Preparing for 'children referendum'
Sir, – The children’s referendum is a misnomer. It is and should be re-named a referendum for the transfer of the rights of parents (married and unmarried) to the State and State agents.
The Irish Constitution as it stands offers far more rights to children and to every citizen in this State than any Constitution or international convention in the world. Former attorney general and tánaiste, now an eminent senior counsel, confirmed this to the Law Society in 2002. Judge Adrian Hardiman declared it as “breathtakingly inaccurate” to suggest that the Constitution as it stands prefers the rights of parents over the rights of children, but it does prefer the rights of children and parents over the rights of the State. Justice Mary Laffoy and former judge Hugh O’Flaherty all agree, as indeed do others.
If this referendum is passed, every child in the State, particularly children of deserted, separated, divorced or unmarried parents, but also children of married parents, will be in grave danger of being legally snatched by the State and State agents and adopted inside or outside Ireland.
The Irish Constitution, as it stands, is a barrier to the EU/UN all-embracing adoption policies, often termed “legalised kidnapping”. This is what will change, if the referendum is passed.
I am not just asking people, I am begging them, for the sake of all children, not to be deceived by the pious platitudes of our overpaid politicians. I wouldn’t trust “the State” with the little finger of one of my children. I certainly don’t trust it with all my children. I’ll be voting No on November 10th. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – There is little debate on the children’s rights referendum and most if not all the information available to the public is totally biased in favour of a Yes vote – in fact huge amounts of money are being spent to guarantee a Yes vote.
The public is being sold a lie to the effect that the referendum will protect vulnerable children. The Government is using the abuse of children to con the public into voting Yes and to undermine the rights of parents.
The Government wants to remove the current Art. 42.5 but this article already gives the State the power to remove children at risk from the parents or family home and it also respects the natural and imprescriptible rights of the child, so there is no need to change it.
The inclusion of Article 42A in the Constitution, if passed, will give children and teenagers separate rights from their parents and even if the family is functioning normally and providing love and care to their children, their parental role will be undermined and children will lose their right to parental protection.
Voters are not told what rights children are to be given, so voters have no idea what they are voting for. It will be the State that decides. The proposed amendment makes the State the defender of the rights of children, not their parents. If the amendment is passed it will devalue Article 41 which states the family has inalienable and imprescriptible rights.
The State will possibly turn to United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of the Child in deciding children’s rights. Some of the things the UNCRC outlines as children’s rights are quite worrying, for example, the right to freedom of association and free access to information. If children associate with unsuitable characters or access information on pornography this could be viewed as their right to equality, inclusiveness and non-discrimination which would undermine the rights of parents and deprive children of parental protection.