forgive me for this – but how can an individual who claims to be enlightened enough to know the proper way to run this nation even suggest such an atrocity? Even if we take away all sentimentality from the equation, a mass suicide of this magnitude could conceivably ruin the country.
If selfless service for the the welfare of the poor is your fundamental goal in life, form an organization of pro-RH bill advocates or concerned citizens with the altruistic vision to provide for the poor people’s RH care needs. We don’t want to take part in your self-sacrificing agenda. However, we guarantee you that charitable private corporations and organizations will support your altruistic goals.
[Editor’s note: “the the welfare” in the first sentence is likely a typographical error on the author’s part.]
They exist. Perhaps this suggestion would not have been made if the author were better informed, or cared to be so.
Call on all leftists/Marxists/sociologists/neo-Liberals/statists in the country, particularly the Marxists in Congress, to pool their money for the benefit of the poor and less privileged women.
This is also being done; thus the outrage you undoubtedly hear from so many voices and directions. I’d like to add that this message is also being shared with the groups you didn’t identify.
Mass migrate to North Korea, Cuba or Venezuela where the government provides for the needs (e.g. education, health care, abortion, transport, etc.) of their people from womb to tomb. We, anti-RH bill people, guarantee to shoulder your mass transport expenses.
Assuming that the anti-RH Bill people willing to spend on such a grand exodus can actually afford it, and assuming that it can legally be done without any diplomatic issue, why limit the pro-RH Bill folks’ choices to these troubled nations? Pro-RH Bill people should also have the choice to migrate to countries like Finland, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, and New Zealand, which number among the many countries that provide public health care. Unless, of course, froivinber meant to imply public health care causes economies to collapse; a debatable assertion, based on evidence.
If you want a welfare-statist government that would provide everything you need, we suggest that you form a new political party, say, Pro-RH Bill Party or Welfare Statists Party, and join the political process in 2016. You have all the right to influence the government just as the Catholic priests also have the right to influence our statist politicians. Here, you would have the freedom and the right to vote for a pro-RH bill or pro-welfare presidentiable (e.g. Rep. Edcel Lagman or Rep. Risa Hontiveros) who would guarantee to provide you everything you need from womb to tomb.
Again, it’s been done. It’ll continue being done. Of course, the candidates wouldn’t think so narrowly to identify themselves solely as the “Pro-RH Bill Party”, as there are many more matters to attend to in this country. They’ll likely have umbrella concerns and name themselves as something more general, like the Anad party-list and the Labor Party (Partido ng Manggagawa), both of whom vocally supported the RH Bill in interviews. There is also no denying that Noynoy Aquino likely bagged a few votes during the presidential elections on the speculation that he’d have the bill passed during his term.
The Philippines is a democracy, and officials are often elected based on their perceived ability to provide for the voters’ needs. Citizens already exercise their right to vote accordingly.
If you want to spread sex education and other RH bill information, please have the initiative to spread them privately and at your own expense. There are parents who don’t want their kids undergo this kind of leftist/Marxist indoctrination fully supported by sociology professors (who are all Marxists) and anti-population intellectuals like Winnie Monsod. Have Winnie Monsod lead your new political party or altruist organization. You may also provide free family planning counseling to poor people who’d like to avail of your free services.
There are multiple issues with this suggestion. First off, the bill seeks to address the fact that not all parents will take the initiative to privately provide sex education to their children. I, for one, never got “The Talk” from my parents. What more from a large portion of Filipinos who treat sex as a taboo subject? Offering sex education classes in public schools helps ensure that Filipino citizens learn to be responsible about sex and its risks.
Second, just as there are parents who don’t want this sort of education reaching their kids, there are those who do. If we refer once again to the SWS surveys, we’ll see that 70% of individuals surveyed belonging to socioeconomic classes D and E – the classes most likely to benefit from public education – are in favor of the RH Bill. Coupled with the figures in the other socioeconomic classes, majority wins if the bill is passed.
Third, insinuating that all sociology professors are Marxists is a logical fallacy and unbecoming of an individual who deems himself an intellectual. It detracts from the cogency of the argument.
Fourth, free family planning counseling is covered by the consolidated RH Bill, as stated in Section 7. Note that the impact on taxpayers will not be as heavy as some anticipate; the bill, as written, provides free counseling for poor patients. This will likely be a much smaller amount than required for mass ligations, vasectomies, and migrations.
If you want all workers to have free RH care services, why not start your own business or form a corporation whose stockholders are all pro-RH care advocates? Is this not a good idea? If you believe that most Filipinos support your idea, we also believe that many would be very much willing to selflessly invest in your RH care Corporation without any guarantee of possible return on investment. You might want to manufacture condoms, pregnancy test and contraceptive products, etc. But take note that your new Corporation is created to serve the poor people’s common good or greater good, thus its primary corporate goal is to provide the RH care and perhaps education and transport needs of its workers.
The idea of creating a business for pure charity is oxymoronic; for a business to survive, it must create income. Charity, on the other hand, seeks to provide for those without means. Manufacturing contraceptives and pregnancy tests costs money, and if the business’ goal is to provide free products for the poor, it would quickly crumble.
Pro-RH Bill advocates already have avenues through which they can contribute their support: non-government organizations like Likhaan, WomansHealth Philippines, and the members of the Philippine NGO Council on Population, Health, and Welfare. Unfortunately, these organizations cannot accomplish such a large-scale task as effectively as a government-backed initiative.
Since your RH bill seeks to coerce all doctors to abide by its unconstitutional provisions, why not call on all pro-RH bill doctors and health care providers to take part in your new organization? We believe there are doctors who do not support the RH bill. You might not want to violate their rights to ‘freedom of choice.’
According to Section 28 of the consolidated bill, the three acts health care providers are prohibited from doing are 1) Knowingly withholding reproductive health information to concerned individuals; 2) Refusing to perform legal and medically-safe reproductive health procedures on the basis of a lack of third-party consent; and 3) Refusing to provide health care and information to individuals on the basis of marital status, gender, sexual orientation, age , religion, nature of work, or personal circumstances. In short, doctors are prohibited from denying citizens their legal rights.
Perhaps “freedom of choice” is applicable in other professions, but doctors take certain oaths upon entering the field on ethical grounds. These bind them to several responsibilities, including preventing disease whenever possible. They acknowledge the fact that they hold special obligations to uplift the quality of life for their patients, through information or action. As such, in choosing to become doctors, they knowingly waive certain freedoms for the interests of the patients. There is no violation.
If you’re so disgusted with the Catholic priests for trying to influence the government, why not create a new religion that would preach anti-population and statist gospels? You might want to join the statist group of the Filipino Freethinkers who are using science and reason and freedom to advance their own pro-big government, pro-fascism, pro-government control agenda.
The formation of a new religion would likely be ridiculed by the community at large; partially because numerous proponents of the RH Bill have no issue with the Catholic faith. Many still consider themselves Catholics despite having views opposite the clergy’s. Rather, it is the manner in which the local Catholic priests tend to restrict their followers’ access to certain rights that is the issue. I mentioned earlier that a good number of pro-RH Bill people aren’t anti-population; they’re pro-responsible population growth. There are many reasons for wanting this – dwindling resources unable to support a rapidly-growing population for one thing – but there is no anti-life sentiment.
As for the Filipino Freethinkers, I leave their reaction to these assertions of pro-fascism agendas to them.
Since some of us, anti-RH bill secularists, support abortion, we encourage your women to seek abortion especially now that the Congress is due to start a debate on the beginning of life.
What would mass abortions contribute to the matter at hand, other than creating mountains of medical waste and serious health risks in women? What would the timing revolving around Congress accomplish? Symbolism at the cost of death? This is ludicrous and grossly unintelligent. There are safer, more logical ways to get the message across.
Besides, froivinber should know that the law – that which he seeks to defend by calling the RH Bill “unconstitutional” – identifies abortion as an illegal act. The bill recognizes that fact, and states as such in Section 3. It also recognizes that women should not be denied medical help regardless of the reason for the need; post-abortion care is provided for in the interests of medical duty, as sworn by health care professionals. froivinber’s suggestion, ironically, is unconstitutional.
You might also want to entertain and provide life-encouraging services to the poor and women. Why not call on dramatist Carlos Celdran and all actors and actresses who manifested their RH bill support to achieve this goal?
If these individuals have already voiced their support for the bill on the public forum, why would there be a need to call on them? How would entertainment solve the issues surrounding the suffocating population density in the metropolis, and the succeeding poverty? This suggestion makes no sense.
froivinber ends his friendly letter by stating that secular RH Bill opponents disagree with the “idiotic evaluation” RH Bill advocates have that “freedom of choice” requires government intervention. He goes on to say that the bill violates the very notion of freedom, since freedom is a natural facet of humanity not to be affected by law, government edict, or political decree. He (or “they”) believes that a free society is one that is informed, but said information is not to be disseminated by the state. He closes by recommending that pro-RH Bill freaks find pseudo-intellectual guidance through prayer or by joining the Freethinkers.
Forgive the language that follows, but it is in froivinber’s nature to make ad hominem attacks against those who disagree with him and disguise them as logic. I myself am guilty of character-directed remarks, but I make it clear (as in my post on Noynoy Aquino’s withdrawal of support for the bill) that I am writing an ad hominem piece. This, despite the counterarguments bound in logic, is another such post. If you are uncomfortable with this, please read no further.
froivinber is a special kind of moron, one that has convinced himself of his own intelligence that he fails to see the idiocy that spews from his gullet. He masks his arguments with heavy terms (he brings up the word “statist” eight times in his arguments, and roughly 10 more times in the comments, give or take the instances from other people), but then points to his own posts as references. This is akin to the childish argument of “I’m right because I said so.” He tries to appear well-read, but his sources can be questionable at times; helium.com, for example, is a site where anyone can publish whatever sort of bullshit he feels like writing that day. He is quick to dismiss his critics as “IDIOTS” (yes, in all caps) and calls them “STUPID” and “IGNORANT” as he hides behind his keyboard, oblivious to his own ignorance. He makes no apologies when called out for this uncomely behavior, often arguing that he is not at fault for calling these people for what they really are. Never mind that insulting one’s opponent is the number one no-no in the intellectual pursuit of debating. This whole “letter” of his was less a convincing, coherent argument, and more a thumb-sucking rant hiding underneath a thin veil of false intelligence. The anger directed at pro-RH Bill individuals and the violent recommendations make that all too clear.
The true idiot, dear froivinber, is the fool who shuts his ears to the rest of the world, dismissing information that goes against the grain of his limited mind. He believes in his mind and heart that he has found the answer to all of life’s ills and raves like a lunatic at the people who think otherwise. The true idiot is deaf to two-sided reason, and blind to the truth. He is arrogant and callous and obnoxious with his half-hearted knowledge, never criticizing himself for fear of realizing his own stupidity. He will never realize the value in seeing from both sides. He will never recognize in himself the pseudo-intelligence he attributes to others. He will never, ever learn. He refuses to.
As a result, his words, loud as they may be, will never have substance.
You, froivinber, are noise.