O’Connell’s heart would have been with the fans in Rome


Daniel O’Connell, the liberator, had the footwork to avoid the dodge and dive of the Duke of Wellington and Sir Robert Peel to deliver Catholic emancipation in 1829. Even though O’Connell held that Catholicism and nationalism were two sides of the same coin, it was tolerant of all religions and none.

In 1847, with failing health, O’Connell made a final pilgrimage to his beloved Rome. Unfortunately, he died on the way, in Genoa, and failed to fulfill his desire to go to his God from the Eternal City. In his last breath he uttered the famous last words: “My body to Ireland, my heart to Rome and my soul to heaven.

In accordance with his wish, O’Connell’s heart was buried in the Church of St. Agatha in Rome. His body rests in the Glasnevin cemetery. Without a doubt, as a champion of Catholicism, his soul is in Heaven.

If O’Connell was still alive he would have been at Wembley Stadium on Sunday night cheering on his beloved Italians.

He loved Italian culture, energy and liveliness. He had an intense aversion to the betrayal and infamous tactics of the English nobility, although he had no quarrels with the ordinary British people. Like O’Connell, my heart was with the Azzurri on Sunday night.

Their beautiful, expansive attacking football contrasted sharply with the overly cautious defensive approach of the English. The Italians deserved to win as they played the best football in the competition and weren’t intimidated by the unsportsmanlike behavior of some English fans. Live italy !

Billy Ryle

Tralee, County Kerry

No hard feelings or love lost for lack of support in English

Although England lost the Euro final on penalties, Italy won a great game.

Being English I wanted England to win and I was saddened to see how many Irish and Scots wanted us to lose. However, I wish Ireland, Scotland and Wales the best of luck for next year’s World Cup after England. If it’s not London, then Cardiff, Edinburgh or Dublin deserve success and glory.

Dominique shelmerdine

London, England

Murphy’s costly walkout led to Bacik’s byelection victory

“The coalition is mutilated by Ivana Bacik’s victory for work,” said the Independent Irish title (July 10). Idiot me, thinking the above situation was not caused by Bacik’s victory, but by Eoghan Murphy’s decision to forgo the pledge he made to the voters in this constituency to represent them for the life of the present Dáil. Am I wrong?

Besides, can someone tell me, even roughly, how much the by-election cost?

Brendan Casserly

Bishopstown, Cork

Statements on Covid are going in the wrong direction

I notice a tendency for some commentators to pronounce Covid as ‘cow-vid’. With collective immunity in mind perhaps?

Tom gilsenan

Beaumont, D9

The state of emergency is dangerously endless

Your columnist Larissa Nolan has hit the nail on the head (“The central fault of Ireland’s pandemic policy is a chronic lack of common sense”, Independent Irish, July 12). The constant “panic station” approach of the pandemic by our government and public health experts is dangerously overdone.

They seem to have a fanatic urge to keep the country in a sort of endless “state of emergency”. Good job, they weren’t there during WWII, known as the emergency in this country. If they had been, the emergency would still be ongoing.

John o’connor

Killarney, County Kerry

The vision of the “living with Covid” strategy is totally wrong

Tess Finch-Lees’ point of view (“We shouldn’t be forced to choose between school and child safety”, Independent Irish, July 10) that Ireland is pursuing a “living with Covid” strategy is wrong. Since March 2020, Ireland has experienced the most severe confinement in Europe and one of the most severe in the world. We have spent about half of the last 16 months in Level 5 restrictions, and we are the only country in Europe to have shut down the construction industry.

Living with Covid would imply having few restrictions compatible with the fact that hospitals are not overwhelmed. Florida lifted all restrictions months ago and its hospitals have not been overwhelmed. Meanwhile, Australia, which is pursuing an ‘elimination’, currently has a significant portion of its population on 23-hour-a-day lockdown.

John kelly

Letterkenny, County Donegal


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