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The Charm of Ireland

Burton Egbert Stevenson

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .About all most of them do is to teach the children to read and write and cipher—and these most haltingly. Twenty per cent of the people in western Ireland are still unable to do even that.

"You are a Nationalist, I suppose?" I said, after I had finished looking through the blank.

"I am," he assented emphatically.

"Why?" I asked.

"Because it is bad for Ireland to be treated like a spoiled child. That is the way England treats us now—we can get anything we want if we yell loud enough. And it's bad for England, too. She has problems enough of her own, heaven knows, but all she can think about is Ireland. Every sensible Englishman will be glad to get rid of us, so his government can have a little time to attend to its own affairs. What Ireland needs is to be chucked overboard and told to sink or swim. We'll swim, of course, but the shore's a long way off, and it will be a hard pull; but the harder it is, the closer we Irish. . . Read More