Some 1,800 new lawyers have just passed the 2018 bar examinations. Will they be going into the practice of law — or had been moved to take it in college — only to advance their interests no matter what the cost to the public and Philippine society? Or will they practice the profession in behalf of the urgent need of defending the laws that Philippine experience and history have demonstrated as necessary in the making of a just society?
The Philippines is one of the world’s most lawless countries. But it’s not because it has too few laws or none at all, but because it has too many that are often interpreted in favor of the powerful so as to bring about the exact opposite of their intention, are selectively implemented, or hardly enforced at all.
THE main complaint by his mostly lawyer partisans against the impeachment of Renato Corona is that it was done too quickly, followed by claims that it’s an attack on the Supreme Court’s independence, and is unconstitutional besides.
Minority Congressman and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo ally Edcel Lagman is leading the chorus of Corona advocates in declaring that a crisis is upon us as a result of the supposed haste, describing the signing within a few hours by 188 congressmen of the impeachment articles as the result of “the mother of all blackmails (sic)” because, he said, his colleagues signed on pain of Malacanang’s withholding their 2012 Priority Development Assistance Fund, otherwise known as the pork barrel.
“…Let’s kill all the lawyers.” An old lawyer joke, killing all lawyers wasn’t necessarily Shakespeare’s advocacy for a better society.
This particular line does appear in the playwright’s Henry VI (part 2), and must have drawn a raft of laughs when first said, lawyers being as unpopular among ordinary folk in 16th century England as they are now in many countries. But because the intention was uttered by Dick the Butcher, one of Shakespeare’s most villainous characters and a murderer, it’s usually argued (by lawyers, who else) that he was condemning the idea, and was actually defending the profession as “the protector of truth and order”.