Colette Browne reminds readers of the wasted political opportunities of the past 13 years (‘Smaller parties have a great opportunity – just don’t over-promise or under-deliver’, Irish Independent, April 22).
Once again, the people of the Republic of Ireland are watching and waiting to see what government will eventually emerge.
Will it be a government that grabs the opportunity to make society fairer and spread money across the nation? Or will it be yet another vision-less talking shop, where the sole focus of each and every TD is their own backyard and the next election?
I was reminded of the opportunity on joining the then-EEC in 1973. One protocol, designed to create employment in every county in Ireland, was the directive that above-ground utility lines in towns with a population of 12,000 or more be put underground, by 1984. The EEC provided 50pc of the funds. The work never took place.
The best way forward, in fact the only way, in the aftermath of the current pandemic, will be to create nationwide infrastructure projects. Hence the demand of the Independents is a very sensible idea.
Casey doesn’t exaggerate on new laws around lockdown
Patricia Casey does not exaggerate when she says current Garda powers are akin to a police state. Jim O’Connell (Letters, April 22) is mistaken to assume Ms Casey’s analysis is misleading, especially when we do not know how many of these laws could remain in some form into the future, long after Covid-19 has done its nasty work.
We are not sheep who must blindly obey. All of this is new, and neither politicians or gardaí sent out to enforce these new laws know any more than anyone else on the issue.
Bantry, Co Cork
RTÉ should look to Savage in search to replace O’Rourke
I, along with many others in Ireland, will be sorry to see Seán O’Rourke departing from RTÉ. However, I am imploring RTÉ not to appoint either Miriam O’Callaghan or Claire Byrne to take over his radio show.
They already have their own TV shows. Let some new blood get a chance – my vote goes to Anton Savage, who I think would be excellent.
Bray, Co Wicklow
We could now call time on pubs dominating our culture
Have we finally found a way to stop the connection between Irish culture and the pubs? There is every possibility that pubs, as we know them, will not open again in 2020.
If so, are we ready to give it a try and develop our culture without the omnipresent pubs at the centre of our social gatherings?
New approach can be found to halt irresponsible drinking
Ian O’Doherty states that shutting pubs until next year is a step too far (Irish Independent, April 21). I disagree.
It has become clear that restrictive measures such as lockdown and social distancing have already caused a spike in domestic violence, massive unemployment, redundancies, depression and mental health ailments.
We also know from scientific research that drinking alcohol has had devastating impacts on individuals and communities. A great deal of anti-social behaviours, crimes and violence are alcohol-fuelled.
During these unprecedented and volatile times when patients with Covid-19 are clogging up our accident and emergency and intensive care units, it is very sensible to shut pubs and forge a new approach to tackle irresponsible drinking.
Dr Munjed Farid Al Qutob
London, United Kingdom
Macken tribute had me jumping back in time
Colm Keys’s piece on Eddie Macken (‘Macken blazed a trail and left legacy of many shredded back gardens’, Irish Independent, April 22) brought me right back to my childhood.
Like him, we also set up jumps after watching Macken, Harvey Smith and Paul Darragh on telly.
They were simple times and, as I look back now, happy times.
Loughrea, Co Galway
Televised Mass is such a comfort during this crisis
I would like to thank RTÉ News Now for the daily Mass at 10.30. It is such a consolation for those of us being cocooned in these strange times.
Clonmel, Co Tipperary