An Irish woman's social, political and domestic commentary
Friday, April 08, 2005  

Pope's funeral

Our President's working class roots have betrayed her yet again. They had done so previously when she was spotted at some state dinner or other holding her cutlery in a peculiar fashion. Today, she foolishly wore a hat to the Pope's funeral in the mistaken belief that posh people wore hats to funerals. All the other really posh women wore mantillas. Uh-oh. As my 1 year old says.

posted by Sarah | 22:10 7 comments
Is this meant to be a joke? "Working class roots"? Is this real-life or an episode of Upstairs Downstairs?
How appalling that one of the lower orders should commit such a heinous crime!

I can forgive a fashion faux pas much quicker than I can forgive snobbery and begrudgery.
Oh lighten up for heaven's sake.
Personally, I think a mantilla is a sign of female subservience and is entirely inappropriate for a head of state. I remember cheering Mary Robinson for meeting Pope John Paul as the representative of the Irish people and looking him in the eye. The President represents all the people of Ireland and ought not to demean herself by excessive (and sexist) abasement before a religious leader who is, after all, only a man.

I thought the sight of non-catholics such as Laura Bush wearing a mantilla was ridiculous.
Fair point to a certain extent. However what about 'when in rome?'. As Head of State I would expect her to wear the appropriate gear especially as she is a devout catholic anyway. If she was representing Ireland at the funeral of any other religious leader e.g. muslim, I'd expect her to follow custom. Mary R. was making a statement. Did Mary Mc just get it wrong? With regard to Laura Bush, her and Condi's crime was to show their faces at all given JP2's condemnation of the US's warmongering policies.
Check out this debate on a US blog about Bush/Rice wearing veils. They reference Mary R. etc. It 's interesting.
Further update: I just rang the Aras and asked the press officer. She is adamant that Mary Mc. did not wear a mantilla as a statement but simply because she always wears hats to funerals. I think this is lame.
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