The following submissions have been lodged in respect of the consultation on marriage which is focusing on whether so called “same sex marriage” should become constitutional.
The submission to the consultation by European Life Network enclosed the position paper prepared by the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, which can be found on this link.
The basis of that position paper is as follows:
*Marriage - the permanent, exclusive union of one man and one woman - is the basis of the family, the fundamental group unit of society. Upholding marriage is therefore in everyone’s interests.
*Marriage as an institution protects children, both born and unborn. Statistics show that unborn children are much safer within marriage than outside marriage.
*Same-sex marriage lacks basic elements of true marriage e.g. the complementary sexual difference between spouses necessary for the procreation and healthy upbringing of children.
*Same-sex marriage represents an attempt to redefine marriage, thus undermining marriage. This undermining lessens the protection for unborn children which true marriage provides.
Our colleagues in Irish Media Review have also made a submission, which we have included below.
1. Marriage and the Family are adequately defined in the Constitution as it stands.
2. It is clear from the Constitution that Marriage is between a man and a woman.
3. The current drive for Same-sex "marriage", concerns equality and rights between adults, not the rights of children. Implicit in this, is the adoption of children.
4. Children are thus excluded from this equation.
They are brought into this world through no will of their own. Those who are responsible have an obligation to ensure that the rights of a child pro-created by them are vindicated.
In consequence, the child is entitled to a mother and a father, and to the security, and welfare of a home.
It seems incredible that, in a society that considers itself "civilized", all this has to be explained.
5. This right has been consistently ignored by legislators, eg, divorce, children’s rights, and now same-sex "marriage".
6. Divorce has led to more, not less, co-habitation. Co-habitation often means that adults keep their options open, while the children have no choice.
7. One in three children in this country are now born "out of wedlock". This may seem a dated term, but it means that children are deprived of their right to a mother and a father, and in some cases, to a secure family home. The priority is the interests of adults; children have to make do. They have no vote and no voice, and in the case of unborn children, no visibility.
In addition to the numbers of children affected by co-habitation, there are those who witness the marriages of their parents torn apart, as well as their families and homes. Again, they have to grin and bear the consequences for them.
To ease the minds of legislators1, children are now said to have a voice in matters affecting them. What could affect a child more than the divorce of their parents?
Yet what is the experience in, for instance, the UK? It is doubtful if many, or any at all, divorces are refused, due to the objections of the child.
8. Are we seriously suggesting, then, that all this can be remedied by same-sex "marriage"?
9. There are many who saw Civil Partnership as a stepping stone only, when legislation was passed in 2011. And so it has come to pass!
10. Those who sought the legislative promotion of Civil Partnerships in 2011, viewed marriage as anathema. It seems to me that the reason for this was the (sexual) freedom CP allowed, as against the restrictions and obligations of marriage.
Yet, if a child is involved, or a parent becomes disabled, that person is entitled to a solid commitment. The commitment may be for a long period, perhaps even for the life of the parent(s).
Is it really the case that same-sex marriage contains a commitment "till death do us part"?
11. Even if no abuse of the rights of the child occurred in co-habitation, divorce, child-"care", same-sex "marriage", or polygamy, society would still need children to continue the species.
In fact, the State is obligated to parents who go the trouble and expense of rearing the next generation. The granting of the same status, and financial recompense, to any other group, including same-sex couples, would undermine marriage.
12. How would continuation of the species be achieved in same-sex "marriage"?
There are a number of solutions. All, as far as we can see, are intended to be beneficial to the adults, but treat the child in an even more demeaning way, even regarding the child as possession to which adults feel entitled.
For instance, things did not work out very well in the case of McD. -v- L. & anor, (10/12/2009), where a third party became involved, and subsequently aggrieved. Similar cases are likely to keep lawyers and courts busy.
IVF is likely to lead to surrogacy, to the use of animals for pregnancy, and beyond. Science, it is suggested, should only operate within the bounds set by society. Otherwise, science is likely to become a law unto itself.
13. All this is not to say that heterosexual couples do not fail in their duty. They do, and this is recognized in the Constitution. Does this provision need to be up-dated? Probably, but same-sex "marriage" is not the answer to failed real marriages.
14. We should be conscious of what is happening in the UK. The UK is further down the line on same-sex "marriage". The result, so far, is that religiously-based adoption agencies have been closed.
Assurances that same-sex "marriages" will not be required to be held on church premises, are seen as just that. Just assurances.
15. I would suggest that it is the duty of legislators to respect life, and, in so doing, to provide laws that benefit society as a whole into the foreseeable future.
I would equally suggest that this is not achieved by seeking out, and legislating for, extra-ordinary circumstances.
Divorce, resulting in detrimental effects on children, was sought because it was claimed that co-habitation was just around the corner (which it was), and divorce was the answer. Instead, it promoted co-habitation. Petrol was thrown on the problem.
We should be conscious of this example.
16. There seems to have been much haste in pursuing this project. Notification seems to have been made on 1 March and the deadline date is 19 March.
This leaves 18 days for the consideration of a project which is likely to undermine what has been in existence, and has been effective, for many thousands of years!
17. A covering letter is being sent separately to the Chairman.
The so-called "children’s referendum" of 2012 was hypocritical.
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child was signed by the Irish Government in 1992, but never put before the people. The reason was obvious. It would not have been approved by them. Instead, the Courts were empowered to adjudicate on those provisions of the Convention brought before them, thus permitting "children’s" groups to cherry-pick from the Convention.
An underhand attempt was made to permit sanction of wide-ranging changes to Article 40 of the Constitution. In the event papers were withdrawn by the Department from Post Offices days before the referendum. Had the attempt been successful, it would have made possible changes to Article 40.3.3 permitting abortion.
Ms Frances Fitzgerald, TD, was placed in charge of the referendum, and of the Government Department of Children. Ms Fitzgerald is a leading member of the National Women’s Council of Ireland, a major objective of which is to legalize the taking of the lives of unborn children.
Irish Media Review