The Garth Brooks panic in Dublin - same politicians ignored X-case for 20 years

Extraordinary stuff. The Party that failed to act for 20 years on the X-case legislation wanted emergency legislation rushed through the Dail in 24 hours to facilitate a Garth Brooks concert. The concerts now appear to be all cancelled following an announcement from the promoters but the entire episode shows how politicians found great urgency to act when it came to a populist money making cause that they could not locate anywhere when women's lives were under threat.

Gobshite Dooley, Fianna Fail’s transport and tourism spokesman told the Dail 8th July that
"If the legislation was accepted by the Government it could be in place by tomorrow evening or Thursday at the latest — and the Minister would be in a position to overturn the decision of Dublin City Council if that’s what was decided."

Fianna Fail were in power for most of the time after the X-Case and like every other party in power in that period they refused to legislate for the provision of abortion in situations where the life of a women was under threat. It took the tragic death of Savita Halappanavar and the massive demonstrations outside the Dail that followed it to force politicians to legislate and even that took months and initally saw all the major parties vote against an emergency bill brought forward by independent TD Clare Daly.

Apparently the interests of concert promoters are to be valued far ahead of those of women in Ireland. We'd have imagined that balancing the interests of residents against music fans is something you could fairly describe as a complex issue in needs of careful consideration in a way that emergency legislation to protect women's lives never could.

It's true that there are now 400k fans out there. But there is no reason in particular to assume thats the reason for the eagerness for emergency legislation and if you listened to whats being said by politicians the focus is very much on how much money it was expected would be made. They ignored 500k _households_ who refused to register for the Household tax so you can be sure they would ignore 400k people if it didn't suit their interests

Is it simply another example of the deeply engrained Misogyny of Irish society, another repeat of Yeat's observation that "still they fumble in the greasey till and add the hapennce to the pence" or a little bit of A and a little bit of B?

WORDS Andrew Flood (Follow Andrew on Twitter )

  


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