Tuesday, October 27, 2015

77. Medical Test

Let's pretend we have a presidential candidate who is blind and has no hands. I thought it was irrelevant until I checked Article 7 of the Constitution, which says the President should be able to read and write. I'm sure Mar Roxas and his dirty tricks department would waste no time in having that candidate disqualified if the candidate would pose a challenge to his run. In the case of Sen. Miriam Santiago who once admitted to be cancer stricken, her cancer would not pose as an obstacle to her candidacy, unless in the course of the campaign she loses the ability to read and write. Yet, by not disclosing her current medical state, nobody knows what's going to happen to her, that is if her cancer would take her to that vegetative state, God forbid, during which she would lose control of her faculties, and even the ability to think, which curiously was left out in the requirements for candidacy. Of course, when she says she is fine, that is a medical opinion, which she is not qualified to make even if she were a doctor herself; it's like a barber cutting his own hair. Yet, she is not a medical doctor, and thus whatever she says about her medical condition is self-serving. In the 80s when Marcos got sick and had his kidney transplant, the matter was kept secret by the State. This fuelled speculations about the Executive Committee, which he claimed would take his place under the semi-parliamentary system. He lived through those times and  even cheated his way to the February 7, 1986 elections, dextrose and dialysis machines in tow. But we all know he lost his touch, which eventually led to his ouster three weeks after the elections of 1986. Had we been invaded by China then, we would have been toast. This brings us to the conclusion that leaders or candidates who decide not to disclose their medical condition are not being responsible. In the case of Sen. Miriam, she's like saying she can do this job, when she very well knows she can't if she's sick. She lamented in her speech during the votation for CJ Corona's impeachment that she was nearing the end of her life. Yet, Sen. Miriam would be Sen. Miriam, and notwithstanding the polemics on her health which has animated her career, she would be headstrong in her position that her health is none of our business. Well, we'll be watching her, as long as she can read and write, never mind think, there is no debate she's qualified. 

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