Martial rule in cyberspace

OCTOBER 3, 2012 will be remembered in history as the day when freedom of expression in cyberspace died after the Supreme Court failed to live up to its duty to serve the people as the final refuge against tyranny.

This date, when Republic Act 10175 (Cybercrime Law) became effective, is comparable to Sept. 21, 1972 when Ferdinand Marcos declared Martial Law or March 21, 1933 when the German parliament passed the Enabling Act which effectively ended democracy in the Weimar Republic and ushered NAZI rule.

Perhaps belatedly realizing the political implication of this stupid law, a number of lawmakers and even Malacañang, vowed to “repeal” the anti-democratic provisions of this archaic law. If anything the actions of these pretentious leaders only showed that they have nothing but utter contempt for the people.

This encompassing law had the hallmarks of a totalitarian system of governance and completely against the spirit of the 1986 EDSA Revolution which, ironically, was led by no less than the mother of President Benigno Simeon Aquino III.

Sen. Edgardo Angara said the people, especially journalists, have nothing to fear from the Cybercrime law. He stressed that media practitioners are the most protected species on Earth. What is this guy talking about? Could it be possible that he has not heard of the Maguindanao massacre or the rising incidence of violence and harassment against practicing journalists or our persecution by five cent politicians and government functionaries?

Is he not even aware that the Philippines was declared by the international community to be the most dangerous place to do media coverage next to Baghdad?

Angara, a technocrat, wants to assure all of us that steps will be taken to correct the oversight in the law. Ha ha ha yeah right. In the meantime, until the law is amended next year or in the next decade we will suffer the consequences of your arrogance and contempt.

The Cybercrime law not only overturned the principles of criminal law as regards jurisdiction among others, it also trampled on the constitutional prohibition against the passage of ex-post facto law (alleged libelous materials posted in the internet prior to the passage of this law are still subject to its provision).

With one fell swoop of a pen, the authors and lawmaker supporters of the Cybercrime law constricted the democratic space and turned back our time to an era where might is right. All of these despite the presence of “brilliant” legal minds in Congress.

The only good thing that came out of this law is that our lawmakers are exposed to be charlatans. They are either arrogant, nincompoops or just plain lazy.

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I have nothing against the serving of warrant against Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo immediately after the Sandiganbayan ordered her arrest because of a plunder case against her.

However, an arrest warrant for a graft case was issued by the same anti-graft court against Grace Padaca four months ago and yet she was not touched.

Well that is obviously because she is an ally of President B.S. Aquino.

It seems, there is one way for political enemies and another, a lenient way, for allies. I came to realize now that this is what the President means when he talks about the Daang Matuwid. Onli in the Pilipins.

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Does boredom wear you down or is there just a nagging feeling that you want to get away from the metropolis and be with mother-nature? Then go and visit Bato Springs in barangay San Cristobal, San Pablo City.

Located at the foot of the mystical Mt. Banahaw, Bato Springs is just one hour and 30 minute drive from Manila. You have a spacious parking space that could even accommodate tourist buses and first class amenities for all your business and pleasure needs.

For more information call Ms. Elaine Garchitorena at 0495620976.

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