Racist stereotypes have no place in Brexit debate – Breathnach

Published on: 11 August 2017

Fianna Fáil TD for Louth and Spokesperson on Cross Border Co-operation Declan Breathnach has called on Country Squire magazine to apologise and withdraw an article entitled “Eire- Get stuffed” from its website.

The disparaging article, which was posted on Thursday, advocates for a hard Brexit and argues that the Republic of Ireland is “disloyal”.

Deputy Breathnach commented, “I was genuinely shocked to read this disgusting article. The lazy stereotypes peddled by the piece are deeply disappointing in this day and age. Aside from the inaccuracies and casual dismissal of the dire impact Brexit may have upon this island, North and South, the author specifically attacks Irish culture and history. Depicting Irish people as criminals and drug mules, the article trades in racist stereotypes to make a broader point about Irish-UK relations that belongs to the 19th century not the 21st.

“Brexit is a serious issue that demands real debate. It is not helped by megaphone diplomacy or vicious articles such as this one. We need to engage in a constructive debate about how we can reach an agreement with the UK over the future. The racism of some Brexiteers, which is evident in this article, makes that harder. I am calling on Country Squire magazine to retract the article and issue and apology for the offence it wilfully caused.

“All media outlets have a responsibility to make a meaningful contribution to the Brexit debate. Trading in racist stereotyping and bitter broad stroke statements has no place in that discussion. The magazine should do the right thing and act appropriately”, Deputy Breathnach concluded.

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