Category: abortion

mo & RHian

i didn’t even “know” rhian ramos before the sh*t hit the fan; these showbiz girls all look the same to me.  but mo twister i couldn’t help noticing from the first because he speaks perfect english and is simpatiko naman, reminded me of martin nievera in MAD days.

that they were a couple pala i only found out when a few facebook friends posted mo-rhian related statuses.  in fairness, no one posted the video, or link, unless i missed it lang, which still means it wasn’t being posted all over the place.  which led curious me to to get the gist and find out the latest — to wit, the video was recorded by mo while in singapore, crying over his girlfriend’s abortion against his wishes, which video was released on the internet by unidentified ones, which has led to apologies from mo, but no denials from rhian, only complaints of what-sounds-like emotional battering.

meanwhile, elizabeth angsiaco was tweeting like mad from the senate as filibustering on the RH bill proceeded and senator tito sotto had the floor again and was again discoursing on RH as in-aid-of-abortion or something as disputable.  which led me to post this status:

the mo & rhian story, in the context of RH debates in congress, is HOT.  interesting that nothing much is being said in social media in defense (or offense) of either mo or rhian.  one would think that the pro-life would be taking mo’s side, and the pro-choice, rhian’s.  but it’s more complicated than that, ‘no? … yung pro-RH naman natin ay hindi all-out pro-choice

commented orlando roncesvalles, a virtual friend and fellow blogger:

this is a difficult issue.  “choice” in “pro-choice” is a crime in PH so long as the courts define a conceived fetus as a natural person.  if i remember, roe v. wade turned in part on texas common law that a non-viable fetus was not yet a human being.

and yet abortion, a mortal sin acc to the church, a crime acc to ph law, happens everyday around here.  we all know someone who has resorted to it for one reason or another at one time or another.

the silence, including the legislators’, on this particular allegation of abortion, though not unexpected, is intriguing.  is it to spare the girl, whom it would seem we don’t want to condemn because the guy has punished her enough?  or are we giving her the benefit of the doubt since she has yet to confirm or deny?  (ako, i’m eagerly awaiting her lawyer lorna kapunan’s defense strategy: admit or deny or dedma.)

but more than anything, the silence reflects on the RH bill:  it seeks to address the needs only of poor women who have no access to info re birth control and/or contraceptive methods and devices, and who therefore, in many cases, resort to abortion.  this is really also to say that women who are educated and well-to-do need no help and don’t resort to abortion.

in fact the only difference between poor and rich women in this country of macho moralists who have no respect for women’s rights is that poor women have only hilots and sleazy clinics to run to where methods are crude and painful and life-threatening, while rich women have access to expensive facilities and safe and painless procedures, here and abroad.

says philstar‘s cito beltran:

…lets face the facts, ABORTIONS have been happening in this country, in schools, colleges and universities from the fifties, all up to today. Some women were forced to do it by their partner or by social pressure, or fear. But I also know of young women who had abortions because pregnancy would ruin their careers or their life. Men have been party to them or have been opposed to them but could not stop them.

We are a nation that has lived with this generational lie, we are a society that has opted to live in denial and ignorance rather than do something educated, civilized and Godly about pre-marital sex, about sex education and most especially about unwanted pregnancy. And while factions were fighting as they do today, the killing of unwanted babies continued.

yes, it’s time to face facts.

enrile, sotto, pepsi #RH

senate president enrile insists that RH is about population control and NOT health.  excuse me lang, but it is about population control AND health.  and what’s wrong ba with population control that’s nothing naman like china’s or japan’s one-child policy. it’s not even a two- or three- or four-child policy.  it’s a policy that will leave it to couples to decide how many children they can afford to support and raise with dignity, and to intelligently choose a contraceptive method that both man and woman can live with.  which could be a lot of children pa rin tho properly spaced, but that would hinge on whether our good and honorable senators ever muster the courage and nobility to fight for the interests of the masses (jobs, land, food, good education) and not the self-serving interests of the elite to which they belong.  until then, what’s wrong with population control in this third world country where majority of filipinos are poor and can barely feed themselves properly three times a day?  happy lang ba si enrile na anak na lang nang anak ang kababaihan, di bale kung ikinamamatay ng ilan, di na bale kung gaano kahirap ang buhay, di na bale kung gaano kaawaawa ang mga bata? susmaryosep.  parang obispo na siya.

as for majority floor leader and eat bulaga comedian senator sotto, he insists that the RH bill is about abortion.  at hindi siya nagpapatawa, serious siya, as in, he studied in harvard, he knows what he is doing, and no less than god is using him to do what is right.  really?  right for whom?  for macho men who can’t make pigil their panggigigil, pasensiya na lang the women and the unplanned-for oftentimes unwanted uncared-for children?

The senator was able to solicit the support of the Filipinos for Life group, which noted a local pro-RH organization’s supposed advocacy for abortion. It was referring to EnGenderRights Inc., a member of the Reproductive Health Advocacy Network, an umbrella organization of RH advocates all over the Philippines.

“They say, ‘Abortion is rampant, therefore we should legalize it.’ Graft is rampant. Should we legalize plunder? Murder and rape are rampant. Should we legalize murder and rape?” Filipinos for Life said.

where where where does it say we should legalize abortion?  and who has ever thought of legalizing rape?  of getting away with rape, yes, certainly, ask senator sotto himself who helped his brother vic (yes, bossing himself) and bulaga cohorts joey de leon and richie d’ horsie get away with rape, literally, thanks no less to sotto’s wheeling and dealing ways, or so it was reported.

if you google the pepsi paloma rape case now, you will find tito, vic and joey the topic of many exchange forums (fora) such as this where commenter no. 9 posted a 2004 article by fundy soriano of people’s tonight. it was written sometime during the 2004 campaign and soriano commended, among other things, candidate FPJ’s choice of tito sotto as campaign manager:

HINDI nagkamali ang aktor na kandidatong pangulo na si FPJ sa pagkuha sa komedyanteng naging senador na si Tito Sotto bilang campaign manager dahil sanay na ito sa pag-areglo ng gusot na kinasangkutan ng mga taong malalapit sa kanya.

Hindi talaga nagkamali si Poe sa pagkuha kay Sotto dahil hasang-hasa na sa pagtatanggol at pagtutuwid ng mga sitwasyong baluktot.

Unang nasubukan ang galing ni Sotto noong Oct. 1982 nang pangunahan niya ang pag-areglo sa kasong rape na isinampa ng sexy stars na sina Pepsi Paloma at Guada Guarin laban sa kanyang kapatid na si Vic Sotto at mga kasamang sina Joey de Leon at Richie D’Horsie. Sa record ng kaso, nabulgar ang rape case nang lapitan ng ina ni Pepsi Paloma si Atty Rene Cayetano (ama ng senatorial candidate na si Pia Cayetano) para hingan ng tulong para makamtan ng kanyang anak ang katarungan na umanoy minolestiya ng tatlong host ng Eat Bulaga.

Nang nabatid na ikinakasa na ng naging senador na si Cayetano ang kaso sa piskalya ng QC, biglang naglaho ang tin-edyer na starlet na hindi nagtagal ay nabawi ng mga tauhan nina Col. Rolando Abadilla at Capt. Panfilo Lacson (yes, si Ping na kandidatong pangulo) ng MISG sa kamay ng kilalang hoodlum na si Ben Ulo. Umalingasaw ang pangalan ng mga Sotto nang aminin ni Ben Ulo na tauhan siya ng mga Castelo, maternal clan nina Tito at Vic.

Ayon kay Pepsi Paloma, umano’y mismong si Tito Sotto ang pumilit sa kanya na pirmahan ang affidavit of desistance para hindi matuloy ang kasong may parusang bitay. Tuluyang napigil ang pag-inog ng katarungan nang nagpakumbaba ang mga komedyante at naglabas ng public apology sa husgado kung saan inamin din ng mga ito ang nagawang krimen sa starlet na nagbigti ilang taon ang nakalipas dahil sa umano’y hindi pa rin nakalimutan ang kahalayang ginawa sa kanya ng mga artistang kabilang ngayon sa likod ng kandidatura ni Poe.  (May 8, 2004)

the same article has been reposted ad infinitum in many other fora and blogs over the years, some of them followed by comments defending the accused, it was just hyped up, the case didn’t go to court, walang conviction, ibig sabihin walang rape. i’ve also seen a youtube video that purports to tell the true story, pepsi paloma was just a whore.

FYI lang.  it could only have been rape.  here’s what i knew and how i felt about the case back in late 1982 (from a tv junkie column, parade mag, a times journal publication):

Now that Pepsi has forgiven Vic, Joey, and Richie, it’s back to show business as usual for thethree musketeers. How nice.

When the news of the rape case first broke… I expressed incredulity. I couldn’t believe that Vic and Joey were insane enough to jeopardize their careers for a momentary macho thrill.

On second thought I realized that Pepsi couldn’t have completely contrived the situation. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

Obviously, at some point in time, Vic & Co. got together with Pepsi & Co. Who set the meeting up and what occurred, we don’t know. Among other things, Pepsi & Co. claimed it was rape; Vic & Co. claimed it was a photo session.

I tried to follw the case closely but the major dailies treated it like backpage news. I had to be content with the skimpy reportage of afternoon tabloids.

There was mention of a missing Sulo waiter, a crucial witness, but no follow through. I wondered where he might be, what his story might be, and why we didn’t have snoopy reporters a la Lois Lane ferreting him out of hiding.

All through August and September the Sotto camp issued nothing but denials. Vic even had an alibi: he and brother Tito were at their mother’s house in Ermita at the time of the alleged rape.

And then the bomb. A letter of apology. An admission of guilt. Implicit. Unmistakable. “Dear Pepsi . . . We hope that you will not allow the error we have committed against you to stand as a stumbling block to that future which we all look forward to. We therefore ask you to find it in your heart to pardon us for the wrong which we have done against you. Sincerely…” (People’s Journal, 13 October)

the rape and the apology happened almost 30 years ago.  people say these guys have changed. well, maybe vic and joey — we havent heard of any rape complaints since.  but tito the senator is another story.  tila kinarir na niya ang under-the-table deals, and you wonder about this twistedly dogged anti-woman stand on the RH bill.  what’s in it for him kaya?  maybe the bishops have promised to make him president someday?  god forbid!


simbang gabi RH blues

to get in the christmas mood, for a change, nagsisimbang gabi kami ni katrina.   the first dawn we went to st. francis church along shaw blvd., a three-minute drive from the house.   the big church was full, all seats taken, standing room only for many late-comers.

to our dismay, merong pre-mass video about RH, complete with a hillary clinton clip equating RH with abortion.   the audio was bad, and i was glad.  (i wondered if this was regular sunday fare too.)

worse, during the looooong sermon, mga kalahating oras yata yon, at least five maybe ten minutes were devoted to the evils of RH na, sabi daw mismo ni first lady hillary clinton, is the same thing as abortion,  all in the context of na contrary to isaiah the prophet’s admonition to “observe what is right, and do what is just”.

nagpanting ang tenga ko.   naalaala ko tuloy si carlos celdran.   sayang wala akong placard saying, it’s a lie!   as if.   di ko naman type na umeksena.   thought of walking out instead but it didn’t feel like the right thing to do.   we wanted to finish the mass more than to make a statement.

over breakfast we wondered if we should find another church.   a friend said it might be the same in all parish churches, on order of the bishops.   we decided to give st. francis another chance, maybe it would be another priest, maybe it would be another kind of sermon.

hayy.   no such luck.   same priest.   again, this time in the context of joseph’s genealogy, the long string of “begats” tracing his ancestry to abraham, ipinasok na naman ang RH=abortion.   this time naalala ko my parents, regular churchgoers all their lives.   they would have been so shocked and scandalized to hear such talk in a church, during mass.   my ears shut down, my mind wandered, wondering where to next.

day 3 we tried christ the king in green meadows.   smaller church, sosyal neighborhood, a 10-15 minute drive away.   hallelujah.   no pre-mass RH=abortion video.   no talk of RH=abortion in the sermon which took 10 minutes or so.   on the story of joseph agonizing over what to do when he found out that the virgin mary was pregnant with a child not his, until he was visited in a dream by an angel who told him that the child had been conceived through the holy spirit and to call him jesus.   the sermon likened joseph’s travails to what we all go through in life, both dark times and good times, and the choices we all have to make, na naikonekt rin niya sa poverty and ofws.   good job.

i can only imagine how the st.francis priest used joseph’s story to again push the RH=abortion line lie.   i’m glad i wasn’t there to hear it.   thank god for christ the king!

RH hurrahs! and a boo

the first HURRAH! is for dr. sylvia claudio, director of the u.p. center for women’s studies, who spoke up in congress at the 2nd deliberation of the house committee of population and family relations on the critical question of when life begins, and fearlessly unequivocally contradicted the notion that life begins at fertilization.

I have a prepared statement today but let me respond to the questions posed to the medical doctors by Representatives Biazon and (Anthony) Golez on the issue of when life begins.

I note that the Chair called upon me because Rep. Biazon also asked who does not believe life begins at fertilization. I do not, for two reasons. The first reason is that as an agnostic I do not subscribe to the beliefs of the Catholic Church. In this regard I would like to remind everyone that the Constitutional provision on religious freedom protects not just the right to belief but also the right to non-belief. …

The second reason I do not believe that life begins at fertilization has to do with my expertise as a medical doctor. . . . I would like to note that “conception” is not a medical term. The terms fertilization and implantation are medical terms and we can describe and explain these processes to lay people. Any scientific discussion requires the precise use of terms. The Philippine Obstetrics and Gynecological Society is correct when it states that the mainstream medical and scientific community agrees that pregnancy begins at implantation.

the second HURRAH! is for dr. marita v.t. reyes, chair of the women’s health care foundation, who recently gave a talk on “Biomedical Ethics and RH” in a u.p. forum. reyes points out that only upon implantation does the woman’s urine test positive for the hormone that signals a pregnancy.

Conception is usually equated with fertilization described as the union of sperm and egg. Clinically, however,conception is synonymous with pregnancy and is established by a pregnancy test based on the presence of the human chorionic gonadotrophin in the blood and the urine. This hormone is secreted by the chorionic villi after implantation of the embryo.

… Implantation is completed 14 days (2 weeks) after fertilization. Studies have shown that 45-70 percent of fertilized ova do not successfully implant. It is after implantation that individuation may be said to occur since twinning and fusion no longer take place. Some books refer to the fertilized ovum prior to implantation as a ‘pre-embryo.’ After implantation, it is referred to as ‘an embryo.’ Sometimes, debates are unresolved because of differences in terminologies! It is at implantation that the hormone, human chorionic gonadotrophin mentioned earlier, is secreted and is used as an indicator of pregnancy.

so there.   as far as these lady scientists are concerned, human life begins with implantation, which doesn’t happen until more than a week after fertilization, if at all there is an egg that is fertilized after unprotected (uncontracepted?) sex.   so what’s the harm of emergency contraception, or the morning-after pill, when one is not pregnant and just wants to make sure one does not get pregnant?

of course the anti-RH folks will insist that life begins with fertilization and any intervention in the reproductive process is morally wrong.   i say again, it’s for the woman to decide who to believe and what to do with her own body.

of course it would help if mainstream media would level-up the information-gathering, yes?   and lead discussions that would help women understand that they have options, and that would make the golezes and sottos in congress see that millions of impoverished men and women who may want to practice contraception (instead of having to resort to abortion) just can’t afford to buy condoms and pills when they can barely feed their families three meals a day.

this brings me to the BIG BOO! which goes to anc‘s the brew that guested paranaque representative roilo golez the other thursday but instead of truly grilling him on his anti-RH stance, the brewhas just let him go on and on — high population is good, contraceptives are already available, maternal deaths should be blamed on lack of doctors and midwives, at kung ano-ano pang kamachohan.   they should have posted a disclaimer: the opinions expressed herein are not those of the brewhas, or the network’s, unless of course anti-RH din pala sila.

sure they tried, pitifully unsuccessfully, to bring the talk to the level of the impoverished family, but golez was just too “good” — poor din daw siya noon but his parents had the right values, sent him to school, blah blah blah.   hay naku.   so the brewhas changed the subject na lang:  how daw kaya to produce more pacquiaos.

like i posted in facebook, the girls didn’t help the RH cause any.   they should stick to trivial issues for which knee-jerk reactions are good enough if they can’t be bothered to do their homework.   if they had bothered to check out golez’s website they could have at least maybe prepared an intelligent counter-attack.   or maybe not?

in last thursday’s episode the brewhas reacted to criticisms lightly, patawa effect — kesyo they didn’t wanna “mess with golez”…  he will “stoop to nothing”…   kesyo  it wasn’t supposed to be a debate, nothing wrong with letting the “charming” golez have his say…  maiba naman from “shrewish zealots” with “magical reasoning”…   ganoon?   ewww

so what do we make of one brewha’s  rant vs. tibaks and the suc budget protests.   i guess matapang lang sila vs. the left at pag di nila kaharap?   ‘yan ba ang girl power, anc style?   BOO!