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Wednesday, February 28, 2007

And from today's Irish Times, in relation to the previous post...

Madam, - Fintan O'Toole's comments on the Progressive Democrats' policy on civil unions are extremely disingenuous (Opinion, February 27th). He is wrong to suggest that deferring the Civil Unions Bill 2007 was an illiberal act.
The PDs were the first government party to make it their policy to introduce civil unions. In March 2005 an overwhelming majority of members passed a motion to introduce civil unions.
As a current court case on the constitutional status of civil partnerships is being appealed to the Supreme Court, it would be premature and irresponsible of the Oireachtas to pass new legislation in this area.
The Minister for Justice is quite right to ask for a postponement of the Labour bill until the current legal status is defined by the Supreme Court. It would be a mistake to act on civil unions before then. - Yours, etc,
Monkstown Valley,
Co Dublin.
Fintan O'Toole writes: The Zappone/Gilligan case before the Supreme Court deals with marriage for gay and lesbian couples. The Civil Unions Bill was explicitly framed to avoid the issue of such marriages altogether. The Supreme Court appeal is therefore irrelevant to the bill.

Madam, - While I do not always agree with him, may I congratulate Fintan O'Toole for his column condemning the sheer gutlessness of Michael McDowell and the Regressive Undemocrats regarding last week's shunting of the Civil Unions Bill for gay and lesbian people?
I advise all voting citizens of this country to keep a note of this Government's failings, U-turns, broken promises and pure self-serving political cowardice from now until the election, and throw them all back in the Government parties' faces when they come grovelling at our doorsteps.
Perhaps the Minister would care to clearly explain on these pages his reasons for shooting down the Bill? - Yours, etc,

1 comment:

Tony said...

Declan, your place in my heart as a hero of pithy commentary has now been cemented. Fair play to ya!

I sat in the public gallery on the Wednesday night - when the vote was taken - and I was sickened. The token numbskulls wheeled out to whine and filibuster on the Government's behalf were cringeworthy: Fiona O'Malley, in particular, was virtually incoherent.

Liz McManus and Catherine Murphy spoke brilliantly, sensibly and eloquently in favour of the Bill to the sparse Government stooges. Then the vote was announced and, as if by magic, the Government parties' unwashed emerged from the woodwork in vast numbers to toe the whips' line and cast their votes of shame. Couldn't they be bothered to sit in on this important debate? Were they too ashamed?

I'm mortified that I once thought the PDs were actually worth something. I can't wait for the PDs and Fianna Fail (no fada on the a) to come to my door looking for votes. My mild manner has been replaced by paint stripper. Bring it on! Labour gets my vote from now on. The cowards get my contempt.