Monday 16 September 2019

Letters to the Editor: 'Sinn Féin can change history – so what is the hold up then?'

Former Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams. Photo: PA
Former Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams. Photo: PA
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

It is time Sinn Féin grew up and stopped living in the past. In a recent interview on the Troubles, Gerry Adams stated:  “All thinking republicans are committed to peaceful and democratic means.”

Well if Gerry is committed to democratic means, why doesn’t Sinn Féin take its seats in Westminster?

This is one time Sinn Féin can change the course of history, and I would like to know what is keeping it from doing so.

Brian O’Keeffe

Greystones, Co Wicklow

Why is the law turning a blind eye to drink-driving?

So after all that emerged from the penalty-points scandal, which resulted in the high-ranking resignations of both government and Garda personnel, it seems nothing has changed.

It would appear individuals can laugh up their sleeve if they are caught drink-driving and just walk away from the bench.

This week we learned one in three caught drink-driving had no action taken against them, and we have no idea why because

the reasons given by a judge were not recorded in any court records and, in any case, judges do not have to give any explanation for their decisions.

After the tribunal, we all thought – at least I did – the loophole that allowed a blind eye to traffic offences was surely a thing of the past and, no matter how well connected an individual might be in society, it would not save them.

How naïve of me, I should have known better. No explanation given, no reasoning of the decision entered into any court records, just dismissed.

Even when we amend laws to deal with loopholes, another loophole can appear.

Anthony McGeough

Tallaght, Dublin

Fleadh was a delight for young and old once more

When I learned that the Fleadh, the annual Irish national festival of music, song and dance, was to be held in Drogheda in my native Co Louth in 2018, I knew I had to get there to support it.

I took the train to Drogheda and spent a few hours on its streets, soaking up the atmosphere of relaxation, friendliness and a wonderful display of musical talent by people of all ages.

It was free entertainment at its best.

I took my harmonica out of my pocket  and wasn’t slow to join in with a group or  two of young musicians who were sitting  or standing casually among walkers on the streets.

The informality and spontaneity was delightful.

I didn’t go to the Fleadh this year but I certainly enjoyed nine hours over three nights of it on television – non-stop quality entertainment by old and young from all over Ireland and abroad as well.

I remarked that many in the audience on the streets were standing – a sure sign that they were enjoying themselves.

I was pleased to hear Irish spoken often.

The three young continuity announcers were excellent, and some others weren’t slow to throw in their own “cúpla focal”.

I am looking forward to the Fleadh next year – in Mullingar, I’ve heard.

Seoirse De Faoite

Ath Cliath

Shefflin the Wise shrugs his shoulders at others’ elbows

I awoke and there it was. I stared at it in wonder for days on end, not knowing what  it was.

That is, until last Sunday when Henry Shefflin named it as ‘my elbow’.

He put my mind at rest by reminding me that indeed it wasn’t part of my body, but something apart.

Henry is a wise man, despite what people say about sports pundits not knowing ‘their arse from their elbow’.

Henry stands out as that rare exception.

Billy O’Riordan

Clonmel, Co Tipperary

Only honest path for Boris is in calling a general election

Although I am a Conservative Party  voter who voted for Brexit in 2016, the only honest course of action is for Boris Johnson to call an immediate general election before the UK is scheduled to leave the EU on October 31.

His parliamentary wafer-thin majority demands no less. If he wins, let him govern, unhindered, thereafter.

If he sincerely believes in Brexit as I do, he should seize the opportunity to silence his critics before they wrest the initiative from him in the near-future.

There’s no shame – even if he lost – as all parties would know what a Conservative victory meant.

Dominic Shelmerdine

London, UK

Irish Independent

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