Saturday 24 June 2017

President Higgins must leave behind 'past gods'

The state visit to Britain is an opportunity for the President to begin a new political discourse

Queen Elizabeth II talks to Louis Walsh (2nd left) at a reception for the Irish community at Buckingham Palace
Queen Elizabeth II talks to Louis Walsh (2nd left) at a reception for the Irish community at Buckingham Palace

John-Paul McCarthy

Last week Queen Elizabeth threw a reception in Buckingham Palace to mark the contribution of Irish immigrants to British life and society.

To watch her chat with her guests was to be reminded that we have come a long way from Donall MacAmhlaigh's experience of being called "Chang and Wong" for speaking Irish amidst the didicoys of the Edgware Road.

These scenes raise an important question.

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