Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Shame on the residents of Pearse House

While I appreciate the lighter side of Dublin and of people, the strange, the sarcastic, the misspelled and the malformed, I find it incredibly difficult to ignore the traces of the darker side of things.

Not just the junkies, the beggars, the racism or the dilapidation which are deplorable by themselves, but the sadness, the melancholy and the helplessness that tends to permeate the non latte drinking, metro reading, 9 to 5 office bound section of society.

I think it's my awareness of this that makes me seek refuge in humorous graffiti, street art and expression, attempting to accentuate the positive while the negative runs riot, sticking its middle finger up at the attempts to ignore it and screaming loudly to both announce its presence and remind itself it exists. Head down and iPod loud, I do my best to evade it.

And then, every so often, I'll run across things like this - stuck to a wall on the walk beside the Luas tracks - that will rise up, slap me in the face hard and make me realise that my refuge is temporary, that my ignorance is self delusion at best and that Dublin city can be a sad, sad place.

I can only imagine the frustration, anger and ire of the person or people who composed this and while I don't know the story, I can only imagine what fear and desperation prompted them to stick this on a wall for people to read.

From what's remaining, the text is as follows:

  • Shame on the residents to allow child rapist _______ _____ to continue to live among you

  • Shame on you to allow him live with a young mother and her two little girls

  • Shame on _______ _____ to allow this evil pedophile access to her two little babies

  • Shame on the father of these children who allows this rapist and pedophile to sleep under the same roof as them

  • Shame on her mother to allow her grandchildren to be exposed to this monster

  • Shame on the young men of Pearse House for not standing up and doing what their parents are afraid to do

  • Shame on the people that still befriend him

  • Shame on the local publicans that are still serving him

  • Shame on the political representative in the area for ignoring the actions of this filthy scum

  • Shame on the gardai for dragging their heels in [unreadable] appropriate steps to protect these children

  • Shame on the local HSE or their r [unreadable]
Great praise and admiration for the girl [unreadable] come forward and expose [unreadable] what he is and capable of [unreadable]. Their courage is to be admired.


Concerned Parents of Yo [unreadable]"
If it's real, then why is this allowed to happen? Why have things gotten to the stage where they have to resort to a shaming campaign? If it's not, then why is this poster allowed to remain for, based on its wear and tear, a considerable time? Surely a smear campaign cannot be tolerated either? Who should most feel ashamed?

What do people do when they feel they're not being listened to? Where can they go? How do they share their stories? What of those that we never hear?


  1. I suppose the primary reason this came about was fear:
    People don't know whether the accusation is true or not?
    People are afraid of the man.
    People are afraid of drawing attention to themselves and disturbing the balance of their community?
    People are cowards.

  2. Google the name of the fella on the poster...he has previous for other things it seems...

  3. Damn that's a bit out there. Fair play for spotting it,i would have wandered past and though it was a planning application sign or something.

    It's a completely passive agressive way of tackling something that is obviously a big deal to the writer.

    I can understand the sentiments but dealing with a problem that way will only lead to tension in a community.

    I'm surprised it hasn't been taken down as if the accusations are unfounded then it's defamation.And if it's true then why haven't the powers that be taken steps to bring the person to justice?

  4. Well observed Darragh but when you say:

    "Not just the junkies, the beggars, the racism or the dilapidation which are deplorable by themselves, but the sadness, the melancholy and the helplessness that tends to permeate the non latte drinking, metro reading, 9 to 5 office bound section of society."

    It is adopting a "them and us" view of the people that not only inhabit Dublin, but wider society as well.

    This makes the assumption that all is rosey in the latte drinking, metro reading, 9 to 5 office bound section of society. One only has to take a look at the likes of thelivesofothers blog to see that this is not the case. It could be argued that blogs are the equivalent to "paper on the wall", albeit expressed in a more eloquent way. Blogs are basically the answer to this question:

    "What do people do when they feel they're not being listened to? Where can they go? How do they share their stories? What of those that we never hear?"

    Sadly, our miracle economy (such as it was) failed miserably to tackle the exclusion and marginalisation of the people who were driven to put that poster on the wall.

    A great post Darragh, and a debate that must be had.

  5. A tag then one day I will return to this lovely place ...
    just arrived to blogs, found you 3rd, ( 1st two oh dear),then found you and thru you, your lovely, bright, passionate community. Such intelligent, thoughtful, creative community you all are.
    the short: I’ve been cloistered, per my own spiritual creative design over 3 yrs, have barely talked to another soul, heard to emerge and touch the world to prepare for my returning. Didn’t want to, but did, one finger out, carefully holding my breath, then, finding you and your community, I smiled. Grace follows Grace. Went back into my cloister, but then just had to run out quickly, couldn’t stand not commenting after your kind teaching how. :)

    So 1st. I loved reading your posts, traveled backwards and read older ones, too. I so admire your courageous decision and I want to say you ‘are’ a priest, my dear man, just as you are. The www is vast, new ways, new means, so lovely, and, yet so wild, and even treacherous in places. You stepped into this world with Grace and a loving patience. The time and care you take to write your daily posts is so rich and inspiring, yes, and you go even farther. The posts you write to help others navigate this world, patiently helping them to dispel their fear, is well, may I say, very Christlike :) . (Priests take many forms, and we are all priests as we align with our life’s purpose.) Your careful, methodical, and very respectful way of showing steps to those of us who are so very frightened of the medium is a giving that comes from heart. ‘Steps is steps’, but it is fear you dispel and confidence you help manifest. With my new confidence, I puttered back and forth throughout your community on my brief sojourn out.

    The manner in which you bare your heart and soul in telling your stories is really your true gift. Just your soul’s eye view of events (even potent pieces of paper on a wall) is so keen and rich. (I listened to the tune of the day (Pete "El Conde" Rodriguez ) while looking at the seal below it, pretending he was the one singing, lol. ) I must now let go and not dive too far in for now, wish I could take time to comment to some of your community, I will one day, such good writers, sharp, insightful and witty folk, much creative courage.

    Only a bit more cloister for me, then to return bringing forth new life. (Oh a meme- your community taught me that too :) ‘How do ‘you’ bring forth new life?’ ) I am a writer and an artist. I plan to be doing some readings in Dublin one day, when I do, I will buy pints for your party in gratitude, and I will surely be back here to read more one day. (you might do a post on cheerlinks to abbreviations and how to talk shorter :) Oh who knows, I might even have a blog one day. Thank you very much for your inspiration. See you all soon.

  6. okay, i did good, but my name only came out 'i' ...
    i am mary lol

  7. I'd say it's only me but the concept of a "latte drinking, metro reading, 9 to 5 office bound section of society" annoys me almost as much.

    I was actually dangerously close to being eh... "caught" by a pedophile when i was younger, when my parents found out they forgave the family involved(apart from the man himself of course). They're normally pushovers, but the complete lack of some bursting emotional response surprises me looking back.

    Anyways what I'm saying is you can't really comment on the note without knowing a full backstory.

  8. I can kind of empathise with the poster. The frusration and rage at the injustice. The failure of the strong to protect the weak. The weakness of the strong.

    It doesn't read like someone conduction a smear campaign to me. IT sounds like someone expresing fury and misery at their own impotence and the fear and inaction of those around them.

    It also sounds like a thousand other Irish situations where people were too scared to make waves and children suffered. It's nothing new, is it?

  9. I have to say I agree totally with Darragh. I have to say as a Dub there is a part of Dublin which I do see as a them and us. There is an ugly nasty under belly in Dublin which if you were to stray into the wrong pub and dare to even look at them they would start something. And dare I say its tracksuits, innner city areas and kids who spend there days in the pub while their parents drink sums them up. Sorry but it's true. The whole business at Pearse House is very sad if it is true, it needs to be dealt with properly not by mob mentality. I imagine the people who wrote it are happy enough have their own agenda and live by a set of morals which they change to suit the story.

  10. Without knowing the back story - People have to live their lives after rehabilitation however I can see where worried parents can come from if there is a convicted child rapist living in their area.