Home / View Point / Letters to the Editor / Letter to Editor: Child marriage is an abomination; and Kamla’s flip-flopping is shameful

Letter to Editor: Child marriage is an abomination; and Kamla’s flip-flopping is shameful

“This stance against child marriage must be seen as an absolute. Much like the universal condemnation of child soldiers, so too we must recognise that child marriage can never be justified.”

The following Letter to the Editor on child marriage, in response to recent remarks by Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar, was submitted to Wired868 by Dr Emir Crowne, senior lecturer and barrister:

Photo: UNC political leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar celebrates victory at the 2010 General Elections. (Copyright Frederic Dubray/AFP 2015)
Photo: UNC political leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar celebrates victory at the 2010 General Elections.
(Copyright Frederic Dubray/AFP 2015)

Child marriage is indefensible. The recent remarks, and overt politicisation, of the issue by the Honourable Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar is shameful—as is her apparent flip-flopping on the issue.

Religious and even cultural arguments in support of child marriage must all fail. The rights of children need to prevail over any perverted sense of moral righteousness. This stance against child marriage must be seen as an absolute.

Much like the universal condemnation of child soldiers, so too we must recognise that child marriage can never be justified.

In the past, religious and cultural arguments have been made that child soldiers are perfectly acceptable. Such children are seen as doing ‘God’s work’. If they die in battle, they will certainly be rewarded in the afterlife. Nonsense.

The international community has recognised the idiocy of such rationale, and has sought to protect such children. (Notably, most child soldiers are male).

Yet, when it comes to protecting children, and young girls in particular, from the exploitative marriage desires of (much) older men—yes, they’re all men—certain religious and political leaders have taken to defending the practice. This must stop.

Photo: Majed, 25, (left) and his eight year old child bride, Ghana, in Yemen. (Copyright ABC News)
Photo: Majed, 25, (left) and his eight year old child bride, Ghana, in Yemen.
(Copyright ABC News)

Even if religion or culture were to be weighed against the rights of children in some sort of perverse constitutional balancing act, the rights of the children must always win.

That there is even a “debate” about this is, quite simply, sad.

About Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor
Want to share your thoughts with Wired868? Email us at editor@wired868.com. Please keep your blog between 300 to 800 words and be sure to read it over first for typos and punctuation.

Check Also

The Misuse of Telephones and Telegrams: Why State is over-reaching by prosecuting Facebook post

“The provision [used to prosecute Rayad Mohammed] was enacted in 1951. Yes, 1951. It was …

28 comments

  1. Trump does what he says he’ll do or tries to anyway. Kams on the other hand oftentimes can’t even remember what she did the day before.

  2. Trump does what he says he’ll do or gets to

  3. Child Marriage is legal rape done by paedophiles. Where are the voices of the so called women’s groups. when you need them. During the debate where were the women lobbyist. Bunch of jokers.Men ( or the boy’s club) still making decisions for women. Why? The silence from the eat a food NGOs is deafening. Just disparate voices here and there. There is strength in numbers, or that memo has not reached women in T&T, so who takes them seriously?

  4. She’s the local version of Trump….

  5. Hindu is 14….. Muslim is 12…..Just sick

  6. Why are we surprised by anything that comes out of Kamala’s mouth. Clearly she has not proven to be a woman of integrity contrary to all the crap that continues to be said in her behalf by persons with questionable character.

  7. What would he call teenage pregnancies out of wedlock? Alright?

  8. And being a woman, one would have thought she would have resolutely stood against the men who support these outdated beliefs. Because women would understand better than men how traumatizing sexual intercourse can be when the body is not fully developed for this; particularly with overgrown men.

  9. Who is going to protect the children. The likes of Sat and Kamla has lost any semblance of credibility. It is very difficult to expect any better from these people. It is very sad i deed.

  10. Unconscionable! The thing is, she knows better.

  11. Kamla could go and suck a damn rotten egg.

  12. If possible can anyone provide pictures of smiling child brides ?

  13. To think that the former PM drove around each Christmas and handed out toys seeing the joy in the children faces all the while having no problem with those very children getting married .

  14. Salaah Inniss

    I agree with your logic Dr. Crowne…

    ‘Flipflop’ is to kind a word..hypocrisy however seems more apt. We talk about human rights yet we don’t feel that the right for choosing one’s partner is a major decision and that supporting child marriage denies girls the right to choose whom and when to marry. further it infringes on the right to and denial of education. So they can continue to talk twaddle and politicized the issue but in these modern times this archaic practice has to stop.

  15. Kamla never flip flopped on this issue, she has been very consistent, it’s just that her position is too abstract for most to grasp. You see, Kamla opposes child marriage (you still with me?), but she also sees any PNM opposition to child marriage as an attack on Hinduism and Islam, but curiously not Orishaism …. basically she sees it as an attack on Indianism even though she opposes it herself.

    There you go
    You’re welcome!

  16. Kamla and the UNC appear as another Hot Spot in Trinidad & Tobago .