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Political Correctness

category international | history and heritage | opinion/analysis author Sunday September 10, 2006 22:25author by K.T. Walsh - Social Justice Report this post to the editors

Political Correctness

Could Ireland face riots like the Brixton riots in the next five years?

Why spend so much to process immigrants in such an ineffectual manner?

Acceptance and Tolerance by all......

I am willing to stick my neck out tonight and speak the forbidden word and the forbidden wording is to ask, in other words, don't question the wording political correctness. Well I will and I will state my reasons accordingly.

I am in Dublin now 7 years after many years in the USA. I can see the riots coming down the road in the next 5 years. I ask tonight are the Irish people blind and deaf because the main conversation in taxis, cafes, restaurants, bars is 'Can we sustain the numbers of immigrants when the economy drops and yes it will drop because it depends on construction right now'.

I welcome to Ireland anybody - creed, colour, religion, we are all human beings looking for the right to work. But I question the Irish government - how could we have spent Euros 1.1 billion on processing these people over the last 3 years. Where is our Civil Serivce, Public Service, Immigration Service? The question I ask is there an undercurrent of other bureaucrats, like the one's that produced the computerized version for voting system (now obsolete - cost was Euros 47 m.). This is a far cry from the 1.1 b. for processing. Where is the Common Sense in all this?

'Man once possessed complex knowledge concerning his place in nature and was to that extent content and free. The knowledge has been replaced by abstract theories he does not understand and must take on trust from experts he does not know. But should humans not be able to understand the basic constituents of their lives'

Now I again ask the question - What is Political correctness? Is the meaning for all people - I am sick and tired of Irish Radio and TV saying that Irish are Racist? Should not every group, every culture be able to influence, revere, reserve in accordance with their free will beliefs and wishes. Is not the present separation of experts and sheep one reason for the much deplored social psychological imbalance.

In basic English I am asking is this. Tolerance and Respect is not just for the Irish citizens, it is for the people also coming into Ireland and they should respect us also.

1.1 billion is an enourmous amount of money. So I ask the question, right in the face of the word, Political Correctness, and I have that right as an Irish citizen - Why so much money and what does the word processing mean in this serious assessment really mean? Sometime ago, I witnessed a taximan being slapped in the face and being called White Thrash when he charged a certain Nigerian woman in relation to her buggy and shopping. This working Irish citizen put his head down and walked away. I ask why and the answer is the word again - political correctness.

One of the most fundatmental questions in our lives is to find out what we value. What principles we want to live by and which codes we will use to guide our behaviour? Most of us want to live a good life but what in today's dying Celtic Tiger, does Good really mean? Good to me means Respect for all people and that includes all of our Irish citizens who live in fear of being called Racist.

Diversity and acceptance begins at our schools. I welcome multi-culture but we also have our culture. I am saddened to hear sometime ago that a Crib was removed from a certain Dublin hospital during Christmas because it offended a Muslim doctor. We have our religion and our culture and nobody in my view has the right to change it as applies in their country.

I now ask the question before we have something like Brixton - would people wake up? We need to try and educate all of us in acceptance and tolerance in today's changing Ireland.

I notice Senator Mary McCarthy's reply to Eirigi on the Indymedia site, I would appreciate views from others.

Juido Krishnamurti 1895-1986
'Religion is a frozen thought of men out of which they build temples'

K.T. Walsh

author by iosafpublication date Mon Sep 11, 2006 16:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Ireland doesn't have any comparable urban area to Brixton either in the 1980's or now. Let me remind or inform readers that the London borough of Lambeth (whose "capital" is Brixton) saw 3 seperate periods of sustained violence in 1981, 1985 and the last in 1995. It also had for a brief period the largest percentage of ethnic minorities in the UK and the highest mean level of unemployment. Not surprisingly the borough was home to the highest number of squatters as well. Lambeth was in the period of the riots considered with Glasgow to be the most corrupt city borough in the UK. Until 1971(& the final extension of the Victoria line) it had poor infrastructural links with the rest of the London area yet boasted the highest population density of any borough, these people were crammed into 6 main housing estates. The borough of Lambeth together with its neighbour Southwark had seen the highest rate of destruction resulting from World War 2 bombing raids and most of south London's housing estates were built with migrant labour in immediate post-war period to the mid 60's. The style of these urban projects were mostly high rise and were pretty similar to Dublin's Ballymun complex (built at the same time but obviously much smaller) or the peripherary of Paris. I lived in the borough of Lambeth for qutie a few years, & cultivated friendships with local & national politicians. I took part in the consulations leading to the final gun amnesty in the late 90's and the experimental "go soft on soft drug" regime by the Metropolitan police which allowed them try and catch crack dealers instead. During my time in that borough I remember the deaths in custody of several young men (all black) & saw the destruction of the Brixton nail bombing. I left together with many others when in the final period of New Labour's "clean-up" the borough evicted in a space of 4 months a squatting population of close to 16,000 people. Brixton got its first luxury supermarket at the same time is now a gentrified & dynamic place to live proud of its afro-caribbean heritage .

Maybe Ireland may see inter-ethnic tensions, develop a violently racist police force, but it has not nor will present the same mixture of ingredients that led to Brixton's riots or the other most famous "race disturbances" in the UK :- the Toxteth riots. it is an utter simplification to suggest this is Ireland's future, & would only be made by people who see a 3 Brixton riots and Toxteth & last year's Parisien Clicy sous Bois riots as "being the same". Something which they were most definetly not. As for suggesting a date line for rising tensions - 5 years is a short time. In the Spanish state we are accutely aware of the potential or risk-factors associated with migration. Though the constitution disallows any census of "religious affiliation" it is believed Spain currently has the 4th largest muslim population in the EU, to which must be added over one million other migrants. The urban areas of most concern to people across the political or activist spectrum or not suburban areas (such as Brixton or Toxteth) but the future development of satelite towns and small urban areas with housing estates which are more than 40km from the nearest largest city. But that much said, there is a general agreement that not until 2nd & 3rd generation Irish citizens descended from migrants experience marginalisation will there be a serious risk of any kind of sustained rioting or inter-racial tensions.

All that said.......................
One thing I do see huge potential for, not only here in the Spanish state or in Ireland is the deterioration of "sink estates" and the spread of what may be called the "Moss side phenomona" where a 15 year old lamentably named Jesse James got shot on Saturday most probably by gang members of his own area & ethnicity. I am aware that off-setting such problems lies at the core of the Spanish state's & Catalonia's recent moves to "legalise" & "formalise" gangs such as the self-styled "Latin Kings" (taking their name from the infamous puerto rican group which abound in certain migrant groups as public associations.

1981 saw Brixton & Toxteth riots :-
1985 -
1995 -

author by gavinapublication date Mon Sep 11, 2006 21:04author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I have to say that I'm inclined to think that riots and no-whites ghettos are around the corner, maybe not in 5 years, but 10 or 15. From observation, I see that the African migrants to this country are hugely under-represented in the workforce, for whatever reasons. All others (Chinese, Western and Eastern Europeans, South Americans) are very visible in the shops and factories of this country. Africans are also hugely over-represented in terms of having young children (someone try telling me that Ireland's previous citizenship laws didn't influence African/Nigerian immigration to this country). So, when these children grow up, without having had experience of either parent working, but only of having been provided with housing, clothing and food in exchange for nothing, what will their thinking be? To emerge from a lifetime of free provision with a healthy and productive mindset doesn't follow.

To compound things, most asylum seekers are housed in the less affluent areas of the country. And if our European neighbours' experiences are anything to go by, then the same tired excuses of isolation, et al, will come to the fore - we've seen the horror of what's happened (and what's been plotted) in the last year or two in Britain, Spain, Holland, Italy, France, Germany etc by those in Muslim communities. But then, there are plenty of Muslims here too, so why would this country's Muslim communities be any different? Well, they're not.

Certainly, the host countries should shoulder some of the blame for poor integration and assimilation of migrants. But political correctness is taken to such preposterous degrees in this country, that any hope of assimilation of our migrants was thrown out the window in the mid-nineties. I can think of not one example of where multi-culturalism has worked as its architects had hoped. Indeed, the contrary is the case in all of our neighbours' countries. But yet we skip blindly down the hole of political correctness, and abandon assimilation and integration to the scrapheap. We will reap what we've sown.

author by Supremist?publication date Tue Sep 12, 2006 11:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

'assimilation' is a horrible word. It completely disregards someone else's culture and values, and presumes ours are superior. Take off your blinkers

author by gavinapublication date Tue Sep 12, 2006 13:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"'assimilation' is a horrible word. It completely disregards someone else's culture and values, and presumes ours are superior. Take off your blinkers"

It's amazing that you can read everything that was said before you, but your only remark is the use of one word.

Regardless, assimilation does not presume anything. It is the absorption of other people's cultures into the culture of the majority, it does not matter whose culture is superior or inferior, it is simply a means of making the process of integration more fluid. I don't care whose culture is superior, what matters is that my culture is my culture, and it's the one I know and love. It is NOT the job of the host country's culture to change to fit migrants. On the contrary, the onus is on migrants to fit into the host country's culture.

Perhaps if the Orangemen had assimilated in the same way as the Normans, we wouldn't have the clashes between Orange and Green that persist to this day.

I'll take off my blinkers, if you open your eyes and use your brain.

author by hermitpublication date Tue Sep 12, 2006 13:24author address author phone Report this post to the editors

the ghettos are allready forming, in fact ghettos have been in Ireland for years, just that the ghettos are full of white poor people not black,yellow et all. The tracksuit armies have been fucked into nasty public housing, fair enough when Ireland was da welfare state they spread out the housing a bit , didnt make it so blatent, now that tis the celtic tiger they are trying to fuck em out of those places and put em into even worse shitholes, because land is precious now, worth 10-15 times more than 10 years ago.

The massive influx of eastern european/african immigrants will have an effect--anybody who denies this has there head well and truly buried in the sand. The fact that they carry their own customs and language etc with them means invariably that they will congregate with each other and initially not assimulate.

It is always the way in my view that the first wave will not change, it is their children though who will. The Irish government needs to make it easier for integration/assimulation to take place though something which at present it does not do.

Positive affirmative action and proper funding now by the government will stop potential disquiet and isolation in the future

author by curiouspublication date Tue Sep 12, 2006 13:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

In favour of whom? The competition between immigrants and the native population for jobs, housing and other public resources disadvantages the already disadvantaged. Now you propose - I assume - to worsen that situation by instituting affirmative action in favour of the immigrants?

Not a success where tried elsewhere. For either party.

author by hermitpublication date Tue Sep 12, 2006 14:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The competition between immigrants and the native population for jobs, housing and other public resources disadvantages the already disadvantaged. Now you propose - I assume - to worsen that situation by instituting affirmative action in favour of the immigrants?

Indeed, simple inexpensive things such as for non english speakers--english lessons(you may say Irish but it shall never become main language again imo) --these lessons help immigrants. On the housing front you are indeed correct--but the fact here is that there is a dire lack of housing for all the people of Ireland and the most vunerable bear the brunt as usual and yes immigrants increase the strain on the public system in all regards but you cannot blame immigration for lack of policy and planning by decades of governments--a simple example not related to this but i think makes it crystal clear---the transport system in Ireland is absolutely dire, appalling in fact fucking shamefull, it is totally overloaded and it is due to a simple fact--previous governments regardless of their beliefs, totally underfunded the transportation system as they have done the health system, as they are DOING in the health system.

A simple fact also is the housing partnership arrangement should enforce the housing aspect and be increased. Slapping massive estates in the middle of nowhere with little or no facilities(schools,parks,shops, proper transport etc) and fuck all planning, while it gives someone a home it also gives them rage/hopelessness over time imo. The mentality of fucking all the rotten apples(so to speak) into a single basket is imo a failed policy of the 60s, however all governments keep repeating this same basic error and in fact compound it mainly due to the fact that these areas are then largely left to rot like the rotten apples they were meant to incarcerate. this is in fact imo institutional rascism--not because they are black or white or yellow but because they are poor.

you cannot blame the immigrant, they did not create the problem --the governments lack of investment in its own country does that all on its own.

basically yes i favour treating immigrants the same as the natives so to speak, why shouldnt they be? The first scapegoat and the easiest scapegoat is the immigrant, that foreign fuck that speak no english and steals our jobs---this is the line that in a few years when the interest rates go a lot higher and the times get a lot meaner and tougher that certain parties spit out, in fact nothing could be furthrer from the truth. Immigration is currntly driving this countries growth rate forward and it is about fucking time.

5 years ago i saw about 1 chinese shop in dublin city----i currently see a wave of multiculturalism and with it the benefits of a multicultural society and a shitload of chinese/ghana et all commerce and trade. they pay taxes, they contribute, in fact they are now us.. As an immigrant is in effect a citizen of Ireland they should be granted full rights in our society

Just dont try to blame the immigrant, try to see them as part of a solution, not a problem.

author by Curiouspublication date Tue Sep 12, 2006 15:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Treating everyone the same is fine. However, that is not what affirmative action has meant where it has become policy in education, employment etc where it is associated with quotas and so on.

Of course there would not be so much tension if housing policy and so on was different. However, the fact is that it is not likely to change. It is driven by the market and the housing market itself reflects a labour market with a huge proportion of immigrant labour that is imported because it is cheaper to employ than Irish labour. That is the economic bottom line and pious wishes about multi-culturalism are neither here nor there.

Like it or not, the best option for Irish workers is for some form of control over the levels of immigration as it is Irish workers who pay the price for the importing of cheap labour, and of all the other issues involving housing, congestion and so on. Much easier to prevent these situations developing rather than letting them occur and then later trying to deal with the malign consequences. As in UK, France, Holland and so on.

author by Michelle Clarke - Social Justice and Ethicspublication date Thu Sep 28, 2006 00:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Just read your comment and I would agree with you.

Firm policies at the start are vital to avoid crisis management.

Steve Biko (1946-77) South African Anti-Apartheid activist, murdered in police custody.
'If you want to say something radical, you should dress conservative'

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