West Belfast Youth Talks Back … but mostly to itself #openuptheconversation #youthtalksback

Yvette Shapiro introduced this year’s panel to an audience of 30 or so youth and another 30 less youthful in Whiterock Leisure Centre: Cllr Steven Corr (SF), Julie-Anne Corr (PUP), Anna Lo MLA (Alliance) and Sean Connolly (applied psychologist). She reminded the audience that the young people from West Belfast’s Upper Springfield Development Trust Participation Group had identified education, racism and apathy as local concerns. The sound in the hall was variable and the recordings are hissy (despite my attempts …

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The decline of traditional patriotism in Britain and Ireland

Remember the great closing episode of Blackadder from the trenches of the Great War where the artful dodger meets his nemesis at last   : “ We need a futile gesture?” The “futile gesture” being that he was to lead his men over the top to be mown down by the German machine guns.  But it was in Ireland that the futile gesture worked best, in the blood sacrifice of 1916.   The Irish Times had some fun at the taoiseach’s  expense …

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