A Canon Lawyer Speaks



Former President Mary McAleese in Wood Quay, Dublin this morning

“My husband and I have been happily married for almost forty years. We are Catholics and have campaigned for marriage equality for gay citizens, as a family, since long before we had children.

We believe happy marriages are good for individuals and for society. We believe happy gay marriages will be good for individuals and for society too. Will a yes vote affect my heterosexual marriage or any heterosexual marriage?

Not in the least. But it will greatly affect my life and the lives of all parents of gay children. It will give us peace of mind about our children’s future and pride in our country’s commitment to true equality. It will right a glaring wrong.”

We have all ignored a very important reality that on both sides of the referendum argument there is considerable agreement about the need to regulate surrogacy, a need that will exist whether the referendum is passed or defeated.

No-one in Ireland, whether heterosexual or homosexual, has a legal or constitutional right to procreation using surrogacy. This referendum if passed will certainly not create any such right. It is a nonsense to think it could.”

Some Churches take a very different view of definitions of both marriage and the family as is their right. They are perfectly entitled to hold to their own definitions and have them respected by our laws of religious freedom but they are not entitled to insist that their religious definitions should prevail in our secular civil law which makes non-religious provision for all citizens.

This referendum is about extending to gay citizens the secular, non-religious right to marry in a registry office, a right that heterosexual citizens already enjoy under our Constitutional law.”

Mary McAleese this morning speaking at an event hosted by BeLonG To, Ireland’s national organisation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender young people.

Pic: Tiernan Brady

(Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland)


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32 thoughts on “A Canon Lawyer Speaks

  1. Starina

    the church only cares about headcanon lawyers. “my fanfiction features a god who only loves me”

  2. Lordblessusandsaveus

    “Canon Lawyer”

    LOL. What a joke. As relevant as Monopoly money. Has as much influence as the rules your parents lay down in the house.

    1. newsjustin

      What other tips for a vibrant civil society have you picked up during your internship in Pyongyang Fluffy?

        1. newsjustin

          “stop giving religion a say in the public sphere.”

          You know the importance of civil society Clampers. You know how corrosive a retarded civil society is.

  3. Garthicus

    OT but related. I’ve had two conversations at work with colleagues this week and a conversation with a friend who were shocked that I was voting yes, interestingly enough one is from the Philippines and one is from Pakistan and the friend is from South Africa, all are voting no due to the what they believe is the religious side of this.

    Could there be a whole section of the voting population that has not been thought of/addressed by the yes campaign? Obviously this is only 3 people, but I found it interesting.

    1. jeremy kyle

      Depends how many immigrants have shelled out for an Irish passport. A Polish friend of mine asked why I even cared since I’m an atheist and marriage “is a Catholic thing”.

    2. Don Pidgeoni

      I think you’re right. There was an article in the Guardian about African and Eastern European churches and how their congregations are basically all going to vote no because of religious reasons. It was a pretty sizeable number of people as well although they would be unlikely to have their decision changed by any of the yes campaign.

  4. rotide

    I assume this is the unpopular angle but that ruling is ridiculous. The bakery didn’t discriminate on the grounds of the persons sexuality, they didn’t agree with the message and refused to take the order. Would they be forced to print a Tiocfaidh Ar La cake if they were unionist?

    1. Don Pidgeoni

      Didn’t they take the order and then give him his money back because of whatever? I think if they hadn’t taken it in the first place they probably would have been fine but only because its harder to prove.

    2. rotide

      Possibly, but even then they would be only guilty of breach of contract surely? It’s hardly discriminatory.

      1. Don Pidgeoni

        If the reason that they gave (which I think is what was said) was that they won’t do it because its a cake promoting gay something something that is discriminatory. If they had said, oh we are just very busy we can’t do it, that’s harder to prove.

  5. nellyb

    Can’t wait till Saturday.
    Want the posters down, want Breda of Hearts O’Brien look after her own family ONLY, want unborns stop grinning at me with their cheshire smiles out of petri dishes, want Mad Hatter Mullen stop using “sperm” and “children” (instead of “embryos”) in adjacent sentences…
    Yes is a done deal, may be not this year, but soon enough. Hopefully Ms.O’Brien will start freelancing for Russia Today after the referendum and spare us her invisible charity.

    1. phil

      I want the next government to look again at Catholic school patronage , its become very clear to me at least, over the course of this campaign that gay children are not safe in catholic primary schools, and likely the straight ones either …

  6. Ppads

    Interesting that the Catholic Church has banned all none CC literature from being displayed within the church. It’s getting bad when the CC think you are too homophobic, or just lying.Darmuid Martin in this piece this morning made a point of saying that he was not connected to any NO group. Clearly not impressed.
    And now Mary Mcaleese has weighed in. She is speaking to middle Ireland in a very real and personal way. Something the Mothers and Fathers have failed to do, mainly because they are a con act and most people know it.

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