You Tube Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jOvMEVlQhIQ
A tumultuous few days in rural Ireland, firstly we had the spectre of a large group of thugs enter a family farm and proceed to throw the family onto the roadside at the behest of the bank and the sheriff. One of those evicted is a long time member of Republican SINN FÉIN Poblachtach. These people were aided by the 26 county police by way of blocking roads leading to the remote farm, thus stopping some neighbors from coming to the assistance of the family. The fact that the family wanted to pay what they could (E1000 a month) didn’t matter to KBC Bank or their hirelings, they wanted this farm to sell on and turn a profit.
One neighbour did manage to come to their assistance but was beaten to the ground and further assaulted by a number of these thugs. When the farm owners called on the police to aid the elderly man, the reply came that it was on private property. It seems it is ok the beat someone on private property in the estimation of the police. When the man was eventually subdued he was pushed out from the garden and grabbed by the police. His face cut and bruised, he also had damage done to his teeth. It wasn’t until after the event that it transpired that this man was a former member of the 26 county police, yet he still elicited little sympathy from the new breed of police. The family were soon to follow this man onto the roadside, with little belongings and no idea where to go, what to do.
A few days passed and on Saturday night/Sunday morning the people of the area banded together and in the dark of night went to the farm house. Initially asking the bailiffs men to leave, an offer that was refused, they did what had to be done. Hand-to-hand combat and an attack dog used by the bailiffs as a weapon, but the bailiffs were soon dispatched on their way, running up the road and across the fields in bare feet. Sadly it has to be said the attack dog was injured and was put down later. The fault for this lies squarely with the bailiffs, had they taken the opportunity to walk away, had they not weaponized the dog, it would not have been injured.
Sunday morning as people across Ireland awoke, the news travelled through the internet, phones, radio and eventually the TV news. It is interesting to note that the initial eviction was not covered in mainstream media, the hospitalization got barely a mention. The police blocking off streets to facilitate this got no column inches in any paper. But come Sunday and RTE gave a very biased coverage of the removal of the bailiffs from the family farm, going as far as to imply that the local people killed the dog. It seems that banks, courts, police, private security and the national broadcaster are working hand in glove.
Let this event be a catalyst for the people, no longer should we allow families to be evicted from their homes. If the banks can be bailed out; if builders can be bailed out; if developers can be bailed out and if speculators can be bailed out then surely the home-owner and the farmer can get some form of debt write-off. For it is these people and other tax payers who actually end up paying the aforementioned bail outs. They have been taxed into poverty and are left to choose whether to pay mortgage or food or fuel.
We can only hope that this is the start of a sea-change for the people of Ireland. We must demand a fairer Ireland, where the people are at the centre of concerns. No longer should we be seeing evictions, nor homeless people lying in doorways while there are hundreds, if not thousands of houses and apartments empty. Likewise the state should not be paying millions for families to be housed in hotels, hostels or B+Bs, we are looking at a coming generation who do not know what a traditional home is. They live, eat and sleep in one room, they have no pay space, kitchen. Parents have nowhere to relax once children go to sleep. This is todays Ireland, while the politicians rake in E70,000 and more in wages, they have expenses for everything imaginable and qualify for a pension once one term is served.
The time for talking is past. It is time for action, the people have had enough and must act to protect each other. If someone comes to steal your neighbour’s house… resist alongside them. Let the word go out, we will not accept the evictions anymore. If banks can get a write-off of debt, if builders and developers can get debt written off, why then are home owners being evicted because they have been burdened with extra taxes to facilitate the bankers, builders and developers.
Diarmuid Mac Dubhghlais,
O Connell / Sands Cumann, Baile Átha Cliath