Sunday 4 December 2016

Land of cowed parishioners

Published 29/05/2011 | 05:00

Sir -- What did Falmouth Kearney and Patrick Kennedy have in common? Both were forefathers to US presidents.

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Both were failed by a country that remembers them fondly in retrospect, but when it mattered, never gave them a chance of a living here. But perhaps most significantly of all, their adopted homes gave them what their country of birth never did, a chance to achieve based on their merits alone.

This has been the story of all Irish emigrants. Far too often we blamed the British for our past failings. But the truth is that The Irish 'Free' State has failed its sons and daughters just as much as the British did. Now that we have exorcised the ghost of British rule, through our mature welcoming of Queen Elizabeth, isn't it time that we began to honestly reflect on our home-grown disgraces?

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