12 June 2008 Edition

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Mála Poist

Lisbon Treaty debate

I SEE soccer star Paul McGrath is voting ‘Yes’ to Lisbon because qualifying for Europe “was one of the highlights of my international career”.
And winning the Eurovision Song Contest was one of the highlights of Dana’s international career but she’s still voting ‘No’.
So what’s your point, Paul?

THE conduct of the mainsteam print and broadcast media in the 26 Counties during the course of the Lisbon Treaty campaign has been an utter disgrace. RTÉ and the Irish Times, in particular, were nothing more than cheerleaders for the ‘Yes’ camp.
Following the shock of the TNS/MRBI poll which showed that the ‘No’ vote was leading, this media bias became even more pronounced. Irish Times hacks and RTÉ presenters sounded ever more shrill in their attacks against opponents of the treaty and in their amplification of all of the bogus arguments and scare tactics of the Government.
The media campaign for a ‘Yes’ vote reached a hysterical climax with the by-now notorious Irish Times editorial of 7 June, headed “Are we out of our minds?”
Examples of this blatant media bias throughout the course of the last number of weeks are too numerous to mention. However, one issue really stuck out for me. This was the complete failure of journalists to confront Fine Gael over the brass neck that its representatives displayed in attempting to assure people that Irish neutrality is not being undermined while that party’s clearly stated policy is to ditch neutrality at the earliest opportunity.
The Irish media have once again displayed the spineless character that was its hallmark during the dark days of Section 31 political censorship
Baile Átha Cliath 3


Fundamental differences

QUICK as the media is to seize upon extreme utterances by Muslim fundamentalists, why isn’t DUP MP Iris Robinson, wife of First Minister Peter Robinson, being pilloried by the mainstream newspapers and TV for her disgusting comments about people who are gay when hate crimes against gay people in the North are on the rise?
Mrs Robinson described homosexuality as “disgusting, nauseous, loathsome, shamefully wicked and vile”. She said her strong Christian upbringing meant she would never change her views and nothing would stop her from speaking out on the issue.
Or does the media think it’s okay to be a hate-mongering fundamentalist so long as it’s a Christian?
Dublin 6

IRIS ROBINSON cites the Book of Leviticus as her catechism in describing homosexuality as an abomination.
Leviticus also advocates ritual sacrifice, slavery and the death penalty for fortune tellers.
What are Mrs Robinson’s views on those?


1981 Hunger Strike Commemoration

THE Annual Hunger Strike Commemoration will be held  this year on 17 August in Derry. Details of the commemoration will be published in An Phoblacht at a later date.
In addition to the large number of ex-prisoners attending, the organising committee hopes that as many members of the Relatives’ Action Committees will also participate. The Relatives’ Action Committees were a fundamental part of the campaign for political status by the republican prisoners in the  H-Blocks and the women’s prison in Armagh. They took the campaign in support of the prison struggle all over Ireland and to many other parts of the world and helped to dismantle the wall of silence created by the British around the conditions of the protesting prisoners in Long Kesh and Armagh.
We hope that as many of the members of the Relatives’ Action Committees and supporters will be in Derry on 17 August. The Relatives’ Action Committees will be co-ordinated by myself and all members who wish to participate should contact me on 0287 1366 015 or on e-mail at [email protected]
This is a very important event in the calendar of republicans and Derry will give its usual welcome to all those attending

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1

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