Citizen Journalism Ireland: 2003 to 2006 Social Justice and Ethics (10 articles) by Michelle Clarke

These are selection of emails, letters, articles on a computer that was remove by An Garda Siochana and held for several years.  It related to emails and unacceptable images.  The computer was returned after many requests eventually.


 Date: Friday June 06, 2003 9:39 AM


Time is approaching, the Torch was lit and the journey to Ireland has begun.

by Michelle Clarke Social Justice and Ethics

This is the European Year of People with Disabilities › EUROPA › EU law and publications › EUR-Lex– the objective is to challenge people to highlight the benefits of full integration for society as a whole.  Changing attitudes is one aspect but the breaking down of barriers and obstacles also needs attention.

The European Year of People with Disabilities (EYOD) is very much people driven.  A budget of Euro 12 million was provided but mostly distributed to national level.  At a national level, more local stakeholders will be involved and this will stimulate awareness.  It is hoped this new awareness will impact into policy objectives for equality for those with disabilities.

 ‘At the event opening in Athens, European Commissioner for Employment and Social Affairs, Anna Diamantopoulou talked about ‘invisible citizens’……

One in four Europeans has a family member affected by a disability; only 4% have a colleague with a disability and only 2% know a disabled pupil at school.  Europeans with a disability are less likely to have a job or a business or have a complete tertiary education.  They are less likely to be ‘married’ (Social Agenda – European Commission Employment and Social Affairs April 2003 – free EU Office).

The EYPD has established a new framework.  A number of major companies have volunteered to establish action plans in favour of people with disabilities.  These include Hewlett Packard; Volkswagen; Sony; Manpower and others.  The recruitment company Adecco has committed to placing 7,000 people with disabilities on the EU labour market during 2003.  IBM has also made provision in line EYPD.

In Ireland, we need to remember that the Disabilities Bill has been delayed.  However, it is important to remember that legislation fights discrimination.

There will be lots of fun and excitement with the participants, their families and friends but there will also be opportunities to compare how different countries look at Special Needs and Disabilities provision.  I note in Spain, the University provides 3% of student places to people with disabilities.

Chinese Proverb:

‘The true miracle is not to fly in the air

Or to walk on the water




 Wednesday, Sep 1 2004, 8:41pm

Gardai and claims that 90% encounter bullying!!!!!

by Michelle Clarke – Social Justice, Please


A lot of detail and accuracy.  I was about to publish my article on bullying but read yours and realised I had forgotten to mention An Gardai Siochana in the context of bullying.

Bullying does not apply to children alone.  People who bully ironically are often the ones with low self-esteem. They project onto others those characteristics they share, but don’t like in themselves. Alas they seek the vulnerable targets. What is more interesting is that they may not even be aware, the reaction may be from their subconscious. Bullying applies in schools, between children, between parents of children; in the Civil Service, in the professions, and even Bertie Ahern (Taoiseach) refused to be bullied by Michael O’Leary (Ryanair) according to a recent  newspaper headline. What can be done either at an individual level or otherwise?

It’s September, children are back at school; employers and employees are back; politicians are back and so are students.  Why not ask some person like Tony Humphry’s to lecture people/children/facilitators for an hour and make them aware as to why they engage in bullying. This can be backed up by some of the copious number of self-help books on the market. What has greatly helped me is the quotation from Nietzche ‘He who has the reason why, can deal with anyhow’

As a young secretary, I was facing the problem.  It was a set up situation to establish the power element of I am ‘the boss’ and you are ‘the secretary’. This is over 20 years ago now.  I was saved by a wise Chartered Accountant in his 60’s who told me ‘Young lady’, if you don’t make a stand now, this will continue’. I took his advice and it worked very well in that company and I was most sad to leave the company many years later,

I became re-acquainted with Bullying and others seeking to be in control when I became humbled through ill-health. The only difference this time is that I had neither the health or ENERGY to engage……it was about vulnerability, submission, and ultimately becoming passive resistant.

As I recover, I know that bullying exists. My way of dealing with it was and continues to be reading about it. A small book that I found excellent is John Powell’s (Jesuit Priest) ‘Why am I afraid to tell you who I am……written 1950’s but sets down parameters…….I have enlisted some coping strategies like believing that I have the right to choose not to use the phone and to not listen to people who tend to want to tell other people how to their lives. I am not faulting the human being but I am acknowledging my right to say no to the phone and accepting a quality in their person that I do not like.

An extreme example of bullying which just tells us it is worldwide:-

When I lived in Zimbabwe, I either heard or read about this. The New Government in the 1980’s was left with the remnants of the British civil service. Naturally, there was a change over in staff and of course the new staff had an acquired status position in line with their promotion and based on what they identified from the past administration. The system did not quite work the same way.  Sometimes for example to get one’s tax sorted out – you had to employ a few relatives from the rural areas to get tax due back. Power / control – we are talking about being human and susceptibility.  I read/heard of one case of a white woman probably for the first time having to deal with the new system attending a civil service office. She like the rest had to queue. The black Zimbabweans had spent their lives forming queues. However, each time she reached the desk – the African woman dismissed her and kept telling her to go to the back.  Eventually – the answer came. You are white, you have done this to us all our lives. Now you see what it is like. This I would call redressing the power balance and is understandable. However, the key point is that people learn. The learning is key. This is where the learning starts and behaviour change is the aim. Bullying is more a characteristic/trait/coping mechanism and it is acknowledged that if you confront bullies – they retreat. The characteristic is often born out of their own insecurity. What is important is that this characteristic can change IF PEOPLE ARE WILLING TO INVEST THE TIME IN SELF DEVELOPMENT AND GROWTH.

To confront: May be as simple as say to them – That is your projection. This disempowers the bully who fires words like arrows……or may involve years of research and accusation to achieve the forthright findings of the Morris Tribunal. The findings ought to remain stark in the minds of policy makers and Government. The Morris Tribunal may cost inordinate sums but it is up to we the people in Ireland to take an individual responsibility to ensure Ethics and Social Justice.

The time has come to engage……….within our society.

 A Gandhi quote:

You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.

This dimension of health merits keen attention in the health boards, teaching, the Gardai, the politicians’ personal commitment levels and effective leadership of their bureaucratic mass etc…………Some lessons in human skills and the concept of equality and ability of people to change their attitudes need focus and personal undertaking.

Compassion seems to have fallen from grace in the society of today – it is not marketable perhaps. Compassion helps you to seek the explanation…….the ‘take responsibility awareness’ route needs to start in the schools NOW AND WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT. In the UK – they have started at classroom level and explanation……

Michelle quotes Nietzche

‘He who has the reason why can deal with any how’

Wednesday, Sep 8 2004, 4:05pm

Legalised Brothels in Holland to Vintners Ireland and Vision

Response to article

by Michelle Clarke – Social Justice and Ethics 

This is most interesting. Now that our Government are in swing and aiming for Social Awareness, people ought to put forward legalisation of brothels in Ireland.

Again I recommend the article in this weeks Economist magazine about the Sex business. The time has come to use initiative in Ireland and why not piggy back on the research of other countries.

I note with a degree of wonder the bleating of the Vintners association about the smoking ban; it appears that takings are down; and product prices are up.

Perhaps the time has come for pub owners to have some vision. Many pubs host crowds at ground level or empty spaces these days and vacant space upstairs……maybe some options need to be tapped.

I say no to kerb crawlers. I say yes to respect of all people concerned. I do not like passing women working on the street late at night when it is cold and dangerous for them. They supply a need. We need to take note.

If sex is legalised, maybe there would be less rape, crime, etc. If a person is a sex addict then let them pay accordingly without any inherent seediness. Public Health ought to be involved also.

Quotation selected from News Internationalist

“We need policies of eco-justice, and we need to realise the spiritual dimensions of our life, of our interconnected planet Earth, of each other!’

Petra Karin Kelly (29 November 1947 – c. 1 October 1992) was a German Green politician and activist.


Wednesday, Sep 8 2004, 11:36pm


Suicide Prevention Day this Friday

Ponder on wisdom ‘Knowledge is no load’

by Michelle Clarke – Social Justice and Ethics

The number of fatal car accidents recently alarms me………I don’t know why but personally I seem to link them with suicide and ask the question why RTA details are not more specific in detail (as in other countries). is an interesting website. The notification of World Suicide Prevention Day is September Friday 10th 2004. This coincides with the Aware Daisy days. Thursday; Friday; and Saturday – Bulbs for planting will be sold throughout the Island of Ireland. This years focus is Depression and Suicide Prevention.

The UN agency seeks to curb ‘the huge but largely preventable problem of suicide’. The figures reveal that almost 1 million people die as a consequence of suicide. This is more than from homicides and wars combined. This makes suicide a ‘tragic global public health problem’ according to the World Health Organisation.


The news report outlines a large number of complex underlying causes including poverty, unemployment, loss of loved ones, arguments, relationship breakdowns; to name but a few.

They also state that having access to the means to suicide is both an important risk factor and determinant of suicide.

Stigma remains in Ireland. Aware, Mental Health Organisation, Mind and other organisations; people like the Samaritans are there with the listening ear.

Listen to Christy Moore’s ballads; Don McLean (Vincent); Many will recall this song released by  Street Preachers their version of “Suicide Is Painless” on 7 September 1992 as “Theme from M.A.S.H. (Suicide Is Painless)”. Writer(s)‎: ‎Johnny Mandel‎.  There are many writers who suffered severe mental health problems and their lives ended in suicide; to name but one the writer Sylvia Plath. You are not alone just stretch out the hand. Drink and drugs are not the answer, it is humanity and the ability to not experience loneliness in being alone. Life is a journey and there are many pilgrims out there to take your hand.

People hit momentary suicidal dips and make it through. To be a survivor of suicide haunts your life particularly if stigma surrounds it.

A quotation: News International

Size matters!!!!!

‘Perhaps that is what the 21st century has in store for us. The dismantling of the Big. Perhaps it will be the century of small things”.

Indian Writer and activist – Arundhati Roy

Wednesday November 3rd 2004, 11:13pm

President Bush returned to Power.

Time to learn from history and work towards Peace
by Michelle Clarke – Social Justice and Ethics

President Bush is democratically voted in for a second term.

Peace, Justice, Ethics, Equity and a myriad of words that are associated with the ‘God’ he so often refers to and speaks about…..must become the priority of each individual on this citizen journalism (open publishing) site.  There is too much accumulated pain in this world today…….it is time to learn and make the change.

George Santayana ‘Those who forget history or condemned to repeat it’

February 2002, sitting alone and trying to enhance memory skills (outcome of a horse riding fall), I transcribed a TV programme on the human impact of war. Nearly three years later (with virtually no memory of the intervening period), I find the details. The coincidence is that it is the day George Bush becomes President of the US for a second term). As a Pacifist I have decided to re-circulate this.

President Bush is democratically elected for the next four years so now we must appeal to people to link to a route that will seek to achieve peaceful resolution.

A comment and the profound impact of the visual on the television focuses my attention to another’s stark reality. The young man says:-

‘The reality changes with the first air-raid’.

‘It needs to be witnessed, felt, the sense of smell must be evoked. The Macho men all of a sudden are ‘scared men’. The world becomes four-dimensional. They are face to face with the immanence of death.

He states the key factor as the sense of guilt……yes, its is the paradox. ‘YOU LIVE AND ANOTHER DIES’

The point is poignantly made that the war environment inflames the will to live but this gives way to a will to no longer live, once they have returned ‘Home’.

The reality is that mental wounds are just the same as physical wounds.

What people forget is the reality of the war front; the need for alcohol and drugs; to enhance entertainment and compensate for loss of family, friends…. Combatants can ‘play around’ with dead bodies and fire hand grenades. There are no sanctions as such. The word place in context over time is so often forgotten.

The reaction of the Ministry of Defence in the UK to the problems that arose per consequence of the Falklands war, was to reduce the medical budget. This appears incredible when one considers just what happened in Vietnam when three times the number of men who died in action actually committed suicide. This does not take account of those affected by alcohol, drug addiction and other scars of war. In the UK, more combatants have now died from suicide than were killed in the Falklands war and the numbers are rising significantly.

It is at this point, we need to ask, what can be done to halt the atrocities of War in Iraq and put an end to the War of Terrorism. People are suffering and people will continue to suffer. This is a quote that may help us to take another view. It is at least worth thinking about………

The Talmud
‘We do not see the world as it is, we see the world as we are’

 11th November 2004

 Armistice Day – ‘Let us reclaim the Significance’

 ‘When on the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th Month the Guns stood quiet at the end of World War 1 (Poppies)

by Michelle Clarke Social Justice and Ethics

 Extract: Voices in the Wilderness email notification.

Now that the U.S. election is over, violence in Iraq has increased and is continuing to spiral chaotically. Fallujah and other areas of Iraq are faced with brutal and escalating military operations. Fallujah has been the target of numerous recent air strikes, and has been sealed for the eminent U.S. military strike, a strike that many have been warning of for sometime.

Armistice Day is less than a week away. Let us reclaim the original significance of Armistice Day, when on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month the guns stood quiet at the end of World War I.

Themes which near-future action could be built upon might include:

 Reclaiming the original significance of Armistice Day:

  • end the US war in Iraq and bring the troops home:
  • full funding for health care for veterans, including those injured by the use of depleted uranium;
  • full participation by the US in the rebuilding of Iraq as the rebuilding is directed by the people of Iraq with payments for the damage done by 14 years of economic and military warfare against the people of Iraq;
  • end “stop loss” orders that keep soldiers beyond the end of their enlistment agreement: and
  • amnesty for war resisters.

 Arundhati Roy gave a speech on the evening of the U.S. elections in Australia to tell us,

“There can be no real PEACE without JUSTICE. And without resistance there will be no justice. Today, it is not merely JUSTICE itself, but the IDEA of  JUSTICE that is under attack.”

Below are a few summaries of those stories with links to the full article/update on our new web site. First, Ceylon Mooney of VitW and the Wheels of Justice Tour has a request.

Dear friends and affiliates in peace, justice, nonviolence and anti-war work,

A project of Voices in the Wilderness and Al-Awda, the Wheels of Justice Tour (, is coming to the south early 2005. we wish to bring our nonviolent witness to war and occupation in Iraq and Palestine to your neck of the woods. We wish to spend January and February in South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida.

We are looking for individuals and organizations to host and organize events in these states. There are a number of ways to put us to work…..

Ireland provides the history, the people, the acumen, the experience and particularly in the light of the Peace Process to make an impact towards global peace and justice.  Let us think of inclusiveness and the words of John Hume ‘Diversity in Unity……’

Armistice Day:  The poppy; its poignancy always makes me think of those who

fought and lost life for Peace and Justice.

Michelle Clarke

Friday, December 10th 2004, 7:47pm

Message to Dr Ian Paisley; to the PD’s and to Hecklers in the Dail

International Rights and Freedoms – Citizen Journalism site

by Michelle Clarke – Social Justice and Ethics Please

Let us not forget what has been achieved and the essence of a transition to Peace.

  • Concerted effort of many people to the Peace Process
  • Peace is essential. Diversity exists but it is up to each person to work at making Unity the goal.
  • Let’s look to colonial powers like Zimbabwe who appear to have fallen by the wayside. Let us take regard for the need of a Peace prototype/model that can give inspiration to other countries torn apart by war.
  • Let us take account of Narcissism and those who act the part of “Boss” as distinct from “Leadership”.

Leadership is about inspiration. Leadership envelopes philosophy, psychology and a level of Truth.

To Dr. Ian Paisley, to the PD’s and their harsh sentiments to decommissioning and to those who heckled Mr. O’Caoilain (Sinn Fein) in the Dail yesterday.  It is my humble belief that it was time for reflection with the hope of PEACE.

I lived in Zimbabwe in the 1990’s and worked in the City, London in the 1980’s early 1990’s.  A horse riding accident resulted in a traumatic brain injury. This hampered my life but I can read and relate to pre accident memories (a strict routine is order of my day but it is tortoise not hare). Today, I completed a book I found in a second hand shop. The title attracted me – The Real Irish Peace Process – A Socialist Democracy Publication published in 1998.

I would recommend this factual account of ‘The Troubles onwards to the Peace Process. The main elements of the book emanate from discussion papers and articles written in 1997, they also revert backwards to the Hume (Nobel Peace Prize Winner) and Adams discussions.

Now let’s go back to Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia.  1982 there was an end of Guerilla war in Rhodesia, the former British colony, and the Lancaster Agreement was enacted and the new State formed. (It would appear that the Agreement was somewhat modeled on the Republic’s of Ireland’s Anglo Irish Treaty in 1922,  there was a cessation from colonial power). Like Ireland, the Zimbawean people had to endure a civil war. The  golden rule ‘Divide and ‘Conquer’ applied yet again and pitted the Shona tribe (President Mugabe) against the Matebele tribe (Joshua Ngoma). One need only listen to the news and realize the heightened sense of conflict in this country two decades on. Lord Mansfield’s words about ‘Absolute power corrupts and power corrupts absolutely’ could be said to be  apt as famine and drought blights the poor.

Ireland on the other hand has consistently through generations sought a Nation State. Now with the committed efforts of all parties involved in the Peace Process – there is hope. This Peace Process has been endorsed by people like President Clinton, Senator Edward Kennedy and many others in the US. Prime Minister Blair has been committed in his endeavours as has our Taoiseach Mr Bertie Ahern (previously Mr Albert Reynolds). People like Mr. Trimble, Mr. Hume, Mr. McGuinness, Mr. Gerry Adams, Mr. Gerry Kelly and so many more have been relentless in their efforts to work with the IRA and to achieve all that is but one step a way from the Hope of an Island of Ireland.  I did not include Dr. Paisley for one reason. As a person I do not know him but his behaviour and vanity is not acceptable. I feel it is time for him to leave aside remarks that I recall coming from a certain nun I lived in fear of at school.

Doris Lessing now in her late eighties moved from Persia (Iran) to Rhodesia and was one of the  Revolutionaries expelled from Rhodesia by the Ian Smyth (British Colony) government.  Given my experiences over 5 years in Zimbabwe I bought her book African Laughter. President Mugabe invited her to return to Zimbabwe in the 1990’s and the book was the outcome of the visit.

Subtlety appeals. I recall that every office, hotel, etc. had a photo in a prime location of    President Mugabe (perhaps just in case one would forget!!!). Doris Lessing however found a ‘Poem’ in most offices. Appropriately, the title is ‘THE BOSS’

The Boss drives his men

The Leader inspires them

The Boss depends on authority

The leader depends on Goodwill

 The Boss evokes fear

 The Leader radiates love

 The Boss says ‘I

The Leader says ‘WE’

 The Boss shows who is wrong

The leader show what is wrong

The Boss knows how it is done

The Leader knows how to do it

The Boss demands respect

The Leader commands respect


I would hope that during this time of reflection that we can look to the leaders and ignore the narcissists. Narcissists are the people concerned with how they appear as distinct from what they intuitively feel. They deny feelings and contradict the image they seek. Acting without feeling, they tend to be seductive and manipulative, striving for power and control. They are egotists focused on their own interest but lacking the true values of the self – namely self expression, self-possession, dignity and integrity……on the cultural level, narcissism is seen as the loss of human values’……(Book title            Narcissism: Denial of the True Self. Alexander Lowen MD).  I am sure we all can identify Boss/Narcissist people but these too are part of what David Hume refers to as ‘Diversity in Unity’

In time we will clearly identify the narcissists and hopefully leadership will ensure Peace in Northern Ireland and a united Ireland when people decide that this is possible.

Michelle Clarke

December 2004

2005 Resolutions (Suggested…)


Michelle’s suggestions – hopefully others will add on to same.

First and foremost PEACE


The Christian Vision – The Truth that Sets Us Free

John Powell SJ.

An Interesting perspective perhaps!


Fr. Powell’s list of the hardest things in life to give up:

  •  Mental and emotional health
  • Physical health, especially eyesight
  • Faith and meaning to life
  • The nearness of several friends with whom one can be totally open and feel totally safe
  • Love of beauty and the gift of self expression
  • The acknowledgement of others that one is a sincere and caring person
  • A sense of success: the knowledge that one is actually accomplishing at least in part what they would like to do with  life.
  • A sense of humour and the spirit of enthusiasm.


This is a good start 2005 New Year

Wednesday, August 17, 2005 11:22 AMFrom: “michelle clarke”

To: <>; “info” <>; <>; <>
Cc: “” <>; “Jim Maguire” <>; “Age and Opportunity” <>


Subject: A dog in an apartment.  Small Jack Russell Rescue Dog.

Disabilities Act

To: Environment Office and others.

I have been to your office many times in Suffolk Street and have your brochure on dogs.I sustained brain damage in a horse riding accident in 1993 while living in Zimbabwe.  This is complicated by Bipolar and Anxiety problems.  I have endeavored to live as independent a life as a possible but am unable to work i.e. apart from writing.

Last year a friend of my mine persuaded me to get a dog.  A rescue dog became available unexpectedly and in September and I have him one year now.

The Disabilites Act is not yet in place so I have not had the benefit of an assessor of needs.  I am receiving hassle about my dog, Jack,  but in an indirect way through the management company, who write to my mother (I am 46 and refuse to correspond with me because I am only the minority shareholder).  What is going on?  …..  I understand based on pre-accident experience a lot about life but it is the momentum and no short-term memory that makes things different.

The irony about this is the apartment is in Wellington Road and I walk the dog many times a day.  He is in fact similarly to a dog similar to those provided for people with sight difficulties; or Emily dogs for brain related matters; or those provided by Peata for the elderly or people with disabilities.  Surely people grasp the affection animals have and the benefits they provide.  Other cultures do.

Can you advise me as to what I can do in the mean time.  My apartment is 1100 sq ft with a balcony.  People with disabilities need and deserve rights to develop the spectrum that John Hume’s ‘Diversity in Unity’.  What is exercised by people on the management committee is a form of bullying.  Human rights would suggest a dog is a canine companion to assist me to live in the community rather than institutional care which would be a far greater cost to the state and a very sad reality for me.


 Michelle Clarke

 Amnesty 2001 – Mental Illness the Neglected Quarter

‘Amnesty is a worldwide voluntary activist movement working with human rights.  It is independent of any government, political persuasion or religious creed……Amnesty’s vision is of a world in which every person enjoys all the human rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other International Human Rights Standards’

‘One in four people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives.  Around 450 million people currently suffer from such conditions, placing mental health disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.  Treatments are available, but nearly two-thirds of people with a known mental disorder never seek help from a health professional.  Stigma discrimination and neglect prevent care and treatment from reaching people with M. Disorder….Where there is neglect, there is little or no understanding.  Where there is no understanding = NEGLECT


Sunday September 4th, 2005 5:28 PM


To: <>

Paper by Prof Quinn ‘From Charity to Rights’ and the attitude of those

who I choose to refer to as the ‘Ignorant Educated’

The Disabilities Bill


Mr Eddie Hobbs, a question for you.  I recognise your tick box only too well, it is about language descriptions and areas related to finance concerning work related funds and wealth management.  I can understand this but I am one of the Category that are out in Limbo.  I say Limbo because I am the in-between, I used to work, I used to participate and then it stopped one day when I was 32.

What about the Disabilities Bill that lingers as a carrot to be used by FF at the next election?  A Prof. Quinn wrote an excellent paper several years ago ‘From Charity to Rights’.  Foolishly, having lived outside Ireland for a number of years and having been ill, I naively wrote in detail to him, to receive no response.  This is not the English way based on courtesy and proper feedback but then I supposed they left the South in 1921 and we shed basic decent manners in their wake.

Presently I am greatly enjoying  Nick Leeson’s  with Ivan Tyrrell book [Back From the Brink, coping with stress’).  I experienced the Corporate Finance days of London – ‘Book my flight Tuesday scenario because Concord goes Tuesday and returns Friday….Every Friday was about Magnums of Champers and the odd policeman incident to keep the men on their ‘macho image platform’.  All fun and high power.  Many interesting clients and ideas!

Eddie.  Ireland is full of committees, research, and ongoing research.  I live on Wellington Road (and this is a story about knowing what to do but unable and unassisted to achieve basic human rights).  The NDA (National Disability Authority) is across the road from me.  I have gone several times and written many emails but I seem to keep missing what they provide for people mid life who end up having to face many house moves, divorce, the Church providing an annulment to my former husband without my sanction (The Church chose to ignore letters from my psychiatrist which basically said ‘Halt’).  My husband of nearly 15 years left in a psychiatric hospital in Harare, Zimbabwe and I returned to Ireland and I fumble as bipolar, significant memory problems, chronic fatigue with anxiety etc.  This does not take account of my horse fall; unconsciousness; fractured skull, 100% deaf right ear and laterally discovered considerable damage to my right.  Thankfully I am doing well but at tortoise speed.

All I tried to do re. Professor Quinn and others related to Disabilities was to provide them with the social capital of my experience.  The word Denial and a book by S. Cohen comforted me in that I learned about denial and maybe to have some understanding of these people who too have a ‘conditions(s) and ‘educated ignorance’ which I now refer to.

I don’t know if you ever watched Bewitched in the 1960’s.  I loved it as a child but I sure did not think I would end up like the part played by Zaza Gabor (you see post brain injury and with medications thrown in, my neuro circuits are haywire so I appear totally dotty and as I tire easily, I stagger).

Point…..Simple.  I support totally the requirement for an Assessor of Needs for people with Disabilities.  Can we stop the meetings (based on the fact that some people are excluded from attending and have valid input) and can we just demand ‘Rights for people with disabilities’ and that the Rights can be enforced by the Courts and no less.  Protection is vital.  I can vouch that unnecessary stress hampers the life of a person like me.

I need a person to help me manage my affairs (a carer for say 1 hr each day)…..similar to what you do on the TV with people and their financial affairs.  I can’t work.  I write a little ‘social capital’ plus I have invalidity from the UK and payment/accommodation from my mother.  I just can’t work the way ‘work’ expects anymore.  However, I have unusual experience.

We need Rights for People with Disabilities.  We need proper enforcement, accountability and transparency.

Why did we lose John Fingleton from the Competition Authority?  Where is the efficient, effective regulatory systems to curb greed.

Well done to the work of the Tribunals but one point.  Are people in business so linked to their memory, arrogance and mobile that the concept of the written contract; retain by file method jettisoned.  I ask, at what cost?

I have several files of non answered queries particularly from Government bureaucratic services.  We are all the people of the Island of Ireland, salaries paid ought not be the denominator of recognition.  John Hume speaks of ‘Diversity in Unity’ – let it be so.


Michelle Clarke

Distressful to read this letter in July 2016: Rambling and those who said it – they were right.  I seemed to think back then if I cited all details of what I could not cope with it it would improve the message of the letter.  No it was rambling; irrelevant so I have removed my day to day list of problems of trying to engage in a normal life.

Amnesty 2001 – Mental Illness the Neglected Quarter

‘Amnesty is a worldwide voluntary activist movement working with human rights. It is independent of any government, political persuasion or religious creed……
Amnesty’s vision is of a world in which every person enjoys all the human rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other International Human Rights Standards’

‘One in four people in the world will be affected by

mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives.

 Around 450 million people currently suffer from such conditions,

placing mental health disorders among the leading causes

of ill-health and disability worldwide.  Treatments are available,

but nearly two-thirds of people with a known mental disorder

never seek help from a health professional.  Stigma discrimination

and neglect prevent care and treatment from reaching people with M. Disorder….

Where there is neglect, there is little or no understanding.

Where there is no understanding = NEGLECT




About michelleclarke2015

Life event that changes all: Horse riding accident in Zimbabwe in 1993, a fractured skull et al including bipolar anxiety, chronic fatigue …. co-morbidities (Nietzche 'He who has the reason why can deal with any how' details my health history from 1993 to date). 17th 2017 August operation for breast cancer (no indications just an appointment came from BreastCheck through the Post). Trinity College Dublin Business Economics and Social Studies (but no degree) 1997-2003; UCD 1997/1998 night classes) essays, projects, writings. Trinity Horizon Programme 1997/98 (Centre for Women Studies Trinity College Dublin/St. Patrick's Foundation (Professor McKeon) EU Horizon funded: research study of 15 women (I was one of this group and it became the cornerstone of my journey to now 2017) over 9 mth period diagnosed with depression and their reintegration into society, with special emphasis on work, arts, further education; Notes from time at Trinity Horizon Project 1997/98; Articles written for 2003/2004; St Patricks Foundation monthly lecture notes for a specific period in time; Selection of Poetry including poems written by people I know; Quotations 1998-2017; other writings mainly with theme of social justice under the heading Citizen Journalism Ireland. Letters written to friends about life in Zimbabwe; Family history including Michael Comyn KC, my grandfather, my grandmother's family, the O'Donnellan ffrench Blake-Forsters; Moral wrong: An acrimonious divorce but the real injustice was the Catholic Church granting an annulment – you can read it and make your own judgment, I have mine. Topics I have written about include annual Brain Awareness week, Mashonaland Irish Associataion in Zimbabwe, Suicide (a life sentence to those left behind); Nostalgia: Tara Hill, Co. Meath.
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1 Response to Citizen Journalism Ireland: 2003 to 2006 Social Justice and Ethics (10 articles) by Michelle Clarke

  1. Pingback: Citizen Journalism: 2003 to 2012 Social Justice and Ethics by Michelle Clarke | canisgallicus

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