The legal ruling in Ireland granting this right has gotten mixed reviews. Some think of it as a blessing; others, as a curse.
But both sides are united in the belief that good old Irish hospitality should prevail, even in the case of a home invasion. As an unknown author once wrote, "Hospitality is making your guests feel at home, even if you wish they were."
Therefore, by common agreement, some basic "rules of the game" have been established for Irish home shootouts. For example, if the intruder does not survive the shooting, the body is to be sprinkled with shamrocks before being loaded into the coroner's van. Down for the count but not dead, an injured intruder should be offered a dram or a cuppa while awaiting the arrival of police and ambulance. Also, an offer of a wee bit of Irish soda bread or a corned beef sandwich would not be amiss.
One Irishman opposed to the legal ruling allowing shooting of intruders is 85-year-old Sean Fahey of Limerick, who doesn't like the idea of having guns in the house. He asked a reporter in an interview: "Begorrah, what is this anyway? Who wants a shootout at the OK Corral right in your own backyard?"
Nevertheless, Mr. Fahey admits to having his own methods for dealing with intruders. Although he wouldn't divulge all the details, he did say that he has several heavy plaques (they all read, "A hundred thousand welcomes") at the ready to be bashed over the heads of anyone who would violate the sanctity of his home. In addition, the knives with shamrocks and sweet Irish sayings engraved on the handles -- they hang on one of the walls of his living room -- have a purpose other than decoration. If necessary, they can be used, according to Mr. Fahey, to "stick into the fat bellies of intruding pigs."
Okay, then. Anyone reminded of the movie "Home Alone"?