Tuesday 27 September 2016

Kenny's Brexit poll advice to Irish living abroad rings hollow

Published 07/06/2016 | 02:30

Taoiseach Enda Kenny: canvassed Irish people living in the UK. Photo: John Stillwell/PA Wire
Taoiseach Enda Kenny: canvassed Irish people living in the UK. Photo: John Stillwell/PA Wire

It was with much interest that I recently read about Taoiseach Enda Kenny actively canvassing Irish people living in London to vote to keep the UK in the European Union in the upcoming Brexit referendum.

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The irony is we must remind ourselves that Irish emigrants do not have the right to vote in their homeland - in either local or national elections.

In the recent past, Mr Kenny has pledged to hold a referendum on the right of the diaspora to vote in our presidential elections on some future date.

I will wait with interest, but won't hold my breath.

It was very disheartening to note that, during the recent General Election campaign, none of the main political parties produced a comprehensive diaspora policy to give them the opportunity to vote in our national elections.

There was nothing either to attract them back home again to the land of their birth, where they would have much to offer Ireland in a recovering economy.

It now seems to me that our emigrants are pawns to be used by the establishment whenever the opportunity presents itself to them.

Tom Towey

Cloonacool, Co Sligo


It's 'showtime' for students

For all those Leaving Cert students getting ready for the English paper tomorrow, it seems appropriate at this time to remember a quote from the great Muhammad Ali.

"The fight is won or lost far away from the witnesses," he once said. "Behind the lines, in the gym and out there on the road - long before I dance under those lights."

Yes, all your hard work has brought you here today. Now it's showtime. Give it your best shot.

Damien Carroll

Tallaght, Dublin


Ali had some luck on his side

Muhammad Ali's legacy, both inside and outside the boxing ring, will long be celebrated.

However, surely he was fortunate that his trainer, Angelo Dundee, was not in Henry Cooper's corner at Wembley Stadium in 1963.

Tony Moriarty

Harold's Cross, Dublin


An advocate for Islam

The sad demise of Muhammad Ali is a tragedy. He was not only a legendary, invigorating, mythical and inspirational figure - he was simply the greatest of all time.

But more than that he was one of the fiercest advocates for the greatness of the Islamic faith, the splendour and glory of which shone throughout dark ages. Who does not remember when he refused to place his name on the Walk of Fame?

He bears the name of our beloved Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, and he did not want people to walk on it, but to look upon it.

His star is the only one being put on the wall, while others are placed on the floor.

His spirit has transcended time and space. Who could imagine that a pious and devoted Muslim has managed to unite the world in death and life - and remains a figure for respect, unity, understanding, racial equality, religious harmony, human dignity and freedom?

Perhaps his greatest battle was with Parkinson's disease. This provided a shining example of gallantry and survival in times of adversity.

Dr Munjed Farid Al Qutob

London, UK


Human-animal hybrids wrong

Creating human-animal hybrids is bad for people and worse for animals. To create animals containing human material, animal mothers undergo invasive procedures to harvest their eggs and implant embryos.

These animals have exactly the same capacity to feel pain and to suffer as any other animal - including humans.

To understand more about human development and diseases, the world's most forward-thinking scientists are developing and using methods that supersede the crude use of animals and are actually relevant to human health.

These modern methods include sophisticated tests using human cells and tissues and innovative biotechnology - such as organs-on-a-chip, which replicate human physiology, diseases and drug responses more accurately than experiments on animals do.

With more investment and the use of humane, cutting-edge technology, we'll have much better science than the monstrous 'frankenscience' of creating human-animal hybrids.

Dr Julia Baines

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, London


Freedom: was Orwell wrong?

John McCoy (Irish Independent, May 28) commends Canadian Ambassador Kevin Vickers's "brave actions" against a peacefully protesting Irishman.

To George Orwell, freedom is "the right to tell people what they do not wish to hear".

Was he wrong?

Sean Bearnbhail

Dublin 9


A suggestion to wrestle with

May I suggest that the next recipient of your 'Sport Star of the Week' award might be Kevin Vickers after his excellent and overpowering display of 'Canadian-style' wrestling in Dublin recently?

Michael McGarry

Rathgar, Co Dublin


Survivors deserve justice

The only way to get justice for the last few remaining Protestant survivors of residential homes, and others, is to work with the homes and institutions that are covered by the Commission of Inquiry, which was set up in 2015.

We need a fast-track to redress for any living survivors who can prove their case with more than hearsay, i.e. with documentary evidence.

The survivors who are still living must be at the centre and the issue must not be driven by outside political influence, historians and academics.

They need to take a back seat, with justice for survivors being the 'driver'. They need to hear the voices of survivors who want justice now.

The Bethany Home - after 23 years of campaigning - is the only home which has produced indisputable evidence from the State's own archives. To date, no home which qualified under the 2002 Redress Act has been able to make the same case in writing as the Bethany Home has presented.

It is now long overdue to give the few Bethany survivors the justice that has been denied to them for so long, as they are now very elderly people. Many are in poor health and some are suffering with advanced dementia.

We are only working on the criteria laid out by the then minister, Dr Michael Woods, and the Bethany Home has ticked all those boxes - and more.

Derek Linster

Justice for Bethany Homes Campaign

Irish Independent

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