The Tricolour - an historic symbol of national identity and culture, or potentially alienating to some?

A FINGAL councillor has warned against flying the Irish flag outside County Hall for fear of offending non-nationals living here.

Blanchardstown-based Cllr Matthew Waine opposed a motion proposed by Cllr Daire Ni Laoi (SF) to hoist the Tricolour at the council’s HQ in Swords.

The Solidarity Party public representative was one of just two who voted against it, suggesting that the red flag of Marxism and Socialism should be flown instead.

He said: “We have one of the most multi-cultural populations in the whole country living in Fingal, and I think we need to consider the sensitivity of this.

“The issue of religion, language, nationality … all of those issues are extremely sensitive and we’ve seen how that can play out to divide people.

“I would prefer to see the flagpoles used to express solidarity, so for example on the week of Pride, we should show the Rainbow flag.

“I think we should fly the flags of minority groups, like Pavee Point.

“I come from the tradition of the workers’ movement which doesn’t see the country of your birth as being anything significant.

“I would prefer to see the red flag fly outside County Hall, and maybe in the future that will be the case.”

His view was supported by Cllr David O’Connor (Ind) who said: “You’re saying what a lot of people think.”

Cllr Brian Dennehy (FF) also said he understood where Cllr Waine was coming from, in that flags can be “used as a wedge to divide people”.

But Fianna Fail’s Cllr Darragh Butler said: “I think it’s staggering that a councillor should say we shouldn’t fly our national flag, or hide our own flag away.”

Independent Cllr Jimmy Guerin said: “I take offence at the comments of Cllr Waine. I’m not surprised at him.”

Cllr Ni Laoi said: “I’d love to see the national flag flying from the turrets of Malahide Castle and Swords Castle and Ardgillen, but for now I’m just proposing that this flag, this symbol of tolerance, inclusion and respect, be flown outside County Hall.”

After a lengthy debate in the council chamber, with the majority of members supporting the proposal, the motion was carried by 34 votes to two.

13 COMMENTS

  1. I hope that this is a wind up .
    This is our national flag and anyone who wants to come live work and enjoy what this country offers are welcome but should honor and respect our flag .
    Am tired of trying to please everyone but this is last straw . Why dont we just get rid of our tradition s and customs and except e eryone elses . Gobshite to even think this is ok .

  2. every country displays their flag .what a fucking shower of absolute gobshites to suggest we put our flag away .is every country I visit not gonna have their own flag displayed because it might cause offence to me .HOW MUCH ARE THEY ACTUALLY GETTING TO BE SO SENSITIVE TO PEOPLE COMING INTO IRELAND WHEN THEY DON’T GIVE A FUCK ABOUT OR LISTEN TO IRISH PEOPLE.no offence to the people coming in but theirs something very strange about our government not wanting to upset people when they don’t give a FUCK about the people of Ireland.

  3. It’s not like we haven’t given up everything already to suit our so called leaders. Sure why not take our identity away too…. Who comes up with this stuff. Afraid of offending someone? Sure let them be offended, it doesn’t do anything. I’m offended by boy bands, any chance ye will take them away.. No? But you will take our flag down? Gobshites is putting it lightly.

  4. What aload of bulls..t will someone please help me understand what i missed..did we change from IRELAND to another name over night…..im an irish citizen born and bread….my flag is green/white/orange…..you can be guaranteed that other countries wouldnt give a damn about our believes ,cultures, history etc if we lived in their country…as far as im concerned you live by the lay of the land you chose to call home. If your not happy then move on and i dont mean that in a nasty way what ever others might think , im just sick of this beautiful country dancing to someone elses tune…im actually starting to get very annoyed while writing this….Why is the government always willing to give up whats OURS to make other people happy That also goes for selling us out to Brussels during crash..under no circumstance should our flag be removed your living in IRELAND

  5. How stupid can you be? Flags are universally used to UNITE people, not divide. I hope and pray that the Irish, or any other right-thinking people will never fall to the downright lunacy of “inclusiveness” that infects America, and has lead to the hemorrhaging of civility and total division of society, pitting militant groups violently against one another, and everyone else caught in the middle.

  6. If non nationals don’t like us flying our National Flag , let them go back to where they came from. I am Irish and proud of it and proud of our Irish flag, it took us 800 years to be able to fly it. The powers that be should be more in touch with the Irish people and their needs and wants

  7. I lived in Ireland for a year BECAUSE I wanted to live IN IRELAND for a time. If you’d have taken down the flag for me, I’d have left or never come in the first place. I want Ireland to STAY IRISH. THAT’S what I love about it.

  8. Hugo Chavez was just on the stamp a murdering communist so why is anyone surprised that they would like to fly a communist flag

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