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Hopes and dreams

Hopes and dreams
Ronald Roy — July 25, 2015

The country’s presidency is defined under the Philippine Constitution as an office occupied by a person in whom “executive power is vested” (Section 1, Article Vll), and who is elected thereto, provided he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter, able to read and write, at least 40 years of age on the day of the election, and a resident of the Philippines for at least ten years immediately preceding such election.” (Section 2)
The foregoing definition’s use of the pronoun “he” alludes to no gender in particular, and the definition is so liberally construed as to allow aspirants, women included, to come from the widest possible field of candidates. Note as well that even a pauper is not barred from running for president, provided he meets all the cited requirements.

Wannabes, afraid of Grace
To be sure, therefore, it is the Constitution’s democratic spirit of equality that emboldens a candidate to invoke a liberal construction or interpretation, not a strict one, of any issue affecting his or her eligibility for the office. Verily, a strict construction or interpretation is undemocratic, as it fosters the unsavory notion that public offices are only for rich and influential aspirants, or the idea that a candidate like Abraham Lincoln, who never went past intermediate school, cannot be given equal access to an opportunity to serve in government.
So, what’s the big deal about Sen. Grace Poe not being suited for the presidency for allegedly not meeting the citizenship and residency requirements? Answer: Other presidential wannabes are afraid of her because she’s so popular that, this early, she’s as certain to win the 2016 presidential derby as the sun will rise tomorrow in the east.
In any event, I prefer not to delve into the matter since it is virtually sub judice. Suffice it to say that, based on my stock knowledge of citizenship and residency issues learned in law school, and on Grace’s replies to her critics, she has nothing to worry about. Her critics also chide her for having scant experience and insufficient legal knowledge. HUH???

Lawyers, the best public servants?
My late father was a lawyer. One of my sons is a lawyer. I am a lawyer, and I have numerous friends who are decent lawyers; but let me say this: the shrewdest criminal masterminds come from the ranks of lawyers. And certainly, we need not be reminded that one: the Priority Development Assistance Fund and the Disbursement Acceleration Program were unlawful masterpieces devised by a lawyer, DBM Sec. Florencio Abad, two: former Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, a lawyer, is now languishing in jail, and three: VP Jejomar Binay, also a lawyer, is now wallowing in deep s – – t!
Sen. Grace Poe is viewed as a moral and ethical person who will use her legal knowledge for the benefit of the service. She may not be a lawyer, but she is a political scientist (Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, Boston College) — which is more than we can expect of an aspirant who allegedly lacks the experience to become a good president. Aren’t her critics trying to be wiser than the framers of the Constitution?!
For the uninitiated, “Political Science is a social science discipline that deals with systems of government and the analysis of political activity and political behavior. It details extensively with the theory and practice of politics which is commonly thought of as the determining of the distribution of power and resources.” (Wikipedia)

Heart, commitment and loyalty
Who can then dispute that Political Science —which Grace Poe formally studied for four years in Boston College, and has underpinned her government stint over the past nine years as MTRCB Chair and Senator of the Republic of the Philippines, not to mention her immersion in civic projects which started when her father was still alive — is the very stuff of public service? Who can then dispute that more essential than experience are what Grace calls “the heart for service, the commitment to give it, and the loyalty to the people”?
Take the case of former President Fidel V. Ramos who had the heart for the military service, the commitment to give it, and the loyalty to the people. He studied soldiery in the prestigious West Point Academy for four years, and proceeded to become Commander-in-Chief of the Republic without a single combat experience.
Without further need to cite other actual cases, let me just say that Grace Poe is the most qualified aspirant for president — she on whose heart, commitment and loyalty the burdened sovereign people look forward to pinning their hopes and dreams.

09186449517 ronald8roy@yahoo.com

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