HERMENEUTICS AND THE CONSTITUTIONAL POWER TO DECLARE MARTIAL LAW

After scoffing the would-be Hermes of Duterte’s remarks and drawing attention to the art of linguistic interpretation and construction (Hermeneutics), Dean Aquino of San Beda Law asks the question in his article in his Facebook page:
 
IS IT WRONG FOR A PRESIDENT TO WARN THE NATION THAT HE IS POISED TO DECLARE MARTIAL LAW?
 
His answer is an unequivocal, NO! It is NOT wrong.
 
The Constitution gives the President the right to declare martial law because it as one of his emergency powers as provided in the Constitution. But this power is restricted by many limitations, the Congress for one and the SC (by the initiation of a citizen) can both nullify it. These restrictions, according to Dean Aquino, are in fact a disservice to the Constitution.
 
His description of those who oppose this exercise of the president’s power is sharp. He likened them to POSSESSED PERSONS (na bumubula ang bibig) who paint the declaration of martial law as something dark or evil (some kind of an imposition of their own version of history). He then lectures them about historical hermeneutics. According to him, HISTORICAL EVENT ADMITS OF DIFFERENT INTERPRETATIONS – WHICH IS NOT TO ARGUE FOR A RELATIVIST CONCEPT OF HISTORICAL TRUTH.
 
He then closed his article with an admonition to those POSSESSED PEOPLE who steadfastly reject the possibility of martial law (including Andanar, Yasay and Pimentel) and would stay the hand of a president poised to declare it under all circumstances. They MUST LEARN THE WAYS OF THE CONSTITUTION AGAIN.
 
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