Donald Trump and US migrant ban


Sir, – On March 17th, this nation will celebrate its national day with parades in towns and cities throughout the country. Many of us will attend the GAA football and hurling club finals in Croke Park. Some may prefer the St Patrick’s Day Dog Show.

While we enjoy the pageantry of the parades or the nail-biting tension of Croke Park, our Taoiseach will be presenting a bowl of shamrock to Donald Trump, president of the United States of America. In normal times, this is an occasion of pride for us Irish. These are not normal times.

This is an American president whose words Enda Kenny himself labelled as racist. Donald Trump, in his recent actions, has proved that Mr Kenny was right. The people of Sudan, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, Yemen and Iran have been barred from entering the US for 90 days. The people of Syria have been barred indefinitely.

This is an American president who believes that torture is justifiable.

This is an American president who refuses to believe that our actions can affect our climate.

This is an American president who refuses to admit refugees.

This is not the sort of president who deserves an honour from the people of this country. We have had a special relationship with the US for generations, despite some uncomfortable moments. I, for one, do not want a special relationship with Donald Trump. I am asking the Taoiseach to cancel his visit to the White House.

Instead we could issue an invitation to Mr Trump to meet our President, Michael D Higgins. A visit to Áras an Uachtaráin could see him dispatched with a flea in his ear. – Yours, etc,



Co. Wicklow.

Sir, – The cardiologist who saved my life in Dubai is a Christian originally from Homs in Syria and holds a British passport. His colleague, who treated me with the best of care, is a Muslim from Khartoum, Sudan, who has worked in Ireland for many years and is an Irish national.

Mr Trump’s new measures now effectively ban or make extremely difficult these British and Irish citizens from entering the United States.

I call on all Irish, British and European nationals to condemn the Trump administration’s racism in all its forms. – Yours, etc,



Kilrush, Co Clare.

Sir, – The Taoiseach should post the shamrock. – Yours, etc,


Blackrock, Co Dublin.

Sir, – The Taoiseach has stated that the St Patrick’s Day visit to the White House will go ahead. May I suggest a nationwide boycott by shamrock-growers and glassblowers? That way, our leader will have to dig out an unwanted wedding present from the back of the “good press”, dig up clover from the back garden, and hope that nobody notices the difference. – Yours, etc,



Co Clare.

Sir, – President Trump’s ban on certain nationalities entering the US is racist, wrong and has caused great upset internationally.

Let us act in the only way we can. Those of us who are planning a holiday to the US should immediately consider alternative destinations. Irish sporting and community organisations should cancel any proposed trips to the US this year.

And I will be happy to buy Korean rather than American if I need to change my phone this year.

Collectively we have the power to make a difference and to show President Trump that his policies can have negative consequences. – Yours, etc,



Co Meath.

Sir, – Every year, without fail, we have the naysayers and their fellow travellers moaning about Ministers and other public representatives going abroad to promote Ireland on St Patrick’s Day. These commentators, who clearly know little of our multibillion euro tourism industry, and who seem to care less about foreign direct investment, are this year winding themselves up into a frenzied crescendo due to unfolding events in Washington. They should reflect for a moment on how and why they have the ability to make a disagreeable situation far worse for Ireland! – Yours, etc,



Railtours Ireland,

Amiens Street,

Dublin 1.

Sir, – It is interesting to see the outrage against Donald Trump and him following through on election promises. It seems many people were happy to abuse Mr Trump, saying he will never do this, never build that, etc. Now that he is actually doing exactly what he was voted in to do, we have outrage. It never seems to dawn on these protesters that 16 Muslim countries have banned anyone from Israel entering their countries. In fact, several of these countries will not allow anyone in if it is shown that these people have entered Israel at some point, regardless of whether they are Israeli or not. Seems yet again Generation Snowflake likes to pick and choose what issues it wants to protest over, regardless of the facts. – Yours, etc,


Causeway Bay,

Hong Kong.

Sir, – If President Trump is going to invoke the memory of 9/11 in justifying his ban on immigrants from “Muslim countries”, perhaps he should explain why Saudi Arabia isn’t on the list, given that 15 out of the 19 hijackers came from that country. –Yours, etc,


Killiney, Co Dublin.

Sir, – Maybe now is the time for the French to ask for their statue back.– Yours, etc,


Dunshaughlin, Co Meath.

Sir, – In first-year English, we teach our children the power of metaphors, similes, symbols and images. What will the children think, I wonder, on March 17th, when they see their Taoiseach present a bowl of shamrocks to Donald Trump? – Yours, etc,


Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin.

Sir, – For the inaugural speech of the 45th president of the United States, it’s a great pity that Donald J Trump was not informed by the maxim of Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding fathers of the United States: “Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment”.

Nothing I have observed to date gives comfort that Mr Trump will ever believe in and follow that rule of conduct. – Yours, etc,


Cabinteely, Dublin 18.

A chara, – Richard Coffey (January 28th), in his letter regarding the election of Donald Trump, suggested that we “must respect the fact that he is now the elected president of the United States” .

I think not. We certainly have to accept his election as president but we’re under no obligation to respect it. I, for one, think the election of Donald Trump was ill-judged and ill-advised; blessedly, I’m entitled to that opinion. I think the president would appreciate my line of reasoning. He has gloried in his lack of respect for individuals and nationalities so numerous that it would weary me to list them here.

I do hope that Mr Coffey will believe me to be opinionated, trenchant and argumentative. I’d be sorry to be seen as “politically correct or righteous”. – Is mise,


Annascaul, Co Kerry.

Sir, – I was somewhat taken aback to read your editorial headline “On the seventh day Trump rested” (January 28th). It is extremely unwise to compare the actions of the US president to those of a deity, even in jest. I suspect the current occupant of the White House lacks a sense of irony. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 13.