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Showing posts from November, 2017

The great Galway 'busker war' of 2017!

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This is Emma.                                                                           

Emma’s a gem.

Emma and people like her add so much to the vibrancy of my city.

Throughout the year, she’s a huge hit with tourists and locals alike. She takes up her spot at the top of High Street, puts on a backing track, and dances to the best of Irish music.

Shoppers take a break to enjoy her superb skills as a traditional Irish dancer, while visitors soak up this perfect taste of the vibrant native culture in Galway.

A few yards up the street, more visitors are captivated by the Galway Street Club. A ‘raggle-taggle’ collection of performers from all over the world, they entertain the masses for free on Shop Street and their act has become so successful that they are now invited to play decent-sized venues all over Ireland.

When they are not pumping out the sounds outside Eason’s, their perch is often taken up by James.

Gifted with a voice akin to Luke Kelly, one of his sessions on the street …

No poppy for the innocent victims

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For an Irish footballer who lives in England, it’s a source of annual abuse. 

For An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, it’s become a new cause for
derision.

And for a small, but brave number of high-profile people in Britain, including Channel 4 presenter Jon Snow, not wearing one is a courageous statement in the face of a wave of xenophobia and jingoistic nationalism.

The red poppy.

Is it right to wear one on Remembrance Sunday?

And is it ever right for an Irish person to wear a symbol which honours the members of the British Army?

An Taoiseach broke new ground when he became the first Irish leader to brandish a poppy in the Dail this week.

It hardly came as a huge surprise, given that this is the leader who tweeted about remembering “where he was when Princess Diana died” on the day two homeless people passed away on the streets of Dublin.

The Irish people clearly have a very problematic history with the British Army, even though more than 200,000 men and women from this island served with…

Why do the Irish denigrate the truth-seekers?

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In Ireland, we tend to denigrate and ridicule those who seek out the truth or shine light on our darkness.                                             
It’s as though the mirror they hold up to Irish society is too ugly to witness, too painful to face up to, so that it’s easier to assassinate their characters than to acknowledge their search for justice.
Take Jonathan Sugarman.
There are restaurants in Dublin who refuse to accept a reservation upon hearing his name. There are pubs where he’d be shunned, seen as a pariah, if he joined the great and the good as they let their hair down on a Friday night.
Because, for the vast majority of Irish bankers, the party has never stopped.
Why would they disown him? His only ‘crime’ has been to do his job properly and to tell us the truth.
When I spoke to him this week, ten years had passed since he did the right thing, at enormous cost to his finances, his career, and his mental health.
An Israeli citizen living and working in Ireland, he thought he w…