The name you dare not whisper
I had a quiet chuckle the other day.
I came across a news item about carnage and mayhem in a town in County Limerick.
Aha! I says to myself – Rathkeale?
Apparently the main street had been wrecked and several vehicles were very badly damaged. A fight had broken out between two rival “gangs”.
Nah! I says to myself, not gangs. I bet it’s families.
It was Rathkeale.
What I found fascinating about the whole affair was the lack of just one word in the entire article – Travelers!
You see, Rathkeale used to be an ordinary quiet little Irish town, sitting there in the Limerick countryside and minding its own little business. A grand spot by all accounts. But then, for reasons now lost in the mists of time, travelers started moving in. It became the place for travelers to buy a place. And of course as they moved in, so the ordinary folk moved out. Who wants to live in a town where the pubs and hotels are taken over by drunken, rowdy and frequently violent mobs?
I have nothing against Travelers in general. What I do have a problem with is their subgroup – the Knackers. These are the lads who seem to spend their lives pissed and aggressive. Occasionally they sober up a bit and do some work “we’re doin’ a job down da road missus and we have a spare bit a tarmac over so I can do your driveway dirt cheap?”.but fist fighting is their main pastime.
There seems to be a fair bit of hostility amongst the Knackers and there always seems to be a feud between various families. And they solve their little rivalries usually with a fair bit of violence involving machetes, bill hooks, meat cleavers and anything else sharp and heavy that comes to hand. Hence the chaos in Rathkeale. To make matters worse, there is a tradition that Traveler families from all around Ireland and the UK all gather in Rathkeale for the festive season thereby doubling or even tripling the town’s population
The problem is that we mustn’t mention the Knackers. Travelers recently got some official recognition as an “ethnic minority”, whatever that means. As a result they can’t be barred from any establishment [even if they’ve wrecked the place] or even mentioned negatively as they then scream discrimination and are quite prepared to go to court. It’s amazing how they can totally ignore the law of the land except for the laws on discrimination?
So in this article, there is mention of the chaos and damage and how the violence is unacceptable etcetera etcetera, but nowhere do they mantion that it was rival boms of Knackers, or even Travelers. Interestingly they do mention a group “who are not from the Travelling Community“, which it seems is politically all right. to say
Travel tip –
Avoid Rathkeale for a while..
There will not be much tax revenue taken out of that town.
Bet the banks are not much used either.
It’s a brave bank that would open a branch there…
The deliberate omission of the word ‘Traveller’ does nothing to help either the local community or the members of the Travelling community or are subject to the abusive violence of some of the male members.
Mysogynistic attitudes to those within their own community and the downright racist attitudes towards members of the settled community, to the extent of physically preventing teenage girls from mixing with anyone who is not a Traveller, belong to another century.
Prejudice and criminality should be called out for what they are
In fairness they’re not all violent yobs. The misogynistic culture is scary though. The girls spend their early lives just dreaming of their one day – the wedding where no expense is spared, with stretch-limousines, massive flouncy dresses and horse drawn “fairy” coaches. The rest of life is a very steep downhill.