Taking At Face Value

I emailed Joe Duffy today.

Well, I emailed the show. Joe is off sick, Damien Reilly has been keeping the seat warm.

Mick Nugent was on, representing something called Atheists Ireland. (by the way, who elected Mick to speak on behalf of all the atheists in Ireland?)

Anyway, Mick was speaking about blasphemous libel, so I fired off an email, an adaptation of Bobby Henderson’s protest against state sponsored creationism.

The first line read: ‘I am writing to commend Dermot Ahern for his proposal to outlaw blasphemy.’

I went on to outline the basic tenets of Pastafarianism, and my joy that my beliefs would not receive state protection.

After all, I pointed out, my irrational superstitious belief has as much right to the full protection afforded by the legal resources of the State as any other irrational superstitious belief.

RTE called me back, asked me to hold to go on air. Then after a few minutes came back, saying they’d call me back. Maybe.

And that was the last I heard.

I suspect that somewhere between the first and last contact, someone read the email, and realised I wasn’t 100% sincere in welcoming blasphemous libel.

Blessed be his Noodly Appendage.

By Gerard Cunningham

Gerard Cunningham occupies his time working as a journalist, writer, sub-editor, blogger and podcaster, yet still finds himself underemployed.


  1. I’ve been left on hold several times now, mostly by Newstalk. I think they always book more people than they can fit.

  2. I suspect once they realised I was on the anti- side they dropped me. they sounded desperate to find a few religious advocates who would take offence on air and get a row going.

    You could hear the disappointment in Reilly’s voice when Tommy Tiernan went all mellow and started talking about the lovely day he was having in the park looking at the trees.

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