Leap: A foundling can become President
In the light of the series of lengthy and in-depth public debates on the issue surrounding Senator Grace Poe-Llamanzares’s presidential candidacy for being a foundling, the Lawyers for an Election Advancing the People’s will or Leap, issued an official statement saying that a foundling can be bona fide fit to run as candidate for President of the Philippines.
“Foundling, a somewhat unusual term which lately has risen in the mind of Juan dela Cruz, is defined as an abandoned baby that is found after being deserted by its parents. Some of the most loved figures in popular culture i.e. Clark Kent, Harry Potter, James Bond, Luke Skywalker and Little Orphan Annie are for a time considered as foundlings,” Leap stated.
Foundlings, by definition, differ from an orphan in the sense that the parents of an orphan are known but not alive, but the parents of a foundling are not known. In most cases, foundlings were left by their parents to save them from a life-threatening situation, to avoid the scandal of raising a child born outside of marriage or simply because the parent cannot support the child.
According to Atty. Pearlito B. Campanilla, lead convenor of Leap, just because a child is a foundling does not mean he or she cannot live a full and meaningful life.
“In fact, there are many incredible people who are foundlings that are now successful professionals, actors and actresses, athletes, business individuals, politicians etc. They all rose up from their sorrowful state of being left behind, notwithstanding that they are infants, to continue their existence in spite of the danger and odds,” Campanilla said.
Campanilla stressed that foundlings are characterized as introvert, distrustful, rebellious and deeply resentful of intimacy. But they are the ones who has developed extra-ordinary skills and are up in arms to deal with extra-ordinary situations on a regular basis.
“Thus, they are actually good leaders,” Campanilla added.
As to the issue of whether or not foundlings are qualified to be a candidate for president of the Philippines, Campanilla opined that they are qualified. He added, “Regardless that their parents and place of birth are unknown, they are not to be deemed stateless because principles of international law and R.A 8552 and R.A. 8049, which are laws that govern local and inter-country adoption in the Philippines, consider them as Filipino citizens.”
“To simplify matters,” Campanilla continued, “citizens of the Philippines who did not do anything to perfect their Filipino citizenship are under the Constitution qualified to run as president of the country.”
“Further, no empirical evidence exists to prove that foundlings are less patriotic, less loving or less dedicated to the country where they were found. In the case of Senator Grace Poe, a foundling, note that she was guaranteed a life of ease and plenty as a citizen of a first world country.
“Yet, she opted on returning to and serving once more her struggling country where she was found. She was attacked by her foe and friends alike yet she held on and continued her fight to be an inspiration to the sector of the society who are downtrodden and oppressed. Such loyalty to and love of her countrymen, as well as nobility of purpose should not be bypassed upon anyone.
“It is not the foundling’s fault that their parents abandoned them. They grew up without the loving and nurturing care of a father and mother therefore it was a very difficult life for them. How we treat these children shows how civilized our society is. It is not right and just that they should be discriminated and marginalized,” Campanilla said.
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