The Great Famine of the 1840s was undoubtedly the most catastrophic event in Ireland’s history. With an estimated one million dead and another million lost to emigration, the population of the island fell by around 25% in the space of a few years. After a century and a half our population still hasn’t recovered to the pre-famine high of 8.4 million. Fast forward to today and the Irish constitute a tiny percentage of the world population – a minuscule 0.06%.
To befuddle matters more, this figure includes many foreign nationals who have been bestowed Irish citizenship in recent years. Contrast this tiny population with superpowers like India and China with 1.3 billion and 1.4 billion people respectively. Our insignificant, sparsely populated island must appear to be nothing more than a curiosity on the world stage.
The UN predicts Africa will impressively increase its population to almost two billion by 2050. Most nations outside Europe continue to grow as well, seeing the importance of a young population. Other countries discuss their demographic strengths and failings as regular policy points. Meanwhile back home in Ireland, the birth rate falls as Irish people have fewer children and have them later in life, if at all. The average age of first-time mothers in the Republic of Ireland is now 31 years old.
This country once held the honour of having the highest birthrate in Europe. Now dats suggests we are destined to join Germany, Italy, and the old Eastern bloc countries as yet another European nation with a shrinking population. The recent legalisation of abortion will almost certainly accelerate the decline, just as it has done elsewhere.
The old stereotype of the large Irish Catholic family is no more according to demographic statistics – we threw off the shackles of religion with considerable vigour, but one can’t help but wonder if we have now cut off our nose to spite our face.
German-born Prof. Ferdinand von Prondzynski, former President of DCU, once famously predicted that if current trends continue, the Irish will become a minority in their own homeland by the year 2050 – a prediction picked up by the Irish Times. It’s ironic that it’s often well-wishing foreigners who publicly announce concern at the rapidly changing demographics of Ireland. It is tourists that most often recognize that the Irish people and our culture are something unique and worth preserving, something we Irish seem blind to.
The double whammy of falling native birth rates combined with increased immigration does not paint a bright future for the Gael. Environmentalists will lament the declining populations of the Giant Panda and Black Rhino, but why isn’t the same concern shown for declining human populations?
Politicians will rattle off the old clichéd talking points: mass migration is necessary to take care of an aging population, replace retiring workers, pay our pensions, and so forth. While some immigration is valuable, they will inevitably neglect to mention that a 2011 CSO study found a vastly inordinate amounts of migrants from certain backgrounds to be unemployed, making their economic contribution to Ireland somewhat doubtful.
An alternative strategy that is often overlooked is the possibility of bringing home members of our massive global diaspora. They constitute a massive pool of untapped potential that could seamlessly integrate into Irish life much more easily than a totally foreign culture. This open invite to the diaspora was used with incredible success in Israel, where returning Jews cultivated desert wastelands in the fledgling state into high yield farmland and within the span of 50 years created one of the most advanced economies in the world. Today Israel boasts a high tech sector almost rivalling all but Silicon Valley.
The fact that hurts the most is that the population decline is not the result of measures imposed on us by a hostile foreign power, and then by tragedy and mismanagement as was the case with the Great Famine and our continued decline into the mid 20th century. It’s the result of political decisions made by democratically elected leaders and the personal choices of our people.
We have no one else to blame, we are the architects of our own demise.
Even more alarming is the apathy of the average Irish person when presented with these demographic predictions. The statistics suggest we are slowly fading from the face of the Earth, yet we simply don’t seem to care. This isn’t the natural reaction of people in such a situation, it is a product of the incessant demonisation of patriotism and nationalism over the past decades by a virulently biased media.
To be Irish is nothing of value, it’s nothing to be proud of, we are told. Merely an accident of birth. Some even suggest our flag is something to be ashamed of. In November 2018 when a motion was put before Fingal Council to fly the Irish flag outside the County Hall, Councillor Matthew Waine of the Solidarity People Before Profit party opposed it on the grounds that our flag could be offensive to minorities.
“I come from the tradition of the workers movement, the labour movement, which doesn’t see the country of your birth being anything really significant,” he proclaimed. “I would prefer to see the red flag fly outside county hall here. Maybe in the future that will be the case.”
The sacrifices of Pearse, Collins, and Tone appear to be all for naught. However, it doesn’t have to end like this. Our destiny is not set in stone. I implore all readers to revive the sense of patriotism lacking in our national consciousness. Inspire others to learn our history and celebrate our heroes. Fly the Irish tricolour with pride and refuse to cower when political opponents attempt to smear you. Their insults only have as much power as we allow them.
Ireland is our homeland and we can’t be afraid to say it.
Well said, Mr. McEneaney. I pray our mindset changes to a sufficient degree on a national basis to combat present trends.
First off.Find something to give a people pride in something they can belive in in the current situation.Dead heros of ancient times or glorious revloutionary failures are not the answer.Nor are millionares kicking an air filled balloon around a field in their underwear.
We ha v e to ask ourselves …What does it mean to be Irish ??As a person ,a race, a culture?A society?We need to ask and find these answers before we can plan and progress anywhere.Otherwise we are just spouting empty rehortic that no one really belives.
Well, Sean, I’d say looking to the “dead heroes of ancient times” may point you in the direction of what it means to be Irish because it ties into what it means to be Irish as a person, race, culture and a society.
>Otherwise we are just spouting empty rehortic that no one really belives.
You need to pay more respect to the past because your way literally isn’t producing anything to be proud of. You want to create something outa nothing. Oh the irony. “Let’s make up stuff as we go along.”
Short of implementing the policies that Hungary 🇭🇺 are now advocating ( pro family taxation,housing etc ) I cannot see how an ethnically Irish country could survive into the mid century .
It seems that the Milenium Generation have accepted their fate of never reaching adulthood and consequently will not reproduce , which allows Lovely Leo to import Drone people for our Service Industries negating the need for a native population to exist at all .
It’s worth noting that many Irish people are okay with this projection ,and look forward to increasing opportunities for spontaneous hugging and crying in their future .
Of course an ethnically Irish country could survive. After thousands of years, it doesn’t have to come to a full stop. You don’t need the ethnic minorities, and if you need workers due to incorrect domestic policies, you can always take the white migrants. Are you begging for crime and terrorism?
No link between skin colour and crime and terrorism . Crime is related to values. So only letting in people from fair skinned countries doesn’t necessarily solve that problem and it also contributes to inequality.
“No link between skin colour and crime and terrorism . ” Unfortunately, that is just cucking. There are clear differences in propensity to crime between different ethnic groups. Figures in the US, the UK, Sweden, and other countries all show a very very high black crime rate. To suggest letting 1m Swedes in and 1m Somalis would have the same impact on crime and security is ridiculous — and in the face of all the evidence is simply a case of lying.
You are not listening to my point. Swedes have a Western European culture. Somalis don’t and also they come a country with no civic society. Obviously Somalis might cause problems but its cultural. Travellers have a high propensity to commit crime. Certain working class districts too. They have the same skin colour. The crucial factor is environment and culture.
Mike, fair point and well made. One way to restate the opposing point is that, at the moment it is undeniably true that the average white person is much more likely to come from a background/culture more European, more congenial to our culture, and more civic-minded than a statistically-average black immigrant- because much of africa remains without a stable or healthy civic society, and furthermore immigrants will be more likely to come from such areas.
Given how brainless must of our immigration debate is, the simple version is that it would be better to have white immigrants. I hope we can move past the simple version soon.
Choosing your Drone People by skin tone is unlikely ever to gain traction in Ireland 🇮🇪. That would be so beyond the Pale , worse than Hitler ++.
However,importing lots of low IQ folks to make up for failure to replicate natives in an age of robotics,seems unwise . Yep
What I mean is something like the US “national origins” immigration system from 1924 to 1965. Come over and see Birmingham, and ask yourselves, “do we want Cork to look like this?” Instead of imitating the country next door, you could start avoiding the country next door’s mistakes???
The problem with this is that in Ireland we now have a generation that is used to Irish ☘️ people looking like African,Asian,Arab etc . They feel comfortable with this ,it’s like Broadband , when was it ever different for them ? .
Native Irish are not in competition with other ethnic groups for jobs in service or retail , their problems come from a system that inhibits their independence as adults, employment that allows for home ownership and family rearing . I can’t see an NGO campaigning for this section emerging anytime soon .
Take a look at the UK, which is further along the multi-cultural curve and see how it works. The situation when the ethnic minorities are 1% and when they’re 20% are totally different. Small minorities are under great pressure to integrate or at least not create trouble. When the population of them goes over a certain level, the dynamics become much more unpleasant. You have all of this to look forward to. Maybe in 20 years’ time you will recall this conversation and realise what I said was right. Prescient people who can see what is coming include people like Enoch Powell. In his day, he was told he was speaking nonsense and that the ethnic population would never go over 3m (see the David Frost interview with him in 1969). 500 Africans in Cork and 50,000 Africans in Cork -=- these are totally different propositions, and yet one leads to the other. Enjoy your future!
I am old enough to remember the “Rivers of Blood Speech “ and the transformation of Birmingham,Toxteth ,Bradford,Tower Hamlets into ethnic enclaves . These were not a result of the Windrush generation, but a strategic choice by UK government s of both Tory and Labour hue. Why this happened I’m not certain, was colonial guilt enough to transform the midlands into Wasiristan . Manufacturing was already in decline before this happened so what was the rationale in importing more unskilled labour ?.
One thing worth remembering is that the Irish were never that great to begin with. Abnormally selfish attitudes existed way before mass immigration. Putting aside our Irish history leabhair for a minute, my conjecture is that the apparent prevalence of the egregiously self-interested and reckless in Irish society is the result of the transformative effect of the Famine, where the weak and hopeful died or emigrated and the opportunists and survivalists (sociopaths) propagated, increasing the latters concentration in the population above normative levels. If I’m right, then very well intentioned people like the Author are not just misguided but wasting their considerable time, energy, and youth to an almost criminal extent.
Equating survivalists with sociopaths is simplemindedness, survivalism is self defence & defence of ones family / friends in response to the wider community becoming dangerously self destructive.
Some people see no benefit in following all the other lemmings off of the cliff…
If the Zeks had adopted the mindset beforehand they might have escaped their fate, alas they had to adopt it to an even greater degree after the fact…
Small countries need to be careful in this climate. Im a New Zealander. I dont believe that Im Xenophobic at all. Heres the bite my country is. It is simmering under the surface.