Raphael Lorenzo Aguiling Pangalangan

Raphael Lorenzo Aguiling Pangalangan is a Lecturer with the University of the Philippines and is currently completing his Master of Studies in International Human Rights Law with the University of Oxford. He earned his Graduate Diploma in Advanced Studies in Human Rights and Humanitarian Law from the American University Washington College of Law (2017), his Juris Doctor from the University of the Philippines College of Law (2016), and his Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy cum laude from the University of the Philippines College of Social Sciences and Philosophy (2012).

Designation: University of the Philippines
Institution: University of the Philippines
Paper: Legal Consequentialism: Dutertic Formalism as the Philippine Concept of Law
Abstract: "The Philippine approach to law disparages the “softness” of non-law such as policies and principles in favor of the technical application of rules. Yet recent jurisprudence shows that even our formalism is flawed. In March 2018, the President unilaterally withdrew from a treaty because the Constitution had not vested that power elsewhere. Two months later, in Republic v. Sereno, a sitting Chief Justice was removed by her peers on the rationale that the Constitution had not expressly prohibited it. Both cases, though distinct in many ways, build off the same premise: Silence. In principle, Philippine legal thinking finds solace in the certainty of positive law as fealty to the sovereign will. In practice, we manipulate the meaning of text to suit the needs of the moment. Devoid of normativity, the law becomes a weapon wielded by the powers that be. What we purport to be positivism is in reality but a tool for our consequentialism. Given all our troubles, one real problem is not the abandonment of the rule of law per se, but its misconception."