As Ireland hemorrhaged population via ‘famine’ and emigration, it received little support from elements of the English press.
On this day in 1848, the The Saturday Review responded to comments from Archbishop John McHale (The Lion of St. Jarlaths) as to how emigration was bleeding Ireland dry with an astonishingly racist rant.
“(A)nd in a letter to Mr. Gladstone he sighs…. over the departing demons of assassination and murder. Like his friend Mr. Smith O’Brien, he regrets the loss of the raw materials of sedition and murder. Ireland, he says, is relapsing into a desert, tenanted by lowing herds instead of howling assassins. The Lion of St. Jarlath’s surveys with an envious eye the Irish exodus, and sighs over the departing demons of assassination and murder. So complete is the rush of departing marauders, whose lives were profitably occupied in shooting Protestants from behind a hedge, that silence reigns over the vast solitude of Ireland.
Ireland has long been seething in the flames of misrule and agitation and sedition. Ireland is boiling over and the scum flows across the Atlantic and the more the Archbishop and the like of him blow at the fire, the more the scum will boil over.
It can be spared, and the many excellencies of the Irish people (not found among the Catholics) will only become more excellent by the present process of defecation.” Source: Ireland under English Rule, P319; Thomas Addis Emmet, 1903.