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We Must Learn From A Brutal Murder?

by Jimmy Rhatigan

GOOD CHRIST, it has taken the ugly killing of a beautiful woman to bring a torrent of condemnation of the abuse of the innocent.

Whether we are prepared to admit it or not we are still at the stage in our one time isle of saints and scholars that we ignore a dangerous bend on a road until someone is killed.

The murder of an obviously wonderful teacher called Aishling Murphy in Tullamore brought shock and horror to the midlands and indeed to all of our country.

For too long, we have put up with fairytales of ‘never again’ from our power brokers who are so busy feathering their own nests that grim times to them are merely trivialities to be tolerated.

Outpourings of grief are understandable and welcome as are condemnations of a brutal crime against humanity.

Yet the cruel event that stole a woman from her loved ones is not the first time that a crime of this magnitude has been committed.

Look back on the records and you will find that many people, male and female, have gone missing, some presumed murdered and while lip service is sometimes paid to their disappearance, earth is not always moved to solve mysteries.

In fairness, some Herculean efforts have been made to find the missing or murdered but effort would appear to be sporadic rather than ongoing.

Some murders are never solved.

Rhetoric abounds but as families shrouded in grief suffer on, those in power offer little more than waffle and broken promises.

Listening to the outpourings of those who knew and loved Ms Murphy was heart-breaking.

Then followed a procession of platitudes from those we will simply describe as being from the political class, rather than politicize the morons, thereby giving them credibility they simply don’t deserve.


On the podium were so-called leading politicians who paid glowing tributes Ms Murphy, sympathized with her family and promised that no stone would be left unturned to find her killer.

It was as if the latter should not be the case for every awful misdeed.

And, whether they like it or not, our politicians should long ago have been tackling a horrific problem that has been festering for far too long and is now a boil on the face of Irish society.

Those in high places have a habit of turning up after a horse has bolted or a treacherous road has claimed another life. 

The routine is to say that it shouldn’t have happened and the promise is that it won’t happen again.

Gobbeldygook and crocodile tears are not worth a damn to grieving parents, brothers and sisters, sons or daughters of a murdered man or woman.

Reality is that many parts of urban and rural Ireland are deadly dangerous.

Would you walk the footpaths or roadways to your home on the periphery of Kilkenny City circa the witching hour?

I doubt it.


God love the family of the late Ms Murphy.

But we should now leave her nearest and dearest, the children she taught and the teachers she worked with, to grieve and to spare them the rants and panderings of Government politicians after a ticking time bomb explodes.

The latter will continue to spew rhetoric as a no longer safe Ireland slithers into an ugly sewer, a dangerous place that is a threat to all our loved ones. 

If someone is badly beaten or worse in a local area at night the best we can hope for is a promise of better street lighting.

That is called a sop.

As for action to work towards preventing any repeat of a heinous crime, forget it.

That is not the way Ireland works. 


Sadly, this applies to so many aspects of our lives, mothers and babies, cervical cancer scandal, homelessness, hospital waiting lists.

A gargantuan Spring cleaning of our country is the only way forward.

Otherwise we will continue to asphyxiate in our own vomit.

I don’t apologise for my rant nor do I intend any hurt to good, decent people.

But I can assure that if Ms Murphy were my mother, sister, or daughter, I would be out with my gun blazing.

If I had a weapon.

That would appear to be the only option left to shattered families. 

And, in fairness, that would only create more hurt and pain.

God rest you Ms Murphy, may Heaven be your bed.

As for those who have allowed our country to slip into a dangerous mire for law abiding citizens, they don’t deserve to lie easily in their beds.

But, as they have done for too long, they will simply snore their heads off and surface only when there are political kudos to be garnered.

Talk is cheap but can be costly.

And political brass neck is the price we pay for continually electing morons whose only aim is self-serving.

Hopefully Ms Murphy’s death won’t be in vain but what a huge price for her family to pay as Mother Ireland frets and lives in fear for the wellbeing of her other offspring.

What we desperately need to ease our plight is rigorous community policing, feet on the ground, a presence that we believe can be so positive.

That should be a huge help to solving our problems as women and men in blue should certainly be a huge deterrent to those who would maim or kill.

Someone, anyone must have the wherewithal to put such a plan into action.

Other suggestions to our politicians who, no doubt, will form a committee and off we go on another merry-go-round.

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