The people who never tired of telling us, “the innocent have nothing to worry about,” are exhibiting worrying signs of fatigue.
The main Garda staff associations still support random drug testing of gardai “in principle”.
But the Garda Representative Association, displaying the hallmark lack of self awareness for which it is justifiably renowned, said that it was committed to testing that was “fair, measured and balanced and not like, totally out of the blue?”
“After we done the Jerusalem dance video,” a spokesman seethed, “I thought we’d seen the back a this but this is the thanks we get. Random testing – it’s taking the fucking piss!”
Meanwhile the association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors bluntly said it was “alarmed about reports that testing will commence within six months”.
“We do support it in principle,” AGSI general secretary Antoinette Cunningham admitted, “it’s just that we’re seeking clarity on the…the… finer points”.
“Speaking off the record,” she added, “there are nowhere near enough rehab places to get everyone clean in that timeframe.”
When asked about the force’s power to randomly drug test drivers, she replied “It would be quite wrong to suggest that right now, the potentially impaired are testing the potentially impaired”.
She later denied she had her fingers crossed when she made that statement.
Or that it jarred with the launch of a new anti-corruption unit specifically set up to tackle “high level fears” that some gardaí are taking drugs.
Afterwards she conceded that, under the circumstances, ‘senior’ might have been a more appropriate word to use than ‘high’.