Climate world war started
Sir - A study called 'Trajectories of the Earth system in the Anthropocene', published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, warns a hothouse Earth may, in coming decades and future centuries, threaten the "habitability of the planet for humans".
It goes on to describe how thawing permafrost that releases methane gas, along with melting polar ice-caps, "can act like a row of dominoes" to harm life on our planet.
I believe this dangerous situation predicted to be ahead of us could be likened to a world war which, very probably, may have already started. It is a world war between the peoples of planet earth and the destructive elements of climate change.
As in both World Wars of the 20th Century, the countries of western Europe have already taken upon themselves some necessary measures to reduce their carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions in order to lessen the damage that could happen to them and the rest of the human race.
We should salute the success of our forces
Sir - Jennifer Whitmore, of Wicklow County Council, stated her negative response to military images put up on the big screen in Croke Park (Sunday Independent, August 5). The promotional video was part of the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Defence Forces' contribution to peace-keeping.
Ms Whitmore goes on to say: "My real issue is with the GAA and the type of content it has allowed to be shown on its big screen at Croke Park, the content of the video is not suitable viewing for young boys and girls."
I was at the same match and was delighted that the GAA gave this platform to our superb Defence Forces. We have a proud history of peace-keeping by our men and women in uniform from Ireland.
The GAA and the military also have a strong relationship through our national sports on and off the playing pitch. From people like the late Dermot Earley, the list is endless of high-profile military/GAA sports people. Parishes across Ireland have military personnel coaching, playing and partaking on committees within the GAA sphere.
Our national broadcaster projects on a weekly basis advertisements for feminine products - should we guard young boys' eyes away from this, or explain this is part of being a woman?
A well-known chewing gum product advertisement has serious sexual connotations with two teenagers in a bedroom. This advertisement can be seen at any time, long before the watershed time of 9.30pm. Is Ms Whitmore concerned about this as it is beamed into our living rooms to younger audiences of boys and girls?
I have attended plenty of GAA games across the provinces, at club and county level. The use of unparliamentary language by supporters at games would be of a greater concern to young ears!
Finally, in Bray recently the annual air display took place. Jets and fighter bombers flew across the sky. I would be interested to know - did Ms Whitmore deny her children this outing?
The sound of shots in Croke Park, as displayed on the promotional video for our Defence Forces, is part and parcel of what defence forces do - they shoot guns!
Ms Whitmore will be very aware that many years ago shots were fired in Croke Park and lots of people lost their lives. Is this a place young children should be taken to without telling the full story of Irish history and the GAA?
Our Defence Forces' presence, across places of conflict, for more than 60 years has on many occasions prevented shots being fired by opposing factions.
I salute you all, our citizens in uniform, for your contribution and sacrifices for world peace.
Hi-tech failures that lost an empire
Sir - Einstein said that religion without reason is blind. Henry Ford said that history without technology is bunk.
Eilis O'Hanlon's article (Sunday Independent, August 5) on Leo's uncles bringing down the British Empire lacks critical reasoning.
Britain lost its position in the world and its empire by losing the lead in the hi-tech race. Egypt nationalised the Suez Canal in 1956. Britain invaded Egypt to secure the Suez Canal, essential to the empire. Russia threatened nuclear war and Britain asked the USA to help but President Eisenhower refused.
Britain, without the necessary technology to match Russia, evacuated its forces from Egypt, lost the canal and its empire.
Loyal supporters lifted by Monaghan
Sir - As a lifetime supporter of Monaghan, I just want to say how proud we are of our county team that has given us all here a welcome lift. They have never had the best of luck with decisions from the referees - I feel they were very seldom given close calls this way.
I also feel from listening to Sean Cavanagh that apparently all Tyrone have to do is turn up and get to the All-Ireland Final. His rugby tackle on Conor McManus was the cause of the black card being introduced which is a joke as it never is carried out the way it was meant to do.
I think the present panel of Monaghan players will give a game to any county in the country. Forget about the population of our county, we regard quality as much better than quantity.
I know a lot about Tyrone and their players - as my wife comes from Omagh. Whatever happens, it won't cause a divorce.
Surprise invasion of the eyebrow clones
Sir - What is our Government doing to stall the current invasion by eyebrow clones?
Over the past months, they appear to have steadily infiltrated - not just men and women on the high street but various broadcasting establishments which are obviously infected by the permanently surprised eyebrow clones.
Clearly Brexit is a diversion created by their galactic masters to forestall any co-ordinated international defensive action by the human race.
I am concerned that our politicians may already be infected and unable to take independent action to forestall the onslaught.
With such a scenario, what can the ordinary uninfected human do to defend him/herself?
Unionists fear the republican ethos
Sir - Eoghan Harris (Sunday Independent, August 5) invites his readers to visualise Irish unity as seen through unionist eyes. One main obstacle to this scenario has been firmly removed, ie the fear of Rome rule, Catholic Church domination - religious, social and at times political. The church-going unionist has now perhaps more in common with the almost-beleaguered Catholic minority.
Looking through unionist eyes, their main fear would be the established ethos of the Irish State as founded on republican revolution. They would find it difficult to harmonise their 400-year religious and political outlook with what is accepted officially as modern Irish history.
The well-informed unionist would be aware of the other strand of our history, the patriotism of Butt, Grattan, O'Connell, Parnell, and yes, in more recent times that of John Redmond.
As the saying goes, some food for thought!
A vessel that holds the key to humanity
Sir - The wheel is accepted as man's most important invention. Surely the vessel must be up there with the wheel in order of importance. From the crudely hewn-out pieces of timber or stone of primitive times to the more sophisticated vessel we now take for granted, vessels are essential to our comfort and very existence.
Vessels come in many shape, sizes and materials - glasses, bottles, cups, buckets etc. Precious wines in the great cellars of the world are stored in vessels sometimes for years or even decades to be matured. We use vessels to store and transport essential life-saving medicines. Water, which is essential to our very existence, is stored and carried in vessels. We drink water and water-based liquids from vessels.
It has been suggested (or proclaimed) that pregnant women are reduced to the status of mere vessels. These amazing human vessels not only store and carry tiny human beings at the very beginning of their lives, but they also nourish, nurture and enable these precious little ones to grow and gestate until they are ready to enter the world. Without these essential vessels none of us would exist. It is a very shallow and crass school of thought that underestimates and trivialises the value of vessels.
Saving of a soul for a better life
Sir - Another excellent article by Niamh Horan which asks the question, "Is it right to step in if a child is being abused in public?" (Sunday Independent, August 5).
If we are honest, most of us would think twice. Bravo, Niamh, for doing so. But so much goes on behind four walls after the event, that maybe the safest option in this mobile phone age is, and I quote the snippet beside Niamh's article from the ISPCC, "make immediate contact with the Garda and state the location".
Sir - On behalf of that little boy, and on behalf of all children who have ever had some stranger step into their lives, even just for a moment, to give them a lasting impression that somewhere out there some people do care - a very big thank you to Niamh Horan.
I wish there were more that responded in the way she did.
I could have done with it myself as a little girl, but the family I was adopted into were too big a "name" locally to be believed as monsters of incredibly sinister behaviours for them even to be looked at honestly.
I used to dream of people like Niamh Horan, because I had none, that is until over a decade ago, my best friend and love of my life came into my life. He assisted me to break free and begin what has now become one of my life's purposes... to be a free, real human being.
So thank you again Ms Horan for supporting that little boy. He will remember you when his nights are hard and his days are long and grey. That is much more important than his parents' reaction.
That is the saving of a soul for a better life.
Name and address with the Editor
Time for Topaz
Sir - As the Residential Tenancies Board of Priory Court considers the tribunal report on the fate of Topaz ('The saga of the senior counsel, the hotel owner and the miniature Pomeranian,' Sunday Independent, August 5), can it be hoped that discernment and compassion prevail? After all, it's not as if Topaz is a three-headed rottweiler that's been attacking residents and driving them out of their homes.
Address with the Editor
'Granny grant' is just a bid to buy our votes
Sir - Probably one of the most bizarre attempts to get votes in the next election must be the so-called "granny grant" which inevitably requires funding from the taxpayer so it can be equally called the "granny tax". Grandparents make a huge contribution to childminding but so do parents. Should parents be paid to mind their children?
The Irish electorate have suffered huge financial adversity with their pensions partially confiscated, and the temporary income levies which were renamed USC and supposed to be abolished - instead Fine Gael now plans to rename them in more Father Ted-inspired politics. We also have a housing crisis and a pension crisis so the question arises: should we be distracted by a naked attempt to buy votes by the Independent Alliance which has really achieved nothing?
Mother Nature's grim warning
Sir - Sometimes it feels like the whole world is on fire. Looking at the awful footage on our TV screens, you get the feeling that all the predictions were right and that something of apocalyptic proportions is happening - in Europe temperatures of 45 degrees Celsius in Spain and Portugal, in Greece a death toll of 91, and in California thousands of fire fighters attempting to bring outbreaks under control. Even in parts of the Arctic Circle the temperatures are reaching an unheard of 20-30 degrees, causing the ice to melt at unprecedented rates as even the vast tundra is losing its permafrost .
A recent UN climate change conference stated that if we started now, not in 10 years' time, to radically reduce greenhouse gasses it might not be enough to arrest what is surely an imminent catastrophe.
We appear to have been given a warning by Mother Nature - may I respectfully suggest we act on it.
New generation can seize the moment
Sir - It's not easy being a young person in a virtual world. The misuse of the "beautiful people" to influence your lifestyle, your opinions, your standards and your beliefs is all-pervasive. Your appearance, your physique, your body weight, your actions and your personality are under constant scrutiny on social media, which is powerful enough to control your agenda if you allow it to do so.
It's time for young people to take stock and realise that they are the most-educated generation in Irish history. Young Ireland is better equipped to meet social and employment challenges than ever before. It's a generation that need not be outsmarted by vested interests or malevolent manipulators. Don't believe it when the commentators tell you that your Leaving Cert is worthless. Nothing could be further from the truth. Enjoy your results on Wednesday. They are a tangible and real achievement. There is nothing virtual or simulated about them. You have worked damn hard for them. Your results open the window of opportunity for you and the sky is the limit if you stay grounded in reality and prioritise your educational goals. Go for it and seize the moment.
By the way, your Leaving Cert results are personal and private. You decide who should know about them. They are far too precious to share on social media!
Sir - I do not know how many times I have read Triona McCarthy's article (Life, Sunday Independent, August 5). It was so beautiful, so emotional and so lovely.
The last time I read it, I cried so much I had to go for a walk to calm down!
I wish Triona, Will and their beautiful children every happiness. And as for the photos - gorgeous!