Saturday 24 June 2017

Emer O'Kelly : Judges must now decide whether or not our Constitution allows for compassion

Emer O'Kelly

A man called Brian Murray said during the week that "the State cannot criminalise private behaviour because it doesn't like it", a quiet, level-headed statement.

Not surprising, because Brian Murray is a senior counsel, and he said it in the High Court. But behind it lies a depth of soul-destroying misery that each of us can only hope we will never personally have to face, as we contemplate in horror what Mr Murray's client is enduring.

We have been criminalising private behaviours for generations in this country, even right through the 20th Century and into the 21st. We policed the bedrooms of married couples, forcing them into cold celibacy if they could not cope with more children.

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