Ireland has a housing crisis. There are not enough homes in the country for the people already in the country.
Ireland has a medical crisis. There are not enough doctors, or hospital beds, or consultants, for the people already in the country.
Ireland has an energy crisis. We are not generating enough electricity to reliably supply the people already in the country, or their homes, or their businesses. Some people are now receiving bills that are multiples of what they were, just one year ago.
Ireland has problems, if not outright crises, in other sectors: We lack sufficient Gardai to deal with a wave of crime and anti-social behaviour. In the economy, inflation is crushing businesses and families alike. In our schools, many classes are over-subscribed. Our prisons are full, to the extent that many people who should be in prison now receive suspended sentences instead.
All the while, the Government of Ireland insists that it’s over-riding moral obligation is to offer shelter and protection to those “fleeing war”. Anyone who objects, as we were so sternly lectured this week, is either a racist, or doing the bidding of racists.
The media has an obligation to report the truth, even when those truths are unpalatable. In that spirit, here are some truths:
It is true that many of the people seeking asylum in Ireland simply should not be considered true asylum seekers. Gript has interviewed many of them, on, and off camera. Many of them will candidly admit that they are here to flee not war, but the UK or EU countries where their welcome is not as warm. Some of them have come here on the promise of a visa.
It is true that the majority of asylum seekers are not women and children, traditionally and correctly viewed as the most vulnerable in times of war, but young men, traditionally and correctly viewed as those most likely to move abroad to seek their fortune.
And it is true that we have no room for them: That is why the Irish Government is accommodating them not in homes, but in abandoned office blocks, and run-down hotels.
None of this is a matter of race. It is as insane to import thousands of dark-skinned young men to live in abandoned office blocks as it would be to import thousands of light skinned young men to live in abandoned office blocks. Nor is it a matter of religion: It is no more or less insane to import thousands of Muslims or Hindus to live in hotels in Carlingford and Killarney than it would be to import thousands of Christians to do the same. The issue is capacity, and security, not race or religion.
It is true that many people are afraid to speak about this. We know, in Ireland, the penalty for having “far right” views: You may lose your job. You may lose business opportunities. Certainly, you will never win favour from the state. There is an unofficial, but very real, regime of punishment in Ireland for those foolish enough to open their mouths and shout “stop”. We all know it, and feel it, and many of us fear it. Our conversations are restricted to the private sphere, because we know the cost of having those conversations in public. Very few people even bother to deny this, any longer.
And yet, it cannot continue.
Ireland does not have the space for the people it is welcoming. If “Ireland is full” is a “far right trope” as some insist, then that is the case only because it is true, and it is easier to denounce a truth than face up to it. The simple fact of the matter is that when we are re-purposing office buildings for refugees, we are doing it only because Ireland is, in fact, full.
Not full in the sense that we could not support or sustain a higher population – of course we could. Our population density is low by European standards. But our current infrastructure cannot support new people at the rate they are currently arriving: We lack the houses, the hospital beds, the school places, and the general infrastructure to support this rate of new arrival. That point is obvious, even if it is regularly, and dishonestly, misrepresented.
What we have seen, this week, is little less than a political system at open war with its own people. Political Parties, including the opposition, have openly called the public racist for seeing what anyone with eyes can see: There is no room for the people they are importing into the country.
Roderic O’Gorman, the Minister responsible, says that Ireland has a moral obligation to do all of this. He is wrong.
The purpose of a state – the entire point of being a sovereign country – is to have borders, and to be able to control those borders. Ireland has no obligation to allow anybody to enter this state. If that were not true, we would dispense with all passport controls, and indeed passports themselves, tomorrow.
We are not observing a “responsibility”, in Ireland. We are making a choice.
Politicians love to say that they fear and oppose the rise of the largely mythical “far right”. And yet, this week has been an effective advert for that movement. All have done their part: The media, the politicians, and the legion of NGOs who seem to run this country with an iron fist.
At Gript, we will continue to give a voice to those who object, as we have done this week. We make no apology for doing so. This country is not in the grip, as some would claim, of the “far right”. It is, however, in the vicegrip of the far left, who believe in no borders at all, and that anyone who objects is racist.
It is madness, and it must stop. Ireland is, in fact, full.