Posts Tagged ‘history’

On This Day

December 29, 2009 Leave a comment

These are special days in the history of Irish constitutional rights. On December 29, 1937 the Irish Constitution came into force, having been passed by a national plebiscite in July. The picture shows Eamon De Valera, architect of the new Constitution and then President of the Executive Council, standing with members of his cabinet at Government Buildings during the inauguration of the new Constitution. On December 28, 1960, the Oireachtas passed the Health (Fluoridation of Water Supplies) Act, 1960, which required local authorities to fluoridate public water supplies to reduce childhood tooth decay. Mrs. Gladys Ryan had a strong objection to the the fluoridation scheme and challenged the constitutionality of the 1960 Act. Her case; Ryan v AG [1965] IR 294, marks the origin of the doctrine of unenumerated rights in Irish constitutional law.

If you feel like celebrating these milestones, why not raise a glass of fizzy pop to the five young Ryans, whose parents – the case report tells us – ‘did not encourage their children to eat sweets, lollipops or ice cream, and [only permitted them] soft drinks… on Christmas Day.’

Early Irish Rights Campaigner Remembered

October 23, 2009 Leave a comment

‘The altar of liberty totters when it is cemented only with blood’

Daniel O’ Connell, The Liberator, was remembered in Dublin yesterday at the opening of his refurbished crypt (where his body is buried, minus – as every schoolchild knows – his heart)  in Glasnevin Cemetery. The Irish Times has the report here and there are some great photographs on Flickr here.  O’ Connell is remembered for his campaign for rights and freedoms for Irish Catholics.  President McAleese, speaking at the event called him ‘ the original human rights activist’.