The last few weeks have witnessed a raging controversy on the issue of child marriage which culminated in a virtual war of words between two leaders of the largest religious denominational groups in Trinidad and Tobago?Hindus and Catholics. The child marriage controversy is not between Hindus and Catholics but between certain religious organisations and the State.
The larger concern is whether the State should have the right to interfere in the cultural practices of any religious group in a multi-ethnic society. The discourse revolves around the broader themes of universalist or absolute norms versus relativist or contextual norms. A similar controversy has bedevilled debates on human rights on contentious issues which are culture-specific such as child labour and female genital mutilation.
Become a subscriber to the Trinidad Express Newspapers for access to all our articles via our vNEWS. Subscribe to vNews | Log-In to vNews