interviewed on NewstalkFM this week. If you close your eyes - or listen on the wireless - he's pure Wexford, he eats rissoles. The name is, of course, a bit of a give-away and Lee Chin got most cross when talking about the casual racism meted out on his poor old Chinese Dad. As a super-fit sporty-person, he got less slaggin' in school than his more obviously foreign father.
But getting slagged in an Irish school isn't particularly because of being 'foreign'; any difference will do. The son of a pal of mine, with impeccable Irish antecedents since before the famine, was also educated in Wexford and wanted to learn. Accordingly, he sat in the front of class, paid attention and asked questions . . . while trying to ignore the rain of spit-balls coming at the back of his head from the know-nothing gobshites in the back row. There was no street cred to be had from academic excellence and he only survived because he excelled in cross-country running. Despite all the educational handicaps, that chap went on to win a prestigious scholarship [free dinner and accommodation in college for 5 years] at Trinity College Dublin. Smoke that, know-nothings! In his interview, Lee Chin was asked if life for the New Irelanders was getting easier in 2017 . . . long pause . . . and the short answer was No, casual racism is endemic. It must be worse if your parents look different and you don't excel in any sports. The other poster-boy for success in sports despite not having a full quota of 'Irish' grandparents, is Dublin GAA footballer Jason Sherlock, who can be met-for-a-soundbyte at Punchestown Races.
We got sent this collage of pixellated New Irish by the only Twitter-active person of our family. We were stunned to see Dau.I as part of an assertion "We Are Irish" as if there was any doubt about it. She was born in a farmhouse in North County Dublin - that alone being sufficient to secure her green passport. But it's true that she looks a bit
If Éamon de Valera can be born in New York City without the benefit of a parental marriage cert and go on to write the Constitution for the nascent Republic in 1937, then everyone can be a lot less certain and judgmental about what it takes to be Irish. Harrrrumph!