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Crime

Get those goddam burnt babies off my TV

Lyndon B Johnson was not a man to trifle with. Lyndon B Johnson had a direct way with words that many today would find offensive. This was the man who famously said of Edgar J Hoover, “better to have him inside the tent pissing out, than outside the tent pissing in”.

In the late sixties, there was an appalling civil war in Nigeria, causing the deaths of up to three million people, principally through starvation, and the world became convulsed with guilt. Funds were raised. Organisations were set up. Pressure came on politicians to do something!!! Do what? Pressure came on the United States to intervene, and Lyndon B Johnson, as President, felt uncomfortable. The news carried saturation coverage of famine, of starving children with distended stomachs, and of rotting cattle by the roadside. This was the late sixties, I remind you, and Johnson was a Texan. He’s reported to have told his aides I don’t care what you have to do. Just get those goddam nigger babies off my TV screen.”

The sentiments of a true politician.

Now, I don’t seek to compare what’s happening in Moyross with a world-scale disaster like Biafra. In fact, I don’t think there’s any comparison at all, but I’ve been listening to the news stories about a government-appointed Moyross Czar, and I’m thinking to myself, what the fuck is this? The government is going to tackle the Moyross problem without looking at the underlying issues that exist in every estate in Limerick and throughout the country? They’re going to throw two or three million at Moyross and they think the problem will go away?

Just get those goddam burnt babies off my TV screen!!

I was at a party tonight which was also to be attended by a friend of mine, who happens to live in Pineview Gardens, Moyross, a woman who accepted a house there as a haven to raise her young son when things were hard. There was no sign of our friend, but finally when someone got through she said the Guards had just left because the windows had been broken in. Again. The last time was when a gang of twelve-year-olds smashed them the day she and her son were supposed to go on holidays. Our friend and her son are targets because they don’t talk or act like knackers.

John Fitzgerald is an estimable fellow fresh from a triumphant stint as Dublin City Manager. A man with a keen insight into the problems of Moyross. John is a native of Galbally, County Limerick, about thirty miles from Limerick, which would surely guarantee him an intimate understanding of the Moyross situation. It’s only ten miles further away than Tipperary town.

Ah now, let’s not be like that. I wish him luck if he thinks fixing Moyross will fix the problem, but of course it won’t. He’ll write a report, they’ll build a waitress training centre and the bandwagon will roll on to the next issue.

The government needs to spend about a billion on this problem nationwide, or approximately the same amount of tax money it gave to the clergy to get them off the hook for abusing children. More on that later.