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Tuam outrage shames Irish people and State

The Irish public are seeking to apportion blame for Tuam and many other such cases in mother and child homes, Magdalene Laundries etc. Of course, the Catholic Church has to bear responsibility for what happened, but they are not the only ones.

I’m sure many will be unwilling to face the fact that responsibility also rests with those that the majority of the Irish public spent the whole of last year lauding and lionising ad nauseum.

They are the ones who, having replaced royalty with the Catholic Church, proceeded to make the Church the senior partner in government, placing it in an unchallengeable, unanswerable, all-powerful position in the State and in Irish society with tragic consequences.

The Garda Siochana was also complicit in this whole affair, capturing Magdalene ‘escapees’ and returning them to custody (although they were never charged, tried, or convicted of any offence in a court) in these religious gulags — sometimes to serve a life sentence.

Unfortunately, responsibility rests most heavily on the Irish people themselves, for no such outrages by any regime can be successfully perpetrated without the complicity of the people. So, just as ‘we didn’t know what was happening’ rang hollow in 1945 Germany, so it rings hollow for the Irish people who knew what was happening, but said and did nothing.

They enabled and facilitated these horrific crimes against generations of Irish women and children, and, in many cases, condemned their own daughters, sisters and nieces to their fates.

Sad and shameful times for Ireland, indeed.

PETER KEATING

Charleville, Co Cork

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