Philippine Daily Inquirer

WHO WILL BENEFIT FROM DIVORCE BILL?

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Iam a Catholic and I am openminded. The Philippine­s is generally a Catholic country. We are still bound by the beliefs left by the Spaniards. Our Church is still conservati­ve in so many ways especially on the issue that concerns the family—the use of contracept­ives and now, divorce.

I read an explainer about the divorce bill, its key points, grounds and how it works. It is like: “Wow, that simple?” It is far, far, far simpler than the annulment under the Family Code. It is more realistic than what our laws are imposing right now.

However, as I read through it I realized—is it really intended for the common Filipino families or intended for those few whose annulment cases failed and who are legally separated by law but cannot, in any way, qualify to nullify their marriage? I am honestly thinking of those lawmakers who are in conflict with their families and who are separated, legally or not.

I think this is the reality. The ones who craft laws will of course find ways to make those they crafted advantageo­us to them. Good for them!

On the stand of the Church: As always, the Church says, bills like this are “antimarria­ge” and “antifamily.” But, I really cannot understand how the divorce bill can be antimarria­ge and antifamily. Is it not that the bill is an answer for those families, individual­s and children damaged by a disastrous marriage? How can it be antimarria­ge? Is the Church still blind on the reality that there are marriages nowadays that are not meant to be? Is it not aware of arranged marriages? Should it still bind people who are married just because of the vow—till death do us part—even if they are now trying to kill each other? I think now is the time for people from the Church to open their minds and hearts to the reality of this generation.

I am amazed with the divorce bill but I am concerned by its effect and by the idea that instead of it being helpful to Filipinos, it could be disastrous to everyone. Time may come we will say that arguments of the Church people are indeed true. Because of its simplicity, no wonder, it could be subject to abuse. Wecould expect a bulk of divorce cases in courts as soon as this bill becomes law.

While everyone waiting for this bill to become a law is ecstatic, I would just like to suggest ( suntok sa buwan, though!): Lawmakers should put some hard safety measures to prevent abuse. MELODY ARIAS, melody.saira@gmail.com

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