Anti-Irish Humor

glevy at acnet.pratt.edu glevy at acnet.pratt.edu
Sat Jun 3 21:57:18 MDT 1995


I was going to let this issue die, however, your "humorous" comments
concerning the Irish and a dead friend of mine require a response.

The belief that Irish people will get into a fight at the drop of a hat
(so-called "Irish temper") is a racist stereotype.  I certainly did NOT
claim that all Irish people have a violent temperment, although, my dead
friend was certainly a person who believed in defending himself and his
people from racial insults.

You, evidently, feel that the death of a young man in his 20s is a cause
for laughter.  I have not, I admit, been laughing too much in recent
days.  Yesterday, a group of about 125 punks and activists met in a park
in the Lower East Side ("La Plaza Cultural").  When "Waltzing Matilda"
was played, I saw scores of young punks with tattoos and body piercings
break down and cry like babies in memory of their fallen friend and
comrade. A yuppie, with a sense of humor that you would appreciate,
walked disdainfully by the gathering and contemptuously flicked a bottle
cap into a makeshift memorial for Crusty Dave.  The punks gave chase and
the yuppie (unfortunately) got away.

I have little regard for a Marxist who believes that the death of a
militant anarchist and Irish revolutionary is cause for laughter.  The
same people who attended the memorial yesterday demonstrated today in
support of squatters and were met with pepper gas, clubs and arrests
(earlier in the week the City used a tank against squatters and had three
helicopters full of SWAT teams ready to jump onto the roofs of the
buildings to ensure that about 125 squatters would become homeless).
Mayor Guiliani described the City's action thusly: "People have to learn
that they can't go on indefinitely not paying rent."  I trust that you
find his comment quite amusing.

Don't bother responding -- I have nothing further that I wish to say to
you concerning this topic.

Jerry


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