Opinion Letters

Monday 18 February 2019

Letters to the Editor: 'Despite their assurances, we shouldn’t naïvely trust EU'

In light of interchanges between Donald Tusk and Leo Varadkar earlier this week, one wonders if the phrase could be reconstructed as “the gentleman doth reassure too much, methinks”. Stock photo
In light of interchanges between Donald Tusk and Leo Varadkar earlier this week, one wonders if the phrase could be reconstructed as “the gentleman doth reassure too much, methinks”. Stock photo
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

There is a line from William Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’, “the lady doth protest too much, methinks”.

In light of interchanges between Donald Tusk and Leo Varadkar earlier this week, one wonders if the phrase could be reconstructed as “the gentleman doth reassure too much, methinks”.

Donald Tusk’s scornful remark that there was “a special place in hell” for those who promoted Brexit without anything resembling a plan, and the amused responses, are hardly likely to make British agreement easier; indeed, it seems an intended insult to inflame British anger and force departure without any agreement.

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In serious negotiations, it is usual for protagonists who seek genuine agreement while vigorously fighting their corner to refrain from serious or inflammatory insults and to make allowances for compromise so that agreement is possible.

This appears not to be the situation with Brexit.

It appears the EU is determined to make leaving conditions so difficult that the British will be forced into the abject surrender of abandoning Brexit altogether, or remaining bound legally to the EU for an indefinite period without the power of political input. Or that in frustration, the UK leaves without agreement at all.

This latter option, although publicly abhorred, may well be the desired result in the hope that British economics will collapse and deter any other EU member from ever again trying to leave the single market.

The greatest loser in such a situation would be the Republic of Ireland which, despite fine words and gratuitous support, would be thrown to the economic winds as acceptable collateral damage for consigning beastly Brexiteers to an economic hell from which it would be hoped, they never emerge.

Politics and power are dirty games; it behoves the weak and naïve caught up in the intrigue to trust nobody – especially those who protest or reassure too much.

Padraic Neary

Tubbercurry, Co Sligo

There’ll be Hull to pay after Tusk’s remarks about Brexit

As a lawyer, I have always argued that sometimes words can be misheard and people misunderstood.

I might then ask any hypothetical jury something along the lines of: “Is there a possibility that Donald Tusk was misheard?”

I might then suggest that it is indeed possible Mr Tusk actually asked was there a special place in Hull for the Brexiteers and he may in fact have been suggesting the lively and dynamic de facto capital of East Yorkshire be a place for their next conference, soirée or get together…

Leo E Sharkey

Petrazalka, Bratislava, Slovakia

Nursing is not a ‘vocation’ – we studied long and hard

I am a nurse and have been for a long time. I believe I have an amazing job which I wholeheartedly love and I couldn’t do anything else.

I have met some of the bravest and strongest children and families in my line of work. I have also made wonderful life-long friends who I adore.

I have missed Christmases and birthdays, nights-out and friendly catch-ups, all because of my job.

But I do it because I love it. I have very often put my son to bed and cuddled him knowing I wouldn’t see him for three days.

My job has made me cry tears of pure laughter and joy but also the saddest of tears. I will never want to change my job – it’s who I am.

I believe my job is not a vocation. It’s a highly skilled profession, one I went to college for and studied hard to gain my qualifications.

Tomorrow I will leave my two boys and join the picket once again to stand up for me, for my colleagues and future nurses and midwives of this country.

Róisín Farrelly

Tallaght, Dublin

Vaping is 95pc safer than smoking real tobacco

With regards to claims that vaping is perhaps worse than smoking cigarettes, this is simply not true (‘Vaping clouds the issue of reducing number of smokers’, Letters, February 6).

Studies have shown that vaping is 95pc safer than real tobacco.

It’s now known that electronic vapes only have two to three chemicals in them; to assume that inhaling vapour is worse than real cigarettes that contain roughly 3,000 chemicals is mistaken.

More research is needed on electronic cigarettes but there are promising indications that they may potentially help to reduce the numbers of those smoking and this is something that could vigorously improve public health.

Benjamin Burroughs

Derry city, Co Derry

Irish Independent

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