An end to keeping misery behind closed doors
For far too long evil acts have been hidden in the name of protecting the 'sanctity' of the family, writes Emer O'Kelly
A colleague said to me during the week that he remembered being in the Children's' Court as a young reporter and hearing a 14-year-old child tell the judge: "I had twins for me father." The poor child was probably sent to some kind of reform school as a "bad lot". It wasn't reported.
And I remember a case in the Children's' Court myself which still haunts me. When I was a trainee journalist the Children's' Court was our baptism of fire. We were sent there because it didn't matter then, and we could cut our teeth.
I may have had a university education, but I was naive to the point of stupidity. One of the reasons I was naive was because Irish newspapers had never published stories which might "upset" people. Parents, for instance, needed to be comfortable about their children; not to be alarmed that they might be taken up the Dublin mountains and raped by a pervert. Or raped behind the altar on a Sunday while still wearing their altarboy's garb. Even in the 1990s, somebody was still able to say to me: "At least we're not like England."