Aug 25, 2010
Is this really our country?
Since the publication of the Ryan report on industrial schools and the Murphy report on child sexual abuse within the diocese of Dublin, revelations on the treatment of Irish citizens in the twentieth century by the Church and State have undermined everything we believed about ourselves. And the revelations keep coming.
The Primate of All Ireland Sean Brady covered up the rape of children by paedophile Brendan Smyth allowing him to continue raping children for a further nineteen years. The publication of this information has not led to his resignation but rather to his adopting the persona of a “wounded healer”. This persona allows him to continue in his position and treat survivors of the Catholic Church’s brutality with utter contempt. His "wounding" is the discovery of his coverup.
Then there is the systematic mutilation of women by doctors both through symphysiotomy and corrupt individuals wielding a scalpel. There was no oversight because doctors were “self-regulating”. And the medical scandals have not ceased - unread x rays, trolleys, cancer misdiagnosis, surgeons removing the wrong kidney.
Now, we find out that children were used in medical experiments. These children were not those living at home with parents. These were children in mother and baby homes and industrial schools. Members of religious orders gave "consent", violating numerous ethical codes including that of Nuremberg, which was drawn up in the aftermath of the Nazi behaviour in concentration camps.
All of this was done by Irish people, ordinary Joe and Jane Soap. Our uncles, aunts, friends, parents participated or knew what was going on. We are all complicit. What sort of a fucked up country is this? The human rights violations continue on - children in care left on the street, rat infested schools, children in adult psychiatric wards and the children in care disappearing by the hundreds.
Something has to be done. The Murphy inquiry needs to be expanded to cover all dioeses. Victims who did not survive the industrial schools need to be identified and cause of death established. Serious reform or possible abolition of the HSE. The state needs to acknowledge ALL the human rights violations. Offering resignations is not enough. Firing, followed by criminal charges is a beginning.
Ireland has been a republic for less than 100 years and already we have violated human rights on an unprecedented scale. What sort of people are we?
What's all this about?
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