130 thoughts on “The Mammy Complex

    1. Sheila

      Oooo, I did not realise this Clamps.

      That said, taking down any posters – even the ones that are not legal campaign material – just looks bad. The No campaign are relishing in No posters being taken down.

      That said whoever is taking them down is up for debate.

    2. newsjustin

      Actually, the guy who posted it on twitter says it does have the necessary details – in tiny black text. He doesn’t go into too much details on the problems he has with it though.

    3. AlisonT

      After ripping down the poster go to your local library and burn any books you have a problem with. History shows that will lead to a more tolerant society.

  1. Wayne.F

    That there is litter, report it to your local authority, ask for it to be removed and conformation of the same

    1. tm

      The truth is self evident and absolute. Two men cannot make a baby, or has something changed recently.

      1. Well that's that

        Back under your bridge troll. That’s not what this referendum is about. Now stop trying to muddy the water with your ignorance and thinly veiled homophobia

        1. tm

          It has everything to do with the rights of children. As Prof John A Murphy said “grotesque nonsense” How true.

      2. zackersetu

        Ya… neither can an infertile straight couple. (sigh… your ignorance knows no bounds … both in the sense of lack of knowledge and in the lack of sensitivity or humanity)

        Also what is not self evident or absolute is what this has got to do with the referendum?

        Clearly as you like people to tell you what to think, I’ll inform you. Nothing. Just because you choose to ignore all the major children’s charities, the Referendum Commission itself, Ireland’s foremost authority on Child Protection Law, and largest representative body for Psychologists in Ireland and in the USA (also incidentally the world), alongside the other numerous barristers and solicitors (people who actually know what the law actually states), does not make you right.

        I’m actually sick to death of the ..well that’s just my opinion, stance that is being vomited out by the No side. If it is an opinion that is based on absolutely nothing other than the contradictory ramblings of a 200 year old story, that has been retranslated and gutted by various sects of religions for the past 2000 years, then your opinion is not worthy of being aired.

        Provide me with one, solid reason that is backed up by either professional (not including those that have been widely discredited ), empirical, scientific or legal (that actually pays heed to real legal interpretation and not merely a smokescreen as Iona have tried to do), then I will listen. Until then you waste all our time and energy!

    2. Wayne.F

      TM correct biologically two men can not make a baby. But we are not voting on reproductive rights for two males we we are voting on Marriage rights for LGBT couples, under article 41 of the Irish constitution and combined with Murray V Ireland IR532 1985 a family can be defined as a married couple without children.

      So reproduction is of no relevance to this debate. So you appear to be just overly interested in LGBT sex or children

  2. Gers

    “Massive” ? That’s what she said. Otherwise, cope on. No amount of removal of NO signs will change the outcome of the vote, it will make a lot of people looks like arses, something that seems to amplify as the vote gets closer.

    1. munkifisht

      According to Wikipedia, 1 man’s paternal love = 0.87324 women’s maternal love, so using present exchange rates you’d need 2.1451605515093216068892858778801 men to love make up for a straight couples parental love while you only need 1.74648 women to make the same amount of love as a straight couple.

      That’s right! Science Bitches.

  3. zackersetu

    I’m sorry , but if this isn’t outright homophobia, what is it.

    Also … although it is the oldest argument in the book and I usually do a bit of an eye roll when i hear it ….
    Didn’t Jeebus have 2 ‘fathers’ … and well if the auld tome is to believed they are apparently the source of all love … ergo … God and Jesus’s love isnt as good as mother’s love. Therefore the No side believe the bible is wrong … thus they probably should begin to question that whole Leviticus issue too!!

    In short these posters (this and and the ‘don’t be silenced’ crap) are damaging, offensive and just plain and simple hate! I just really hope that the Irish public see this a step too far!!

    And a final thought … is this really image that is going out to the world? .. small minded scaremongering, and thinly veiled homophobic ramblings strung up on every lamppost? ohhhhhh where do I buy a ticket??? I tell you the only increased tourist trade from this will be crazoids going to on pilgrimages to Knock! FFS!!

    1. newsjustin

      It’s not homophobic. 2 men, any men, are not women. Therefore they cannot be mothers. Therefore they cannot give a mothers love.

      You could argue it’s sexist (is a father’s love not enough?), but it’s clearly not homophobic.

      1. ahjayzis

        It’s dog whistle stuff – they NEVER bring up two women with a child, ever, it’s always two men. it’s incredibly homophobic, reaching out to a deeply ingrained prejudice that somehow gay men are a threat to children. I feel really sorry for Colm O’Gorman’s kids today.

        1. newsjustin

          Gay men certainly aren’t a threat to children. But no two men are the same as a woman.

          1. ahjayzis

            No pint of craft beer served is the same as a 2004 Dublin registered Volkwagen Passat. Fun game! What else isn’t the same as something else?

            Referendum is about civil marriage. RefCom and a legal opinion obtained by IONA of all people have smashed any link between surrogacy, Adoption Authority has debunked connection to adoption changes. Children’s charities are in favour.

            My granny is not the same as my smartphone though, so TAKE THAT.

        2. newsjustin

          And some day you’ll have to explain to me the term “dog-whistle”….apart from the obvious meaning.

          1. ahjayzis

            It’s saying something like “A mother and a father and a child is not the same as two gay men and a child” – Colm O’Gorman and his partner are not ‘two gay men’ to the wonderful girl he raised.

            It plays on a deep, old, inaccurate fear and you know well it does. It’s why they never reverse the genders and play the two gay women card, because lesbians were never conflated with paedophiles and thus it’s less effective.

          2. Clampers Outside!

            I think it means… directed at a specific group, a message specifically for that group, a specific fear in this case.

            Is that it Ahjayzis? Nice expression me thinks, new to me…

          3. ahjayzis

            Basically. It plays up a fear among people who already have a prejudice, but sails by people who don’t.

            Used a lot by conservatives in the US, things like;

            “You can’t publicly say black people don’t like to work, but you can say there’s an inner-city culture in which generations of people don’t value work.”

          4. Dough Berman

            A ‘dogwhistle’ in politics is a cloaked appeal to prejudice. Superficially innocuous phrasing is employed which nevertheless conveys a message of sympathy or accord with a particular demographic which the speaker believes will respond to the ‘code’ (they will ‘hear’ the ‘dogwhistle’, which will pass unnoticed by the majority, just as, by analogy, humans can’t hear a dogwhistle but dogs can). The classic examples are mostly founded in US politics, where the technique was pioneered: references to food stamps, ‘welfare queens’ etc sound initially like fairly standard austerity blahblah, but once analysed in the context of race relations, it quickly becomes clear that there’s more to it than that…

      2. zackersetu

        Yes .. Let me introduce you to a small concept called context…. in the context of a marriage equality debate this is the clear purposive meaning of the poster. If they went up without the current issue being put to referendum, then yes I would agree, however the meaning of this poster is perfectly clear. It may be sexist also, however not one reasonable person reading these posters are going to think … oh yes, that a general statement and has absolutely no particular emphasis on gay men!

        The no side knew exactly what they were saying .. you know exactly what they are saying.

    2. Anomanomanom

      Nothing homophobic about it. I’m for the yes vote, but it’s just ignorant and stupid to start calling no voters homophobic. I have friends who are voting no and we have gay friends in our social circle. I know people who are voting no because they don’t think a gay couple should be allowed have kids. And their reasoning is that Gay people are born gay, and that’s fine, but their also born un able to have kids if they’ve only been in gay relationships.

      1. ReproBertie

        So you’re saying you know people who are voting no and are homophobic. No big surprise there really.

        1. Anomanomanom

          Like i said ignorance. People like you are the reason some people are voting no.

          1. Roj

            “People like you are the reason some people are voting no.”
            Well isnt that a ridiculous reason to vote no? Voting just to spite people you don’t agree with, well people like that don’t deserve a vote.

            And again we hear about people voting no due to their belief that gay people shouldnt have children. [grooooan slaps head with palm].

      2. ahjayzis

        First of all, this referendum is not about kids, according to the Referendum Commission, the Adoption Authority, the ISPCC and Barnardos – that’s been made clear for weeks. You’ll forgive me for considering no voters quoting those reason being either A. ignorant or B. concealing their prejudice.

        Secondly, “don’t think a gay couple should be allowed have kids” – this IS homophobic. It’s deeply offensive. My brother might be a drug addicted convict but I’M the one who shouldn’t have kids according to someone who has never met me. Gay people DO have children. If saying single women should not have kids is anti-women, saying gay people, full stop, in general, should not have kids is anti-gay. Anti-gay is also known as homophobic.

      3. zackersetu

        Oh FFS ….. aren’t they wonderful … they have gay friends but draw the line at therm having kids. I would love to have them as friends … such caring people, and not patronising at all. Please tell me again is being ignorant and stupid in that situation.

        Look … (sigh of pure resignation at this point) I thank you for your future vote and I appreciate wholeheartedly your sentiment, in voting yes, but lets not forget what homophobia is . It is an irrational fear of those who are gay. Stating that 2 men (with the indisputable contextual implication of those two men being gay) are not capable of showing the same love as mother is the clear statement. This statement goes against all the statements that have been made by children’s charities, lawyers, children of gay couples, gay children of straight couples etc. The conclusion here is that the statement made is not rational or in other words …is irrational. It is a statement grounded in bigotry and fear … or homophobia. It is statement made solely to cause further fear, resentment, misinformation and is simply false. The majority of gay men reading those signs feel attacked, demeaned and judged; not to mention that the message conveyed has nothing to do with the simple objective of the referendum…equal access to civil marriage, regardless of gender. (That in fact makes it worse …. it’s not even relevant …it’s a personal attack, plain and simple).

        So again I thank you for your vote for equality, but I also would thank you not to rationalise homophobia as being an acceptable statement … I know how it made me feel and it is not now, nor never should or will be acceptable.

        1. newsjustin

          Sorry zack, it’s just a fact that two men cannot give what a mother specifically gives. If men and women were entirely identical it would, for example be of no consequence that women are grossly underrepresented as CEOs and member of parliament around the world.

          Men are not women. That fact is not homophobic.

          1. Don Pidgeoni

            Ok, I’ll bite. Apart from breastfeeding, what does a woman specifically give a kid that a man couldn’t? And please answer, don’t just run off.

            “If men and women were entirely identical it would, for example be of no consequence that women are grossly underrepresented as CEOs and member of parliament around the world.”
            This is not due to biological differences but you knew that.

          2. zackersetu

            I defer to Don Pidgeoni on this one …. my thoughts exactly !!!

            It makes me so very sad that people can’t even grasp the simple and yet pervasive homophobia in this. I have been reminded so many times of Shakespeare over the past while … As Polonius notes in Hamlet

            ‘We are oft to blame in this, with devotion’s visage and pious action we do sugar o’er the devil himself .’

            People are so busy fussing about the falsity of balance, that they casually accept and defend evil …. that is the awful truth of what is currently happening and it is so very worrying for each and every one of us.

          3. Anomanomanom

            I did reply with a fair and balanced response. But it’s for some reason not posted.

          4. newsjustin

            Zack, you keep saying the poster is homophobic, but please explain why it is??

            What does a mother give a child (firstly, it’s ludicrous to suggest we exclude breast feeding. I think breast feeding is very, very important….but OK):

            – a knowledge that he/she was carried by their mother (the woman who is hopefully raising her) throughout pregnancy. An unbreakable bond with the woman who brought them into this world.
            – a direct, intimate feminine influence on their development from day 1 until their mother’s death. This is important for both boys and girls.

            Sure, you might claim that an aunt, sister or granny might cover some of these things, that people get on just fine in the event that their mother dies at a young age, or that two men can provide something similar. It would be a poor substitute though.

            You might also say that my wording is a bit wooly and vague. But the opposing side tells us it’s just all about love, so I think that’s reasonable.

          5. Don Pidgeoni

            None of which are essential to kids growing up just fine and all of which are pretty insulting to those brought up by their dads. But “direct, intimate feminine influence on their development from day 1 until their mother’s death. This is important for both boys and girls.” This is just the flip-side nonsense of the all kids need fathers or they will end up in jail argument, which is nonsense.

            Knowledge of your birth mother in terms of medical history is important and something to be included in the surrogacy bill, not this referendum, which has nothing to do with children.

          6. zackersetu

            Newsjustin……. (i feel i must type my sighs here on in) *Sigh* Well actually I did, just because you can’t comprehend it, does not make any less a valid reason . But *sigh* again .. I shall simplify, if loosing some veracity in translation, as I fear you might still not quite get it. *sigh*

            The poster itself is homophobic:

            1) Mainly because the referendum has nothing to do with children. They are completely separate issues ….COMPLETELY. The reality is that it’s about civil marriage and the vast majority of respected lawyers and charities, and the Referendum Commission themselves (really do i have to list these again *sigh*) have quite clearly stated that the referendum has nothing to do with gay people raising, adopting, arranging surrogacy of a child.. in fact it has not 1 connection to the welfare of any child … except that of gay children who have to grow up in the country. So the only actual message in this poster, relevant to the referendum is the following : 2 men shouldn’t be let get married (civil not religious) because they are gay ….. nothing more, nothing less. (strangely this qualifies as being homophobic)


            2) Accepting that they are making a relevant argument (which they are not) The poster is saying that gay men cannot ‘love’ children as well as a mother (and the implied yet missing father), and therefore they shouldn’t be able to get civilly married. Are we now questioning the gay man’s capacity to be able to show love… is our love somehow different? Is it sullied because of the fact we are gay? So yes that is homophobic … that parochial, sly slimy wink of a statement underlying it all … Sure gay love isn’t real love … they don’t really love … so how could they love a child like a mammy could. In essence therefore the second message is gays are bad….shocker … homophobic!

            So again … this poster has 1) nothing, substantially and indeed quite objectively to do with the referendum, and is merely highlighting that gay men are gay men and for that reason alone they shouldn’t be allowed to get married and 2) states that gay love is not real love, which is a cheap and dangerous slur on the character of every gay man.

            P.S. every single voting person in Ireland should be disgusted with the fact that the No side clearly think them stupid …. pray tell … are you truly that easily led?

          7. newsjustin

            Zack, the subject of the referendum has no real bearing on whether this poster is homophobic or not. That the poster doesn’t (in your view) have any bearing on the subject of the referendum is one thing – but that doesn’t make it homophobic.

            On your second point – the poster makes precisely zero reference to the love between two gay men. It says nothing about that. It simply states that, no matter how amazing, brilliant and lovely two men are – they are not interchangeable in a child’s life for that child’s mother.

            I get that you don’t like the poster. I get that you would prefer everyone would vote yes. But this poster is clearly not homophobic. You’re just chasing your own tail now. “It’s clearly homophobic because….it’s clearly homophobic…”

          8. zackersetu

            Last comment as .. truly .. I’m sick to death of giving this poster more than it deserves.

            I appreciate you are perceiving it from a perhaps more objective viewpoint, however if i was being completely objective and this was a poster that was not connected to the referendum, at best it would be sexist. The context is the killer here. No the poster, prime facie is not necessarily homophobic, however let’s not kid ourselves, the poster is not to be read in a vacuum . In the context of the debate, it is the unmistakable intention of the No side to imply that Gay men are not suitable parents (regardless of its irrelevance to the referendum), as they are not just different but they are lacking and could never possibly live up to the standard of the love of a mother.

            Look, I don’t think you will see my viewpoint, and possibly that is probably the most disappointing thing to me. I accept you argue it coherently, but that is because you possibly are genuinely not seeing the underlying hatred in this poster. You see homophobia as an objective entity, with a high burden of proof. That is not true … this poster feels homophobic (both rationally and emotionally) to me. And although you may not believe I actually have a rather high threshold. This poster figuratively kicked me in the stomach. To the person who may be more sensitive perhaps a teenager struggling with his/her sexuality.. this would be crushing! So I still stand by and say that the message, the feeling and the intention of this poster is to stir and promote an irrational fear of homosexuals. And that is where I leave it.

          9. newsjustin

            Thanks Zack. I understand that the poster feels homophobic to you. You’ve given me something to think about.

      4. AhHereLeaveItOut

        Gay couples can and will be able to adopt kids, regardless of this referendum. People born unable to have kids? So I guess all infertile straight people shouldn’t be allowed to adopt either? Sounds like you have dumb friends. And homophobic.

        1. Anomanomanom

          No a straight couple with all the relevant parts with a problem that stops them having kids is completely different to two men or women in a relationship that all being well is still physically unable to have kids with each other. I can take on board this point. I or you might not agree with but it’s a biological FACT.

          1. Don Pidgeoni

            How? Surely the biological fact that neither couple can have kids without assistance makes them the same.

          2. Anomanomanom

            In respect of the not having kids parts yes. But if your trying to tell me that, for example a women who is perfectly fine and can carry a baby with no complications but the man as a problem say with his fertility, It is not the same as a same set couple who no matter what biological can not impregnate each other. By the way I’m all for gay adoption, but I take on board people’s point.

          3. Don Pidgeoni

            Why not? The woman could go have a kid with someone else and the gay guy can have a kid with someone who isn’t his male partner. People are tying themselves in theoretical knots about what is and isn’t a real family/couple when this conversation isn’t relevant for this referendum.

          4. Anomanomanom

            Maybe a little thing called love. So you think it’s ok for couple who plan to stay together having one of the having sex with other people just to become pregnant.

          5. Don Pidgeoni

            Oh so, now its about love….. love for the heteros, provided both of them can’t have kids but not for the geys. You know they don’t need to actually have sex right?

            *shakes head, leaves the room*

      5. Ruth

        Didnt the god damn church spend DECADES ‘raising’ children with only men or women to look after them, in the various orphanages and industrial schools up and down the country?? And look how well that went?? Surely the nuns and priests should have worked together to provide a man and a woman to ‘raise’ those left in their charges??

        Honestly… we can all breath a sigh of relief when this goes through… I say when… I hope you are all registered and waiting with polling cards in hand!!

  4. rotide

    All the people saying this is offensive to men and fathers need to get over themselves.

    The problem with this is it’s relevance to the referendum, not how it offends men (if doesn’t. The message itself is one that could be debated pretty well)

    1. Small Wonder

      I think it’s offensive to women. It puts the burden of childcare on women cos they’re so special and really, men would just mess it. So it’s best if she stays at home and he goes out to work.

        1. dan

          You seem to be under the impression that that has some relevance. Care to explain that relevance? Because every study ever done says it’s not relevant to parental ability, and it’s not being voted on.

      1. Don Pidgeoni

        This. Women apparently have some special super power that activates once their vagina squeezes out a person that makes them the be all and end all of families. Nonsense stuff.

        1. rotide

          Err, they kinda do actually. Evolution and brain chemistry saw to that.

          That wasn’t Small Wonders point either.

          1. Small Wonder

            It was Small Wonder’s point.
            I’m just dying to hear more about evolution and brain chemistry though! Sounds like you have a rock solid argument about to burst forth.

          2. rotide

            Rotide knows when he hasn’t a chance of cashing the cheque he wrote in the last comment so i’ll back slowly away

          3. yrtnuocecnareviled

            Cheque bounced.
            Maybe someone should explain the birds and the bees to you.

        2. newsjustin

          C’mon Don. Don’t be hating on the mammies.

          Mothers are kinda important to be fair.

    2. Starina

      It’s sexist and harmful to both men and women — it promotes the idea that women should stay at home and it also promotes the idea that men aren’t sufficient parents. it enforces gender stereotypes. Not to mention it’s grossly homophobic.

      1. ReproBertie

        I’d say it’s only sexist if they haven’t put up “Two women can’t replace a father’s love” posters as well.

        Because if they haven’t then they’re, as usual with these 1950’s christian types, denigrating the role of the father in child-rearing.

        1. yrtnuocecnareviled

          God be with the days when we could lock up the single mammies and take their childer.

  5. Stewart Curry

    Nothing to do with two men marrying. Unless one or both of them had a turbulent relationship with his mother and that’s caused psychological issues and he just wants someone, anyone to give him the love he craved as a child.

  6. bertie blenkinsop

    Can we be sure his problem is the poster?

    He may have just missed that bus.

  7. Jane

    What are the chances they’re going to campaign for improvements for us marvellous mammies once this referendum is over? They sure seem to love us right now, but will they love us next Saturday week?

    My guess is, not really. They’re just using us.

    1. Don Pidgeoni

      They only care about the mammies or the babbies if the geys are coming to rob you of them.

      1. Jane

        Yeah, and not one of these soldiers for mammies will give you a seat on the bus, either, no matter how far along you are. That shows where their priorities lie.

        1. Don Pidgeoni

          Sure, you’re probably don’t even have a man around, why should I give you my seat?

          1. Jane

            True. Listen, I’m not saying it’s not a tough decision. You see a mammy. Mammies are good. You see no rings. No-ring mammies are bad, even potential lesbians if you really want to be damning about them. You don’t want to be seen endorsing that kind of thing.

          1. Don Pidgeoni

            Maybe rotide you could give me and Jane a list of things you deem appropriate for us to talk about? That way you won’t get all upset.

          2. rotide

            You’re doing just fine wheeling out the generalisations and replying with the snappy fingers and ‘you go girl’ on your own

  8. wearnicehats

    I don’t know exactly what the *ist or the *ic nature of this is but you can be sure that there is an *ist or *ic nature to it therefore I can assure you I’m outraged about the whole thing.

    Any chance we could move this referendum to this Friday because it’s all just become a load of old arse now. (oops – is it ok to use “arse” – I mean, um, you know an all?)

  9. eamonn clancy

    Once the child has all the info on their mother it’s ok, medical history would be top of the list.

  10. Joe835

    I love the focus on “two men” all the time, it’s essentially telling the reader to “get a good mental picture, there”. There won’t be “two women” signs because the No campaign know that wouldn’t bother homophobes as much.

    They’re people freaked out by gay men and more specifically, the prospect of gay anal sex but they know they can’t just scream “NO TO SODOMY!” (although many of their less polished performers do) in 2015, so they do stuff like this.

    1. wearnicehats

      You’re right – I think the YES side are missing a trick here. Never mind your equality or whatever all this hoo-ha is about. Rainbows! or something; slagging off religious people, or something, I forget. – lash a few girl on girl shots up there and any undecided blokes out there will be swayed in no time. Some girls too, I reckon. Is it the 22nd yet?? My bike was nicked ages ago and I can’t get a look-in

  11. Gers

    Like some of the Yes posters this No poster expresses an opinion, nothing wrong with this in time of campaigning. Of course someone offended could always lodge a complain for discrimination or whatever … but aside from those distractions, Im not sure why some on the YES side are constantly saying that matters around Children isnt related to Gay Marriage, a positive result will wihtout a doubt increase desire from such couple to complete the family with having children and so it has to count for something for some people decisions. This is nothing new by the way, seen in the UK and US and totally accepted there when the question of Children arose (see this for instance: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/11/gay-marriage-adoption_n_894916.html). So all in all I find it a very bad strategy to try and avoid the subject of children.

    1. ReproBertie

      Children are not an issue because gay couples in Ireland already have children and have been happily raising children for years.All the issues being raised around children – adpotion, surrogacy, sperm/egg donation – are as relevant to straight couples as they are to gay couples. A yes vote will not suddenly instill all gay people with a mad drive for parenthood anymore than a No vote would make gay parents abandon their children.

    2. well

      If i put it posters expressing the opinion No posters are pedophiles would that be ok?

    3. well

      A lot of No people also came out against the Children’s referendum? maybe they have something to hide?

    4. Roj

      You do realise that gay men and women are already joining together through civil partnership and have been for some time now? If the NO side win out on May22nd there will still be as many couples (well, nearly as many) getting hitched and potentially looking to adopt. But, there will also be single gay men and women looking to do the same thing. It has nothing to do with the referendum on May22nd.

  12. well

    Raised by my dad and extended family. Mother is a bit of a toxic person. So this is a tad insulting to me and him.

  13. zackersetu

    For the record … I’m drained by the idiocy…. Let the trolls be trolling. I’ve said my part …. several times … I’m out!

  14. Serval

    I was raised by my father and my mother and they did a great job of turning me into a teenager who gets sexually aroused by looking at bald-headed, hairy-chested men.

  15. Bia

    I kinda agree to the poster . All things have a purpose and look at a female body ….top to bottom it has a purpose and birthing and nurturing and loving babies is its main one . That’s what they are made for

  16. Ima Soul

    There’s plenty of bad mammy’s out there, look at the obesity numbers…child abuse.

Comments are closed.