Provost declares support for same-sex marriage

news1Provost Patrick Prendergast came out in support of same-sex marriage at last night’s SU council meeting. He also promised to look into flying the rainbow flag of the LGBT community as a temporary measure of support at some point.

Prendergast was asked by SU LGBT rights officer, Damien McClean, whether Trinity should follow in the footsteps of UCC and fly a permanent LGBT flag somewhere on the college campus.

McClean argued that a permanent LGBT flag could symbolise the great support for the LGBT community found within Trinity.

It would be, he argued, an indicator to future students, as well as the general population, that Trinity is a welcoming place for members of the LGBT.

The provost agreed that a flag would be a good way of demonstrating the college’s overwhelming support for the LGBT community, especially in the run up to the marriage referendum. However, he added that he would only consent to a short-term flag and not a permanent one – insisting that all permanent flags are a bad idea and are suspect to cause controversy over time.

Prendergast did not say explicitly where this temporary flag might go, but guaranteed to look into it.

He did, however, express some hesitance to branding Trinity as a collective ‘yes’ college in relation to the forthcoming marriage referendum, warning the SU council against ignoring those who intend to vote ‘no’. Trinity has an obligation to represent all of its students, he argued; and even though he is will be voting ‘yes’, he argued that the minority of students against same-sex marriage should not be ignored, but represented and engaged with.

Prendergast continued that if we were to hold debates instead of ignoring those who wish to vote ‘no’, it would likely benefit the ‘yes’ vote, which he thought would come out the winner, due to the nature of the question and arguments.