Our re­pub­lic needs re­spect and in­tel­li­gence, not ig­no­rant prej­u­dice

The Kerryman (North Kerry) - - OPINION -

SIR,

It amazes me how we as a peo­ple turn on our own at times.

We had a man come back from Amer­ica to put his name on a bal­lot pa­per and he con­demned the Trav­ellers and those un­em­ployed.

Now, whether Mr Casey likes it or not, and even if Trav­eller peo­ple felt the need to ob­tain eth­nic sta­tus to try and im­prove their lot, they are still our own, as are peo­ple on so­cial wel­fare.

I have no sym­pa­thy for those who abuse the law of the land – be they Trav­ellers who are crim­i­nals or wel­fare cheats – as these peo­ple should face the full vigour of the law.

But I feel it’s wrong to paint peo­ple with the same brush.

There is a cul­ture de­vel­op­ing within new en­trepreneurs who feel that peo­ple on wel­fare are, some­how, lesser be­ings. But there are many rea­sons why peo­ple are in re­ceipt of wel­fare and, of course, there is the highly exaggerated the­ory of what peo­ple re­ceive.

Mr Casey might do well to up­date his thoughts as the self-em­ployed may well be en­ti­tled to a wel­fare pay­ment shortly in the event of there be­ing a need. But, of course, that’s fine – no de­bate about that.

The gov­ern­ment con­tin­ues on the path of wast­ing mil­lions on JobPath and such, claim­ing full em­ploy­ment in Ire­land . The black econ­omy, of course when it suits, is fine for those who think Peter Casey is right.

We would have well over 10 per cent ex­tra em­ploy­ment in Ire­land if com­mu­nity em­ploy­ment schemes and such schemes as Tuas weren’t shame­lessly abused by Lo­cal Au­thor­i­ties and real jobs were cre­ated.

A lot of right-wing anti-so­cial think­ing peo­ple are not back in this coun­try long enough to un­der­stand our mixed up view of our­selves .

Those who are crim­i­nal, be they Trav­ellers, wel­fare cheats or white col­lar crime mer­chants, should be the fo­cus of the law and not wide rang­ing gen­er­al­i­sa­tions. What we need as a re­pub­lic is re­spect, fo­cus and in­tel­li­gence, not ig­no­rant prej­u­dice. Sin­cerely

Sean Couni­han Ard­shan­vooly

Park Road, Kil­lar­ney

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