essentially retained with the modification that the places under which the offense might be committed is now expressed in general terms – public or semi-public places. The streets must be protected. Our people should never dread having to ply them each day, or else we can never say that we have performed our task to our brothers and sisters. We must rid the streets of the scourge of humanity, and restore order, peace, civility, decency and morality in them. This is exactly why we have public order laws, to which Article 202 (2) belongs. These laws were crafted to maintain minimum standards of decency, morality and civility in human society. These laws may be traced all the way back to ancient times, and today, they have also come to be associated with the struggle to improve the citizens’ quality of life, which is guaranteed by our Constitution. Article 202 (2) does not violate the equal protection clause; neither does it discriminate against the poor and the unemployed. Offenders of public order laws are punished not for their status, as for being poor or unemployed, but for conducting themselves under such circumstances as to endanger the public peace or cause alarm and apprehension in the community. Being poor or unemployed is not a license or a justification to act indecently or to engage in immoral conduct. It must not be forgotten that police power is an inherent attribute of sovereignty. It has been defined as the power vested by the Constitution in the legislature to make, ordain, and establish all manner of wholesome and reasonable laws, statutes and ordinances, 471 | P a g e Constitutional Law 2013 Atty. Edgar B. Pascua II
either with penalties or without, not repugnant to the Constitution, as they shall judge to be for the good and welfare of the commonwealth, and for the subjects of the same. The power is plenary and its scope is vast and pervasive, reaching and justifying measures for public health, public safety, public morals, and the general welfare.38 As an obvious police power measure, Article 202 (2) must therefore be viewed in a constitutional light. G.R. No. 169364 September 18, 2009 PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, vs. EVANGELINE SITON y SACIL Case: The void-for-vagueness doctrine holds that a law is facially invalid if men of common intelligence must necessarily guess at its meaning and differ as to its application. However, this Court has imposed certain limitations by which a criminal statute, as in the challenged law at bar, may be scrutinized. This Court has declared that facial invalidation or an "on-its-face" invalidation of criminal statutes is not appropriate. We have so enunciated in no uncertain terms in Romualdez v. Sandiganbayan , thus: In sum, the doctrines of strict scrutiny, overbreadth, and vagueness are analytical tools developed for testing "on their faces" statutes in free speech cases or, as they are called in American law, First Amendment cases. They cannot be made to do service when what is involved is a criminal statute. With respect to such statute, the
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- Fall '17
- Atty. Edgar Pascua II