Daniel O’Connell once referred to the Irish as the finest peasantry in Europe. Now our peasantry is depleted and we are left with next to nothing to be proud of. The country of proud beggars, standing in shameless servility to a foreign king is no more. We can no longer stand. Our heads are now, like Moore’s in his statue, slightly bowed in shameful witlessness. Is it time to return to our former days of glory? Back to when the Irish serf was so revered by every nation and empire in poetry, songs and plays? But what can we do, when we have no peasants left, just an abundance of homeless people?
I propose that instead of harping on about the ‘homelessness crisis’, we instead look at this as a great opportunity. An opportunity to make our homeless the finest homeless in Europe! Think of the pride this sheepish nation would receive from having something so great to boast about. Think of the revenue from tourists, travelling far and wide to see our greatest asset sing and dance in the streets for their entertainment (Perhaps in some sort of leprechaun outfit?). Carroll’s Irish Gifts could sell merchandise like caps, and T-shirts and jumpers and scarfs. We could then use the vast income from our new attraction, for it would cost nothing to run, to build another apartment building for Trinity students: Our second greatest asset.
Think of thousands of homeless men women and children, all performing their poor hearts out for their homeland. A glorious thought indeed! Of course, we could not pay them for their work. Would they not simply waste it all on drugs? Far better for it to go to benefitting our talented students. The future inheritors of this beautiful island.
The homeless who cannot dance or sing should of course be removed from areas where tourists might see them. It would be an unrecoverable embarrassment if a tourist was to see that some of our homeless are not talented and that all they can do is sleep on the streets in damp cardboard boxes. Oh the embarrassment! Oh the Shame!
This proposal is not too far off the proposal that my friends in Fianna Fáil made, which was to put air fresheners on the homeless people to hide the smell. But Fianna Fáil have never been dreamers like me. I dream of an Ireland full of talented homeless people. To think of our little country, taking its place among the nations of the earth, with something so special to offer them all, would fill my heart with pride. Oh the honour! Oh the glory!
Seán Farbuckt – Turbine Writer