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Thesis, chances, and Faith

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Sleepless nights with my siblings at my brother’s rented space. I never knew that my brother took this photo back then.

 

I have not written for so long on my WordPress blog due to my Law studies. What I have written today for my first blog post since my last is an #FBThrowback of what happened FOUR years ago.

April 2013. I was struggling with my Undergrad thesis then. It was just few days and sleepless nights before the Graduation Day. I was already prepared that I would “sablay” literally (instead of getting the UP “Sablay” – a symbolic sash worn during Commencement Exercises in the University of the Philippines), that is, not graduating with my batchmates that year. Notwithstanding, I still continued working on my thesis, sensing some hope that GOD gave me those times. Though I did not ask for help (because I grew up doing most of my works independently), still, my entire family came to the rescue. My brother offered his rented space where my sisters and I could work on my thesis. My mother filed a leave of absence from her work and came to Cebu to lend any assistance she could lend. But, since a Computer Science thesis/special problem/capstone is too technical for them, all they could do was to proofread my manuscript, help me pop the ideas out of the corners of my brain, print my manuscript, and have it bound while I continued refining the software that I developed for my thesis. My father also helped in editing my manuscript over e-mail. As I have highlighted in the Acknowledgment section of my thesis, it was all a collective effort. (Read Undergrad Thesis Acknowledgment here: https://www.facebook.com/100000053506248/posts/605367546141690/)

Fast forward: my adviser told me that the UP Cebu University Council, during their deliberation of official candidates for graduation that year, gave me one last chance to have my thesis finalized. I did. We did. Eventually, I graduated that year with my batchmates and officially conferred with a BS Computer Science degree with Latin honor.

Such was a learning experience for me, and the lessons I got from my mistakes back then — I applied them when I was doing my Juris Doctor thesis last year, i.e., four years thereafter. I made a Gannt chart — one thing I learned from my Undergrad days — and tried very much to stick to it. The constant monitoring of our Thesis Committee also helped a lot. Consequently, I finished my Juris Doctor thesis on time, without having to pass through the hell of cramming I once passed through four years ago. Then, my Juris Doctor thesis was awarded Best Thesis together with the thesis of my classmate. But then again, it was another product of a collective effort. (Read Juris Doctor (Law) Thesis Acknowledgment: https://www.facebook.com/100000053506248/posts/1493430364002066/)

Indeed, a photo like this one speaks a thousand words, a story even. Mine is a long story to tell but I had to cut it short here lest everyone be bored. But, I would really love to thank all the persons who gave me chances and trusted me that I would rise from my mistakes. Had my Undergrad adviser and the UP Cebu University Council been stricter and not allow me to graduate that year, I would have not come this far to where I am today. To date, I did not know how the deliberation during that memorable day went — Was the decision of giving me a chance unanimous? Or if it weren’t, who were the persons who vouched for me? — but to the teachers who supported me, I am forever grateful. And of course, to my family, I am more grateful.

And to all of those who are struggling right now, I am telling you to soldier on, to finish what you have started, and to keep the Faith no matter what lies ahead. That is better than quitting at once and do nothing at all. “But, there’s no more hope. Graduation is just few days away.” Well, four years ago, I held onto what GOD reminded me through the Scriptures, “[w]ith man this is impossible, but with GOD all things are possible (Matthew 19:26).”

 

PS: Currently, I am having my review for the Bar Examinations this November 2017. Since the Bar Examinations have not yet been regionalized, we, law students from provinces, will still have to spend around P100,000 to P200,000 for the duration of the review until the examination proper. In this regard, I would like to take this opportunity to knock on your kind hearts for some financial assistance. Any amount will do. I will really cherish your help.

 


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Magra-rally pa ba kayo?

Renato Reyes, Jr.: “Samantala, may isang bagay din na dapat nating bantayan. Ito yung pang-iintriga at panghahati. May mga Dilawan na kontra kay Duterte na ang nais ay udyukan ang Kaliwa na mag-rally para sa kanila. Ngayon pa lang, gusto na nilang ipambala sa kanyon at isubo sa labanan ang Kaliwa habang sila ay manonood lang at nakaabang sa Twitter. Ayos din, ano?

Huwag tayong magpadala sa ganitong pang-uudyok na kunwari ay prinsipyado pero ang totoo’y nang-uupat lang. Buti sana kung nag-rally sila laban sa lahat ng kabalbalan ni Aquino, may ascendancy silang maningil. Eh sa anim na taon ni Noynoy, ni hindi ko sila nakitang mag-rally habang pinapatay ang mga Lumad at mga magsasaka sa Mindanao.

Anyways, so ganun na nga. Madami tayong gagawin. Pagtulungan nating maisulong ang mga adhikaing makabayan at progresibo, sa loob man o labas ng gobyerno. Wala sa kamay ng isang tao ang pagbabago. Kalahok dito ang buong sambayanan. Magkikita-kita pa rin tayo, sa kalsada at kung saan-saan pa.”

 

From: https://natoreyes.wordpress.com/2016/06/01/magra-rally-pa-ba-kayo

like a rolling stone

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Ilang beses kong nabasa ang tanong na ito matapos i-anunsyo ang pagkakatalaga ng ilang mga progresibo sa susunod na Duterte administration. Dalawa sa mga progresibo ang hahawak sa DAR at DSWD. Tinuturing na mga progresibo din ang hahawak ng DOLE at DepEd.

Sa ganitong kalagayan, magra-rally pa ba ang Kaliwa?

Maikling sagot, OO naman. Marami pang problema ang mangangailangan ng sama-samang pagkilos. Hindi naman nalutas ang lahat ng problema ng bansa dahil lamang may bagong gobyerno. At hindi naman ang pag-upo sa gabinete ang katapusan ng ating gawain. Hindi cabinet appointment, kundi panlipunang pagbabago, ang ipinaglalaban natin.

Pero kung ang tanong ay “magra-rally na ba kayo laban kay Duterte?”, ang sagot diyan ay “hindi pa sa kagyat, wala pang dahilan”. Hindi dahil sangayon tayo sa lahat ng kanyang pahayag at lahat ng kanyang appointments. May pagkakaiba pa rin sa pananaw. Pero ang mga pagkakaiba ng pagtingin ay sisikapin idaan sa pag-uusap…

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Graft in Tacloban

Harry Roque's Blog

searchI had dinner recently with Mayor Alfred Romualdez of Tacloban City. That was a first. I have been consistently an anti-Marcos activist since my grade school days. I’ve always thought that the Philippines would be a better place without the Marcoses and their conjugal half, the Romualdezes. Like the Aquino’s, my mother’s immediate family, including the Reyes clan of Pasig that gave the country the great statesman, Jovito Salonga, were victims of the Marcos dictatorship. Scars from those days will probably never heal. And perhaps, they should never heal if only to remind us of what dictatorships can do to a democracy.

But I was touched by the tale of Mayor Romualdez.

We’ve heard over and over again the Palace line that the local government is always the first line of defense. That is true because normally, the national government will not be in the area affected by a calamity.

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[UP] Cebu is Rising!

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We, the constituents of the University of the Philippines Cebu, join all Cebuanos, Filipinos and the rest of the world as we STRIKE! DANCE! RISE! to END violence against women and children!

On Feb. 14, we will spend our Valentine’s Day with all the women of all walks in life, joining them in their struggle towards liberation from abuse, discrimination, prejudice, stereotypes and other forms of violence.

Ayala Cebu Terraces will be rocked by the shaking of our bodies, stomping of our feet and raising of our hands to the tune of “Isang Bilyong Babae”. But before that, we, from UP  Cebu, will also be holding our own UP Cebu Rising at 1:30pm; afterwards, we’ll march to Ayala, quarter to 3pm.

For the Unity Statement of UP Community, follow this link: http://www.facebook.com/notes/nke-upc/one-billion-rising-up-community-unity-statement/10151460040341745

One Billion Rising Cebu is made possible by its conveners: Gabriela Women’s Party, UP Cebu Gender and Development Office, SIDLAK GRC 7, Bisdak Pride, Women’s Resource Center of Visayas, Good Shepherd Welcome House, Antonia de Oviedo Center,  Nagkahiusang Kusog sa Estudyante- UP Cebu (NKE), Student Alliance for Nationalism and Democracy-USC (STAND USC), Legal Alternatives for Women, Inc., and The Fair Trade Shop- Cebu

Feb-'12-Special


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Sinulog 2013: Socialism vs. Christianity?

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

The priest who celebrated the mass that I attended this morning started his homily by emphasizing the relevance of Sto. Niño (Child Jesus) as the whole province is celebrating Sinulog (Feast of Sto. Niño). He explained why God chose to become human and undergo childhood, so on and so forth, until he came to what has become the focal point of his entire homily. He began by saying that there are two conflicting ideologies in the society today. First, he pointed out Socialism and defined it as a socio-political system (that started in French Revolution) based on égalité (equality), fraternité (fraternity) and the other principle, liberté (liberty), that he admitted he forgot.

His first statements were affirmative as he said that there is no objection to Socialism’s equality. He went further by emphasizing that the concept of equality is derived, actually, from Christianity which came first than Socialism. However, he stressed that there is a problem with Socialism’s equality, i.e., a person will keep on asserting his/her rights without considering the rights of others because he/she is pre-occupied in making sure that he/she is equally treated. Socialism lacks the concept of social responsibility which, on the other hand, Christianity (the other ideology he referred to in his premise) upholds. Unlike Christianity, he said, Socialism does not include caring for and defending the weakest among men and women. Christianity promotes preferential option for the poor, he added. He, then, concluded that Socialism is a selfish kind.

However, looking at his arguments, it seemed he was referring to Capitalism which is another social system that emphasizes individual rights. This social system, which became a global system at present, is the ultimate cause why there is a great gap between the rich and the poor, why only few own the lands and riches of the earth, why prices are high without regulation despite its promise of low prices due to competition, why people need to pay much for basic social services such as education and health, and why most people strive only for themselves, competing with one another for survival in this money-driven system.

But the priest forgot Socialism’s other principle that he mentioned which could have saved him from misinterpreting Socialism – fraternity. This principle is what makes Socialism different from other social system. In Capitalism, there is also liberty; it’s just that it is a blind liberty. It also asserts people’s rights but focuses much on individual rights. But with fraternity, Socialism does not limit every person to just asserting his/her individual rights, welfare and liberty but the rights, welfare and liberty of others, as well. With fraternity, Socialism inculcates in the mind of every person the concept of collective – that we are brothers and sisters who shall work together for progress, who shall protect one another and who shall look after the weakest among us as we aim for collective progress, liberty and equality. Unlike Capitalism where individualism and self-centeredness reigns brought by competition, in Socialism, there is unity. This principle is actually the same with what he said Socialism lacks.

In the middle of the priest’s homily, I thought of walking-out like what Carlos Celdran did but I did not have the courage. Also, why would I let a priest’s misleading homily ruin my purpose of attending the mass which was communing with Christ? If only that mass was like the synagogues around 2000 years ago where Jesus Christ would entertain questions and comments from His listeners, I would have raised all the points I wrote here and asked the priest and the church-goers in the end, “So, is Socialism really a selfish kind of social system? Is it really conflicting with Christianity on the matter of its basic principles?” Because for me, it is not. The priest, with all due respect, was just barking at the wrong tree.

First published at: http://www.facebook.com/notes/kristian-jacob-casas-abad-lora/sinulog-2013-socialism-vs-christianity/10151265476814794


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BREAKING NEWS: Cybercrime Law goes in action, prematurely!

This is Cybercrime Law in action! (kahit sa October 3 pa magti-take-effect yung law, may umaabuso na.)

This very recent incident will show us how the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 (RA 10175) is FLAWED and will indeed cause harm to everyone. These statements by a certain page claiming to be of PNP give us a clear picture of what will happen starting October 3, 2012. One, that is suggested by these statements, is the INVASION of PRIVACY of every netizen. If the government suspects us of having committed a “cybercrime” as defined in the newly-enacted law, they can immediately track us down and monitor our accounts, WITHOUT COURT ORDER.

This is a CONSTITUTIONAL VIOLATION. The 1987 Philippine Constitution provides in Article III, Section 3. (1) “The privacy of communication and correspondence shall be inviolable except upon lawful order of the court, or when public safety or order requires otherwise as prescribed by law.”

Familiar, eh? Yes, it exhibits Martial Law, in cyberspace. But not just in cyberspace because threats to our lives continue in the real world — spying, tracking, filing cases against us and the possibility of being punished one degree higher (in case of “online libel”).

Clearly, this law is ANTI-PEOPLE! We CALL the Supreme Court to URGENTLY heed the petitions we filed against the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012!

If the Aquino Government is really democratic, such laws abridging our freedom to exercise our democratic rights should not be passed or approved. In case they have been approved, immediate junking/action to revise shall be done.

Fight for a GENUINELY DEMOCRATIC PHILIPPINES! No to e-Martial Law! Junk the Cybercrime Law! Sign the petition here: http://www.change.org/petitions/junk-the-cybercrime-prevention-law

PS: I hope we can use this against the Cybercrime Law

PSS: Can we file a case against the PNP if our evidences will tell us that it is indeed the PNP that is owning the page? I can feel it poses threat to the netizens who commented on that post, esp. to that person whom the PNP addressed such statements.

More photos:

How it started


Source: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=407344995985593&set=a.145337415519687.39609.145291485524280&type=1&comment_id=1016364&ref=notif&notif_t=like&theater


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Fight Against Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012

It is very UNFAIR.

With the newly passed and approved RA 10175 known as “Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012”, it seems we, the people, are the ones being punished for criticizing [reminding and reprimanding] our government leaders for their misbehavior and mismanagement instead of having them punished, instead of having Sen. Vicente “Tito” Sotto, III punished for committing plagiarism, repeatedly. Interestingly, it was Sen. Sotto who included the “online libel” provision. Yes, he, who warned critics that the Law may be used against them. Another important question is that why did not President Aquino veto the Bill for amendments?

The online libel provision of the Act exhibits Martial Law in the cyberspace. Apparently, it aims to silence, especially, those who are online critics of public figures like our government leaders. This is NOT DEMOCRATIC and should have no space in a democratic society. The passage of this Bill just manifests that, in reality, there is actually NO GENUINE and FULL FREEDOM and DEMOCRACY under this Yellow Government,  even after the 1972 Martial Law era and the 1986 EDSA Movement, and even during the first Aquino Government.

The complexity of the cyberspace’s structure will really make it hard for the law enforcers to enforce the Act. As a result, more innocent people may be sued. This is worse than the Oplan Bayanihan that sets no clear distinction between an unarmed activist and a revolutionary. This is as worse as the 1972 Martial Law.

Kaya, tara’t tulungan po natin ang KABATAAN Partylist na makakalap ng sapat na bilang ng mga pirma para sa ating petisyon laban sa Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 (local mini-version of SOPA, PIPA and ACTA)! Pls. sign the petition (follow the link below) and share! Maraming salamat po! Padayon! #lakasngMasa #NeverToE-MartialLaw #FREEDOM

Petition here: http://www.change.org/petitions/junk-the-cybercrime-prevention-law

Suggested article: http://www.interaksyon.com/infotech/opinion-beware-the-cybercrime-laws-section-19-the-takedown-clause

PS: The “online libel” is not just the issue in this Act. There are more that concerns not just or right to free speech but also our right to privacy. I am looking for a free time to write my position on this Act.