8 Things Our Congressmen

Should Also Be Exempted From

By Kel Fabie

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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…

Bonuses


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?

 

Human Rights


Since they’re so eager to throw Human Rights under the bus, maybe we should exempt them from having those, too?

 

Lovelives


It does not seem fair that they get lovely partners while most of us remain single.

 

Bank secrecy laws


Via CNN

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!

Voting on issues they know nothing about


Via CNN

While it’s too late to prevent the Filipino people from not voting for people when they have no idea who they’re voting for, maybe we can hold Congress to a higher standard and prevent them from voting on an issue if they demonstrate with utter clarity that they have zero idea what the issue they’re voting on actually is about.

Well, damn. We didn’t expect to have to talk about human rights again here.

 

Health exams


Because our representatives are supposed to be better than us, as they frequently inadvertently say, then why should they bother having their health checked by doctors on the regular? From now on, they will always be assumed to have a clean bill of health, and we can leave it at that!

 

News coverage


How about we only give these guys a platform when something actually newsworthy happens for a change, like them actually doing their job, instead of being the intermittent clowns they are. If you thought a single clown in “IT” was scary, well, you have more clowns in congress than last weekend’s Juggalo march, and they’re in charge of making laws in this country. That? That’s scary.

 

Taxes


By being exempted from taxes, I mean OURS. They can’t touch it. Can we have that? Please?

 

What else should they be exempted from? Share them with us below!

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