“No person may be elected as President unless he is a natural born citizen of the Philippines, a registered voter, able to read and write, at least forty years old of age on the day of the election, and a resident of the Philippines for at least ten years immediately preceding the election.”
(1987 Constitution of the Philippines)
(Article VII, Section 2)
That the President of the Philippines should be a natural born Filipino citizen and a registered voter – these prerequisites are self-evident. That the same President of the Philippines must be at least forty years old and a resident of the Philippines for at least ten years before the election – these requirements are reasonable. That the said President finally should be able to read and write – this qualification demeans the nature and rationale of the Office and insults the capacity of the person of the President. The reality is that so much more is required of an elementary school teacher than merely knowing how to read and write.
It is great to have and to live in a democratic country. It is a pride and a joy to be a citizen and to belong to a republican state. But to have a President who knows only how to read and write – this is taxing reason, trampling on logic, undermining practical reality and objective truth. This in no way meant, much less intended, to belittle or to look down on people who are but able how to read and write. This is simply and plainly stating the rather obvious fact that to know but how to read and write as the intellectual qualifications of a President of a democratic and republican state appears to be a bad joke for the country and a big disaster as well for the citizens thereof.
What about the psychological personality constitution of a President? Is this something to be taken for granted, something to simply assume? No. This is not exactly or concretely about a terminal mental disorder or an incurable psychopathological liability of the person behind the Office of the President of the Philippines – although such definitely may not be considered as a qualifying personality feature of someone heading a Republic. This is but a requiring psychological normalcy, standard emotional constitution. The truth is that those aspiring for membership in the Supreme Court are said to undergo their individual psychological tests.
What about not even a truly high but simply an above average I.Q.? What about not really expertise in leadership but simply experience in service? What about industry in place of indolence, stability instead of inconsistency? What about a doer instead of a dreamer, a realist and not someone quixotic?
If the above thoughts are preposterous, so be it! Let the President of the Republic of the Philippines know only how to read and write! Then, no complaining please!