Sunday 19 January 2020

Chance to do the right thing

CONFUSION is never a good thing and when you add it into a mix that already includes apathy and indifference, you have a heady brew.

Yesterday's Supreme Court ruling will puzzle many who are at the edge of this referendum debate and haven't had either the time, or energy, to explore the issue.

Dublin engineer Mark McCrystal won his appeal against the High Court's dismissal of a challenge to the Government's spend on the children's referendum information campaign.

The five-judge Supreme Court agreed with Mr McCrystal's claim that "extensive passages" in the Government's information booklet, and on its website, about Saturday's referendum did not conform to a previous Supreme Court judgment.

While the ruling does not interfere with Saturday's vote, it does unintentionally muddy the waters for voters.

Those who had already felt disinclined to vote in this referendum, will not have been encouraged to do so by yesterday's decision.

And Yes advocates -- already feverish over a predicted low turn-out -- will have fresh reasons to worry about foot-fall at polling stations on Saturday.

While confusion is understandable, there is little excuse for either apathy or indifference.

People owe it to themselves, their children and all future children, to be informed and to get out and vote on Saturday.

While those advocating a No vote have lacked any real coherence, those advocating changing the constitution have been, on the whole, convincing and consistent in their arguments.

It could be argued -- and indeed it has been -- this referendum wasn't strictly necessary.

But it is still a chance to do right by our children.

We should take it. .

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