as for the pro-chacha argument that it is the prerogative of the legislature to initiate charter change if it so desires or deems necessary, and that we the people should allow the legislative process to proceed and wait until the proposed amendments have been crafted and agreed upon by both houses (voting separately of course) before we start the protests — well, yeah, that’s what happened back in 1970-73. we allowed a constitutionalconvention, and then marcos declared martial law, and the constitution was tailor-made to his requirements, and it was “approved” not by a plebiscite but by hakot assemblies. burned once, twice shy.
as for the the “need” to update the constitution, sez who? conrado de quiros is so right:
. . . why change the Charter at all?
Shifting from a presidential to a parliamentary system, which is the only change Malacañang can be interested in as it would allow Arroyo to become prime minister, means nothing. The merits of a parliamentary government are theoretical, its demerits are practical. Its advantages are on paper, its disadvantages are in plain view. Even as we speak, we can see its infinite dangers in our very efforts to repudiate Con-ass. In a Con-ass, only the congressmen will vote to amend the Constitution, or all legislators – senators and congressmen – may have only one vote. We know that if that happens, Congress will act like a Mafia, as it did when it voted to kill the impeachment bids against Arroyo, and ram through Arroyo’s will on us.
Imperfect as it is, the existence of a Senate and House of Representatives is infinitely preferable to a National Assembly. Take it from Ferdinand Marcos’ Batasang Pambansa [National Legislature], or what we used to call “Bastusang Pambansa.” That is all it will be.
Indeed, far more basically, why keep inventing new constitutions when we don’t followthem anyway? Why keep manufacturing or foisting new laws-a constitution is merely the highest law of the land-when we don’t obey them anyway? First, let us reward the innocent and punish the guilty, then let’s change the Constitution. First, let us have clean elections and legitimate leaders, then let’s change the Constitution. First, let us give the Constitution a chance, then let’s change the Constitution.”