Workers Solidarity Movement position paper on Anarchism and Religion as ratified at November 2010 National Conference
Almost a century ago, "800 years of oppression" at the hands of the Anglo-Normans and the British monarchy came to an end on three quarters of the island, but it wasn't the end of oppression in Ireland. The baton was eagerly taken by the Catholic Church and the southern Irish state, and in eight years they will be celebrating one hundred years of kidnap, torture, murder and sexual abuse. (content warning: Mentions sexual abuse, child abuse, kidnapping, neglect)
Today's Irish Times IPSOS poll results show the marginalisation of the catholic hierarchy and the anti choice movement. Both bodies have thrown everything they can into opposing the proposed legislation for the X case and rolling back the growing public support for wide access to abortion. The poll also demonstrates just how far behind the people are the political class when it comes to the issue.
The questions and the percentages are below
1:Do you approve of the legislation? Yes - 75%, No - 14%.
The media frenzy may have settled for now over Cardinal Sean Brady’s failure to pass on information about a notorious clerical sex abuser in his midst but we need to make sure we don’t let this extremely wealthy multi-national chiefdom called the Catholic Church off the hook.
On Tuesday 1st May, a BBC spotlight programme revealed that cardinal, and then Fr Brady was at interviews in 1975 where two children were asked to sign a vow of silence after they were abused by paedophile priest Brendan Smyth. One survivor, Brendan Bolan told This World that he had given details of other children to Fr Brady(who was the ‘note taker’ at the time) he suspected were being abused but the problem found that none of their families or the police had ever been warned.
Enda Kenny’s speech in the Dail about the Cloyne report seems to signal that the south- ern Irish ruling class is preparing to break with the Catholic Church. While Kenny’s statement has been the strongest to date it is a pitiful reflection of the state that it has taken it this long to categorically condemn the Roman Catholic Church that, after Cloyne, is tainted beyond what even their most ardent supporters thought possible.
The cracks beneath the surface in the peace process were once again exposed on the streets of East Belfast last night in the second night of serious sectarian rioting. A UVF led mob numbering in the 100's has been engaged in attacks on catholic homes at the edge of the Short Strand. This is the reality of a peace dividend which has failed to deliver to working-class communities and stands in stark contrast to suburbia only 5 miles away which produced golf champion Rory McElroy.
Sevinc Karaca, a Turkish anarchist and feminist, describes the fine line that Muslim women must navigate between Islam and the West. "In all Muslim countries, women had to wait until the 1970s and 1980s for a feminist movement that questioned the practise of religion and its role in the oppression of women. As Feminists in the West beat around the bush with an air of multi-culturalist political correctness and go out of their way to show respect for exotic religions, there is a growing number of feminists in countries like Turkey and Iran and among the diaspora in non- Muslim countries whose policies and strategies for feminism do not take the route of Western Liberal Feminism. The majority of feminist ideologies and activism in the developed world today do not address and support the struggle of their Muslim comrades openly, directly or sufficiently."
Thousands of protesters opposed to Pope Benedict XVI and his state visit to Britain marched through London on Saturday, slamming the Church over sex abuse, gay rights and a range of other issues. A coalition of demonstrators united under the "Protest the Pope" banner started marching at the edge of Hyde Park, where the pontiff was to later hold an open-air prayer vigil for an estimated 80,000 Roman Catholic victims.