Battles still being fought were won a long time ago

Last week’s referendum result did not herald the advent of secularisation in Ireland. It had already quietly arrived in the hearts and minds of Irish people

Elaine Byrne - avatar

Elaine Byrne

3rd June, 2018

The narrative around the abortion referendum was one where the overwhelming Yes vote was framed as a “rebuke to Catholic Conservatism”, to quote the blazing New York Times headline. Indeed, journalist Kimiko de Freytas-Tamura referenced the Catholic Church on 16 separate occasions in her New York Times report on the referendum result.

Irish newspapers also bought into that storyline of a closed, conservative Catholic country which has now become one of Europe’s most liberal,...

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