Justice denied to the victims of child abusers

COME on, Mr Dempsey and Mr Ahern, stop it!

You, or any other cabinet member, should have no right to set the terms, or the agenda, for the inquiry into the national scandal of child rape, buggery, violent physical and verbal assault, slavery (Magdalen Laundries), cruelty, degradation, and God knows what else, perpetrated by members of Catholic religious orders, and the ordinary clergy, on generations of young Irish people with the connivance and active collaboration of the state.

Once again, we see an already discredited government failing to face up to its responsibilities. With their lack of respect and even contempt for our constitution, shilly-shallying and obstructionism, they have forced the resignation of Justice Laffoy.

In effect, they are using delaying tactics and denying justice to the victims of the horrible crimes of certain clerics and other child molesters.

'Collusion' is a word very much in the news now in relation to the dirty deeds in the North, but right from the foundation of this state in 1921, successive Irish governments have disgracefully colluded with the Catholic church in the oppression of our own people, incarcerating those (all poor unfortunate victims of circumstances and religious/societal rejection) in industrial schools, the Magdalen Laundries, mental institutions and the like our very own Irish Gulag.

So the young women who had children outside marriage were labelled 'fallen,' were they now? 'Twas all them 'fallen women's' fault, was it now? Aren't we great for targeting and discriminating against our own? Great Christians or great hypocrites?

Your 'samples' idea is a non-starter, Mr Dempsey. Every single survivor of child abuse is entitled to their day in court, at whatever cost in money or time. That is only natural justice. You cannot weasel out of it now. Go and borrow from the IMF if necessary. The sweet deal your department has made with CORI is already bad enough. And Mr Ahern's apology on behalf of the state is as worthless and useless as Mr Blair's apology for the Famine. A bit late in the day.

A pity this sense of fellow-feeling wasn't extended while the outrages (crimes against humanity) were taking place. You talk about bringing speedy 'closure' to this sorry affair. 'Closure' for whom? That is wishful thinking.

For those of us abused by priests, brothers, nuns, lay Catholic teachers and others, there never will be closure. We shall carry the scars and pain of what these cowardly, perverted thugs and hypocrites inflicted on us to our graves.

Michael Kennefick,

3, Westbourne Place,

College Road,

Cork

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