As a 14-year-old boy, I was listening to the radio in 1952 when it was announced that Britain’s King George had died and that Princess Elizabeth would now follow in his footsteps and become Queen. Where was she when she got this message?
he stayed at a game viewing lodge called Treetops in Kenya. She always aspired to high positions!
Some things you never forget.
Rathfarnham, Dublin 14
Women with unwanted pregnancies need more help
Last Saturday (September 17th) there was an impressive turnout at the March for Life in Dublin. Thousands of people took to the streets to demand that pro-life voices be given a fair hearing, especially as the three-year review of Ireland’s abortion laws is about to conclude.
There was an amazing testimony from Jessica Tear, who had a baby at 18, explaining how she was “tired of seeing” situations like her own being used as an “excuse for abortion.”
A resounding theme of the march was that not enough is being done to provide options and support for women in unwanted pregnancies.
Unfortunately, the feeling of hopelessness that many women feel about unplanned pregnancies is compounded by the cost of living and housing crises.
The government needs to start giving serious support to women in unplanned pregnancies to ensure that a woman never feels that she has “no choice” but to proceed with an abortion.
Firehouse, Dublin 24
Unionists should not fear a united Ireland
After 100 years of independence, the dominant language in the Republic of Ireland is still English. That says a lot about cultural hegemony.
Rather than trade unionists fearing a united Ireland, they should engage actively in the debate on how it might work if a majority or majorities decide this is what they prefer.
Unionists, presumably unhappy by default in a new Ireland, could negotiate for preferential status within an all-Ireland Dáil Éireann. The Irish Constitution already enshrines religious freedoms for all religions and this probably includes Protestantism.
Year after year the Orange Order in Donegal seems to be able to carry on its tradition unhindered.
Yes, it’s hard to banish centuries-old cultural conditioning, but we have worse to fear than a vanishing border.
I also imagine that in a united Ireland unionists would have more equal status with their southern brethren than with their mainland compatriots, as Northern Ireland has always been treated differently from the rest of the UK.
As evidence, I claim why there was a need for the workers’ representation campaign in the 1980s. And of course there’s our ‘dear friend’, the Northern Ireland Protocol!
Hillsborough, Co. Down
When it comes to refugees, we’re embarrassed
If we are supposed to be a prosperous First World country, as is commonly believed, then how come in the fall we can only offer tented accommodation to thousands of legitimate refugees from Ukraine and elsewhere?
If we can’t even take care of our own homeless citizens, shouldn’t we temporarily stop immigrants – or even suggest that they bring their own tents and food for about 10 days?
We’re an international embarrassment, and not for the first time.
Encourage exercise – and reward those who get involved
The government should consider and implement tax breaks for people joining approved/registered sports and fitness clubs etc. The tax relief should be applied to the annual membership fee at the appropriate tax rate.
Surely this incentive would encourage more people to join sports and other physical activity clubs.
The payback would come via fitter, healthier people living better lives, with a subsequent reduction in our public health care system.
In other words, a fitter person is likely to be a healthier person.
Swords, Co Dublin
https://www.independent.ie/opinion/letters/queen-elizabeth-always-aimed-high-even-from-the-start-of-her-reign-42005211.html Ever since the beginning of her reign, Queen Elizabeth always wanted to aim high