Patriotic Oath (Philippines)
The Patriotic Oath (Filipino: Panatang Makabayan) is one of two national pledges of the Philippines, the other being the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag (Filipino: Panunumpa ng Katapatan sa Watawat). It is commonly recited in schools during morning flag ceremony after the Lupang Hinirang is sung but before recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
Recitation of the Panatà is required by law at all public and private educational institutions meant for Filipinos or containing a majority of Filipino nationals. This guideline was set in Republic Act No. 1265, one of many national symbols laws, which was approved on 11 July 1955. The act was implemented in schools through Department Order No. 8 of what is now the Department of Education, which was approved on 21 July 1955. The Panatà was revised in November 2001 by the former Secretary of Education Raul Roco, using shorter lines in less formal Tagalog.
Although Department Order No. 8 states that the Panatà may be recited in English or any Philippine language, the Panatà is usually recited today in Filipino, of which two versions exist: the current text is a shorter, poetic (poetic meaning it's created under Roco's image or ideals, not the ideal of all) rendering of the English original, while the older version is a more direct translation.
|Official Filipino version (DepEd Order 54-2001)||Unofficial English translation|
Iniibig ko ang Pilipinas,
Iniibig ko ang Pilipinas
I love the Philippines - the land of my birth,
I love the Philippines.
1993 JW students controversy
In 1993, sixty eight students from the sect Jehovah's Witnesses (JW) were expelled from a school in Cebu for their failure to salute the flag, sing the Philippine National Anthem, and recite the patriotic oath. A teacher in the same school, also a JW adherent was fired from her job for the same offense. According to JW teachings, flag ceremonies, flag salutes, and patriotic oaths are viewed as "acts of worship" or "religious devotion", the latter two of which they believe "can only be rendered to God alone and not anyone nor anything". The JW's consider the flag as an image and honoring the flag is "idolatry".
The case was brought to court wherein the Cebu Division Superintendent argued that the students and the teacher violated Republic Act No. 1265, the law that makes flag ceremony compulsory for all schools, citing the case of Gerona et al v. Secretary of Education. Superintendent also argued of separation of church and state, stating the flag is devoid of religious significance and it doesn’t involve any religious ceremony, and that giving JW's right to exemption disrupt school discipline and demoralize the rest of the school population which by far constitutes the great majority.
The Court ruled in favor of the expelled JW students and the fired JW teacher, on the grounds that expulsion due to religious beliefs is invalid. They also stated of freedom of religion in the 1987 Constitution of the Philippines:
Religious freedom is a fundamental right of highest priority and the amplest protection among human rights, for it involves the relationship of man to his Creator. The right to religious profession and worship has a two-fold aspect, vis., freedom to believe and freedom to act on one’s belief. The first is absolute as long as the belief is confined within the realm of thought. The second is subject to regulation where the belief is translated into external acts that affect the public welfare. The only limitation to religious freedom is the existence of grave and present danger to public safety, morals, health and interests where State has right to prevent.
Evidence also showed that even if they do not take part in the compulsory flag ceremony, they never engaged in “external acts” or behavior that would offend the people who believe in expressing their love of country through the observance of the flag ceremony. The expelled only quietly stood at attention during the flag ceremony to show their respect for the right of those who choose to participate in the solemn proceedings.
The students were later allowed to re-enroll in the school they were expelled from and the teacher was allowed to resume her duties.
- "REPUBLIC ACT NO. 1265 - AN ACT MAKING FLAG CEREMONY COMPULSORY IN ALL EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS". RP Government. 11 June 1955. Retrieved 2007-09-26.
- "The Revised Panatang Makabayan". Department of Education, Republic of the Philippines. November 12, 2001.
- The Revised Panatang Makabayan (archived from the original Archived March 23, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. on 2012-03-23), DepEd Order No. 54, November 9, 2001.
- Panatang Makabayan (Pledge of Allegiance) (archived from the original Archived March 25, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. on 2012-03-25), Saint Paul College of Parañaque.
- Department of Education rules and regulations quoted in Joaquin G. Bernas (1996). The 1987 Constitution of the Republic of the Philippines: a commentary. Rex Bookstore, Inc. p. 297. ISBN 978-971-23-2013-2..
- Sunga; et al., My Country and My People 1, Rex Bookstore, Inc., p. 34, ISBN 978-971-23-2250-1
- "Philippine High Court ruling in Genaro Gerona, et al. vs The Honorable Secretary of Education, et al". August 12, 1959.
- "RP Supreme Court ruling in Roel Ebralinag, et al. vs Superintendent of Schools of Cebu". March 1, 1993.