The Blanket

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent
An Ireland of equals will not be built on fear

Letter to the Irish News

Gerard Quinn • 11 February 2005

Following the horrific murder of Robert McCartney I felt compelled to write this letter.

Robert was savagely stabbed, beaten and left to die in a city centre street. There were many people involved in this murder - those who carried out the vile act, those who witnessed it and those who participated in the clean-up operation.

Investigation into this was halted by what has been described as "orchestrated disturbances".

Elected representatives were heard saying that: "It appears the PSNI is using last night's tragic stabbing incident as an excuse to disrupt life within this community and the scale and approach of their operation is completely unacceptable and unjustifiable."

I believe - as is evidenced by the support - that the only "unacceptable and unjustifiable" action that evening was the taking of an innocent man's life. Our elected representatives told how it "was very regrettable that what appears to have been a very tragic incident at a bar has been turned into a serious political situation".

If what happened in Belfast city centre on Sunday January 30 was not a "political situation" then it was criminal.

An act of crime that broke the hearts of a large circle of family and friends. The Chief Constable has said that he does "not think this is a crime that is related to a particular terrorist group following its particular objective".

This would support our elected representatives' theory that it was not a "political situation" - and therefore reiterates that it was a criminal act - and should send a clear message to the consciences of those with information of Robert's final minutes. This was a straightforward inhuman act of crime against the natural forces of life and God's will is that, while we must forgive and forget, we must also take responsibility for our actions.

The time is upon us when we must support those with information on Robert's death and help to bring our community into an era that is free from murder and fear.

As I watched my cousin's coffin lowered into his final resting place to be with my Grandfather and my cousin Gerard I looked up to see nothing but confusion and pain etched on the faces of family and friends.

I wondered then if the hundreds who had prayed at the vigil and more than 1,000 who had attended the funeral were asking the same question I was: How does murdering the innocent "protector" of a "respected family" in the local community build an Ireland of equals?













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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



All censorships exist to prevent any one from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently the first condition of progress is the removal of censorships.
- George Bernard Shaw

Index: Current Articles

14 February 2005

Other Articles From This Issue:

An Ireland of Equals Will Not Be Built on Fear
Gerard Quinn

'Law and Order' From Behind a Balaclava
John Kelly

Where Are the Guards of Honour?
Sean Magee

Losing Hearts and Minds
Mick Hall

Protest? You're Having a Laugh
Michael Benson

Brian Mór

When A Leader Deserts His Men
Anthony McIntyre

No News
James Fitzharris

I Didn't Know Her, But I Did
Fred A. Wilcox

Parents Must Fight Bigotry
David Adams

9 February 2005

Oderint dum Metuant
Anthony McIntyre

Life Amongst the Proveau Riche
Brian Mór

Can Republicans Succeed Without Upholding National Sovereignty?
Francis Mackey

The Party or the Process
Dr John Coulter

Sean Russell and the Nazis
Mick Hall

Counting the Bodies
Liam O Ruairc

Elections' Aftermath
Ghali Hassan

What did Aeschylus write in "Daughters of Danaus"?
Toni Solo



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