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Principles, not petulance

• I'm fascinated. Has Fionnan Sheahan joined some sort of old boys' club (boasting James Reilly as a fully paid-up member) or recently taken a course from the Dickensian/ Bronte/Austen school of journalism?

On reading his article in the Irish Independent, 'What did she hope to achieve by this?', I re-read it twice looking for lines akin to 'It's a truth universally acknowledged'.

The tone of Mr Sheahan's article implied that hell had no fury like a woman scorned.

Suggesting that her resignation may stem more from the fact that Roisin Shortall was overlooked for higher office than her being a woman of principle is at best a rather chauvinistic observation on the role of women in modern politics.

He goes on to say that Ms Shortall got a reasonably decent junior ministry and a special adviser (oh how lucky was she! Time to put up and shut up then, Roisin). Has it escaped Fionnan that her name is Shortall, not Shortfall?

Obviously the woman cannot tolerate the shortfalls in the Health Minister's behaviour and approach to turning around a speedily disintegrating health service. Isn't it a strange state of affairs when principles are now confused with petulance!

They say all it takes for evil to flourish is for good men (or in this case, women) to do nothing.

Might I suggest to Mr Sheahan that, in this case, Ms Shortall has indeed done something and at a huge personal and professional cost.

So maybe she has achieved more than Mr Sheahan realises. Maybe at last the electorate will believe that all politicians are not just in the job for personal gain; some of them do actually retain their principles.

It only takes one to make the first move!

Sinead Foley-Coleman
Gurteen, Co Sligo

Irish Independent