“An existential threat to our democracy” -EH?


Just when you thought nothing could eclipse Gaza as a news item, along came yesterday, and the stabbing of several children and an adult outside a school, in broad daylight. “Was that the moment that Ireland lost its innocence?” was a question I heard being asked about the stabbing and the riots that evening in Dublin.

I don’t think it was the day Ireland lost its innocence. When the Dublin and Monaghan bombings went off, maybe then? Or when fourteen people died on Bloody Sunday in Derry? Or when the Finucane family were interrupted during a family meal and the father Pat Finucane was shot dead by loyalists with state support? So skip the innocence.

Was that stabbing incident a good thing? No prizes – it wasn’t.  But horrible though it was, some weeks ago in Dublin young Brandon Ledwidge was shot dead in his home. He was a promising footballer, apparently, but also a drug dealer.  Did Ireland lose its innocence that day? If you hadn’t read the name here, would you even have remembered his name? And this question of drug-dealing and gangs and killings has been going on for about twenty years or more. Yesterday’s stabbing and the riots that followed were described as “an existential threat to democracy”. What then are the drug wars in Dublin?

Garda Commissioner  Drew Harris   said that the rioting was by lunatics and far-right forces. The president of the Garda Representatives Association (GRA) said that they were deficient in personnel and equipment (you listening, Drew? You better be – some 99% of the GRA think you’re doing a rotten job as Commissioner).

The Minister for Justice Helen McEntee was on TV, promising that these right-wing conspirators would be caught and jailed.An Taoiseach  Leo Varadkar was on TV,  saying how this was a threat to the forces of democracy, and he’d see to it that they didn’t prevail.

To coin a phrase, bullshit. It may be there were some right-wing nasties who grabbed the opportunity to create disorder and urged others on. But I’m confident the majority of those who attacked the gardaí did so because they don’t like the gardaí, because rioting is better than sitting at home bored stiff and living in poverty. Rioting is very, very exciting – so different from dull everyday.

Leo V knows that his party and government is headed for a hiding at the polls inside the next year. If he could establish that there was a threat to the state and that he was the strong man who would stand up to such forces and smack them down, he just might pull off the unexpected and eclipse Sinn Féin next time out

They say no wise politician should ever allow a good crisis to go to waste. Leo is doing his very best.



3 Responses to “An existential threat to our democracy” -EH?

  1. James Hunter November 24, 2023 at 3:04 pm #

    Very good jude

  2. Gabe November 25, 2023 at 2:00 am #

    Yep ,don’t look at me, look at them!

  3. Denjo November 25, 2023 at 11:23 am #

    Excellent article Jude, the African proverb seems apt for some of what happened on Thursday night
    African Proverb, “The child who is not embraced by the village will burn it down to feel its warmth.