I know the international press finally picked up on the fight brewing in Ireland. The Irish government has been very happy to keep this subject quiet as long as possible, but on Saturday the 11th of October 2014, the people of Ireland took to the streets of Dublin in a peaceful and well spirited protest. This protest is a great example what’s been going on here and I thought I should share my two cents on the subject. There were reports of an estimated expectations around 10000 people to attend the protest. It turned out the estimate was very conservative, Irish people came out in force to voice their anger on the subject. I was out observing the march on the day and all of my 18 years in Ireland I have never seen this large demonstration, nor the country as united on a subject.
When I heard the RTE reporting 30000 attendance I did not know whether to laugh or cry… It was ridiculous estimate and anyone on the streets of Dublin on Saturday would back me up on that. Irish Times used the term of “Upwards of 50,000 people”. The organiser of the protest claimed there were 100000 people participating in the march on Saturday, and even if it would be in the organisers interest to make the figures as big as possible, I believe they definitely were the closest to the truth. Sounds like a bit of a cover up?
Let me put it into perspective, there was a 3.9km loop on the march route when the march crossed O’Connell bridge and returned to it. When the beginning of the march was returning to the O’Connell bridge, the last of the marchers had not yet crossed the bridge!
I made an unspoken rule for myself about not getting involved in the politics in Ireland as I am not originally from here, but on this occasion I will have to voice my opinion on the subject, as the good people in Ireland who have been so great to me and many have become dear friends to me are fighting their government, who blatantly refuses to listen to the people who employ them! The details of this issue have been reported widely on the net, so I won’t get into it here, but what I wanted to highlight was the extent of the Irish people marching in the streets of Dublin on Saturday. The people are angry at the Irish government, who have in my opinion failed their nation on this subject and I can tell you this fight is not over.
Of course all of the above is just my personal opinion and I am in no way trying to tell anyone what to think or do. But based on my observation I estimate the amount of people marching on the streets of Dublin on the 11th of October 2014 to be in excess of 100000. And no Tánaiste Joan Burton, I did not film the march on my “expensive camera phone”
The author J.P. Kallio is a singer songwriter
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