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Responsible Parenthood = RH Bill?
(by Gina C. Razon  10/29/2012)

President Aquino’s third State of the Nation Address (SONA) earned criticisms, praises, and appraisal. One of the most awaited parts of the president’s speech was the debate on Reproductive Health Bill (RH Bill). As usual, the president began his speech through statistics. He presented numbers of school facilities to be accomplished at the end of the year. P-noy subsequently related the problem on education to the outgrowing population of the country. Then he hit back the poor family planning background of many Filipinos. The president concluded that Responsible Parenthood might be an effective means to solve some aspects of our education crisis.

These are the key points of President Benigno S. Aquino III regarding Responsible Parenthood taken from the Official Gazette of the Republic of the Philippines: 1. I am against abortion.

2. I am in favor of giving couples the right to choose how best to manage their families so that in the end, their welfare and that of their children are best served.

3. The State must respect each individual’s right to follow his or her conscience and religious convictions on matters and issues pertaining to the unity of the family and the sacredness of human life from conception to natural death.

4. In a situation where couples, especially the poor and disadvantaged ones, are in no position to make an informed judgment, the State has the responsibility to so provide.

5. In the range of options and information provided to couple, natural family planning and modern methods shall be presented as equally available.

The whole Responsible Parenthood issue confuses both the population of anti-RH and pro-RH. Some people say that Responsible Parenthood is the rephrased term of RH Bill. P-Noy allegedly used the term to express his full support for the RH Bill given that Responsible parenthood and the latter are purportedly the same. It is suspected that RH Bill authors and promoters are playing mind games. That is through rephrasing the said bill.

But there are reviews that considered P-Noy’s utterance of Responsible parenthood as a way of gathering the sympathy of the pro-RH and finally trashing the RH Bill. Since the term was coined by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) during March 1994. Responsible Parenthood for USCCB is all about living life through the will of God. So if P-Noy’s objective is to cover up RH Bill through Responsible parenthood; the Church allegedly will declare war against the state.

This recent issue will take us into another flight of vague debate. Arguments and propositions can only be settled at P-Noy’s hands. I believe that P-Noy should provide us all the answers. Whatever P-Noy plans on bringing Responsible Parenthood at the top of the news, he must be clear on his intentions immediately.

As citizens, we have to be updated and be aware of the timeline of the current affairs and societal issues as we are affected by those in any means. Because we are one nation and responsibility is innate in every one of us.

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