10 NOVEMBER 1883, Page 14


[To THE EDITOR OF THE " SPECTATOR.1 SIR,—Firm, even-handed justice, is what Ireland has too seldom: got since her connection with England. Arms Bills and Coercion Acts, if unhappily necessary, should be impartially put in force in North, as well as in South. " Disarm the- Orangemen ; and insist on Lord Rossmore and Lord Ernest Hamilton abstaining from their mad efforts to cause a breach of the peace." That is what straightforward common-sense de- mands, and with nothing less will she be satisfied. Is England afraid to do this ? So long, daring the evil days, she was con- tent to ignominiously rule Ireland through a faction, that now she shrinks from treating that faction as common fairness dictates.

Even the Dublin Daily Repress is ashamed of the Orange placards, and letters, and speeches. " We cannot endorse," it says, "all that is being done and said. But then," it adds, "it is poor work criticising in cold blood what is done and said under provocations calculated to stir the blood of the North into a flame." Has the South no blood, and has it received no provo- cations ? Yet its speakers have been not only criticised in cold blood, but thrown into jail, while Orange firebrands are allowed absolute impunity. Perhaps Government still clings to the delusion that the Orangemen are supporting "British interests." Surely you are in error in speaking as if the Nationalists at Rosslea were strangers. It was the Orangemen who were mar- shalled from all parts,— as far off as Belfast ; the Nationalists were men from the neighbourhood.

One word more. Why should not Lord Spencer treat Lord Rossmore as Lord Morpeth did Colonel Verner ? Is it that Government has gone back, instead of forward, in its notions of " justice to Ireland P"—I am, Sir, &c., Great Oressingham Rectory, Norfolk. HENRY STUART FAGAN.