Sir, – It’s easy for Fintan O’Toole to say that that the recent riots have nothing to do with immigration or inner-city poverty, but that is not much consolation for those who live in Dublin’s north inner city – both Irish born and new arrivals (“Irish fascism is not a reaction to immigration or poverty. It’s not even new”, Opinion & Analysis, November 28th).
Many families from other parts of the world see recent events as an ugly turn and they are frightened. Nor does it help those piled into hostels, which are in turn piled into one part of the city, with no plan except the determination of many areas not to have them. Nor does it do much for the grief and bewilderment of Irish-born people who have seen their neighbourhoods transformed beyond recognition. They know that hatred does no good, but they have seen their neighbours surrender to it, while others prefer not to know about their loss.
We Irish have plenty of experience of learning how to live in other countries, but we have little experience of others coming to live among us. Everyone in the north inner city is struggling with this new challenge. They need help. They need resources. They need a plan. – Yours, etc,
EDMOND GRACE SJ,
Sir, – Liam Herrick writes that public order policing is highly complex work and involves responding to dynamic situations (“Dublin riots must not be an excuse to magic away legal and human rights”, Opinion & Analysis, November 29th). If Mark Ferris of the Garda Representative Association (GRA) is correct, part of the response to such dynamic situations involves public order-trained gardaí who are close to the trouble taking a detour home to collect their public order uniforms and shields before attempting to restore order (“Dublin riots: Hardcore group of far-right agitators at centre of Garda investigations”, News, November 29th). This is necessary, we are told, because of inadequate locker space in their city-centre stations. This, if true, must be interesting and valuable intelligence for those contemplating another riot. The rioters can expect to have a good hour’s head start on the public order police and perhaps longer if they take the trouble to riot during the morning or evening rush hour. – Yours, etc,
A chara, – I wish to draw attention to the different approaches that some of our politicians have taken in response to the horrific attacks on innocent children and their carers in Dublin last week, and the rioting that occurred in the aftermath of these attacks. The alleged perpetrators of both of these criminal acts are not being portrayed in a similar fashion by some of our elected politicians. Some media organisations have been slammed by a section of our elected representatives for reporting that the alleged perpetrator of the knife attacks came to this country as an immigrant, while at the same time using Dáil privilege to identify the alleged instigators of the riots that occurred. Surely all politicians should take a unified approach on their response to these criminal acts, and not sow further division and hate in our society by responding in different ways to the alleged perpetrators of these crimes. – Yours, etc,
EAMONN O’ HARA,
Sir, – Last Thursday night there was a concert in the 3 Arena and in the Bord Gáis theatre. If both venues were full, that would mean that approximately 10,000 people would be in town, many of whom would have expected to get a Luas home or a bus. I was in the Bord Gáis theatre. No announcement was made warning us to avoid the city centre, or to inform us that the Luas and Dublin Bus were not operating. As we turned our phones back on we learned about what was happening but found no solution as to how to get home. There were no taxis.
Obviously the Luas trains on fixed rails could not easily adapt to the situation, but why were all buses cancelled across the city? They could have operated while avoiding the city centre and people could have been advised where they could they be found.
The authorities have a duty of care to the citizens and it is simple now to send a text to every mobile phone in the city. I was lucky – a family member came to rescue me. – Yours, etc,