Friday, May 26, 2006

Where there is the Minister there is a demo

There is someone else with a laptop down the back of the hall, not sure who he is but I don’t feel so lonely…until I get to read his name badge.

So the chairperson makes her opening address, invites the minister to speak and all hell breaks loose. On the way into the conference I spotted members of the Separated Fathers Association, the Mother and Child Campaign and Youth Defence.

McDowell opens his mouth and  up pop the fathers group, members of which are dotted throughout the room and they start shouting. 10 minutes of loud noise ensue, slow handclaps from the queers and others. The sign language interpreter and the Deaf attendees had to move to the back of hall for a while.

McDowell, says that constitutional change is not needed as marriage is not on the agenda for same sex couples. And the Irish Human Rights Commission report last week backs him up in this regard…would think the authors of the report would have  a thing or two to say about that.

McDowell says he does understand GLEN’s views on the matter of gay marriage but he has to operate in a different context.

Anyway the crowd here is mixed, legal types from universities, members of lgbt groups from around the country, government officials, members and staff of  political parties, a priest (here with an lgbt group!)


At 11:12, Blogger F said...

Ah so he also doesnt understand the difference between a report reviewing the law and a report proposing reforms. Protest sounds almost hilarious. What was the reaction to his 'marriage isnt on the agenda' BS?
BTW excellent live blogging for those of us stuck at home crumbling under deadlines :(

At 12:09, Blogger Suzy said...

he is explaining the marriage is not on the agenda in great detail - am sure the speech will be on the website sometime today if not already!?

At 14:32, Blogger Simon said...

Cool blogging. I think the reason he says it is not on the agenda is because they don't want to lose the election rather then any disagreement with it.

But maybe that is just me. I wrote a piece up on Irish Election. Do you think it will be an issue in the next election? Sure if you have an opinion sure you could put it up on Irish election. You have an account don't you.

Anyway back to the point. Well done on the live blogging.

At 12:31, Anonymous Tipster said...

The other laptop user at the back is Dr Matteo Bonini-Baraldi of the Unoiversity of Bologna. He was co-author with Kees Waaldijk of a book out next week on the application of the EU Employment Equality Framework Directive in the fifteen "old" EU Member states.

They also jointly wrote the introduction to a report on combatting sexual orientation discrimination in employment in the "old" fifteen EU member states, which is available here:

(Sorry for the broken web address, but when I previewed my comment before pasting, I realised it ruined the beautiful design of your blog!)


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