Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Open Letter to Mr. Conrado De Quiros

This is in response to the column of Mr. Conrado De Quiros published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer today. The title of his article is Transformative

Dear Mr. De Quiros,

It is such an honor to have been mentioned in the column of one of my favorite columnists of all time, even though the reference to this representation is a critical commentary to a statement I had made pertaining to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and the Moral Force Movement.

I would say that almost all of the time, I have been biased in favor of the ideas and opinions written in your column. Of the very few times that I did not sympathize with what you wrote, I acknowledged the wisdom and logic of your point of view. Of course, it also goes without saying that your literary style is superb.

But this would be the first time I have been compelled to write in reaction to your column. Not to violently object but to gently provide a clarification to what I think is an off-tangent perspective of the statements that I made concerning the Chief.

First, my statement, which was an answer to a reporter’s question for my reaction to Chief Justice Puno’s leading the Moral Force, was not a call on the Chief Justice to resign but was a reminder that his present position as Chief of the Supreme Court should be insulated from partisan and political affairs.

As I stated in a television interview, I believe that a person should be asked to resign only if he has committed a mistake or violated the law. I do not think the Chief Justice has committed any mistake not violated any law. In past instances when officials erred, I always merely reminded them the wisdom of quitting their posts, but not as active call for them to resign. The only time I had asked an official to resign was after that shameful Hello Garci expose.

Second, I did not say that politics and morality do not mix, which is what your column portrayed in its commentary on my statement. There is absolutely no phrase or sentence in my statement which said that, whether categorically or implied. On the contrary, I have always believed that each person, whatever profession, is obligated to be moral as an individual. So too, does society have to be moral.

But what my statement was pointing out was that Politics and the Judiciary do not mix. That’s the reason ever since I became a member of the House, I had always spoken against politicians being appointed in the Judiciary. I believe that a person who has dipped his hands into politics and have wallowed in it, loses the “cold neutrality of an impartial judge” required of in the Judiciary. He will always look at things from the point of view of a politician.

Third, the logic which you applied on my statement is overstretching the meaning of what I had said. You wrote:

“Let’s see if this makes sense: Philippine society needs moral recovery. Moral recovery is largely a political exercise. Only politicians may engage in a political exercise. Politicians (as we know them) are what Philippine society needs to morally recover from. Only the people this society needs to morally recover from may mount a moral recovery program.”

The basic idea behind my statement is that the Moral Force movement is led by Chief Justic Puno, who at the same time is the head of the Judiciary; the reform sought by the Moral Force movement is in the field of politics, which will necessitate their engagement in politics; but politics and the judiciary do not mix.

Therefore the point is not that moral recovery in politics is reserved only for politicians. The point is that the Chief Justice (the position, not the person) should not be engaged in politics. It is the position he occupies that makes the circumstances of the Honorable Reynato Puno unique from all of the other Filipinos in this country who are calling for moral recovery.

I perfectly agree with your point that as an individual, each one of us has the right to call for moral recovery and that “it is not only our privilege to engage in politics, it is our duty to do so as citizens of the Republic”. But I do believe that the Chief Justice, whoever may be occupying that position, must not engage in politics.

I hope you will find time to visit my website at www.ruffybiazon.ph for related write up I posted yesterday.

Thank you very much.


Ruffy Biazon
Lone District of Muntinlupa City


Anonymous said...

To the readers of this blog:

The correct link to the PDI article "Transformative" is:


Ruffy Biazon said...

Thanks for the correction! I edited the link already.