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It is unfortunate that a small but well-organised and vocal segment of the ‘no’ campaign have attempted to frame the marriage equality debate as a child protection issue.
Rather cynically, they have exploited the general public’s relative unfamiliarity with gay families to suggest that they are not real families at all, and may even pose a danger to children.
Nothing could be further from the truth. The gay parents that I know are loving, caring, and protective of their children, perhaps especially so because they know what it feels like to be rejected and discriminated against by society.
I would urge those who are intent on vilifying gay families to spare a thought for the damage their words are doing to those children in whose name they purport to speak. I also urge the electorate to send a clear and unambiguous message that such prejudice will not be tolerated in our society by voting ‘yes’ in the forthcoming referendum.
Dr Laurence Davis
Department of Government
University College Cork
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