Same-sex marriage and the child

Dear Editor, In The Irish Catholic of February 13 a spokesperson for the Iona Institute is reported as saying that the group’s "opposition to same-sex marriage is based on the belief that marriage is a child-centred institution first and foremost …".

It follows from this, that motherhood and fatherhood and the natural ties are extremely important, things that supporters of same-sex ‘marriage’ deny.

But these are exactly the same arguments that I, and several others, have put forward outside the Dáil in 2010, when Fianna Fáil and the Green Party were putting forward proposals under the heading of Civil Partnership (which, incidentally, everyone was assured was not a stepping stone to marriage). The rights of children were to be kept out of the picture.

In my view, these proposals, then as now, are regressive.

We already had the example of the Divorce Referendum. It got through largely on the basis of compassion. While some adults benefited, and some of these believed they had benefited, the price was almost exclusively paid by the child.

The commitment of marriage was undermined, broken marriages increased and one in three children (450,000) are now raised by parents who are more desirous of keeping their own options open. Fathers are becoming less visible.

This is a scandal, and something the Government should be doing something about, instead of making the matter worse. Children are to be handed the short straw once again, while deferring to adults’ "rights".

Yours etc.,

Donal O’Driscoll


Co. Dublin.