Posts Tagged ‘ Catholicism ’

News In Brief: Joan’s Phone-Gate Ruins World Egg Day

Joan Burton demonstrates her own new phone (image:

Joan Burton demonstrates her own new phone (image:

It’s that time of the week again, NIB knows you all sit prostrate and silent waiting for your weekly News in Brief, well here it is.

It seems a week cannot pass without Joan Burton saying something stupid. This time it was water meter protestors who she said: “Seem to have extremely expensive phones, tablets, video cameras. There has been the most extensive filming in relation to any of these actions that I have ever seen anywhere. Hollywood would be in the ha’penny place compared to what’s done here.” Holy mother of God! How could they? They’re obviously all social-welfare scrounging, JobBridge dropouts aren’t they Joan?! People on the dole shouldn’t be allowed food let alone phones, the shtate this country’s in, if only we didn’t have to fund Joan’s massive salary, free top-of-the-range devices, car and fecking dry cleaning.

Meanwhile in the Dail they were discussing removing the morning’s opening prayer (do you ever think how mad it is that our politicians sit around and talk about shite for hours, just for the craic?) Of course it’s all just a cover for playground-politics and evading the real issues, but Clare Daly thinks saying a prayer in the morning is “offensive”. It is part of a wider battle to get a law from 1855 prosecuting blasphemy removed from the constitution. But Clare, if no-ones given a shite since 1855 why should we bother now? They’ll only have to reprint the whole constitution (probably on pretty pink paper with a laminated cover) before they decided there’s a law banning cutting your toe nails they want to scrap. Continue reading

News In Brief: Garth-Gate Simmers On As Do The Spuds!


We love da shpuds! (image courtesy:

We love da shpuds! (image courtesy:


Summer’s over everyone, go back indoors. There’s plenty of rather stupid news to catch-up on anyway.

The PSNI were called after a Ryder Cup flag hung up in Rory McIlroy’s hometown was mistaken for a ‘terrorist’ flag. The poor fella flying the flag was forced to explain to the plod, the emblem on his flag was actually that of the European Union that he’d put up for a party not that of ‘an Islamic terrorist group’ as was reported to the police. According to the BBC, whom the homeowner told his story in the end everyone was laughing. HAHAHA Terrorism! HAHAHA Golf! Deadly craic. Continue reading

A Year in Brief: Part One


What a year it’s been; Hitler birthday cakes, mutant rats, and Bob Geldof off to space! To celebrate the end of another 365 days here are some of NIB’s favourite stories of the year.

Kicking off the year in festive spirit a man in Derry was fined after stealing a CCTV camera which “became his friend”. Police found Peter Morrison, 24, drunk and “petting” the camera as they arrived to arrest him. CCTV pets are for life not just for Christmas. Continue reading

San Patricios – Mexico’s Fighting Irish

If there’s one thing that the Irish are known for, besides potatoes and heavy drinking, it’s spreading ourselves around the world. Since the days of empire, Irish emigrants have found homes in America, Canada, Australia and India, even as close to home as our English neighbours. But one particular country that doesn’t really spring to mind so often would be Mexico.

By the 1840s, much of the US army was made up of Catholic immigrants, mainly from Germany and Ireland. When the Mexican War (1846-1848) broke out, which had its roots in the annexation of Texas and the westward push of American settlers, they were sent as part of General Zachary Taylor’s invading force to invade the bordering country. The Mexican government, aware of the prejudices in America against such immigrants, began a campaign to win them to their cause. They were urged by Mexican propaganda to throw off the yoke of Protestant oppression while it was insinuated the America intended to destroy Catholicism in Mexico.

Dubious about why they were fighting a Catholic country in an army where their superiors mistreated them, the Mexican propaganda campaign was very effective in turning these men’s minds and loyalties, and hundreds deserted Taylor’s army. “The San Patricios were alienated both from American society as well as the US Army,” says Professor Kirby Miller from the University of Missouri, an expert on the history of Irish immigration. “They realised that the army was not fighting a war of liberty, but one of conquest against fellow Catholics such as themselves.” In November 1846 General Antonio López de Santa Anna organized American deserters with other foreigners in Mexico to form the San Patricio Battalion, or St. Patrick’s Company, a name it quite probably received from its Irish-American leader, John Riley who had been a member of the Fifth United States Infantry. The company saw action several times throughout the course of the war; at Monterrey, Saltillo and Buena Vista, each time receiving praise for their fighting.

Following the failed defence of Mexico City, the San Patricios found themselves back in the hands of the United States Army. John Riley was one of the lucky few and as he had technically deserted before the war between Mexico and the United States was actually declared, he escaped death. Instead he received fifty lashes while the letter “D” was branded on his cheek. Though some members of the San Patricios escaped death, many weren’t so lucky. The sentences imposed on the San Patricios outraged the Mexican public. In Toluca, for example, Mexican authorities prevented rioters from trying to retaliate against American prisoners of war.

The story of the fighting Irish in Mexico didn’t end there. By March of 1848 the Mexicans had found enough original San Patricios combined with fresh deserters to form two more companies while they continued bargaining for the release of those members in American custody, who weren’t released until the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. The San Patricios actively continued as a group, patrolling across Mexico and protecting the people from bandits and Indians. They later became involved in revolts within Mexico until a presidential order from General Herrera stopped them under which Riley was arrested under suspicion of his involvement in a plot to kidnap the President. The San Patricios were recalled to Mexico City so the government could monitor the group and their actions at a closer range. In the end, Herrera, in order to end the problems with the San Patricios as well as an effort to cut the post-war budget, dissolved the company in 1848. Most members remained in Mexico as they couldn’t return to the United States.

Some US historians still regard these men as traitors who deserted their army. Mexicans, however, see them as heroes, and so they honour them in a commemoration held each September. In 1993, the Irish began their own ceremony to honour the Irish soldiers, in Clifden, Co. Galway, Riley’s old hometown. While being held as a prisoner in Mexico City, Riley wrote a letter to a friend in Michigan in which he said “Be not deceived by a nation that is at war with Mexico, for a friendlier and more hospitable people than the Mexicans there exists not on the face of the earth.”

Pregnant Woman Dies After Hospital Denies Termination

A pregnant woman has died in hospital following a miscarriage just days after being refused the abortion that may have saved her life.

By Kerrie Mitchell

Three separate investigations have been launched into the death of 31 year old married Indian woman, Savita Halappanavar, following her death in Galway University Hospital.

It is understood that Mrs Halappanavar who lived in Roscam, Co. Galway with her husband, 34 year old Praveen, an engineer employed by Boston Scientific, died on October 28th after contracting a severe case of blood poisoning.

Mrs Halappanavar was admitted to Galway University Hospital a week earlier complaining of intense back pain where it was quickly discovered that the woman, now 17 weeks pregnant, was in fact miscarrying. Her husband Praveen claims that despite repeated requests from both his wife and her family for a medical termination hospital officials refused to carry out the procedure because a foetal heartbeat could still be detected.

It has also been reported – by numerous sources – that when Mr Halappanavar questioned the hospitals refusal to carry out the abortion he was informed by officials that it was not allowed because Ireland is a “Catholic country.”

Although the procedure was delayed a further three days, Mrs Halappanavar did eventually undergo surgery to remove the remains of the fetus. Following this the woman subsequently developed septicemia (this occurs when bacteria enters the blood stream) an infection which proved to be fatal. At 1.10 a.m. on October 28 Mrs Halappanavar was pronounced dead.

Now, Mrs Halappanavars distraught family is said to be taking legal action against the hospital claiming that if the fetus had in fact been removed earlier the life of this woman, a beloved wife and daughter, could have been saved.

Three separate investigations are now being carried out by the coroner in Galway, the local hospital’s risk review group and the HSE’s National Incident Management Team.

A spokesperson for the Hospital has refused to comment saying that the hospital cannot under any circumstances discuss the details of an individual patient within the media.

Undoubtedly this tragic case will re-open the debate on abortion which is perhaps Ireland’s most controversial and divisive social, legal and medical issue.

Currently, Ireland’s position in relation to abortion is set out in the Constitution as follows “it is lawful to terminate a pregnancy in Ireland if it is established as a matter of probability that there is a real and substantial risk to the life, as distinct from the health, of the mother, which can only be avoided by a termination of the pregnancy.” This ruling also takes into account the mental health of the mother in question and the potential risk posed to her life which may arise from the threat of suicide.

Naturally this particular case will enrage pro-choice campaigners who will argue that this proves that abortions are not taking place in those cases where the mothers life is in fact at risk while pro-life campaigners will counter that matters are much more complex than this.

In what many reporters are dubbing a “terrible irony” this case comes just days after the Irish Government delayed revealing its stance on abortion. Health Minister Dr James Reilly was originally scheduled to report back to a European body by the end of October on the Government’s proposed actions following the ruling of the European Court Of Human Rights on the abortion regime in this country. Two years ago the Strasbourg Court criticised the Irish Government for leaving its own courts with a lack of clear information regarding lawful abortions. Dr Reilly now has just weeks to set out a plan to respond to the Courts ruling.

Over 1,000 people gathered outside Dàil Eireann last night in order to vent their fury at Ireland’s abortion stance following Savita’s death. Large crowds also assembled in Cork and other parts of the country to protest.