Phil Miesle raises issues concerning the possibility of a European army and the problems it could cause for our neutrality (‘Prospect of European army raises many moral questions’, Irish Independent, Letters, March 3).
When one considers the origins of the EU, we look to the proposal agreed between Germany and France after World War II. This determined that the production of coal and steel would be under a single authority. This later became the European Coal and Steel Community.
The original purpose of this was, in the words of the then French foreign minister Robert Schuman, to ensure that any war between France and Germany became materially impossible. German chancellor Konrad Adenauer responded positively, as did the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy and Luxembourg. The six founding members signed the Treaty of Paris which paved the way for the EEC (European Economic Community). It should have remained an economic community but the problem is it spawned the EU – a European community.
This led to it becoming political. Politicians who failed to get elected at home, or who had lost their seat, accumulated in Brussels.
Hundreds of “acts” were legislated for, the acceptance of which was mandatory in member countries. These acts became so complex that many countries began to ignore them while others accepted them. Companies and individuals employed lawyers to use these acts to their advantage.
This was the main reason behind the UK leaving the EU. If the EU moves toward having an army, we should also leave. Such a development would see our youth used as fodder, like they were in World War I.
Cleggan, Co Galway
A better understanding of the following passage would probably help Irish people realise why Ukrainian refugees have more access to welfare and rights than other refugees arriving here from outside the EU.
“The Temporary Protection Directive (2001/55 EC) was activated by EU Council Decision EU 2022/382 of 4 March 2022, to provide immediate protection in EU countries for people displaced by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.”
This directive is seldom raised in the media when addressing the subject of asylum-seekers and refugees. It specifically refers to Ukrainian people fleeing war. It does not include those fleeing wars in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Somalia, Eritrea, Yemen or Afghanistan.
Our health system is struggling to cope and we have a chronic housing shortage which makes the rising numbers of refugees a headache for local authorities and the HSE.
Although Liverpool demolished Manchester United on Sunday, the result could have been even worse. Liverpool missed several chances to score more goals – three of which they will feel they should have converted. Had that happened, we could say United were hit for ten Hag.
Dundalk, Co Louth
Once again, we have people suggesting that children in primary schools should not be given realistic, age-appropriate relationships and sexuality education (RSE), unless it is delivered through a Catholic prism.
I am old enough to remember that the same mindset railed against our children being allowed to know the basic facts about their own bodies, the use of tampons, contraception and the very existence of our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters.
Little wonder that they are now up in arms at the notion that educators would acknowledge transgender people.
Comprehensive RSE protects children. Pupils who receive good RSE are more likely to report abuse, delay having sex, have consensual sex, use contraception and have fewer unplanned pregnancies.
Comprehensive RSE also includes the reality that trans people exist. We fail our children by pretending otherwise.
Dromahair, Co Leitrim
I have recently read that social conditions in Northern Ireland continue to deteriorate, while the exact opposite is happening in the Republic. Is Ireland destined to become the Hispaniola of Europe in the long run? Haiti versus Dominican Republic. Does the island really want to go there?