The way in what should have been a straightforward debate on the role of the Royal Irish Constabulary and the Dublin Metropolitan Police a century ago has suddenly developed into an angry political row has been instructive.
The issue of rights for Irish speakers has dominated the politics of the last three years since the collapse of Stormont but it would be remiss not to remind political parties and both governments of the context of this debate.
Finally bowing to public opinion the minister for justice Mr Charlie Flanagan, has deferred the planned commemoration of the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) and the Dublin Metropolitan Police (DMP), who were killed in action during the period of the Irish War of Independence.
Recently I attended Mass at which an 80-year-old priest, who has just returned from 40 years overseas on missionary work said: “The Ireland I have come home to is not the Ireland I left and I wonder do I want to settle here?”
A week into the new decade and I’ve still got that leftover feeling – a freezer full of foil-wrapped scraps, only the unfavourite ones left in the sweetie tin and too much month at the end of my money.
So if the DUP and Sinn Féin form a new Executive, serviced by the same bureaucracy that facilitated the RHI scandal, who keeps them all in line? This is no organic legislature, grown out of communal will.
When Simon Byrne was appointed as PSNI Chief Constable, it was widely noted that his elevation was likely to cause him difficulties with a rank and file preferring the new post holder to have emerged from within the organisation.