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Fr. Tabora’s one year 2»


end the silence of the gagged! vol 58 No 3 • AUG-OCT






Police seize four youth activists in a demolition attempt Almira Jane Villegas Four youth activists were arrested after trying to stop a demolition attempt in Bariquit Compound, Purok 13, Bugac, Maa, Davao City last August 24. The said demolition will pave way to the construction and development of Le Jardin, a subdivision, in the 20-hectare land, claimed by the VillaAbrille clan. The four were detained at Talomo Police Station and later brought to Davao City Police Office. The youth activists were recognized as Joselito “Ash Bulldog” Lagon Jr, Regional Spokesperson of Kabataang Artista Laban sa Tunay na Kalayaan (KARATULA) and an

Atenean, Wyrlo Enero, from the League of Filipino Students (LFS), Johnny Boy Urbina and John Michael Lim, both from Anakbayan. They were tagged as the Le Jardin 4. The Le Jardin 4 stood with the residents of the compound and formed a human barricade with efforts to stop the backhoe operation in tearing down their home, which was said to be a violation against the Status Quo Order. The Order was issued by the Regional Trial Court, which said that no developments should take place between the parties involved. However, policemen from the Talomo Police Station started to interfere and seized those who went Continued on page 6 »

The Le Jardin Standoff. Youth activists were seized by the police at the Bariquit Compound, the site for the Le Jardin de Villa-Abrille Community. Screencap/ Sheena Duazo,

EO 79 reaps clash Katrina Kate Dianne Punay

The competition ceases to be more than just a fight over land; it has become a power struggle over life, rights, and truth.


The awaited executive order on mining of President Aquino, EO No. 79, has been hailed by both praise and criticism. Stands all boil down to whether this decree is more of an advantage or a drawback. Last July 6, the President signed EO No. 79 “institutionalizing and implementing reforms in the Philippine mining sector providing policies and guidelines to ensure environmental protection and responsible mining in the utilization of mineral resources.” The environmentalist senator Loren Legarda is dissatisfied. “No doubt our abundant mineral resources belong absolutely to





CEGP-SMR holds first GA

Eco-Knights on the move to help save Davao Shrine Hills

A face-off on biodegradable and non-biodegradable

SAMAHAN’s time in the hot seat

the state and therefore, to the people,” she claimed, adding that though there is an abundance of mineral resources in the country, the government receives a ‘peanut share’ of royalties from mining firms. She affirmed that she will only ‘support a policy move that ensures fair, responsible and sustainable development of the country’s mineral resources’. Here in Mindanao, Malacañang asked Davao City Vice Mayor Rodrigo Duterte to hold his temper in citing his views on President Aquino’s released policy in mining. “You can’t force me to legislate something in accordance to what you like in Manila,” uttered Duterte in the public Continued on page 5 » INDEX AUGUST-OCTOBER 2 NEWS 8 OPINION & COLUMNS 10 IN-DEPTH 12 FEATURES 17 DIVERSIONS 18 MONTAGE


August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University



• The first female • Chief Justice of the

Supreme Court of the Philippines

Estella Jane Sasil President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III named Maria Lourdes Sereno as the 24th Chief Justice of the Supreme Court on Friday, August 24. “In the midst of this period of deep mourning for the loss of Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo, the President is cognizant of his constitutional duty to appoint


FROM RH TO CYBERCRIME Senator Sotto’s blunders from his turno en contra speech to the libel provision in R. A. 10175 Source -

PNoy hails Sereno as 24th Chief Justice The youngest among the nominees


A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University •

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

the next Chief Justice of the Philippines,” Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda announced. Sereno topped the list over seven other candidates, namely Acting Supreme Court Chief Justice Antonio Carpio; exAteneo Law School Dean Cesar Villanueva, former Congressman Ronaldo Zamora, Associate Justices Roberto Abad, Arturo Brion, and Teresita Leonardo

De Castro; and Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza, Sereno has been a lawyer and educator for 25 years now and was appointed to the Court in August 2010 as Associate Justice, which was left vacant when then President Gloria MacapagalArroyo appointed Corona as Chief Justice. She finished her college education at Ateneo de Manila University where she took

PNoy’s Shortlist for the Chief Justice of the Philippines Photos from,, and

up Bachelor of Arts Major in Economics. She then proceeded to Law at the University of the Philippines where she graduated as the class valedictorian and Cum Laude on 1984. She had her post-graduate degree at the UP School of Economics with the Master of Arts in Economics Program in 1992. Then, she studied at the University of Michigan in Continued on page 7 »


Associate Justice Roberto Abad


Associate Justice Arturo Brion


Associate Justice Antonio Carpio


Associate Justice Teresita Leonardo De Castro


Solicitor General Francis Jardeleza


Associate Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno



Cesar Villanueva

Ronaldo Zamora

Blue Servathon finally takes place Ursula Calipayan The much talked about event should have ended last August but it was only near the end of September when participants finally got to take part in the environmental run as part of advocacy service oriented formation program “ BlueServathon.” It can be remembered that the delays garnered negative comments from the participants. “The servathon keeps on postponing. I wish to refund my money,” a 3rd year Business Management student lamented. Another 1st year Accounting Technology student said “it’s somehow disappointing.” The negative reactions surfaced after the date of the Blue Servathon was rescheduled two times. It was supposed to take place on August 12 but was moved to August 26. To the dismay of the participants, it was cancelled again. According to a memo released by the Blue Servathon organizer, the event was postponed because of the advice of the Barangay Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office of Davao City that its best to postpone the event because of the “heavy rainfall every night” that the city is experiencing, especially in the highland areas like Matina Pangi, the venue of the event Blue Servathon. The Blue Servathon team said it would be dangerous for the participants to run in the area especially when it’s always raining. The team, however, clarified that they did not corrupt the money of the participants and that the event would still take place. They also said that instead of Matina Pangi, the runners would run in Roxas Avenue so that weather interruptions on the event will not happen again. They added that it would be safer for the participants. The Blue servathon environmental advocacy run in Roxas Avenue and tree Continued on page 13»

Ong (left) and Leyson (right), the two First Year Representatives, are the proud voices of the freshmen for this school year. Photo/Atenews

Ong and Leyson win 1st FYR automated elections Clemarie Secuya Roughly two months have passed since the First Year Representative Elections took place at the Thibault grounds and at the AdDU Matina Campus last July 12-14. Among the seven hopefuls for the FYR, Roren Ong and Mike Leyson won as the voice of the freshmen garnering 577 and 576 votes respectively. This year’s batch of freshmen was the first to experience the FYR automated elections. Since the voters were new to the system, most of them were enticed to try the automated elections. When asked why she voted, Christine Joy Jovita, “Para magkaroon ng voice ang mga first years. Sana gawin ng mga na-elect ang kanilang responsibilities”. The automated election was

Fr. Tabora and the guests are all smiles at the ribbon cutting ceremony of the Matteo Ricci Mandarin Program. Photo/ Geneva Shaula Almeria

Ateneo launches Mandarin program Maybelle Anne Yutiamco Ateneo de Davao’s first Mandarin Program was opened up last August 8 and is currently offering Mandarin lessons to students and professionals. The program is named after Matteo Ricci, a Jesuit priest who was one of the greatest experts in Mandarin during his mission in China and was also one of the counselors of a Chinese Emperor over 400 years ago. He was buried in Beijing and is admired for his

dedication to embrace a culture outside Europe. University President, Father Joel Tabora S.J., stated during the launching of the program how important it is to speak and understand Mandarin, as it is advantageous for everybody. He also asserted how significant it is to know the history, culture, and language of China, as we are presently involved in important matters with the country. The context of the learning another language and another culture, according to Father Tabora, is

to be based on friendship where the success of the program will rise or fall. He further specified that Mandarin classes might be made obligatory to all students, not just to those who are required to study it. Father Tabora also encouraged Mr. Jenner Chan, one of the main proponents of the program, to develop trips to China in order for the students to know the industry and achievements of China. The Matteo Ricci Mandarin Program Office is presently

located at room C207. Mandarin classes started last August 22 and are still offered. Five classes per day are accessible. 10:00-11:00 a.m., 1:30-2:30 p.m., and 2:303:30 p.m. classes are offered to students. Two classes from 5:50-6:50 p.m. are offered to professionals outside the school. Mandarin teachers are trained volunteers from China. Interested learners are encouraged to go to the MRMP Office to get an application form and for further information on how to enroll in the program. a

also a factor why this year’s FYR election made a record of the fastest time to get 50% voters’ turnout. The election closed with 55.83% voters of the 2,377 first year students. As a first year student, one must concentrate on his or her academic obligations before others. “Being elected, I really have to commit myself to SAMAHAN. I really have to do my job as a leader and to study hard as a student. Sometimes, it is really hard for me to cope up with my acads and personal life but I am really trying my best to balance everything: as a servant leader, as a student, as a friend and most especially as a son,” said Roren Ong, one of the FY representatives. After two months of being in service, the two representatives have established a First Year Student Executive Council (FY

SEC) that would help them in organizing the events for the first years. The FY SEC is composed of first year students from all divisions to ensure that each division’s voice may be heard. They are also using the social networking sites such as Facebook in disseminating information. When asked what events they have organized for this school year, Ong said, “As for this sem, we will be organizing an Ignatian Leadership Training sa lahat ng mga first years especially class officers and all the members of our SEC. But next sem, we will have a jam-packed activities just for the first years like the freshmen got talent, fy cup, and the most awaited freshies night.” The two representatives still have the rest of the school year to serve the the first year student body. a

CEGP-SMR holds first GA Kirsten Ilajas

Rendell Ryan Cagula, Regional Coordinator of Kabataan Partylist, speaks on issues regarding the country’s educational system infront of the Guilders on the first general assembly of CEGP-SMR. Photo/Allan Francis Dorado

81 years and counting, the protector of campus press freedom and human rights in the Philippines has never ceased to shout for truth. Last July 28, the College Editors Guild of the PhilippinesSouthern Mindanao Region had its first General Assembly under the 36th Congress. It was a whole day activity held at the DMMA College of Southeastern Philippines. Guided with the theme

“Laban Natin Noon at Ngayon: Education for all,” the said general assembly sought to strengthen the Guilders to fight for every Filipino’s right to be educated. It also welcomed the newly accepted journalists as guilders and oriented them with the true spirit of journalism. The first part of the program was allotted for the discussion of the current issues and social realities in the country. Mr. Rendell Ryan Cagula, Kabataan Partylist Regional Coordinator, delivered a keynote address on the status of the Philippine

Education System. He discussed the unfair distribution of budget for education and its effects on students who are studying in state colleges and universities. In his statement, Cagula mentioned the lack of funds allocated for textbooks, school chairs and other facilities. Another keynote speaker was Cherry Orendain, Spokesperson of Anak Bayan, delivered her address on the stand of the youth on K+12. She addressed the poor literacy level of Filipinos to the high-rate of Continued on page 13»


August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University



Eco-Knights on the move to help save Davao Shrine Hills Hannah Faith Tormis “Green-minded” Ateneans gathered at J301 last August 6 for the forum on saving the Davao Shrine Hills through the effort of the SAMAHAN Environment Unit. The forum with the theme, “Green Minded ka ba?” thoroughly discussed the potential dangers the Shrine Hills poses to its nearby residents due to its unstable geological status. According the Mines and Geosciences Bureau’s Landslide Susceptibility Map, Shrine Hills is said to be highly susceptible to landslides due to the presence of numerous tension cracks along slopes adjacent to the community. It also has a fault line that touches Shrine Hills from north to south. Mrs. Norma Javellana, the president of Barangay Ma-a Federation of Ma-a Home Owners Associations, and Mr. Stacey Baird, a researcher and advocate of Davao Shrine Hills, highly stressed in their speech the need to reclassify Shrine Hills from being a residential area to a city’s natural protected area. They also contended about the argument that not allowing subdivision developments in Shrine Hills will drive away investors in the city. Instead, they

said that Shrine Hills can be the city’s real asset, an eco-tourism site that will attract foreigners and investors. Instead of houses, forest parks and green space should be constructed. Such notion will only be possible if the city officials possess the political will to protect Shrine Hills. Subdivisions like Royal Pines, Camella Homes, and Las Terrazas are situated on the Shrine Hills site where obvious cracks are seen. Manny Villar’s Crown Communities are also ready to shave off portions of the terrain of Ma-a to construct highend residential estates. Kisan Lu’s Twin Palms subdivision is also one of the projects that are in the initial stages of development. Because of these presented developmental plans, the speakers of the said forum strongly encouraged the Davaoeños and the Ateneo community to be adherent in protecting and keeping Shrine Hills, a green jungle, from becoming a concrete jungle. “The Shrine Hills is a natural endowment given by God to the people of Davao. As such, its preservation and protection has to be regulated by the city government for the common good… In view of the growing residential development in

Ernesto Maceda has been in public service for 53 years. He has held different government posts, from being a councilor of Manila to being the Senate President. Last September 21, he shared his 53-year experience to the Ateneans in the forum entitled “Talakayan with Manong Ernie: A forum on leadership, good governance, and current issues” held at F213. He used his 53-year experience to give his views on the five topics relevant to the country today. He first tackled about leadership. Maceda encouraged the students to join different campus organizations for them


Senator Sotto adds the libel amendment during the second reading of Senate Bill No. 2796, or the Cybercrime Prevention Act.



EO 79 Continued FROM page 1 »

affairs program Gikan saMasa Para sa Masa. The Vice Mayor stated that Davao City will remain offlimits to mining and to pass an ordinance to support that course of action is not needed. Identification of more minefree areas in the country, or the ‘no-go’ zones, is the focus of the reforms program. The Department of Environment and National Resources (DENR) is tasked to grant only exploration permits, review existing mining contracts for possible renegotiation and remove idle mining rights holders. “On the one hand, it is charged to protect the environment. On the other hand, it is charged to exploit natural resources,” wrote AdDU President Fr. Joel E. Tabora, SJ in his blog about the matter. “‘No go’ zone clearer after EO 79? Not really. ‘No go’ means maybe,” he ended in his post. AdDU SAMAHAN President Maureene Ann Villamor asserted, “EO 79 does not suffice to the people’s aspired changes on the mining policies of the country. Based on the analysis of the various environmental groups, EO 79 is not advantageous for the people. It still favors the big mining companies. Baka hindi pa rin genuinely maprotektahan at magamitang national resources for national interests. I support the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP)’ call for a comprehensive mining law.” A signature campaign was started by the CBCP. It pleads a moratorium in implementing the EO and called for the passing of an alternative mining law. On the opposing side claiming practicality, Secretary Gregory Domingo revealed that the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the largest business group in the country, is all for what EO 79 stands for. Despite environmental concerns, he defended that bigger investments in the industry are the main benefit and target of the said order. a

The “Green Minded Ka Ba?” forum talks about the current conditions of Shrine Hills and the ways and methods on how we can preserve and sustain it. Photo/Janine Carla Abejay

Continued on page 6 »

Maceda shares 53 years of public service experience to Ateneans Christopher Caboverde

A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University •

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

to develop their leadership skills at a young age. “Based on my experience, I must tell you that leadership is something that is not inborn. It is developed through the years,” he said. It was also stressed to the audience that one need not be the president of an organization or the country to be a leader. “Not everybody can be president. So, don’t be disappointed if you are not elected president or officer. It is just as important to become a good follower. Because by being a good follower, you learn leadership qualities and eventually, as the days go by, you become a good leader,” said Maceda.

On the Enrile-Trillanes feud, he discussed two reasons for the happening. One is the proposed split of Camarines Sur into two separate provinces wherein Trillanes accused Enrile of railroading the Camarines Sur split in the Senate. Another reason is the “back-channeling issue” in which Trillanes said that President Aquino appointed him as special back-channeling envoy to China to try to solve the ChinaPhilippine dispute. However, the Malacanang insisted that Trillanes volunteered and was not appointed. Enrile then called Trillanes a “traitor” for endangering the country for his actions. Maceda then discussed about the RH Bill. He told the audience

Awitenista 26 begins Katrina Kate Dianne Punay

Maceda answers the questions that students raised during the open forum. Photo/Kristine Salgados

that he will only finalize his stand regarding the bill once the final version of the bill is written. He added that the RH Bill has a slim chance of passing since Congress has eight workweeks left before the end of the year. Also, the bill’s critics in Congress have pointed out 19 objections

to the bill, which make the bill’s chance of passing even slimmer. On K+12, he believes that that program will improve the quality of education in the country and that it is better for students to study for 12 years rather than Continued on page 6 »

Music is Life! Song covers and compositions of the best of last year’s Awitenista reminiscently filled and rocked the Finster grounds last September 19 in the Awitenista 26 Soft Launching. Driving performances were lead by Jovani Tomale’s T.U.B.A.G., Joffrey Escoreal’s Hiya, Kail Bundalian’s Koolang, and Prince Padilla’s Hiyas ng Lahi. The annual song writing competition is produced by Kalasag, Ang Taunang Aklat ng Ateneo de Davao University. It is for everyone to showcase their talents in creating, inspiring and fulfilling music’s essence to the

Ateneo community. And also to live out the authentic Atenean Music Different categories of the Awitenista include: Religious, Nationalistic, Jam Atenista, and Contemporary. The Jam Atenista category which composes of hymns that represent the true Atenean spirit will have changes for this year’s competition. Band members should be from the same department. Compositions should focus not only on the life in the school community but more importantly the unique identity and values that a department possesses. With songs that stir the soul and rekindle a patriotic spirit, the Nationalistic category will have a theme about the environment.

Awitenista veterans Shades of White kicks off the soft launching program of the annual Atenean music competiton, now on its 26th year. Photo/Caycee Coronel

It will feature songs that depict challenges the Philippines is facing with regards to current environmental issues. Atenean composers can get their application forms at the Kalasag office. Deadline of the submission of song entries is on November 16. Also, in preparation for the big

production, there will be another Host Hunt in search for the next host of the Grand Finals Night. The Kalasag is also looking for Awitenista Production Staff applicants who will be part of Awitenista 26. Application forms are available at their office and the deadline for submission is on November 10.

Asked what message he wants to give to Ateneans, the Awitenista 26 Steering Committee Chairperson, Christian Aleleo Cabagnot, says it is simply the three taglines of Awitenista. “Live out your dreams. Show off your passion. Unleash the Atenean music within you.” a


• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3


NEWS the area, we earnestly request the city government to put the preservation of the hills on its top agenda,” Atty. Romeo T. Cabarde Jr., the Executive Secretary of University Community Engagement and Advocacy Council (UCEAC), read the petition statement of the Environmental team of UCEAC on the preservation of the Shrine Hills. In line with the new vision

and mission of Ateneo de Davao, the UCEAC committed to contribute in the protection of the environment and the conservation of the biodiversity. Davao City’s Local Tourism Board proudly says, “Davao: Life is here”. But with the geo-hazard that Shrine Hills possess, is life really here in Davao? More than just a tourist spot or a bulk of residential area, Davao is also a sanctuary that needs to be preserved. Ateneans, don’t just be a blue knight, be an ecoknight! a

Madel Catre The second year students of the International Studies department namely Washington, Versailles and Westphalia held hands and fused ideas making the second Philippine foreign relations week a success. With the theme, ASEAN: One tradition, one identity, one community. The one week activity proved to be an event that polishes Philippines’s shine amidst its relations with other ASEAN countries. The event lasted from September 3 to September 7. Ribbon cutting was conducted at the Thibault grounds at the constructed walk-in gallery made by the concerned students. It presented the different members of the ASEAN and the schedule of activities for the one-week event. With Mr. Akeem Fabila and Mr. Martin Escubido, the informative fun officially started.

CEGP-SMR holds first GA Continued FROM page 3 »

unemployment and not to the duration of the students’ stay in the academe. The said inputs opened the eyes of the guilders to the different problems that bombard the education system in the Philippines. The general assembly did not merely focus on social issues but it had also integrated a half-day workshop for the journalists. It was a simultaneous Basic Journalism Training on editorial, news, features, cartooning, lay-out and photojournalism. Respected journalists mentored

the said workshops and guided the young guilders on how to be responsible journalists. Mec Elino, chairperson of CEGP-SMR, gave a message to the journalists whose battle cry for truth never fades, “We should never be afraid of what risks we might take when it comes to writing and expressing but of failing in prevailing the truth instead, because it is for the good of the many.” At the end of the day, the guilders were inspired with the aim to uphold campus press freedom and to protect the rights of every Filipino. a


On September 3 at activity period, Religious Pluralism was discussed thoroughly by Mr. Mussolini Lidasan, Head of the Al Qalam Institute of Ateneo de Davao University. The speaker’s talk centered on Southeast Asia. On September 5 at the same time, Consul General Eko Hartono from the Indonesian Consulate showed what Indonesia is made of, aesthetically and traditionally, living the theme for that day Enriching Ties, Culture and Diversity to the fullest. The speaker also informed in intricately about Philippines relation with his homeland. On the final day, Department of Foreign Affairs Head, Flora Belinda B. Bacosa, held a powerful and dynamic talk about Philippines’ relationships and role as a member of the ASEAN. With the Pagpapatatag ng Samahang ASEAN as the theme, she strengthened the participating Ateneans con-

viction to take part in the social transformation and changes as she unabashedly relayed what is happening at present and what could happen in the future regarding Philippines’ foreign relations. Pitching in issues of the Scarborough Shoal and concerns for territorial rights, Jhana Lynne B. Ligue, head organizer of the event, left the Ateneans with something important to remember, saying, “We’re all Filipinos. Whatever happens to the Philippines will inadvertently affect us. So, Ateneans, do know. Be aware. Be involved.” The second year IS students conveyed their gratitude and satisfaction with their final requirement at the end of the day, their success proving that the Atenean spirit is truly involved in the issues surrounding not just their nation but also of their neighbouring countries. a

SAMAHAN conducts election awareness Kristine Jean Salgados Estella Jane Sasil

Pnoy hails Sereno as 24th Chief Justice “The President is confident that Chief Justice Sereno will lead the Michigan, USA with Master of judiciary in undertaking muchneeded reforms. We believe the Law. Chief Justice Sereno, only 52 Judicial Branch of government years old, will sit as Chief Justice has a historic opportunity to for 18 years. Thus, her service restore our people’s confidence in the judicial system,” Lacierda will continue for the next three said. presidents after Aquino’s term. Meanwhile, many are As a member of the judiciary, Not a fair fight. Four full grown policemen expecting a lot from her as the Sereno will also follow the pin down and beat up one student activist in new chief justice. mandatory retirement age of all a cruel display of “police” power. Screencap/ “We haven’t given her ample Sheena Duazo, justices which is 70 years old. time to prove herself so it is In appointing her, Aquino difficult and too early yet to broke the tradition of choosing judge her”, said Marnie Torro, 3rd the most senior member of the year AB Mass Communication judiciary. It was learned that student of Ateneo de Davao Antonio Carpio is the next Senior University. Justice next to Renato Corona. “Maybe it would be better for By this, she is considered to be us to wait before we criticize the start of judicial reform. her”, she added. Admittedly, Aquino is very For the record, Sereno Police seize four youth activists in a demolition attempt eager for a judicial reform and is the youngest among the officer cuffed me and stomped Villamor also showed her support was looking for someone who nominees for the post and now Continued FROM page 1» on my right face twice with his by posting a campaign photo in has the leadership more than the the first female chief justice the Facebook group “Ateneans qualifications required by the of the Supreme Court of the against the operation as ordered combat boots. de Davao”. The condemnation Then I was dragged like a constitution. Philippines. by Deputy Commander Chief of the brutal arrest and the pig, and even threatened by Inspector Aldrin Juaneza. Maceda shares 53 years of public service Lagon was documenting the intelligence that he would kill said unlawful demolition in incident (since the day before) me if he saw me again in the the Bariquit Compound was experience to Ateneans when four alleged police and area. I was then punched by a stressed. “Aside sa nagpakita ito ng state intelligences took police officer inside the Mobile An open forum was also held military Continued FROM page 4» wherein the students and faculty photos of him and Inspector Patrol Car. The officer didn’t brutality, na kung saan, sana members asked questions to Juaneza told his officers to arrest wear any nameplate,” said Lagon i-nexpect natin na doon papanig ten years before going to college. Maceda about certain issues the him. Accordingly, they got beaten as he shared his sentiments to ang mga pulis sa mga oppressed However, he conceded that na residents, well masakit country is facing right now. up by policemen and M16 riffles Atenews. parents will have additional Slight physical injuries, tanggapin na ang batas talaga ay The forum ended with a raffle were even pointed at them. They expenses once this program is mischief and panig sa mayayaman; ako saludo wherein Maceda gave away were electrocuted and received malicious fully in place. ako sa apat na may pakialam at resistance and serious prizes like flat irons, rice cookers, different threats. Maceda ended his speech by electric fans, and cash prizes up “I was zapped by the stunning disobedience to persons in paninindigan para sa mga api. discussing about the China- to PHP1500. gun behind my back, and police authority were the charges filed At kaisa ako sa pinaniniwalaan Philippine dispute on the Spratly nila na dapat bigyang hustisya The Political Science and officers tried to take my camera. against the Le Jardin 4. Islands and the Scarborough History Videos showing the incident ang mga aping maralitang Department, the I was punched behind my back, Shoal. He said that the dispute fourth year AB Political Science neck, head, and an M16 rifle was of police brutality also spread inaagawan ng karapatan sa sarili remains unresolved. However, class in cooperation with the pointed at me. I was kicked and out on social networking sites. nilang lupa,” said Villamor in an he added that the Philippines SAMAHAN ng mga Mag-aaral ng manhandled by 5-6 policemen Supporters used the power of interview with Atenews. She also cannot afford to go to war Agham Pampulitika ng Ateneo and thrown to the ground. I tried social media in pushing different mentioned that the incident is against China since the country’s (SAMAPULA), and the Social calling Jaja Necosia of LFS and campaigns to free the Le Jardin 4. somewhat like an eye-opener to military is no match against the Science Division organized the Cindy Bermudez of KARATULA SAMAHAN Central Board greater realities that has to be said forum. a Chinese military. Maureene Ann scrutinized. to get my phone, but a police President,


Sotto delivers his turno en contra speech against RH bill which plagiarizes parts of Sarah Pope’s blog.


2nd PFR week: strengthening ties

Eco-Knights on the move to help save Davao Shrine Hills Continued FROM page 4 »

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August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

Continued FROM page 2 »

Villamor also encouraged and reminded the Ateneans to be vigilant enough as it is also our responsibility to promote social justice. It is also a way of practicing cura personalis, as taught by the Ateneo. “Sa mga kabataan, lalo na sa mga kapwa Atenista, sa gitna ng ating pag-iigi sa pag-aaral natin, wag din sana nating kalimutan na meron tayong responsibilidad na tumugon sa mga isyu ng social justice sa ating lipunan. Ang simpleng pagmamatyag at pakikialam ay porma na rin ng pagpapakita na tayo ay mga persons for others.” The Le Jardin 4 was given temporary liberty after posting a bail of P12500 last August 29. When asked on what would be their plans now that they are freed, Lagon said, “We will still continue our struggle to serve the oppressed and toiling masses. Defend and fight for

Moves is an activity in partnership with AYALA Company that seeks to help address the lack of classrooms in public schools, through a ten- peso donation in ten months. This ten- peso donation in ten months aims to build ten thousand classrooms. The event was made as a ground for discussion of the preceding issues concerning Ateneans and its activities, most particulary the Sui Generis leadership forum. SAMAHAN President Maureene Ann Villamor opened up a forum and tried to get reactions from Ateneans present in the event. She also discussed the current stand of the No Permit No Exam Policy, saying that she is in the process of negotiating the contents of the policy. The guest speaker from LENTE discussed several essential points on what we need to know as part of the national election. Atty. Rona Carlitos talked about the elections and voters’ education for the upcoming 2013 elections saying that more than anyone else, voters should be more educated on how the elections will go on. She stressed the importance of COMELEC registration, in casting a vote and running for office. Among other things the speaker discussed is the importance of encouraging others to register and conducting activities that will raise the awareness of the youth on election and in the political aspect of the society in general.She

added that there are things we can do to ensure an honest, clean, and fair elections especially during the counting of votes and after elections. There are no reasons that we can’t do all of these with the rise of machines, according to her. By this, she meant that in our generation today, information can be easily accessed through the use of technologies. Our gadgets can help us in disseminating important information for the upcoming elections.“By doing this, we must focus on the vulnerable sectors’, she said. Vulnerable sectors include the indigenous people, internally displace citizens, and other unfortunate and marginalized people. People must be very aware on how will the candidates use the election campaign honestly. Honest candidates, she said, are those who follow rules and regulations on the campaign period. Atty. Carlitos shared the steps – particularly on pre-election, election, and post-election stages – on how we can get involved in one of the most important events in the country. The things that we can do in the pre-election stage are to register, encourage others to register, conduct public education activities and to mobilize. Voters should be more educated on how the elections will go on. a

As the 2012 National Elections is fast approaching, SAMAHAN Central Board conducted a forum on social involvement at the Finster Auditorium last September 21. SAMAHAN Talks promoted and introduced the various activities initiated by SCB. In lieu with the incoming elections in 2013, they organized an activity that will serve not only as an awareness campaign to the Ateneans, but also an avenue for them to participate. The highlighted Atenista, Magpakabaka! Campaign promotes the exercise of right of suffrage among Ateneans of legal age. In line with this activity, is a room to room campaign that aimed dissemination of essential election information, and a satellite voter’s registration for the residents of different districts of Davao City. Aside from the election awareness campaign, other activities were also mentioned by the SAthe rights of the people as well.” MAHAN Treasurer Peter Jules He also expressed that they Cañete and SAMAHAN Secretary will file counter charges, both General Hitesh Dhanwani. Proadministrative and criminal, ject Runway and Samahan Para against those who oppressed sa Kalikasan both raises interest them. That would be after on environmental preservation discussing legal matters with through creativity, particularly their lawyers. in making clothes out of recyThe Le Jardin incident is one cled materials. The Ateneo Ten of the unending demolition and land issues faced by the current societal system. As one of the four, Lagon challenged the youth to go out of their comfort zones and be real men and women for others. “It is high time that the youth should heed the call of our time in struggling for national democracy and genuine freedom. Fight for a nationalist, scientific, and mass-oriented culture. Be vigilant and critical on social issues, and we should actively participate. We should stand for the oppressed,” Lagon SAMAHAN President Maureene Ann Villamor along with some students and the guest speaker Atty. Rona Carlitos after the event. Photo/Charydel Malintad said. a


August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University


It is the collective protest of thousands of Filipinos that strikes me as wonderful. Because it proves that there is still a vestige of democracy in our country.

Whether or not you agree with their stands on certain issues, it is undeniable that activists have much to contribute in bringing awareness to the public.

Kathleen Anne Veloso

Edward Lactaoen


A T E N E W S established ~ 1955


Kathleen Anne Veloso Cut the Craft


Filipinos unite!

Jenny Mae Saldaña MANAGING EDITOR Farrideh Jadali Sabet ASSOCIATE MANAGING EDITOR Almira Jane Villegas NEWS EDITOR Jamela Rae Allaga FEATURES EDITOR Bea Trizia Jimenez ART EDITOR

W R I T I N G S TA F F Ursula Calipayan, Marie Florienne Melendrez, Kathleen Pastrana, Clemarie Secuya, Arielle Sta. Ana, Maybelle Yutiamco SENIOR WRITERS

Edward Lactaoen Short Stuff From the Short Man

T E C H N I C A L S TA F F Casrica Gloria Maria Coronel Head Photojournalist



Geneva Shaula Almeria, Louise Marie Loreno, Janine Carla Abejay, Kristina Congson, Allan Francis Dorado, Charydel Cassandra Malintad PHOTOJOURNALISTS Steely Dhan Caballero Head Cartoonist

Steven Adrianne Chua Head Layout & Graphic Artist

A slap on the face of democracy

Jason Occidental, Rafael Benedicto, Ralph dela Cerna, El Sean Fuentes, Jankin Davies Go LAYOUT & GRAPHICS

Christopher Ryan Maboloc MODERATOR Atenews is located at the Lower Ground Floor, Finster Hall, Ateneo de Davao University, Roxas Avenue, 8016 Davao City Tel. No.: (082) 221-2411 loc. 8332 • Website: • E-mail: MEMBER OF THE COLLEGE EDITORS GUILD OF THE PHILIPPINES We accept articles, letters, pictures, comics and other contributions for publication. END THE SILENCE OF THE GAGGED!

ctivism. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as a doctrine or practice that emphasizes direct vigorous action; especially in support of or opposition to one side of a controversial issue; and the people who engage in activism are referred to as activists. Often have I walked along the streets to see activists rallying at either freedom park or along Claveria street. More often than not, I observe people as they direct contemptuous glares towards the people across the street who are holding their banners and placards high and airing their grievances to the public. Most of


Nadine Caballes, Zyra Montefolca Carl Militar, Gerson Poliño, Kristoffer Jan Tipon, Maverick Santos CARTOONISTS

John Lorence Lim WEB TEAM

t’s amazing to watch the developments in the highly controversial Cybercrime Prevention Act. In just a few days after its implementation, Senators are now rushing to excuse and apologize for their mistake. Senator Angara, the principal sponsor of the law in the Senate, has even stated that he will file amendments regarding Section 19 of the Act, which authorizes the Department of Justice to shut down websites even without a court order. Others have admitted that the inserted libel clause slipped past their notice. It seems like the groupthink and “bahala na” syndromes have been at work yet again for these legislators. On the Legislative department’s oversight, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile passed the responsibility to the Supreme Court, saying “We’re not God, we can’t always be right.” Another Senator, Pia Cayetano,


Christopher Ed Caboverde, Juan Basilio Espinoza, Rhea Joyce Semillano, Estella Jane Sasil, Katrina Kate Dianne Punay, Madel Catre, Kristine Jean Salgados, Kirsten Ilajas, Hannah Tormis, Ma. Kristina Camelia Nardo, John Paulo Vicencio JUNIOR WRITERS

Francis Kenneth Barrina, Herc Casiple Heads of Web Development

A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University •

August - October • Volume 57 Number 3


o law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances”. This is the line, provided under Article 3 of the Bill of Rights Section 4, that protects our right to express our thoughts and opinions about our government. As citizens of a democratic nation, we are free to say what we think of how our government officials are doing, whether positive or negative, without fear of getting imprisoned or criminalized. Or so we thought, until last September 12, when the Cybercrime Prevention Act was signed by the President.

Everything seems to be okay at first glance, as it targets computer hacking, identity theft, forgery and child pornography. But when you get to the fourth content-related offense in Section 4 of RA 10175, things get a little unconstitutional. What the libel clause of the law means to do, in plain and simple terms, is gag the people. Contrary to what some people think, it includes everyone, not just journalists. The clause means to stop anyone from complaining or from airing out any bad assessments of the government, as these can be classified as libel. Libel is defined as “the public and malicious imputation of a crime, or of a vice or defect, real or imaginary, or any act, omission, condition, status, or circumstance tending

to cause the dishonor, discredit, or contempt of a natural or juridical person...” in the Revised Penal Code. What’s even worse is that the law is tagged as mala prohibita, as distinguished from mala in se. As written in Ateneo School of Law professor Atty. Mel Sta. Maria’s article, for mala in se, the intention to do wrong is an essential element. However, for mala prohibita laws, which include libel, there need not be a criminal mind. The mere perpetuation of the prohibited act is enough. Merely liking a status or photo about a politician who wrote a law that disregards constitutional rights can be deemed as libelous and can put you in jail. The libel clause in the law simply shows the type of people we have sitting in the government

of our supposedly “democratic” country. They have shown that democracy is a mere tag and they have no pretensions about it. Democracy is supposed to be a government by the people. By passing this law, the very essence of democracy has been thrown out the window and right at the faces of the Filipinos. The question that remains now is this: are we going to remain silent now that our rights are taken blatantly from us? Are we simply going to accept this and live with it? What we need is collective action that will remind the government who the bosses are. They don’t get to repress us and get away with it. We get to say stop when things go too far. Because in this democratic country, and as the President said himself, we are the bosses!

Jenny Mae Saldaña No Half Measures

Seizing the good earth

Garden in the city”, a phrase that will get you imagining of blooming flowers and trees that promises fruitful bounties. However, in reality, it speaks of injustice, cruelty and irrelevant displays of power that got Marcela “Nanay Silay” Camumot and the other residents of Bariquit compound standing up for their rights. According to an article in DavaoToday, the dispute over the area started since 1973 when the Villa-Abrilles sued Nanay Silay for illegally occupying the land that they claimed as their own. However, it was proven afterwards that her family had been tilling the land for almost 50 years. The civil case was dismissed and she was awarded with a court decision establishing her tenancy of the land. Naturally, if I were in the


OPINION echoed the same sentiments, tweeting, “I would have been happy to block libel prov if I had seen it or someone pointed it out. Sadly we cannot catch every provision all the time.” These statements all scream “palusot” to me. If the “I’m only human” excuse is legitimate, can we ever hold anyone liable for crimes or errors? No, because “they’re only human.” If you’re human, then you have a brain which you use to think and analyze. These are laws we are dealing with, laws that will govern the lives of millions of people, not some petty pop quiz. What makes this even worse is that senators are put into those positions precisely to write and carefully pass laws, not sleep on the job or wait for others to “point out” what’s wrong. This incident makes me ask how many other laws have been passed without being properly reviewed by these

people. With the hundreds of laws in the country, the thought gets depressing…and utterly frightening. Definitely not exempted from this is the President himself, who approved the law without analyzing its repercussions. The Palace’s continued support of RA 10175 and emphasis on the Constitution, the very same law that Sections 4 (c) [4], 5, 7, and 19 of the Act go against, are ironic. What makes it even sadder is that he is the son of the icon of Philippine democracy, who fought for the Filipinos’ freedom of speech. If you want to go symbolic, the Act, also called as E-Martial law, was signed on September 12. Martial law was declared by then President Ferdinand Marcos on September 21. I wonder what Ninoy Aquino makes of all this? The sneaky politicians in the government probably thought

that the Filipinos were asleep when they passed the Act. But the increasing number of pledges to file amendments for RA 10175 is the fruit of a thousand cries of dissent of waking and vigilant Filipinos. It is proof that by keeping a steady watch, we can keep the behavior of our government in check. Again, the developments in the Cybercrime Prevention Act are incredible to observe. What’s amazing is not the “Pontius Pilate” or “Bahala na” behavior of our senators, or the unthinking attitude of our President, because these are absolutely inexcusable, but the thing that made them backtrack their actions and do something to correct their faults. It is the collective protest of thousands of Filipinos that strikes me as wonderful, because it proves that there is still a vestige of democracy in our country. a

the time, right after they take a look at the people engaged in the rally, people would say, “mga aktibista.” Which leads me to wonder, what do these people really know about activists, aside from what they see in the streets? In the strictest sense of the word, anyone who takes direct action to protest about a certain issue is an activist. The four young men who were detained in Talomo police station after the demolition at Bariquit Compound? Activists. Those who shared the photos asking for the release of the Le Jardin 4? Activists. All who shared the video of the arrest, saying that police brutality should

end? Yup, you guessed it. Activists. But as the definition states, activisim is not always protesting against a certain issue. Moreover, activists aren’t putting forward their own interests. Take for example the actual people who would be displaced by the demolition in the Bariquit compound and the ones who were protesting to stop the demolition. Even take time to consider the people who are actually against acts of land grabbing and those who actually take part in fighting against it. As the former Vice-president for CEGP Mindanao, Paul Randy Gumanao put it, “Kung may nakita kayong sam-

pung aktibistang nagpicket, hindi ibig sabihing prinsipyo lang nilang sampu ang inilalaban nila. Dala-dala rin nila ang mithiin ng libulibong walang tapang at kapal ng mukhang manindigan. Inilalaban din nila pati ang kapakanan ng iilang mga tumatawa, ng iilang nakalimot kung paano sumuri ng lipunan.” Whether or not you agree with their stands on certain issues, it is undeniable that activists have much to contribute in bringing awareness to the public. The next time you witness activists holding a protest, don’t just hear what they’re saying; listen. You might learn a thing or two. a

shoes of Nanay Silay, I would not easily give up what our family considered as “home.” Knowing that giving up would also mean losing it, why would I hand it down to people who obviously want it for personal gain? These people used different methods of scaring the residents even to the point of firing guns to make them leave the place and even dumping landfills on the rice paddies that they were tilling. Some of them even destroyed the crops and trees planted by the residents. Showing her resistance, Nanay Silay was imprisoned for four days because of “Malicious Mischief” by throwing stones at the backhoe. It’s absurd that she’s the one getting a dose of the wrong sense of justice. If that was the reason why she was imprisoned, what about those ruthless acts experienced by

the inhabitants of the Bariquit compound? Surely, someone must be imprisoned for that as well. Though it cannot be argued that influence and power play a big role in a society like ours, it shouldn’t be a reason for treating someone violently just because of the total lack of control of the situation. Land is not a commodity that you can just take away from people and give them something else in exchange. For the residents of Bariquit compound, it was never a win-win situation. If they opt to give in to the Villa-Abrilles, they will lose the security of tenure and the source of livelihood that have kept them alive over the years. However, if they opt to resist, they will have to fight their way against the Villa-Abrilles who clearly do not take “no” for an answer. Since the Villa-Abrilles keep on insisting

that they own that piece of land, they should have the initiative to compare the records they are holding with that of the records held by Nanay Silay and take preventive actions rather than reactive ones. With everything coming into light, it seems clear that the kind of system we have favors those few at the top of the triangle. This incident should be a wakeup call for everyone to place the brick of balance where it should be. If we want justice, we must work for it. We must make an effort to fight the systemic problems of feudalism and imperialism that have left the people poor, homeless and defenseless. Because one thing is always certain, the strong prey upon the weak. It has become the rule of the world. Now, are we ready to take the challenge of making a change? a

ERRATUM - Vol. 38 No. 1 - Speed Issue - Looking through the sensitivity lens: a closer look on discrimination article: the statement was uttered not in a formal Management Council meeting, but in a conversation with Mr. Leopoldo R. Medina, the Accountancy Department Chair.; Vol. 38 No. 2 - Fiesta Issue - (1) Tale of the Tape - Dance Showdown - 1st BM, 2nd SON, 3rd BSA; (2) Children’s hour photo credit - Allan Francis Dorado; (3) Karaoke Challenge - Trisha Dulanas is a GACP Executive Committee member under the promotions committee; Second placer for Karaoke Challenge, Patricia Tolentino, is not the one featured in the picture.

Submit your articles to, or visit us at our office, Lower Ground Floor, Finster Hall

End the Silence of the Gagged. a


• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3


ccording to Sun Star Davao, last August 24, Wyrlo Enero from the League of Filipino Students-Davao City (LFS-Davao City), Joselito Lagon from the Kabataang Artista para sa Tunay na Kalayaan (KARATULA), and Bathala Lim and Johnny Urbina from Anakbayan were arrested as they tried to block the planned implementation of a fencing permit in Bariquit Compound, Bugac, Maa. According to them, Marcela “Nanay Silay” Camumot and her family owned the property which the Villa-Abrille family also claimed. The Villa-Abrilles, in a joint venture with Filinvest Land Corporation, wanted to build the “Le Jardin de Villa-Abrille” subdivision on the disputed property, hence the name of the group of the four arrested men “Le Jardin 4”. As news of their arrest spread, people on social networking sites like Facebook called for the release of the four. Supporters of the Le Jardin 4 and other organizations including Anakbayan and KARATULA launched the “Piso para sa Le

Jardin 4” so that the four could post bail. On August 29, the four were freed after posting temporary bail. Land grabbing is taking someone else’s land without any authority to do so. Landlords and real estate developers use various laws and policies to get the land for industrial, residential or commercial purposes. Usually, small-scale farmers, fisher folk and indigenous people are the victims of it. Here in the Philippines, farmlands owned by ordinary farmers are the usual targets of land grabbing. But the issue about what happened in Bariquit Compound is still not clear to everyone. Is it really an issue of land grabbing? Joselito “Bulldog” Lagon, one of the Le Jardin 4 members, breaks his silence regarding the incident: “The incident is just one of the many land disputes in the country wherein the usual victims are the poor and the oppressors are the rich and influential.” Lagon added that the people in the place would rather die fighting rather than leaving without a fight. According to Lagon, they

A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University •

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3


had a conversation with Nanay Silay Camumot and Ate Inday Bariquit in which they showed papers, titles and documents proving their rightful ownership of the disputed 20-hectare lot. Lagon added that they had been living there since 1920s and they had their children and even great grandchildren there. “The demolition has dated back since 2006 but in 2011, more and more ways of harassment from the security guards hired by the Villa-Abrilles in the area [were employed] to wreak havoc on the residents, pushing them to selfrelocation and evacuation.” He also added that the Regional Trial Court issued a Status Quo Order, which is an order that states that both parties must do no action on the property until the end of the case. In this case, the Villa-Abrilles should not proceed with the fencing until the court lifts the order. According to an article in Davao Today, Atty. Marlisa Gallo from the City Legal Office said that a status quo order shall prevail in cases when there is a conflict with other issuances.

Photo/Voltaire Domingo

Therefore, it shall prevail over the fencing permit. However, when a permit is issued before the Status Quo order, then that execution of permit shall be considered legal. Atenews tried to get the side of the Villa-Abrilles regarding the issue. However, they refused to comment. “Land grabbing is getting land that you don’t own, and that is not titled to you,” said Atty. Arnold Abejaron, the Economics program coordinator, when asked what is land grabbing from the legal perspective. He has handled land grabbing cases before wherein people claimed to own a land that is not theirs and did not want to leave the said land. “They [the land grabbers] are depriving the owner of the possession of the property,” Abejaron added. Abejaron also told Atenews that he was not familiar with the incident. However, he stated that people whose properties are

Sotto attacked the bloggers in his privilege speech for criticizing his plagiarism and tagged himself as a victim of cyber-bullying.

also claimed by others should go to court and should bring the necessary papers to prove their rightful ownership of their property. He also said that people should make sure that their properties are titled in order for them to become rightful owners of the land. In the case of the “Le Jardin” incident, Abejaron said that Nanay Silay should file a temporary restraining order to temporarily prevent the fencing of the disputed property. He added that even if a person occupies a property that is not his or hers for how many years and even if the original owner does not use the land, he or she cannot claim that land. Yet, this issue began many years ago. According to an article from Davao Today, in 1973, the VillaAbrilles sued Marcela “Nanay Silay” Camumot for allegedly forcing entry into the lot. However, she was able to show in court that they were already farming the land and had been offering part of the harvest as tributes to the Villa-Abrilles way back in 1962. Davao Court judge Milagros Nartates dismissed the civil case



in 1976 and the court established Camumot’s tenancy of the land. However, when Camumot was about to have the land patented to her name under Presidential Decree 27 that affords tillers of the land to own the land, Rey Bragado, Camumot’s lawyer, was assassinated in January 1977 in time for the reopening of her case. The Villa-Abrilles used Original Certificate of Title No. 5609 to claim the lot. Nevertheless, Camumot was able to get from the Land Registration Authority a certification indicating that no such document under the name Francisco Villa Abrillle-Juna existed. As of now, the case is still ongoing. May it be land grabbing or not, resorting to violence and coercion are not ethical means of resolving disputes. People should also consider respecting others’ right to a life free from violence and danger. Despite the alleged harassments and threats, the people of Baraquit Compound still continue to fight for justice. a

WHO OWNS LE JARDIN? Defending one’s property often ends up in a gruesome and cruel way that may even cause the loss of lives. This is especially true in the society we live in where the rich and powerful are at the top, and the poor and weak are at the bottom. Things get too complicated due to the irreconcilable interests of different parties.



August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University

A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University •

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3




The Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 (R. A. 10175) was signed into law by President Benigno S. Aquino, III



A face-off on biodegradable and non-biodegrable Juan Basilio Espinoza The public has long been urged to use biodegradables to help redeem our environment. This is because the use of nonbiodegradables such as plastic contributes too much to the pollution in the environment. It also adds to global warming due to the chemicals produced when they are burned. It is the mismanagement of these nonbiodegradables that causes one of the major problems in our planet today. The sad part is that humans are supposed to be the caretakers, not the slayer. The Local Government of Davao City is now in the midst of responding to this challenge to fulfill their responsibility not just to the citizens but to the environment as well. They have launched their plan to solve the problem on solid waste management. Since June 28 of this year, all non-biodegradable plastics and polystyrene foams are now banned in the city premises. The ordinance is part of the City Solid Waste Management Plan, Ordinance No. 0361-01 also known as “Davao City Ecological Solid Waste Management Ordinance of 2009”. Food and packaging industries are encouraged to develop more environmentally-friendly containers as substitute for polystyrene food containers such as recycled or recyclable paper bags, biodegradable plastic bags, revisable bags, such as cloth bags as checkout bags or containers to costumers. It covers all food and beverage establishments, no matter how big or small and it carries a fine of P2000 to P5000 or imprisonment of not less than one month but not more than six months on violators. During the last few months people have observed that fast food chains are using paper containers instead of plastic ones for food and beverages. At first glance, everything seems to look good. However, a different outlook of the story is present. People may see this plastic ban to be beneficial not just to us but also to the environment. This will help us regulate our dependence on non-biodegradable products and reduce its volume in our dumpsites. Moreover, with the use of environmentally friendly products people can slowly help our environment get back onto her feet again. At the same time, it will also showcase the crafts made from indigenous materials which are environmentallyfriendly. Also, it will promote and advocate recycling. In general, using recycled materials reduces pollution, makes new products cost less and require less energy than using new materials. According to National Recycling Coalition in Washington, DC, recycling and composting diverted nearly 70 million tons of material away from landfills and incinerators in 2000, up from 34 million

Regional Coordinator of Kabataan Partylist Rendell Ryan Cagula discusses about the Philippine education system in the Education for All (E4All) forum. Photo/Steven Adrianne Chua

Privatization of education: heading towards a cliff? Madel Catre

By simply putting your garbage at the proper bin, you can redeem Mother Earth from its gradual destruction.. Photo/Janine Abejay

tons in 1990-doubling in just 10 years. Despite close-to-nature effects that the ordinance is bringing, we still have to see its impending disadvantage. First, papers and biodegradable plastics are more expensive than conventional plastics wherein the pulp used to produce the paper bags requires thousands of gallons of fresh water, and cutting, printing and shipping the paper bags consume fossil fuels. Plastic comes from oil, which must be refined. On the other hand, vendors would also prefer ordinary plastic bags because they’re cheaper. Second, in terms of durability, paper bags are stronger and thicker than plastic bags, and can hold more weight without stretching or tearing. Plastic is water-resistant whereas moisture will break down paper bags. Third, people would now think

that it would be fine to throw biodegradable plastics and papers since it will easily break down. Even though the plastics used are biodegradable, it will still take years rather than days as opposed to what people believe. When these biodegradable plastics are disposed to landfills they produce harmful greenhouse gases as they decompose. Fourth, with the ban of plastics, it poses a threat to the manufacturers and employees of conventional plastics. Atty. Arnold Abejaron, an economist, see it to be one of the results of the plastic ban. “In terms of the employment aspect it can mean that plastic industry will be affected. So the issue now will be the number of workers employed in the plastic industry. So it might have an employment or industrial implication.” Time will come that we will be more dependent on

our natural resources. Trees will also be threatened by this plastic ban. “One of the practical effects in the long run from the shift to paper, if our papers are not recycled and if there’s no paper recycling facilities to be made, the pressure will be passed to the forest since the main component of paper is trees. It might cause further denudation. If they rely on paper, they should use papers that are recycled or they must increase reforestation efforts,” Atty. Abejaron added. The government has already taken its step, how about us? As Ateneans, we have to help the government in this fight. We can’t just rely on them; we also have to do our part. Even in our simple ways, we can contribute to the betterment of our environment. It’s high time for Ateneans to get engaged and do something about it. a

Blue Servathon finally takes place Continued FROM page 2»

Bio and non-bio. Two bins showing where trash should be thrown.. Photo/Janine Abejay

planting of 10,000 seedlings in Matina, Pangi happened at last on September 29 and 30, respectively. It included a fun run activity, feeding program, coastal cleanup of MatinaPangi, and a tree planting activity. The beneficiaries of the program include the Daily Bread program and A-1 Donor scholarship program of Ateneo de Davao University. Through the activity, the Ateneo de Davao University is the only Ateneo School who was able to qualify in the national final of “Garnier- Get Active Campus Challenge.”a

At last the school gates have opened to embrace the youth towards the path of intellectual excellence and global competitiveness. The K-12 program has kicked off and started rolling as we speak. This K-12 curriculum entails a necessary accomplishment in Kindergarten and an additional two years in basic education- elementary or high school. That also means that by the time they graduate from their secondary education, they have options they could take. They can choose to go to college or they may choose not to. Whichever option they may choose, they’d be polished like an opal to become ready and desirable for presentation by the time they graduate. To those students who would like to support their families and work as soon as possible for financial support, they may do so. Students who would like to take up a more rigid course and make their way towards a masters or doctoral degree they may choose to do so. Either way, it makes graduation rites more emotional to engage in and much more meaningful. The K-12 program has kicked off and started rolling... but are we headed towards a cliff?

The stone roll It’s privatization. Denationalization --- the changing of a public state to a private one. Call it whatever you want. It’s gradually being felt and two things triggered this instinct that is fearfully and gradually becoming a reality. The first thing is the cutting of budget in the State Universities and Colleges (SUCs). We say that education is the key to a more progressive future of the nation. But to realize that, the country must allot at least six percent of its gross domestic product as what United Kingdom suggests. Now, gaze upon the tragic Philippine budget for education of less than half that at 2.7 percent. President Benigno Aquino III’s administration has consistently cut its investment in state univer-

sities and colleges for two consecutive years. This year, 50 schools had their budget slashed by more than P500 million; 45 had a P250 million cut from their miscellaneous and other operating expenses budget; and 58 had their allotment for personnel services reduced by P400 million. Students fear that this may be the reason why no Philippine university made it to in the top 300 World University Rankings this year of QS, a London-based research institute. Even University of the Philippines is at rank 62 in Asia, a far distance away from rank 48 a decade ago. Students blame the budget cuts. Because of them, fewer students are getting free tuition and more professors are leaving for other institutions that provide better financial packages.

Rock knocks against another rock In addition to this, another dilemma pops up, reaping suspicions and more protests- the Private- Public Partnerships. A school infrastructure program is DepEd’s first PPP project for school infrastructure and six prequalified PSIP bidders took on the challenge - the BF Corporation-Riverbanks Development Corporation Consortium, and Citicore Holdings Investment, Inc.-Megawide Construction Corporation Inc. submitted technical and financial proposals for the PSIP. These interested parties were invited to design, finance, construct, and maintain one-storey and two-storey school buildings. The project will be awarded through competitive public bidding. The Filipinos access to quality education remains a top priority of the government and the continuing public-private partnership in education will allow many young people to complete their studies, an editorial in Manila Bulletin declares. However, what some fear and question is this: is the government washing off their hands and leaving the education sector to the private institutions? Is the education of the Philippine Youth

being left for least? Don’t these scenarios mean higher toll fees, higher tuition fees, and misplaced budget priorities?

We sure are rolling Ms. Gina Montalan, Dean of the SoEW, critically remarks on the matter. “It’s all about priorities. We should look first why the budget cut was made and where it is headed,” she says, “Let’s say for example that in the future, you’ll have three children and you enroll them all in ballet. After their first year, you see that only your eldest child is good at the art. Your middle child is interested in singing and the other one is good at the guitar. Naturally, in the next year, you’d CUT the budget you’ve allocated for the ballet classes and allocate the budget you’ve cut to guitar and voice lessons for your other children. See? The money doesn’t really disappear. It’s just used for a different matter but it all boils down towards the same goal- maximum efficiency. “ “Maybe budget cuts are made in other institutions to make them more independent in finding their own specialty- crafting their own programs that would produce students that would benefit the society in a given field,” she added, “The moment they find a program that would suit the needs of their community and makes them a unique mark in the society, there will be, of course, necessary changes that would happen to the budget.” “I am not saying this because I’m an administrator. I’m saying such based on the ‘budget cut’ information that you have presented. That’s what we are trying to produce here in SoE. Students who are able to think critically and look at the circumstances first before saying anything and would encourage their students and others to do the same.” The Educators form for Development (EfD) is not so far from Ms.Montalan’s page. Although the voluntary association of educators committed to social transformation believes that the government seems to have set their sights wrong, they Continued on page 16 »


August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University

A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University •

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3




Sotto denies his participation behind the libel provision in the Cybercrime Law during a forum on press freedom.



Making a difference: Fr. Tabora’s one year

Fr. Tabora himself • offered a higher

increase in salaries.

Mr. Lunar Fayloga • also gladly expressed

that Fr. Tabora has been a generous, sincere and reasonable president.

Arielle Ozoa Sta. Ana As one enters the Roxas gate, one sees ongoing P.E. classes with balls tossing here and there and students crowding the open field. Opposite that is the Jacinto gate where upon entry, a giant dusty gym space and blank offices scream silence and memories of years past. These are just some of the physical changes that Ateneans have to adjust to for this academic year. Even the internal changes call for adjustments. Major changes these are, and these have been driven by a visionary who, last May 2011, assumed the highest seat of the Ateneo de Davao University. Aside from being AdDU’s University President, Rev. Fr. Joel E. Tabora, is also the director of PAASCU, member of the CHED Technical Panel on General Education or subjects in core curriculum, chair of CEAP’s Social Advocacy Committee, a key mover of the K+12, and a trustee of DACS. Fr. Tabora is an advocate and active leader, involved in other small schools, thus it is no question why the university he spearheads is undergoing both big and small changes.

Fr. Tabora presides over the Thanksgiving Mass. Photo/Adi Leuterio

entrance and elevator areas inviting students and faculty to countless conferences are proof that AdDU has become actively involved in the debates that will make a profound change in one’s standpoint.

Teachers’ Tale

Fr. Tabora officiates the commencement of the 64th Ateneo fiesta, together with Maureene Villamor and Lunar Fayloga. . Photo/Janine Abejay

Looking Back The building constructions aren’t the only transformations in the campus. The central administration has executed streamlining for the new organizational chart. The University administration has put up different key support services: Academic Vice President, Formation Offices, Publications, and Institutes & Centers such as the Ateneo Leadership Center, Tropical Institute for Climate Studies, and Matteo Ricci Mandarin Program. From one council controlling all operations, there are now three University councils: Academic Council, Community Engagement and Advocacy Council, and Research Council. These councils have different policies, but have equal footing, accord-

Fr. Tabora is leading AdDU to the path of becoming more unified and coherent in facing the most pressing issues in society.

ing to Mr. Jeremy Eliab, Assistant to the President. Under the Academic Council, of course, are the academic structures with one College of Law and five schools with three programs, four clusters and 41 courses/departments which have been restructured along with the reassignment of some of the deans and heads. An averaged increase of 45% for the faculty salaries for different levels has been applied, which is a big help to the core of the university’s education. The College Faculty Union’s Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations have quickened, and in fact, it was Fr. Tabora himself

who offered a higher increase in salaries, according to Mr. Lunar Fayloga, Theology Department Chair and SAMAHAN Moderator. As made clear in the physical makeover of the campus, a multi-purpose community center is being constructed which will house an assembly hall, student organization offices, a swimming pool, expanded faculty lounges, and a lot more. There is also a proposed 5-hectare campus at Lapandag, Buhangin and housing for faculty at Catalunan Grande. Before, only the locker areas were considered “safe” due to the watchful eyes of the CCTVs.

Now, these cameras are located almost everywhere- in the gates, hallways and elevator areas. These improvements contribute to the security of the campus. A revolutionary change has also occurred, as described by Mr. Eliab, which addresses students’ problems- the online enrolment and online payment system. It has become faster and a lot more efficient, eliminating the draining three to five-day waiting period of the manual printouts. In terms of connection, it has also widened. The WI-FI has been stretched out to cater the needs of both student and faculty researchers.

On a teacher’s personal view, Mr. Jenner Chan, SBG Faculty and Matteo Ricci Mandarin Program Coordinator, says, “Facilities and compensation have improved from the time I started teaching. Fr. Tabora has given me this opportunity to lead the program and has challenged and inspired me to work harder to bring excellence to this program of the university.” He adds that Fr. Tabora’s constant motivation inspires him. Mr. Lunar Fayloga also gladly expresses that Fr. Tabora has been a generous, sincere and reasonable president. He adds that since Father is into the internet, the community gets to be well-informed through his blogs. “He is especially concerned with the Vision-Mission. He is very engaged into making the Ateneo de Davao have a role in national and local issues. He is the first president who desired to engage students, thus you can sense his sincerity. Mabilis siya. He made our directions clearer. Having him as the President is raising the bar of our engagements. He wants to create Theologians who ignite reflections on issues. AdDU now has to have a stand.”

on inter-religious issues, on gender, on the urban poor and on Paolo Cansino, a fourth year the youth. Political Science student and President of Ateneo Debate Var- Looking Ahead sity, says that Fr. Tabora is leadTaking a look at AdDU under ing AdDU to the path of becom- Fr. Tabora’s administration for ing more unified and coherent in one year, changes are all aroundfacing the most pressing issues from buildings and gadgets, in society. Paolo, along with oth- payroll and organizational strucer students Luna Acosta, Earvin tures, to the core of the schoolAlparaque and Eda Capundan, its stakeholders: students, teachappreciate how Fr. Tabora would ers and staff. The stakeholders, like to build an AdDU identity particularly the students, have through his concept of Sui Gen- undergone character formation eris. “I believe that it does not and leadership trainings from only serve as common source of the forums and workshops beinspiration and meaning for us, ing provided. “AdDU has its own but it has a function as well of stand”, says Mr. Eliab. Another strengthening the support of the administrator notes that Fr. Tabadministration to the interests ora’s administration is “very afand activities of the students.”, firming”, and that the President’s he expresses. earnestness could be seen even To share how the relatively from the start- during the Uninew administration has brought versity Long Range Planning last out positive effects to the com- summer 2011. In the words of munity, Maureene Villamor, last year’s SCB, ‘Taking LeaderSCB President, conveys, “Aside ship to New Heights’, Mr. Fayloga from shifting our University reiterates and relates this to the vision-mission towards really University President, for “He has highlighting social justice, set- taken the University to greater ting up of new schools, creating heights”. And this does hold true additional offices, mas feel ko if you observe how often movena the administration is closer ments for causes are being parwith the students ngayon.” For ticipated by AdDU inside and Maureene, Fr. Tabora and the outside the campus. This has just been one year. various university units such as UCEAC and ARUPE have mobi- The campus and the people in it lized to bring back to every stu- will continue to transform for the dent what it really means to be better if the University President an Atenean: socially aware and will go on with the strong leaderengaged, knows how to take a ship and advocacy being shared stand on human rights issues, on to the whole Ateneo community. the plunder of the environment, With this, we move on. a

Students’ Say

In the school programs, one might notice the change of lyrics of the proudly sung Blue Knight Song. Fr. Tabora took the initiative to personally revise a part of the lyrics to make it more gender sensitive. Reflecting the university president’s active spirit for change, AdDU has participated in various forums and indignation rallies, fighting for justice. AdDU has also hosted fruitful summits such as the CEAP Convention and the International Mining Conference, wherein delegates and speakers were of the highest calibre. The tarpaulins at the Roxas A pensive smile by the AdDU President during the Thanksgiving Mass. Photo/Adi Leuterio


August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University

A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University •

August - October • Volume 58 Number 3






Real books v e-books


SAMAHAN show their presence by attending to students in their custom polo shirt. Photo/Allan Francis Dorado


SAMAHAN’s time in the hot seat John Paulo Vicencio Imagine a university life without fun. No college fiesta. No orientation days. No talent shows. Imagine a university life without extracurricular learning. No seminars. No workshops. No symposiums. No programs to talk about. No excitement. Students will prefer to stay home and indulge themselves with unproductive play, work and vices. Only empty gushes of wind will fill the university. What would our activity period be for? The success of whatever extracurricular program or show we have today, we owe to an organization. Their sacrifices of time and effort are the reasons for the smiles we are having outside our classrooms. Without them, our student life would not just be monotonous but chaotic as well.The problem there lies if they are not doing their part. What if they are not fulfilling the promises that they gave to the student body last elections? What if they’re another wasted vote? Their performance is vital for our university life. They need to give it all.

Architecture students in the same area, the help of Samahan made their orientation program phenomenal. They added that Samahan also played a part in the implementation of some of their “wants”. “They voiced out for us,” said one student from the group referring to how Samahan had helped make their division orientation momentous. They gave a nine out of 10 rating to the student government. On the other hand, some disagreed. According to two 2nd year Accountancy students, the Samahan Central Board is currently idle. “Their activities don’t reach us,” said the student. “We don’t know much about their plans. However, we do understand that they’re still starting and adjusting,” said the other. They rated them with a five out of 10.

of managing our time properly. But yes, we are delivering,” added Villamor. For the breakdown of their projects, the President stressed that they were proud that they were able to conduct an activity on the very first day of class, the Candy Land. She also mentions that they have efficient working committees, Samahan treasures Council, Samahan Communications, Samahan Creative Team and their very new SAMAHAN Environment unit, the official Environmental Arm of SAMAHAN. Villamor adds that they also held Sui Generis last July 29 and have the Atenista Magpakabana! project. In addition, she says that their division representatives also have their own plans for their divisions. All in all, she summarizes

that most of their projects are in terms of structures and partnerships with external partners such as Campus Clubs Organization and General Assembly of Class Presidents. “Samahan is open for all. We are open for suggestions. We can’t do this alone. We are not here just to deliver services but rather we are here to tap you and encourage you to join us and together accomplish our goals. Let us together fulfill our being men and women for others. Truthfully, our strength lies in you,” finished the SAMAHAN President. Imagine nobody voicing out your student concerns. Imagine living the next couple years of your life studying day and night. Imagine your university life without our student government. Sa-

mahan is vital for us.“SAMAHAN Central Board truly is a blessing in disguise for us students of AdDU. and listen to us. By keeping the needs of their voters in mind, I


can say our votes for them were


not in vain,” says Candy Vivas, a concerned 2nd year Accountancy

Submit your entries to

student. Behind those navy blue SAMAHAN polo shirts aren’t just


preoccupied stressed brainiacs,

Cybercrime, ‘dre

but kind-hearted servant leaders ready to give their all just to serve us the best platter the University we should cooperate. For we all


Ateneo & Sottocopy 1

could provide. In return therefore, 3


4 5

need our strength to accomplish our goals, and as what the Presi-


dent states, we are their strength.









14 15

A Look from The Inside

Privatization of education defeats the purpose of the Constitution’s free education for all. Education is not a commodity. It is a right. It shouldn’t be a product but a free social service. It should be a social service that yields results for its quality that

Baryo Tinyo


Privatization of education: heading towards a cliff?

suggest that one of the greatest remedies that the Philippine academic scenario will ever need is the effective and practical allocation of resources for education infrastructure and development.


wealth & merchants

They always find ways to reach

“The Samahan Central Board, aside from its technical meaning, is the body who integrates involvement, awareness and unity among the students. We want them to feel the vibrance of the community. We are the body that addresses their needs in terms of affairs,” said Maureene Villamor, SAMAHAN President. Public’s Evaluation “We’re not too good or too inRandom groups of students hanging out in the study kiosks ferior. Our performance is just said that the Samahan are per- average. I give it a 6/10 since I forming really well this year. “We can’t discredit our imperfections. love them and their programs,” For me, we still need to make our said one from a group of 2nd year efforts more collective. It’s our inBusiness Management students. dividual challenge to constantly They gave the SAMAHAN a seven remind ourselves of the promises we gave. But we also have aca- SAMAHAN President Maureene Ann Villamor and UP Student Regent Cleve Arguelles during the Education for All (E4All) out of 10. According to a group of 3rd year demic issues, so we have dilemma forum. Photo/Steven Adrianne Chua

Continued FROM page 13»

Houdini in: Plastic Bag

springs from adequate prepara- be answered with a watchful eye tion and practice. and critical mind. Is 2012 Education Budget enough to sustain the needs of Rolling through life with different SUCs? Did the Philiphope and discernment Now, more than ever, the youth pine Government allocate the are encouraged to look critically 6% Education budget suggested at things. A lot of questions must by the UNESCO? How much was

the increase? Did the increase undergo consultation? Were the students informed? Did the students disapprove of the increase and what actions did they take to register their disapproval? With these, the stones continue to roll... a

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Across 1 3 5 7 10 14 15 16 17 18 22 26 27 28 29 30


_ cracker 2 Blizzard’s hit dark fantasy AdDU speaks Mandarin (2W) game 4 Dot above ‘i’ OSA Director 6 Only solon against RA 10175 FC Barcelona Striker (2W) Scientist trained in the study 8 North premier mall (2W) 9 Sottocopy of chemistry 10 Rubber; barrier device Defamation by writing 11 Bitter sa mga bloggers _ sa Tawong Lungsod 12 Centerfold story (2W) Mall across the church 13 Bishop’s fave SUV January is named after _ 19 Makinilya (ENG) Atenews’s new features 20 RA 10175 section 21 Thesis _ Sport on frozen water (2W) 23 Mariano, Jose, Jacinto _ Me (movie) 24 Pale Pilsen Alongside menarche 25 Atenews’s Moderator CJ Pro-RH Jesuit, Columnist © Steven Adrianne Chua Answers next issue Mapapel



August - October • Volume 58 Number 3 •

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University


The medium is not the message Kathleen Pastrana

Technology may improve and it may affect our preferences, but to a passionate reader, it does not matter. The Harry Potter series can be printed in plain blank ink or displayed in the latest iPad screens but still it can drag you into its magical world. Nicholas Sparks can still make you fall in love even if his works are not in your classic paperback novels. What really matters to you when you read? Are you after the content or the medium used?

There’s always something special about books. Imagine the feel of the spine on your fingers when you caress a book. There are worn-out spines, like the skin at the back of an old man’s hand, and there are spines that are as smooth as glass. They are not worth a reader’s interest, but they tell a lot as much as the words they hold. Sometimes the spines are more than just an indication of a book’s age. They determine how many times a book has been opened, and it even gives you a hint on what kind of readers it had. When you’re handed a book, sometimes you can’t help but smell the pages. Unless your book is coated with dust, you can’t deny the fact that the scent of parchment gives you reassurance only books can offer. It is the feeling of excitement mixed with the feeling of familiarity; a reminder that

A glimpse in the life of a scholar Rhea Joyce Semillano Everyone goes through times of wanting to quit or of having the urge to take a break from the routine, but these well-rounded creatures are certainly witnesses for Magis, as they keep on striving for more knowledge and more of experiences. They are the outstanding students in our school, A.K.A. the SCHOLARS. Upon enrolment, hopeful applicants undergo a selection process managed by the College Scholarship Committee. They are selected on the basis of intellectual ability and academic competence, commitment and dedication of service and financial need. On the other hand, there are also some scholars who belong in internally or externally funded, CHED and other government scholarships and need not work for the school. Most of us would be limiting our responsibilities and attention for academics sake and extra-curricular activities. Meanwhile, these scholars are at their best in performing the balancing acts between study, leisure and work considering time as a main constraint. They spend not only hours for education but also hours for labor as they are expected to render service for a minimum of 6 and a half hours to the school per day, a minimum of 22 days per month, as long as such service does not affect their academic performance. These are the working students assigned to the different offices in our school and who must have no failing grade and a WPA of at least 80% regardless of any course. The work given to these students serves as an opportunity

and a training ground as they experience what is it like to go out of their comfort zones and to work with the professionals. Raven Andrew Ricamora, a 2nd year Business and Management student, has been working for Management Information Systems office ever since he became a scholar of AdDU. For him, it is a privilege given and not just a form of donation. It is a favorable circumstance for life’s betterment and a chance for the less fortunate to excel. You have to work it out to preserve the opportunity. He said, “Other students should be aware that they are blessed enough for they don’t have to work for required hours to study in a private school.” Unlike others, Raven admitted that he is financially in need of money and it is through the scholarship that he was able to achieve his goals. To be able to work in the morning until the afternoon, he places his other schedules in the evening. He has to wake up for a 7:40 class, proceeds to his work thereafter and continues to take his evening class. “When there’s a minimal workload, I can have some time to study in the office. Perhaps, putting aside my academics, I’ve learned so much in my stay here. Indeed, experience is the best teacher,” he confessed. One of his tasks is to entertain students who come at the office, to wash the plates and to run for office errands. Because he has to work every day, he has no time for extra-curricular activities though he would love to. “That’s life. Along the way, you have to sacrifice, to accept the challenge and to take risks. You have to move, or else, you’ll be a junk at the corner,” he said. Together with his fellow schol-


son who has a fondness for gadgets, you may prefer electronic books over real books. These electronic books or e-books are typically less expensive, because most of them can be downloaded online for free or for a cheaper price. Kindles and iPads, on the other hand, are worth a fortune. You have to pay for the device first before enjoying the privileges of free e-books. When traveling with a book, sometimes the weight of a paperback novel becomes a burden. You cannot carry five books at once, especially if you’re planning on reading the whole set of Ebook Vs. Book. Two different formats but both allow you to do the important thing - reading. Photo/Geneva Shaula Almeria Percy Jackson and the Olympians. E-books make traveling easier besheets woven together. There are cause they are weightless. A deyou’re holding something real. vice can hold dozens of stories But the advent of technology devices designed to function like without weighing you down. gave birth to more creative ideas. a book, only without the tradiUndeniably, readers also have Books no longer pertain to hun- tional physical characteristics. their own preferences. There are dreds of words printed on dull If you consider yourself a per- bookworms who welcome change

with open arms, while others hold on to the classical medium. “I prefer real books,” Behnice Tesiorna , a third year Mass Communication student and a booklover, shared. “Real books give me memories that stay with me. Some even have sentimental value to me,” she elaborated. It is true that real books possess a timeless aura that keeps readers sentimental. When you read a certain page, you etch a memory in it. Sometimes you even feel a momentary happiness when you find an old, abandoned bookmark hidden between the pages. “E-books are convenient but not long lasting,” Behnice added. Unlike real books, e-books can be easily deleted. They may be very convenient to use, but the device holding them need to be charged occasionally. It’s hard to enjoy your reading experience when your device eventually runs

out of battery. The lifespan of a real book is longer than an e-book, which cannot be easily recovered once the device gets stolen. However, readers like Melissa Zapanta do not share the same belief. “I prefer e-books because you can read unlimited stories,” Melissa, a third year student, said. In just a few taps, you can transfer from one e-book to another without exerting so much effort. This can be very convenient especially to those readers who read more than one book at the same time. So which do you prefer? Ebooks or real books? After all, stories change lives regardless of the means on how they are presented. Technology may improve and it may affect our preferences, but to a passionate reader, it does not matter. a

of being one. “Among the gains is that it can help your family, can force you to study hard and can serve as a fulfillment and a satisfaction to oneself that you did able to maintain your grades,” she said. She shared that the drawbacks include a stressful life, too much pressure and time for others may be sacrificed. “Other than that, it is all about being a determined individual who performs excellently in all endeavors, focuses to pursue dreams in life despite the shortcomings, gives importance to the skills and knowledge acquired and thinks that every experience is a vital ingredient to success.

Hence, a scholar’s act will never be of mediocrity but excellence in every way,” Jonna elaborated. Being a scholar not only exercises one’s mental capabilities but also tests one’s skills and values in dealing with time, with other people and in embracing life’s pressures. It is a humbling experience and a unique opportunity to anyone who continuously commit and is determined to strive to be a better individual. Grades do matter for these people since not being able to maintain them would be, if not, a game over. But here’s what life is to offer. Yes, they may please their teachers with their wit, they may

be well-know because of that, they may impress employers with their transcript of records. Unfortunately, grades do not merely measure one’s triumph. So what’s the bottom line? To be a scholar is not just a label, it is an investment. These people tagged as scholars with different shades and diverse walks of life who share the same passion for learning do not just get free or discount for schooling, high grades or popularity as the results of their fruitful efforts. This is a creative way of shaping one’s personality, one’s very own self. No one else can teach you that. Responsibility, perseverance and discipline as values can lead to


A hero in the making? A student focuses all his attention on the latest superhero flick on his laptop. Photo/Adi Leuterio

Superheroes: more than just fiction Ma. Kristina Camelia Nardo

ars, there are also orientations at the beginning of the school semester that serve as a time to socialize with the new scholars. There are also recreation activities through recollection during Christmas season and other events. Raven uttered that as a working student, he is also benefited by the food stabs given to them by The Daily Bread. He presents the food stab to a stall along the food court for a basic meal costing 35 pesos. “It is overwhelming to hear that, ‘I am a scholar,’” Jonna Lynn Romea, a 4th year Accountancy student and an AOFF scholar, said when asked about the advantages


Sotto finally admits in a CBS report that he inserted the libel provision.


Peter Parker was startled and touched the swelled area where he felt the bite from the rare radioactive spider. Days after, his average life of being bullied and being one of the outcasts became history as he discovered that things stuck to his body and he could climb walls. He created a gadget that made durable spider webs. He then realized something important after a relative’s death. He finally got the guts to confess his feelings to a girl and luckily, the girl accepted him. Later, he finally encountered the villain that haunted the city. All of the events did not happen in reality. It happened in a dark room full of comfy couches that facea silver screen projecting thescene from a light across the room. These couches cradle different people from all walks of life enjoying popcorn and pizza. These people paid access for two to three hours of a roller coaster of emotion, a creative artist’s comic Ara Olamit, A 2nd year AB Politiwork of art brought into action. cal Science student, works hard This is what usually happens for her future. As a scholar, she manages to ace her academics, when we watch movies like The to attend to her responsibilities, Avengers or The Amazing Spiand to enjoy teenage life as well. derman. These movies, along Photo/Janine Abejay with The Batman Rises, achieved blockbuster titles with its heroes wearing special suits, special masks, and equipped with special skills not present to the average human. All movies were released within this year. So why does the superhero fascination never fade? A third year student’s opinion reflects the most common reason why many youngsters and youngsters at heart continue to numerous achievements and acsee the magic of superhuman stocomplishments in which nobody ries. Kaye Nebrija said“It makes can take away. What they are and me happy because even though how they do what they do can be it is not real, I get the chance to an inspiration to the lives of othfeel like I have also explored aners. This is a punch in the eye for the students who go to school just for the sake of going to; who only take education for granted. Being a scholar is not as simple as it can be said; it is a work in progress. As the saying goes, “A scholar always treads on the path of righteousness and as a result, becomes successful.” a

Artwork/El Sean Fuentes

other world of these movies. It is also my stress reliever.” Almost all the Filipinos feel the same way towards superhero movies. After a hard day’s work, most people seek the comfort of sitting on the cushioned chairs and stare at the tubes. To escape the world that entraps people to routines, they enter the portals of television through pressing TV remote buttons. In here, people become passive viewers. They are no longer required to recall the never-ending problems. This is a good moment to stop and take a rest. But being entertained is not the only reason why these movies never lost its spark. Superheroes play a much deeper role in every person who watches and appreciates them. In Jon Meyersohn’s ABC article Superhero obsession: Why we love fantasy, Spiderman screenwriter David Koepp was mentioned. He described superhero stories as empowerment stories and thought that the 9/11 and the recession has a lot to do with the people’s desire for fantasy. “The golden age of fantasy is often when society is going through a hard time. They want to escape a place where they feel a fantasy of success and omnipotence, you’re safe and you’re protected.” Jon Meyersohn provided a good example to what Koepp said. Meyersohn recalled the first appearance of Superman during an earlier stage of what is now known as the Great Depression. “He (Superman) reflected a nation’s need to be uplifted. Soon, Americans were in the midst of a wrenching debate on whether to get involved in World War II. Superman and other comic heroes were drafted to help convince a divided nation that the US should enter the war. Superman was even depicted battling Hitler.” It is no wonder why many stu-

dents plan to watch movies after exam or any activity-filled week. Students do not want to be depressed about the scores. The thought is similar to what third year student Dawn Carlisle Cocjin said. She wanted “to finally think freely, without worrying and such.” As for the Filipino people, there was one of those who became Superman –Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino. He made the people become more involved in politics and his death convinced them that they have had enough of Martial Law. In a much simpler sense, superheroes can stir emotions that help the majority to realize what they truly desire. Psychology also explains the necessity of having the hero presence in human lives. One of the guidance counselors in the Universityrelated human development needs to the importance of emulation. “ The youth are still on the developmental stage. They need somebody to look up to. That’s why there are different superheroes. Even if they’re fiction, they pose different qualities probably absent and probably wishing to be present in a person.” The guidance counselor further made this statement simple through this question: if you are that somebody, what will you do? People want to become heroes. But if people never had any history of what heroes should be, how will people become one? There must always be an example. Like parents. Like friends. Like TV. Superhero movies are products of imagination rooted from the goal to entertain, to empower and to serve as a good tool for human development. So after moments of facing any kind of screen, come back to reality. Face the problemssuperhero style. a


August - October • Volume 58 Number 3

• A t e n e w s ~ The Official Student Publication of Ateneo de Davao University


Too close for comfort Love is in the air, as the Roxas benches are filled with couples showing the whole world their love for each other. It’s always a red-letter-day and the empty rooms stand as witnesses to the hugs, kisses and caresses. While in the warm comforts of the gazebo, it doesn’t take Valentine’s Day to see the sweet sparkling of lovers’ eyes… And the plants, flowers and trees serve as added drama to the so-called “PBB TEENS LIVE IN ATENEO”

Kirsten Ilajas

a normal thing for teenagers to want to fit in. “Hindi naman kasi yan sila [teenagers] magwawala mag-isa may mga kasama talaga yan, yung mga barkada.” And sometimes even if it entails to do what’s not right, teenagers do it to please their friends. Next factor is parental control. She said that parents play very important roles in the adolescent stage of their children. “Kasi busy sila [parents] hindi na napapagalitan yung mga anak nila kaya iisipin ng mga bata na okay lang [being too close for comfort]” Parents, when too busy and too boggled with work sometimes forget to talk to their children. Thus, teenagers tend to think that what they are doing is right because their parents do not reprimand them. And last factor mentioned was moral degradation. She stressed that today; the code of morals has become vague and unclear. “Wala na kasing sense of morality na nadedefine kaya ganoon” Ms. Escanlar add-

“Oo uy, kanang banda sa locker area, sa lib, even sa mga benches sa roxas and center lounges,” said Paul, a 3rd year student, when asked if he thinks “PBB teens” is normal in the campus. Perhaps, it has been part of our daily lives to see lovers in the school grounds and it has already become usual, even evolving into one of the cultures in the university and it is spreading so rapidly. Thus, the jargon “pbb-teens” is widely used to describe people who are so close to each other (too close for comfort). “Sometimes, mas overst pa sa awkward especially if kanang over over na kaayo ang pagka pbbteens,” shared Paul on what he feels every time he sees people too close to each other. We may only see its facade in the campus as “expressions of love” or as a teenage culture but there’s something more about it that we should be concerned about. It has become very normal and what is alarming are the probable consequences of this growing culture. In an interview Maria Adora Escanlar, one of the guidance counselors in Ateneo, said that there Sabet are many factors that eh Jadali to/Farrid o h P cause this kind of behavior among teenagers. She ed. People tend to enumerated four factors; care less of what is moral or not. media accessibility, peer pres- Thus, teenagers being misled by sure, parental control and moral misconceptions, tend to commit degradation. actions contrary to morals. She elaborated that these Ma’am Escanlar also enumerdays, media has become very ated the possible consequences powerful in influencing the of the “pbb-teens” culture. First youth. Social networks, is early pregnancy. She said that video sites and others have when two people [teenagers] bebecome avenues for teens come too close to each other esto unwind. But more often pecially in private places there’s than not, the television a great chance of being tempted. and the internet have And as cited on abs-cbnnews. also become threats com, according to the United to teenagers. The ir- Nations Population Fund (UNFresponsible screen- PA), “Philippines now ranks first ing of materials has among ASEAN’s 6 major econocaused teenagers mies in teenage pregnancy with to access informa- a rate of 53 in every 1,000 women tion or videos that aged 15 to 19.” are not suitable for Second is irresponsible parenttheir age. Another hood. Ma’am Escanlar, pointed factor mentioned out that because teens become was peer pressure. parents at very young ages, She said that it’s

Some would prefer for love to rule in secrecy. Others are proud enough to flaunt it. Photo/Caycee Coronel

chances are they will be having a hard time in raising their children. “The foundation of the couples is weak, kasi nga masyado pa silang bata, mahihirapan talaga sila.” She also added that in the long run, it would possibly result into broken families. And last, it repeats over and over again. And when teenagers see it as a normal case in the society they will think that it is also okay. Yet, like any kind of issue in the society, the culture of “pbbteens,” if not fully-solved could be minimized when all of those involved would cooperate. According to Ma’am Escanlar, if possible she would place the computer in the living room so that she can monitor what is being watched or done by her children to limit media accessibility. Strong parental control is needed and also partnership of the parents in raising their teen. “Pagsinabing 10pm [uwi na], 10pm talaga yan.” She added. She also said that teenagers should avoid going to private places or anywhere that they can be in private. “They [teens] must also keep in mind that there is no absolute freedom in expressing one’s feelings.” Ma’am Escanlar highlights the value of social responsibility. As teenagers we are not only tasked to enjoy our youth. We have to understand that other than being young and free, it is our task to shape and mold ourselves to become responsible adults in the future. We are to recognize what is right and wrong for us, after all it is for our own good. As future adults we have to be responsible in building our nation and not just to focus on our own feelings. How can we raise our country’s banner if as early as now, we will be boggled on how to raise our own children? How can we solve poverty if at the age of 15-19 we already have kids to send to school? The thing is, let us live our youth and let us not speed things up. The issue of teens being too close for comfort is only one of the underlying issues that the youth must face. And in all the challenges we face what we must all keep in mind and in heart is what Jose Rizal said “Ang Kabataan ang Pagasa ng Bayan.” a

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