8 Things Our Congressmen
Should Also Be Exempted From
By Kel Fabie
Recently, House Majority Leader Rodolfo Farinas made what sounded like an outlandish request: that he and other lawmakers be not arrested for minor traffic violations. Y’know, violations of the very laws that they themselves created? It sounded bonkers, but if anyone bothered looking closely, it was just in keeping with what was already in the law, to begin with.
Yes, it is in the law that these lawmakers are indeed given parliamentary immunity while serving their term. That’s exactly why that ubiquitous “8” in their plate number means they don’t have to worry one bit about the number coding traffic scheme, after all. But while they are immune to suit while sitting in power, as both Senators Drilon and (surprise!!!) Sotto pointed out, their drivers are not.
Besides, what is up with that reasoning, to begin with? Because they “represent” the Filipino people, they should be excused? How is that representative of us? Everyone gets to work on a daily basis, all the while liable to being stopped for traffic violations, so to demand what is clearly preferential treatment, even if it is perfectly legal, has to be one of the most out of touch things a person claiming to represent us has ever done, and we have legions of examples of those instances by now.
But we here at the 8List are nothing if not helpful, so we want to make these lawmaker’s lives easier. We want them to not just be exempted from minor traffic violations, we have 8 other things we want them to be exempted from! Things like…
Considering how even someone as perennially truant as Jules Ledesma was capable of getting a full salary despite being even less enamored with his elected job than he seems to be with his wife, maybe we can exempt lawmakers from receiving any bonuses. After all, this so-called 15th-month bonus is a practice because there’s an extra 4 weeks in the calendar when we expect 48 weeks for 12 months, and not just because of the holiday spirit. If they didn’t even show up for a single working month, why should they get an extra working month in money?
Since they’re so eager to throw Human Rights under the bus, maybe we should exempt them from having those, too?
It does not seem fair that they get lovely partners while most of us remain single.
Bank secrecy laws
Hey, an exemption that makes sense! How about making it a blanket statement that if you’re a public official, your bank account is automatically exempt from bank secrecy laws? That sounds like a capital idea!