Marilag Ang Malaya

Monday, April 2, 2012

TRO defy, Nuns justify

I've been following the case of the 5 students of STC Cebu whose pictures of them in bikini were the subject of much controversy in the media. The case involves quite a backward take on morality and child rearing. Lots of tweets are on it, lots of blog posts, lots of drama, religious jihad, and stuff like that on the comments and the sidelines.

At first, it was STC who held the moral authority as the children indeed violated the rules found in their Handbook.

However, things took a turn-around when they took a page from P-Noy's Secretary of Justice, Laila de Lima, who defied a Supreme Court TRO allowing GMA and the ex-FG from leaving the country. In fact, they used the same term-- "deficient".

Suddenly, the issue became larger than the mere five students involved. The issue now is, are the TRO's issued by the RTC, SC, or any Philippine court, merely a guideline or an order that must be followed.

In punishing the students, the nuns of STC defied law of the humans in the Philippines. After reading much in the debate, I now believe the students do, in fact, deserve punishment. And true enough, the nuns have succeeded in doing so.

On the other hand, I also believe the nuns also deserve punishment for defying the TRO. A court TRO is not a mere piece of paper. It is the judgement of an official of the land, a representative of the Filipino's justice. Irrespective of the deficiencies of the TRO, they are not merely obliged, but obligated to follow it. While these nuns do have dedicated their lives to following their version of God's law, they must first follow the law of man, for it is among men that they live their lives in service to God.

Defying the TRO is a classic move of the nuns "making a wrong to 'right' another wrong." It is then left to the RTC to render everything right. In a stroke of ultimate justice, I pray that the RTC judge hold these nuns in contempt of court (and mete out the appropriate punishment), while accepting the punishment that they gave their wards as well. In doing so, the RTC will reclaim its authority that has been in much tatters since the day the SC held itself above it. Should the nuns accept the punishment of the RTC, it will render them invincible against future children and parents who hope the get around the rules in the Handbook--that they are willing to be crucified so that their wards can claim eternal life.


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