21st February, 2002


Dear Michael
With reference to Tony O’Sullivans ‘ Questions for T.D’s. “Where are the amenities for our kids in Douglas?”
I have a thirteen-year-old son who lives and breathes ‘Skateboarding’. It’s the up and coming sport. For kids there are anti-smoking, anti-drugs and anti-drinking but there are no amenities for them to skate, in Douglas, without being moved. Some of my own neighbours are unhappy with them skating in their own park. Other housing estates move them on as the noise is irritating to people and yet the kids are causing no harm to anyone, but to themselves from falls. Their only option is to travel into town to the new Skatepark, which is not only expensive, but also there is the risk of having them in town on a Saturday. Their names were taken in town last Saturday by the Gardai for skating on the footpath – trying to catch the bus home. I do understand skating on a footpath is a danger for people using the footpaths, but surely the kids are in more danger skating on the roadway, as we can see from the child who lost his life last week in Kinsale.
Douglas Park provides amenities for the young and old but not for our teenagers. Why not select a small part of it for the skaters. I understand Insurance may be a problem but as a parent, my son is my responsibility, it would be up to me to take care of his injuries. Maybe there is some unused area in the Woollen Mills that could provide an area for the kids at a small charge.
I am sure they’re are other parents out there that would agree with me
Concerned mother
(Name and address with Editor)

Thank You Douglas Village Shopping Centre

On behalf of The Parish Community of Christ the King, Turner's Cross I thank the Organisers of the Douglas Village Shopping Centre Community Award Scheme for their cheque of € 1000 towards The Church Restoration Fund. It is very much appreciated.
We also thank the Parishioner (who wishes to remain anonymous) for nominating the Parish for the award.
Douglas Village Shopping Centre is to be congratulated for fostering community initiatives. We thank you for the service you provide to the Community
Yours sincerely,
Fr. Kerry Murphy-O'Connor P.P..
Christ the King Parish, Turner’s Cross

Immigrant’s Letter

Dear Sir!
I'm quite sure that my opinion is not relevant for TD O'Flynn, because I don't have a Vote in this country but nevertheless I say Noel O'Flynn does not speak for me! And from my own experience as a Night-cashier in a busy Filling station, the only people behaving anti-social there are Irish! But please, no one should get me wrong, 99% of our customers are genuine and decent, it's the remaining 1% who spoil the entire image! Apart from the verbal abuse I constantly get (one very nice Irish guy even promised to shoot me if he'll meet me the next time out on the street!), we have at least up to 10 "Drive Off's" per day, which means in other words, people are heading off without paying for their Petrol! And those are certainly Irish customers, because Asylum seekers usually don't own a car! What steps is TD O'Flynn going to take against this anti-social and criminal behaviour? Or are these individuals allowed to carry on with it, only because they are Irish?
Yours sincerely!
Stefan Schorr,
Ashford Court,
Grange, Douglas.

Law and Order
Dear Editor,
With reference to the recent vicious and brutal attacks which have occurred in this city over the recent past and the controversial arguments this has lead to in the media, I would like to out line a few points that I feel have not been highlighted amply by the politicians, the Garda Superintendent, Court Judges etc. of this fair city of ours.
A few weeks ago the listening audience of a local radio station were subjected to an interview / sermon from a retired Judge informing us that the reason this city was in such dismay was because of the late-night bars / night clubs which are part of this city. Personally I felt this a pathetic statement to come from some one who would have the ability to make a great change to the current condition our city finds itself in. It has amused me greatly over the past few days to listen to those in public office "pass the buck" and put the blame on others yet no one has stood up and taken control of a situation that could very easily be rectified.
As I mention, in the recent sermon from the retired judge he omitted to mention the pitiable sentences that are passed down by the mainly male orientated judges of this country. For example on the Examiner of Friday 15th 2002 last I was honestly quite sickened to read the details of just two cases which were presented to the courts recently. Both case’s which as any "normal thinking" person would see were quite appalling. Yet the judge that sentenced both perpetrators, he obviously didn’t feel that either of these criminals deserved prison sentences. The victims left the "Great Court" where they believed they would get justice for the wrongs that had been committed to them, wrongs that would inevitably affect the rest of their lives but they were sadly disappointed.
The two cases (briefly) were as follows:
1. A young male was assaulted were he received a bottle to the face which caused him to receive 35 stitches to his face. He received a 3 year suspended sentence and the perpetrator was order to pay a sum of compensation.
2.Two young girls were sexually abused over a period of 12 years. The perpetrator is now 72, he got a 3 year suspended sentence.
The sentences, I feel says it all! For those who are of the opinion that all the trouble that exists is the fault of the extended drinking hour’s etc. I can only say and recommend they take a look at some of our European neighbours i.e. Holland. This is a country where I think it is safe to say that absolutely everything that one could imagine is legalised yet the Crime rate of the country is at an all time low as with the Isle of Man. Those in government have taken a responsible approach to crime and it is simply not tolerated at any level. Perhaps if the "Public Figures" of this country spent more time studying these countries and how they implement their laws instead of debating on local radio stations and making public statements of dismay, Ireland and the city of Cork may have some hope of surviving the ghastly crimes that are occurring on a daily basis and that we would no longer be subjected to the horrendous news reports we hear.
Perhaps it is time too that the government take a close look at the Garda force of this country. The Garda Superintendent stated with reference to the assault on a young Limerick man studying in Cork who is fighting for his life after a brutal attack on the Grand Parade last Saturday Feb. 16th that the Garda force are on the streets yet couldn’t be everywhere at one time. This is both a correct and incorrect statement. It is true that they are on the streets of this city but they don’t get involved and this is something that anyone who is familiar with "Saturday Night on the town" can confirm. On the night of this particular assault I happened to pass down Oliver Plunkett street at approx. 12.40 AM where I spotted two members of the Garda issuing tickets on parked cars yet only minutes later in the near vicinity the vicious attack took place. Perhaps if the Garda force that are on our streets in such "large numbers" took more interest in the safety of innocent people attempting to enjoy a night out instead of issuing parking fines, a lot of these problems may not arise.
Yours Sincerely
(Name and address with Editor)

Rubbish Collection
Hi Michael,
We are all very busy at the moment doing our bit for the environment recycling etc. At the weekend I decided to go down to Douglas shopping centre to put all my cans papers etc. in the skips and I ended bringing everything back home again. The skips are overflowing and there are trolleys full of cans etc. next to the skips. Who is responsible for these skips, it looks awful. It takes all the good out of it. My kids are coming home from school fully aware and informing us about what we should be recycling and making sure we do it.
Keep up the good work.
Ger O'Herlihy.