Fairy 'joke' blown out of proportion
Deputy Danny Healy-Rae said the Dublin media have made too much out of comments made regarding fairies at work on the depleted N72 road on the Killarney side of Barraduff and that he would rather starve than level a fairy fort.
"The whole thing is blown out of all proportion. The Dublin media are making too much commotion out of it," Danny told The Kerryman on Tuesday.
Maura Healy-Rae sparked the fairy controversy at a recent meeting of Killarney Municipal District Council when, in the course of a debate, she humorously remarked that her father was convinced fairies must be damaging the road.
It was a throwaway comment that was latched on to by national media with one UK newspaper picking up on the story and giving it extensive coverage.
"Look, we have to understand that maybe the people up in the Dublin media don't know what a Lios or fairy fort is. But people in rural areas knew what I was talking about.
There's a lot of respect for them here and to be honest, there's machines here in the yard and if I was asked to level out a fairy fort I'd starve first before I'd do it. But the main thing is the road still needs to be repaired. That's what's been lost in all this," the Kilgarvan Deputy added.
Deputy Healy-Rae said the people of Kerry have strong beliefs in local folklore due to the rich and extensive archaeological monuments across the county.
"Over several generations these monuments have come to represent not only suspicion, but also a deep respect in the landscapes they are located in," he said.
"These things are important and even though my comments were taken out of context, it doesn't mean things like forts and standing stones don't have a place in the minds of people," he concluded.