Editorial: 'There's no glamour in drug trade, just stench of death'
It is hard to imagine now, but there was a time in this country when the murder of any human being was an occasion for revulsion and national distress. As if by stealth, we have somehow allowed ourselves to become somewhat more familiar with the vilest of crimes and their competing barbarism.
As for the criminals, the more they practise, the nastier and more desperate they appear to become.
Yesterday, Jordan Davis was buried at the age of 22. The young father was shot dead as he pushed his infant son in a pram in Darndale. This is no longer seen as depraved or remarkable in Dublin 2019.
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Only the previous day his friend Sean Little's body was found next to a burning car.
He too was 22. They will be reunited in the same graveyard this week.
When lives end violently, needlessly and calculatedly, a hole is ripped in the hearts of those left behind.
So there is nothing remotely attractive or alluring about the drugs trade.
The lives of those who ply it are disposable, they are deemed less valuable than the drugs they peddle. People are traded as 'drug mules', no longer even classed as human.
Their lives are deemed cheaper than the illicit cargo they carry.
It was Noam Chomsky who pointed out: "For the powerful, crimes are those that others commit."
The bigger beasts in the dog-eat-dog underworld do not sully their hands with the messy aftermath.
It is the devastated wives, families, girlfriends and children, who are left to deal with the pain and anguish.
With life having no value other than the material, there is a pathetic attempt to bring a patina of class to the carnage and butchery that goes with gangland.
As Fr Leo Philomin told mourners at the funeral of Mr Davis yesterday: "Drugs don't make you king. Drugs make you into a corpse. And those who sell and buy and sell again are the gravediggers with the stench of death."
Fr Philomin's words sound blunt, but behind them was genuine compassion and concern for families torn asunder.
In February 2016, the funeral of murdered criminal David Byrne was a lavish affair.
He was laid to rest in a €20,000 coffin and 11 limos left the church.
A remote-controlled car was even driven down the aisle at the close of the funeral Mass.
But Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has strongly criticised the increase in demand for 'show funerals'.
There is no glamorising the wasting of young life. Gilded caskets, horse-drawn carriages or any of the trappings the drug lords use as a bogus veneer of power, are shallow.
Drugs strip away all dignity and substance.
The only things of any proven depth in the drugs trade are the grave of its victims.