Who exactly is accusing Ireland’s most stylish taxi driver of racism? How on earth could any of Derry “Elvis” Coughlan’s recent points of view be construed as racist, or even excuses for racism? He’s already stated quite clearly that his union, which goes by the equal opportunities-friendly name of the Cork Taximen’s Association, contains members from Tunisia, Chile, Poland, Albania, Bangladesh, England and Scotland, and it’s only coincidental that none them quite fall into the ‘black’ category.
He told TV3 news that his association’s constitution didn’t allow “non-national members at the moment.” He then went on to say, “we can only take in local Cork men who are affiliated to the Cork taxi meter area.” And why can’t they take black taxi drivers? “They are too new to our shores and too amateur to get the act right.” Where’s the racism in that?
“To become a member of our association, you must have a proven qualification, be able to converse with people, have route knowledge, and give a person a fair deal on fares.” Fair enough to this point, I say, it’s not as if any of us has ever had an Irish taxi driver who rips you off, goes all around the houses, or hasn’t a f***ing clue where he or she (we have female taxi”men” too up in Dublin) is going, is it? Well, apart from the week where an Iraqi taxi driver found my house without any problem but two Irish ones on days either side of that completely failed to. An isolated incident.
“This has nothing to do with race. But members of the public are telling us they are not happy with them,” said Mr Coughlan. “We are getting too many complaints about their attitude and manners, and about some drivers not knowing where they are going, especially in rural areas. And they are putting people out of their cars in rural areas because they don’t know where they are. They are too short on our shores to prove themselves. It will take time for them to regulate themselves.”
All spoken like a true, traditional, fair-minded, cosmopolitan, Christian, leftie Union leader in my opinion. Who knows, in addition to looking exactly like Elvis, maybe he’s into breakdancing too?