The buck will not stop at the Supreme Court

TO THE QUICK - Jerry Tundag (The Freeman) - July 10, 2020 - 12:00am

How come I have this icky feeling that the anti-terror law question will not see its end at the Supreme Court? Maybe it’s because I have seen so much of the bad side of politics in this country to know that concerns about how the new law might be abused is rooted more in dirty politics than in genuine fear.

I have a feeling that an adverse ruling by the Supreme Court will not put to rest the concerns raised against the new law. The Supreme Court is just being used to lend a veneer of ascendancy in case it decides to strike down the law as unconstitutional. But if the High Court sustains it, the noise will not stop. Worse, the Supreme Court will be branded as an administration stooge, a "co-conspirator against the people."

But in so doing, the oppositors will be exposed for what they really are --motivated more by the need to politically oppose the administration in whatever front rather than being impelled by a genuine concern about possible sinister intents woven into the law. Because if the latter is what moves the resistance, then a reassurance by the highest court in the land ought to be enough.

But just what is really wrong with the anti-terror law? All laws in modern civilized societies are presumed to be good and are reflections of the mood and character of the people for whom the laws are made. Laws in these modern civilized societies are crafted by legislators freely elected in democratic elections, not dictatorial issues of one man. Any arguments to the contrary cannot stand in the light of established fact.

Laws are like all medicine. Medicines are all made for a good purpose even if, like all laws, there sometimes are unintended risks. Or, like laws, all medicine can be abused. But that is not why both laws and medicines are made. In this imperfect world, there is always a bad side to the good. Always. But we do not focus on the bad, otherwise we will never be able to move forward.

There is a bad side to a baby taking its first steps. It can fall and hurt itself. But we allow the baby to go so it can move on in life. To marry is to work for the rest of your life. There will be mouths to feed, children to send to school, clothe, shelter, and protect from criminals. But you do not mind the hassle and the sacrifice. You look at the joy of family, the love that makes family possible, the satisfaction of being the provider, the man responsible.

There is a quality that drives "the man with the hoe." And it is positiveness, and with it the willingness to take a challenge, to take risks, for the opportunity to taste the fruit of sacrifice, which is good. Duterte and Congress are not evil men to craft an evil to oppress the populace. And even if they are, it is not up to you to say so. In the eyes of God, you are really no better than them. Presume the good then, not the bad.

The country is staring terrorism in the face. It needs a tough law to better deal with the problem and keep the country safe. Do not think only of yourself and what the law might possibly do to you. You are not wanting in wisdom, otherwise you would not care. But being wise is being wise in all things. Like taking medicine, you know what to do to avoid having the law, like medicine, get you in ways you don't want it to.

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