Padraic Pearse would ban hare coursing

27 Mar


In this the year of the centenary of the 1916 Rising, the government should honour the names of Padraic and Willie Pearse by bringing an end to this cruel abuse of timid, vulnerable hares by outlawing live hare coursing. In a letter written by Padraic Pearse’s sister, Senator Margaret Pearse, to actor John Cowley (aka Tom Riordan) in 1967, she stated about her brothers, Padraic and Willie: “I am certain that were they alive today, they would be foremost in condemning coursing for the sadistic spectacle it is.”

Senator Margaret Pearse, then 89, and writing from Linden Convalescent Home in Blackrock, said that both brothers, Padraic and Willie, “would have been totally opposed to the inhuman treatment meted out to the innocent little hares at the coursing matches. At all times during their lives, they were kind to dumb animals and Padraic’s writings give many instances of his love for animals and birds.”

It is 50 years since that letter was written, and our government continues to turn a blind eye to the cruelty that Padraic and Willie Pearse and their sister Senator Margaret Pearse would have wanted to see outlawed. If the government wants to pay any kind of meaningful homage to our 1916 patriots, they should, as a mark of real respect, banish hare coursing and indeed all bloodsports from these shores.


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