Ireland: Support us to Disband the Artane Band
Note from the author - I submitted our story to your online paper because the boys, now men, who were incarcerated in the Irish Industrial School system were all from poor families, Travellers, children born out of wedlock, orphaned etc.
The Artane Band is the last remaining link to the horrors that took place in Artane Industrial School, Dublin, Ireland - run by the Christian Brothers. The band's continuous existence is a reactivation and trigger for those of us who suffered horrendous ordeals at the hands of the Christian Brother paedophiles who ran many of the Industrial schools in our country.
The present band continues to airbrush out its past and to deny its origins within the industrial school system, even though, its uniform and insignia are directly connected and originated in the Artane Industrial School for boys.
The experiences of the child sexual abuse are well documented in the Ryan Report, the Inquiry into Residential Institutional Child abuse which came out in 2009. It is no longer ethically appropriate that this band in its present form, with its present name (The Artane Band) and uniform and its direct connection to the Christian Brother's should be still in existence and rolled out at national sporting events, parades, etc indifferent to the thousands of now adults who suffered greatly in places like Artane Industrial School for boys and indeed in the band itself.
Would it be appropriate to have a Nazi Band with just civilians playing in it?
Would it be appropriate to have a Slave band with non-slaves in it?
The band the Artane Boys Band now known as the Artane Band was used as a front by the Christian Brothers to hide the gross inhumanity and child rape that was taking place in institutions run by the Christian Brothers and others. It is not possible to find healing and recovery while this lie is paraded in front of thousands in Croke Park and other such venues.
You cannot hide the truth of the history of this band. And it is highly inappropriate that they would continue in existence with such disregard to our ongoing suffering.
In the name of human rights and simple humanity, The Artane Band should hear the voices of the thousands of victims of institutional abuse and recognise that their presence is an insult and an affront to their struggle in suffering. No other band with such history as the Artane Band, would be tolerated in any civil society. It is hard to understand why it is still in existence.
I myself was in many of the institutions as a child, including Artane. I am a witness to what actually happened, to me and to thousands of other children and I carry it to this day. I have been campaigning for over 40 odd years on this issue and it is not much to ask for this band to be stood down.
What are these parents telling their children who attend music classes in the Artane School of Music? Do they know the true history?
Do our lives, as children, and our struggle as adults, not matter to them? See the truth, do the right thing and take this vile display out of our faces. We do not need reminders of what happened to us. We do not need our trauma displayed as spectacle, at National sporting games such as the Dublin and Mayo GAA final .
Please sign this petition, it is a reasonable and decent thing to do. For those men who died without ever getting a glimpse of justice and for the many men who continue to struggle in darkness.
It needs to be acknowledged that this band is immoral. It is a criminal asset of the Christian Brothers and others like the GAA. The Children of Artane Industrial School were exploited and slaved and criminally abused to keep this band in existence. While the Christian Brothers and the GAA exploited it entirely for all its capital and all its worth. This band was stolen from the rightful owners, the children of the Artane Industrial School.
Thank you very much for reading this and I hope you sign.
Yours, Gerard Mannix Flynn
For further information see
Ryan Report, Artane Chapter 7 http://www.childabusecommission.ie/rpt/01-07.php
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