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Thousands Rally in Philippines to Protest Population Control Bill

 

MANILA, March 7, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines organized a rally March 5, in Manila and protests across the country to galvanize Catholic opposition to the proposed population bill. Thousands of youth gathered to protest the proposed bill that would restrict family size to two children and introduce sex education to children in schools.

In the recent history of the Philippines, the political effectiveness of mass, peaceful Catholic protest was illustrated with the fall of the Marcos regime in 1986. Then-Cardinal of Manila, Jaime Sin, organized the huge rallies in which thousands of Catholics took to the streets and brought about a peaceful change of government. Participation in the current rallies was not limited to Catholics. Muslims and members of other Christian denominations were among the crowds.

Bill 3773, "Responsible Parenthood and Population Management Act," mandates a rule that restricts families to two children, introduces sex education for children and the distribution of artificial contraceptives.

The bill, which has already been approved by the House committee on women, is being strongly defended by the Arroyo government. "Our population policy is based on responsible parenthood. It is based on respect for life, on informed choice," Press Secretary Ignacio Bunye said. The Bishops’ representative, however, said the proposal to limit the size of the Filipino family in the guise of “reproductive rights” is unjust and arbitrary.

Opposition includes the mayor of Manila, Jose "Lito" Atienza Jr., who called it deceptive. He described the bill as “destructive,” and just an “alibi” for the failure of the government to genuinely address poverty. A consortium of pro-life groups said at a press conference that the bill is a violation of the privacy and autonomy of couples and families. “The bill contains sugar-coated measures that would only lead the country to irreparable and lasting damage,” the mayor said

“If there will be more people working, the country will have more earnings. More people working is actually the result of higher productivity, but if there is a small number of people working for a bigger number, then it will result in a depressed economy,” Councilor Grepor Belgica of District 6, a devout Christian, said.

In the declassified 1974 document, National Security Study Memorandum 200, the Philippines was included in the list of countries whose population growth, and consequent growth in prosperity would threaten U.S. security and overseas economic interests. The solution recommended was the imposition of radical population control measures through the United Nations aid programs.

(c) Copyright: LifeSiteNews.com is a production of Interim Publishing. Permission to republish is granted (with limitation*) but acknowledgement of source is *REQUIRED* (use LifeSiteNews.com).

 

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