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Committee, and to accept the Amendment in a direction the very opposite of that which the hon. Member for Clonmel (Mr. which it took two years ago. In 1860 Bagwell) had put upon the paper, extend the Motion for adopting the age of twelve ing the age to eight years. He trusted was carried by seventy-one to ten, and that that arrangement would prove satis- among those who voted in the majority factory to hon. Gentlemen; and he could were Mr. Brand, Sir W. Dunbar, Mr. only express his regret if he had in any Hugessen, Mr. M. Gibson, Mr. Lowe, Mr. way been the cause of an angry discussion. Whitbread, Lord Palmerston, and many
MR. MONSELL said, he hoped the other Ministers. compromise offered by the Chief Secretary MR. WHITESIDE said, he thought would be adopted by the Committee. The that if the proposed compromise was to be Irish Members felt that they had been carried out, the words“ or otherwise" fighting against the individual opinion of ought to be omitted. There would be the right hon. Baronet. It was not to be great dissatisfaction if guardians were to supposed that the rest of the Government, levy rates for the erection of orphanages all of whom, including the noble Viscount outside workhouses, and for the maintehimself, had in 1860 voted for the limit nance of children in those separate instiof twelve years, had had any reason to tutions. change their opinion. They must have Mr. H. A. HERBERT said, he had not simply desired to support their colleague, changed his opinion on the question of although his knowledge of Ireland was age; but after the division that had been not so great that they should be governed taken, if the compromise was to be adopted, by his mere ipse dirit.
he thought the words“ or otherwise ViscounT PALMERSTON said, that ought to be retained. He hoped, thereallusion having been made to the members fore, that the Chief Secretary for Ireland of the Government, and especially to him- would not adopt the suggestion of his self, he must observe that he had not a right hon, and learned Friend the Memvery distinct recollection of what passed ber for the University of Dublin. If the on that subject in 1860. But the opinion guardians, in the exercise of their discrehe had formed that night was founded tion, should think fit to place children in upon the arguments which he had heard Roman Catholic institutions—[Mr. WHITEon both sides of the question; and cer- SIDE: In convents.] Yes, if the guardians tainly, after the speech of the noble Lord should think that in certain cases the the Member for Mayo (Lord J. Browne), he health of the children would be better must think the decision of the Committee preserved in convents, he would say, “Let with respect to the difference between the them act as they think fit.”
He hoped ages of fire and twelvo was quite right. there would be no misunderstanding on
Mr. BRADY said, he hoped the com- the point, and that the Government would promise would be satisfactory to the people be firm on it. of Ireland.
MR. NEWDEGATE said, he would MR. HENNESSY said, he rose to ex- remind the Committee that the division to press his willingness to accept the conces- which the hon. Member for Cork had resion of the right hon. Baronet in the same ferred took place at two o'clock in the spirit as that in which it had been offered. morning. He apprehended that the real He believed that concession would not only purpose of the provision was that the chilterminate an angry discussion, but would dren should be put out to nurse. If that much improve the Bill.
were to be so, let it be clearly understood; MR. VINCENT SCULLY said, he did but let them not exonerate the guardians not wish to disturb the harmony of the from what was their obvious duty. If the Committee; but he regarded the compro- Committee chose to accept the compromise, mise offered by the Chief Secretary as a it was not for him to divide against it at miserable one, and thought the Commit- that time. tec ought to have insisted on the limit of MR. BEAMISH said, he was still of twelve years. The noble Viscount said opinion that the maximum age ought to be he had been convinced by the arguments twelve years, but for the sake of good that had been used that night. It was feeling he hoped the compromise would be really wonderful how the members of a accepted. Government were all convinced like a Mr. KER was in favour of altering the pack of hounds, and all ran upon the same wording of the clause, so as to meet the scent. The pack was now found running objection to the words " or otherwise."
CAPTAIN ARCHDALL said, that if those the rule of five years, in cases where it words were retained, all institutions to was certified that outdoor relief was newhich the children were sent ought to be cessary to preserve the health and life of open to inspection.
the child. His right hon. Friend still MR. VANCE observed, that the Protes- stood on“ five years” as the general rule, tants of Ireland had some dependence in except in cases where it was certified to the Chief Secretary; and, after the state- be necessary that outdoor relief should be ment of the right hon. Gentleman the continued. Member for Kerry (Mr. Herbert), he SIR GEORGE BOWYER said, they hoped the right hon. Baronet would in- would never get on with business if they form him whether the Government would went on in that way. It was now too agree to strike out the words " or other late to discuss these famous words or wise."
otherwise." He trusted the right hon. Mr. O'BRIEN said, he hoped that the Gentleman the Secretary for Ireland would right hon. Baronet would give the hon. make no reply to the objections that had Member for Dublin no information on the again been urged. subject. The hon. Member had shown no MR. VINCENT SCULLY said, that great anxiety to strike out the words to hon. Members opposite could, if they which he now so strongly objected until chose, move to omit the words “ or he heard that the Government agreed to otherwise" on the report. The hon. adopt the age of eight years instead of five. Member (Sir E. Grogan) must, however,
SIR EDWARD GROGAN said, the understand that there would be “ Committee had lost five hours on a single render" on that side of the House. If question, which might have been disposed Roman Catholic children were educated of in as many minutes. The poor rates in convents, there were, on the other were to be levied from the entire property hand, excellent Protestant establishments of the kingdom, and were the Irish people for orphans of that persuasion. When to pay for the maintenance of orphans and the report was brought up, it would bo deserted children in establishments, or, as found that hon. Members had forgotten all it was avowed, in convents over which no that had been said in the present debate, control could be exercised by the State ? and there would not be a word of it in The hon. Members on the Opposition the newspapers. benches had accepted the clause on the Amendment agreed to. distinct understanding that the Chief Secretary for Ireland would not swerve
Clause, as amended, ordered to stand from the period of "five” years. right hon. Gentleman had since thrown Clause 10 (Religious Education of Chilover his friends and accepted "eight” dren, the Religion of whose Parents is years. Could the right hon. Gentleman not known). expect to carry on the Government of Ire- MR. WHITESIDE said, that hon. land in that shilly-shallying manner? Let Members on his side of the House wished the Committee have one single line of to understand the position in which they policy before it. There were now great now stood. The right hon. Gentleman doubts whether the Bill would pass or not. the Secretary for Ireland had yielded to The Committee had abandoned the Poor the arguments of hon. Members who reLaw, and had now no single principle to presented one important interest in that guide them. The Chief Secretary had House, but had conceded nothing to those been the sole cause of the obstruction, and who represented an interest equally imhe (Sir E. Grogan) would, for one, be no portant. He wished to know whether the party to the compromise that had been right hon. Baronet would reconsider the agreed to.
subject on the report, so as to give the VISCOUNT PALMERSTON said, that House the benefit of what had been stated his right hon. Friend had by no means by the Home Secretary. abandoned the principle ho had laid down. SIR EDWARD GROGAN said, the He had departed from the strict principle question before the Committee simply was, of the Poor Law, for the purpose of pre- whether they were, or were not, to repeal serving the lives of the children. It was the law of the land which made the counexactly on that ground that his right hon. try Protestant. The law of the land de. Friend had agreed to make eight years, clared that, where the religion of the panot the general rule, but the exception to rents was not known, the children, if de
The part of the Bill.
serted, should be reared in the religion of which the hon. Baronet had referred, rethe State. A case in point had occurred lated entirely to a past sta trof things, for in the Celbridge Union, in 1841. A diffi- they had been founded upon the old foundculty arose as to what religion the child ling law of Ireland. That law had led to should be registered of; the matter was such constant heartburnings and disputes, referred to the Poor Law Commissioners, that in 1859 he had brought in a Bill, and by them laid before the present Lord which passed a second reading, and which Justice of Appeal, Mr. Blackburn. The provided that the question of registration reply of that eminent lawyer was- should be left to the decision of the board
“I am of opinion that the guardians in such a of guardians. It was proposed at another case as as this should cause the child to be edu- time that the child should be registered cated in the religious creed of Protestantism, the according to the result of the religious religion of the State.”
census of the country, but that system In 1854 a similar case arose, and the then had been found to be unsatisfactory. He Attorney General, Mr. Brewster, gave an hoped the Committee would give its sancopinion exactly the same as that of Mr. tion to the provisions of the present mcaBlackburn. But by the Bill of the right sure, which he believed was the most hon. Baronet, any one who might find a ready way of dealing with the subject, deserted child, even a common policeman, and in a manner which would be acceptamight determine of what religion the child ble to the country. was to be. That was the first time that Sir GEORGE BOWYER utterly desuch a proposition had ever been submit- nied that the law of the land presumed ted to that, or the other House of Parlia- that every deserted child was of the reliment. There were two reasons why de- gion of the State. The law presumed that serted children should be brought up in to be the case, which was the most prothe religion of the State—the one, because bable, unless the contrary were proved. It it was the religion of the State ; and the was, of course, among the poorer classes other, on social grounds, because it would that the desertions of children most fredeter Roman Catholic parents from desert- quently occurred; and as in Ireland the ing their children. If the clause were great majority of the poorer
classes were passed, an inducement would be held out Roman Catholics, the presumption, in to many parents to abandon their children; most cases, would be that a deserted child and the question was, were they to encour- was of the Roman Catholic religion. age Roman Catholic parents to do so. MR. WHITESIDE said, that the quesThere were many parents in Dublin at tion before the Committee was very impresent, who were deploring the loss of portant. The result of the proposal was, their children, who had been kidnapped that whatever might be the religion of the and put into institutions such as those policeman who happened to find a deserted which the right hon. Baronet would estab-child, the child must be brought up in lish by the Bill. It was said that the that religion. According to that view, words " lawful possession” had been in- if a policeman were a Mahomedan, or a troduced into the clause to exclude such Unitarian, any child he might happen to cases; but who was to tell whether chil- find must be brought up in that creed. dren, who were said to be deserted, were Now that was, to say the least of it, a stolen or not. He should therefore move very novel proposition,
The practice to leave out all the words after " case " in hitherto had been to register deserted line 19, and insert “such child shall be children in the religion of the State. In registered of the religion of the State." support of that view, the opinion of Judge Amendment proposed,
Blackburn, when Attorney General, was In line 19, to leave out from the word "case,” conclusive. The exact point was laid to the end of the Clausc, in order to add the before him; and the decision of the words " such child sball be registered of the reli- learned Judge was clear, that in the caso gion of the State.”
where the child was deserted by the MR. GREGORY said, there had been a father and by the mother, the guardians great number of discussions on the sub- had no alternative than to bring it up in ject in that House, and in a vast number the State religion. That seemed to him of unions in Ireland the guardians had to be a more reasonable course of proceedbeen brought into collision with the cen- ing than the rough and ready mode advotral Board, in consequence of the present cated by the hon. Member for Galway. state of the law. The legal decisions to He would admit, that if the religion of the mother could be ascertained, the child educated in the religion of the State. ought to be registered in that religion. Now, the State religion in Ireland was With regard, however, to the principle Protestantism, and hence it followed, on laid down by the hon. Member for Dun- the showing of the opponents of the clause dalk, that in the absence of any such guide themselves, that all the illegitimate and the child ought to be registered in the deserted children in Ireland were the offreligion of the majority of the population spring of Protestant parents. He thought —which he granted was in Ireland the the proposition of the Government was the Roman Catholic-he must contend that it best and fairest that could be adopted. would be of very unfair application in SIR HUGH CAIRNS said, he hoped Ulster, where the presumption would be the Committee would proceed on some that the deserted child was the offspring more rational principle than that which of Presbyterian parents.
seemed to have actuated the framers of Sir ROBERT PEEL said, no doubt this clause. Let them, for a moment, disthe law of the land was that which had card all question of Roman Catholic and been stated by the hon. and learned Gen- Protestant. He had a great respect for tleman; but still it had never been en- the Select Committee which sat upon the forced, and could not be enforced. The subject; but anything so extraordinary question was undoubtedly a very difficult as the conclusion at which they had arone. The Government, however, had, in rived in point of principle he never heard. making the proposal on which the right The clause said that a deserted child hon. Gentleman animadverted, submitted should be brought up in the religion of to the House what they deemed to be the the person, whoever he might be-perbest solution of it. He might further haps a tourist—that took him to the workobserve that the right hon. Gentleman house. He thought that proposition alneed not be apprehensive that any child together irrational, and he trusted the would be registered as a Mahomedan, in. Committee would not adopt it. He conasmuch as there was no member of that curred in this, that where they had not persuasion in the police force in Ireland; the parents or surviving parent they nor did he think it could be justly im- should adopt the guardian or guardians puted to the force that it contained men of the child, or, if there were no guarwho would be ready to change their re- dians, the godfather or godmother for ligion to suit the views of the Government the purpose of determining in what reof the day. The clause had been adopted ligion the child should be brought up. on the recommendation of the Select Com. In absence of these the Government might mittee, and therefore he hoped it would step in; but what he would propose was be retained.
that the guardians of the district should DIR. VANCE said, the question was one pro hâc vice become guardians of the child. of principle, and one that, as a Protestant If the population of the district were Roof Ireland, he could not consent to give man Catholics, the guardians elected by up. The Court of Queen's Bench had de-them would be Roman Catholic; and cided that a deserted child should be edu- they, he had no doubt, would take into cated in the religion of the State. Such consideration all the circumstances of the was the law of the land, and the boards of child's case in determining what should guardians in Dublin had always acted be his registered religion. upon that principle. He regarded the MR. CARDWELL observed, that the clause as a most dangerous attempt to proposal of his hon. and learned Friend abrogate a long-established law, and a (Sir Hugh Cairns) had entirely overthrown first step towards separating the State the argument of the right hon. and learned from the Church in Ireland.
Gentleman the Member for the UniverMr. VINCENT SCULLY said, that the sity of Dublin. It also disposed of the objection was that the clause altered the proposition of the hon. Baronet the Memlaw of the land. Why there was not a ber for Dublin (Sir E. Grogan). The proclause in the Bill that did not more or position of the last-named Gentleman,
that less alter the law of the land. The whole in a country the majority of which, and business of the House of Commons was to especially of the poor, to which class these abrogate bad laws ; and if they did not do children belonged, were Roman Catholics, so, they might as well shut up shop alto- every deserted child should be entered in gether. The great argument on the other the Protestant religion, was so manifestly side was that deserted children should be repugnant to justice that he was not sur
prised that the hon. and learned Member | religion of the State to that of the person
MR. GREGORY said, that the ques-
“Whatever you do, don't the workhouse, that child must be brought introduce into boards of guardians an ele- up in the religion of a gipsy. The only ment which must inevitably produce all intelligible reason given by the advocates the evils of religious discord, by permit- of the clause was, that there was a strong ting those boards to determine in what re- disposition in Ireland to resist the present ligion a child should be brought up.” By law. Inasmuch, however, as the State a large majority the Committee resolved to maintained the poor, was it not natural adopt that view, and he believed the noble that the children, who were made the Lord the Member for Cockermouth (Lord children of the State by being brought up Naas) voted in favour of the proposition under the Poor Law, should be brought before the Committee.
The question had up in the religion of the State? Conbeen mixed up with a good deal of banter cession upon the point under consideand ridicule which had nothing to do with ration would neither satisfy the people of it. The guardians in Ireland, and those Ireland nor England, it would be far excellent public servants the Poor Law easier to maintain the principle of the Commissioners, said, when a deserted child present law than to adopt any compromise; was brought to them for relief, "Furnish and a more miserable compromise than us with a guide-parents where there are that which the clause suggested he could parents, a guardian, where there is a guar- not conceive. The result of passing the dian, and in the absence of these, let us Bill with the present clause would be that bring up the child in the religion of the there would be a perfect scramble for person that brought it to us.
these unfortunate children. It had been MR. GEORGE said, he would prefer suggested that the police would bring most baring a destituto child brought up in the of these children to the workhouses; if so,