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Ireland cuts blasphemy ban from constitution


IRELAND (BP) — Irish voters chose to remove a blasphemy ban from the country’s constitution on Oct 26, reflecting the perception of a quick social shift in what has long been a conservative, Roman Catholic nation.

Close to 65 percent voted in favor of the measure, with the strongest support among voters under the age of 35, with 44 percent of eligible voters participating.

The last time someone was prosecuted for blasphemy was more than 150 years ago, though a law against it was passed in 2009. After the Irish vote to legalize abortion earlier this year and the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2015, some may see secularism’s hold on the country only getting stronger.

Voters also elected Michael Higgins to a second term as president, Ireland’s largely ceremonial head of state.

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  • Rachel Lynn Aldrich
    Rachel Lynn Aldrich writes for World News Service, a division of WORLD Magazine (www.worldmag.com) based in Asheville, N.C. Used by permission. Read All by Rachel Lynn Aldrich ›