Section 4 No 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.
Meaning of freedom of speech, of expression, and of the press The constitutional freedom of speech and expression, and of the press, otherwise known as the freedom of expression implies the right to freely utter and publish whatever one pleases without previous restraint, and to be protected against any responsibility from doing as long as it does not violate the law, or injure someone’s character, reputation or business.
Scope of freedom of expression
Free speech and free press
Right of assembly and petition
Right to form associations or societies not contrary to law
Right to religious freedom
Scope of terms “speech,” “expression,” and “press.” “Speech” and “expression” include any form of oral utterances. They cover picketing for by it one silently expresses what he has in mind, display of a flag, and salute to the flag. They also embrace expression by means of motion picture.
Scope of terms “speech,” “expression,” and “press.” The “press” covers every sort of publications: newspapers, periodicals, magazines, books, handbill, leaflets, etc. Radio and television as instruments of mass communication may also be included within this term.
Importance of the guarantee Promotes growth of the individual and nation Makes possible, scrutiny of acts and conduct of public officials Insures responsive and popular government
Freedom of expression not absolute Subject to the regulation of the State. – The right of freedom of speech and of the press is essential to the preservation and operation of democracy, however, it always subject to some regulation by the State.
Freedom of expression not absolute Subject one to liability when abused. –
Slanderous and libelous
Lewd and obscene
Meaning of the right of assembly and right of petition The right of assembly means the right on the part of the citizen to meet peaceably for consultation in respect to public affairs.
Meaning of the right of assembly and right of petition The right of petition means the right of any person or group of persons to apply, without fear of penalty, to the appropriate branch or office of the government for redress of grievances.
Section 5 No law shall be made respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. The free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference, shall forever be allowed. No religious test shall be required for the exercise of civil or political rights.
Meaning of religious freedom The constitutional guarantee of religious freedom is the right of man to worship God, and to entertain such religious views as appeal to his conscience, without dictation on interference by any person or power, civil or ecclesiastical.
Meaning of religion Religion, in its broadest sense, includes all forms of belief in the existence of superior beings exercising power over human beings and imposing rules of conduct with future state of rewards or punishments.
Aspects of religious freedom The separation of Church and State secured in the first sentence of the provision. The freedom of religious profession and worship, in the second sentence of the provision.
Freedom of religious profession and worship “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 (J. Cruz, Constitutional Law, 1991 Ed., pp. 176-177).”
Religious test prohibited A religious test is one demanding the avowal or repudiation of certain religious belief before the performance of act. Without the prohibition of a religious test, the State could accord preference to a religious organization.
Section 6 The liberty of abode and of changing the same within the limits prescribed by law shall not be impaired except upon lawful order of the court. Neither shall the right to travel be impaired except in the interest of national security, public safety, or public health, as may be provided by law.
Meaning of liberty of abode and travel The liberty of abode and travel is the right of a person to have his home in whatever place chosen by him and thereafter to change it at will, and to go where he please, without interference from any source.
Section 7 The right of the people to information on matters of public concern shall be recognized. Access to official records, and to documents and papers pertaining to official acts, transactions, or decisions, as well as to government research data used as basis for policy development, shall be afforded the citizen, subject to such limitations as may be provided by law.
Rights to information on matters of public concern “The right to access to information are cognate rights, resting on the premise that informed citizens are in the best position to promote, protect and defend the values of a democratic society.” “… there can be no doubt as to the constitutionality of any law making refusal to give information or denial of access thereto a punishable offense.”
Scope of the right The right embraces all public records; It is limited to citizens only but is without prejudice to the right of aliens to have access to records of cases where they are litigants; Its exercise is subject to such limitations as may be provided by law.
Limitations on the right Public records excepted Burden on the government to justify withholding of information
Meaning of writ of habeas data The writ of habeas data is a judicial remedy available to any individual whose right to privacy in life, liberty or security is violated or threatened by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee or of a private individual or entity engaged in the gathering, collecting or storing of data or information regarding the person, family, home and correspondence of the aggrieved party.
Purpose of the writ The writ, together with the writ of habeas corpus, and writ of Amparocompletes the legal armory and remedy of a citizen against violations and threats to his rights to life, liberty, security, and information.
Section 8 The right of the people, including those employed in the public and private sectors, to form unions, associations, or societies for purposes not contrary to law shall not be abridged.
Meaning of the right to form association The right to form associations is the freedom to organize or to be a member of any group or association, union, or society, and to adopt the rules which the members judge most appropriate to achieve their purpose.
Section 9 Private property shall not be taken for public use without just compensation.
Fundamental Power of the State General Principles: The inherent powers of the State are 1. Police Power 2. Power of Eminent Domain 3. Power of Taxation
Similarities Inherent in the State, exercised even without need of express constitutional grant. Necessary and indispensable; State cannot be effective without them. Methods by which State interferes with private property. Presuppose equivalent compensation. Exercised primarily by the LEGISLATURE.
Distinctions PP regulates both liberty and property; ED and PT affect only property rights. PP and PT are exercised only by the government; ED may be exercised by private entities. Property taken in PP is usually noxious or intended for a noxious purpose and may thus be destroyed; while ED and PT, the property is wholesome and devoted to public use or purpose. Advanced Consti #6
Distinctions 4. Compensation in PP is the intangible, altruistic feeling that the individual has contributed to the public good; in ED, it is the full and fair equivalent of the property taken; while in PT, it is the protection given and/or public improvements instituted by government for the taxes paid.
Limitations Generally, the Bill of Rights, although in some cases the exercise of the power prevails over specific constitutional guarantees. The courts may annul the improvident exercise of PP
Police Power The power of promoting public welfare by restraining and regulating the use of liberty and property. It is the exercise of the sovereign right of a government to promote order, safety, security, health, morals and general welfare within constitutional limits and is an essential attribute of government.
Police Power It is the most pervasive; the least limitable, and the most demanding of the three powers. The justification is found in Latin maxims: Saluspopuliestsupremalex (the welfare of the people is the supreme law Sic uteretuoutalienum non laedas (so use your own property as not to injure another property)
Who may exercise the power? The power is inherently vested in the legislature. However, Congress may validly delegate this power to the President, to administrative bodies, and to lawmaking bodies of local government units.