Thursday 21 September 2017

It's time to declare war on weapons of mass delusion

The time has come to stop lying to ourselves about Brexit, Trump, migration and how virtuous we all are

DELUDED: British PM Theresa May with Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Dublin last week. Photo: Gerry Mooney
DELUDED: British PM Theresa May with Taoiseach Enda Kenny in Dublin last week. Photo: Gerry Mooney
Brendan O'Connor

Brendan O'Connor

Imagine this. Imagine if Donald Trump decided to detain all illegal immigrants in camps while he conducted extreme vetting on them. Imagine if he said those people might stay in those places, repurposed old holiday camps and other buildings, for up to a decade. Facilities would be minimal and the people would not be allowed to work but they would be given $1,000 a year to survive on. Twenty bucks a week.

It's fair to say our dudgeon would be high, and the horses we would get up on would be higher. It's fair to say the phrase concentration camps would be used. Trump would be called a fascist. He would be likened to Hitler, as he regularly is now. And we would be so deluded that we wouldn't see that this is exactly what we do here in Ireland. We would be so high on our illusion that we are better people than Trump and the half of America who voted for him that it wouldn't even cross our minds that we tolerate exactly the same thing in this country. And we tolerate it without calling ourselves Nazis or fascists of any kind.

None of this is to say that Trump's travel ban is not an ill-thought-out mess. It is more to highlight the delusion that is in the air right now.

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