A Challenge (Test) to the Pundits

Intellectuals Should Lead March for Change
Letter to the Editor, PDI
By Arcy F. Sibal

I have to admit that I was taken aback by the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s Feb. 15 editorial (“Checkmated bishops”), which was critical of the bishops’ stand on the predicament the country is currently in. To impute that the bishops made themselves a party to a grand constitutional larceny runs contrary to a basic and accepted social theory—the separation of State and Church.

Apparently, the editorial had the late Jaime Cardinal Sin’s past extraordinary stance in mind. By my lights, the extraordinary stand or action of the Catholic Church was justified then as called for by extraordinary circumstances. So the action was more of an exception to the rule rather than a precedent-setting posture.

Professor Randy David’s Feb. 16 rejoinder explained in depth why the Church should not take the lead on political exercises or happenings. The response from the good professor is brilliant and thought-provoking. I am provoked to think why intellectually sophisticated individuals should not lead the march for change. Are they not part of the people longing for a better government?

I’m afraid leaving the pursuit of change to individuals like me who are intellectually challenged would be messy. God forbid!