There is little in the way of fair and even-handed reporting across print and broadcast media outlets on issues relating to Moral Law. And nowhere is it more keenly felt than the reports of the recent Belfast’s Pride Rally in the mainstream press.
Reporting on the event, BBC Radio Ulster claimed the rally, which saw PSNI (Police Service of Northern Ireland) and Gardaí officers march in uniform in the parade for the first time, was the “biggest rally to have taken place” there, attracting upwards of five thousand people.
It seems Northern Irish reporters share an increasing pandemic of selective-amnesia in relation to big rallies in the city. A conservative estimate of the numbers of people attending the 2016 Pro Life Rally held in Belfast sits at 12,500 people with BBC reports rounding this off to just “thousands” in their news reports that followed.
Leo Varadkar, the Republic of Ireland’s first openly gay Taoiseach, told the media on Saturday it is “only a matter of time” before the law on same sex unions in Northern Ireland is liberalised. To which no opposition was reported.
92 year-old Cannon Bernard Magee, from Kilmegan Parish, Castlewellan, County Down, claimed a war is now raging for the control of hearts and minds with misleading national news reports which are no longer neutral or balanced but instead Left-Liberal propaganda outlets.
The Canon has been well acquainted with war on many different levels throughout his many years as priest. He still carries a bullet in his brain from September 1974 when he was shot in the head by gun men in the grounds of his chapel for which he was parish priest at the time. Targeted for being a Catholic priest in a Protestant heartland.
He was the first person on the scene administering the Last Rites to the victims of two UVF atrocities, McGurk’s Bar in Belfast in 1971 and the Heights Bar, Loughinisland 23 years later.
Renowned among his parishioners as being a deeply humble man, he usually steers well clear of the media spotlight but given the current attack on Christian morality he not only felt compelled to speak out when he was asked to comment, but had the courage to be among the few who would.
“The first casualty of any war is the truth,” said the Canon, “and this crisis is no different. We are living in an increasingly secular society where God’s law is under threat every day. The consequence of misleading propaganda being repeated time and time again only serves to corrupt hearts and minds especially the youth. ”
He added: “A Christian’s right to conscientious objection is being eroded little by little and we’re being forced into accepting this agenda. An agenda that Pope St. John Paul II referred to as, ‘a dictatorship of relativism’. A dictatorship were right and wrong become obscured. It would be erroneous not to oppose this.”
Meanwhile, the largest political party, the DUP, is opposed to a change in Northern Irish law and has used a blocking mechanism known as a petition of concern to block motions to change the law, but in the face of fierce opposition, many wonder for how much longer. The party has previously rejected accusations it is homophobic and said it is protecting the “traditional” definition of marriage between a man and a woman.
The issue of same-sex-unions is one of the major stumbling blocks in the ongoing Stormont-Stand-Off with Sinn Fein demanding the DUP stop blocking a law change. During the last debate on equal marriage in Stormont earlier this year only four out of 53 unionists voted in favour of marriage equality. This was the fourth Stormont vote within four years.
A total of 98 members voted. In the end there were just two votes in it, 49 against 47. Catholic Nationalists voted, of which 37 voted yes [100 per cent,] 53 Protestant Unionists voted, of which four voted yes [7.5 per cent]. Five SDLP members failed to attend the vote and three Alliance party members abstained.
The North of Ireland appears to be hot on the heels of its southern neighbour and has been dragged to this threshold by her leaders and decision makers.
In that prophetic question once asked by Luke Kelly, ‘For What Died the Sons of Roisin?’ How would he write his final verse today? It is becoming clear there is an aggressive and sustained attack on, marriage and the family and we seem to be departing very quickly from its fundamental basis – that is in bringing up children.
Why is Ireland being forced to celebrate homosexuality? The media seem determined to exploit the gay community. When then, will our nation, ‘rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed’. Then we can both look forward to a time when, as Luke Kelly alluded to: ‘When those brave men who fought and died that Róisín live again with pride.’