Declan Lynch: We're a nation consumed by martyrdom that never ends
No slogan or leaflet can begin to tackle our long-standing relationship with alcohol,
THE opening sentence of the piece by Caroline O'Doherty in the Irish Examiner went like this: "The much-delayed national alcohol strategy has been shelved until next year despite pledges that the Cabinet would meet to sign off on it before Christmas."
Somewhere deep down in that plain statement of fact, we can hear echoes which have come all the way down to us through the centuries – echoes of our struggles with the same old scourge that has done us down so many times, this martyrdom that never ends.
Of course, some of you may have thought that we already had a national alcohol strategy that had been "rolled out" a long time ago, a strategy that can be summed up in one line – our strategy is, we're going to drink as much of it as we can.