Saturday 3 December 2016

Ancient city horse fair is part of what we are

Calls to close down Smithfield are part of our distasteful attempts to 'gentrify' Irish society, writes Emer O'Kelly

Published 13/03/2011 | 05:00

THERE probably are statistics for the numbers of people shot dead in public houses in Dublin over the past 25 years. I haven't bothered to check them, but they're fairly high.

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Yet I have never heard a single call for even one of the pubs which has been the scene of a brutal murder by the IRA or by civilian criminals to be closed down by law. And certainly, there has never been a call for every pub in the centre of Dublin to be closed down, because it is "only a matter of time" until somebody is mowed down by automatic gunfire in one of them.

Yet that is exactly analogous to what's going on about the Smithfield Horse Fair in the centre of Dublin. It's officious, it's snobbish, it's political correctness (once again) gone mad, and it's part of our distasteful, jumped-up attempts to "gentrify" Irish society. And it makes you suspect that we wouldn't understand indigenous culture or civilisation if they stood up and bit us.

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