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Subject: Re: Children's Rights Referendum
From: Brian Foley <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Irish and N. Irish Law
Date:Mon, 19 Feb 2007 22:55:02 +0000
Content-Type:text/plain
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If you mean to summarise the case-law on the topic, you're dead right of course.
 If, however, you mean that it is impossible for a constitutional amendment to
be in violation of the constitution that assumes a static (or at least
already-decided-upon) conception of what it means for something to "violate"
the Constitution.  As Eoin pointed out, the Indian Supreme Court seems to
believe that one violate the basic structure/ethos of their Constitution and I
can't see how that is either right or wrong.

In short, I think its not impossible to say that an amendment to the
Constitution can be unconstitutional, but it depends entirely on what
already-existing beliefs you have about the very matters which the statement
that "an amendment can't be unconstitutional" (or the reverse) tends to present
as settled.


Quoting Donal Coffey <[log in to unmask]>:

> John,
>
> a constitutional amendment, if enacted, cannot be in violation of the
> Constitution.
>
> Regards,
>
> Donal
>
> On 2/19/07, [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >
> > This proposed amendment should be rejected and hopefully will never get
> > to  a
> > vote. The inability to raise a defense of "honest belief" and the strict
> > liability standard proposed is a violation of the right of any defendant
> > to a
> > fair trial and is in itself a violation of the constitution. Furthermore
> > the
> > proposed provision 42(a)(5) states  " people who have been suspected
> > of,but  not
> > charged with crime". What happened to the presumption of innocence and the
> > right to a fair trial. This proposal has the potential for massive abuse
> > that
> > it  should be rejected on common sense grounds let alone that it violates
> > the
> > constitution.
> > No one in the legal system disputes that the best interests of the child
> > should be the standard when dealing with any issues as they pertain to
> > children.
> > This "feel good" proposed amendment is a waste of time and another attempt
> > to
> > chisel away at the right of a defendant to a fair trial.
> >
> > Regards,
> > John O' Halloran
> >
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