Well, I rushed home from work, had a quick bite to eat and then myself and a friend took the journey into town. No banners had we, but an overwhelming feeling of good or bad publicity that the protest had last week, maybe we, as ordinary decent citizens, could attend this protest and feel that we are doing something and not just sitting and partaking in armchairs politics, which is now the new conversion topic that has over ridden the Celtic tiger conversations, for some, of how much is your house is worth now or nice 06 reg car etc etc. We parked up and headed to Kildare st.
So here I am at a protest, with different groups, some I may not agree with all their views, but I respect the right to protest. I see Gardai in abundance and horses with riot gear and a noisy helicopter up above …mmm, I think, christ is this going to get nasty ?, though, I see around me a lot of others, of all age groups, who were not necessarily affiliated to a particular group and those that were, well so be it and perhaps fair play, it is a democracy we live in. We listen to UNITE, we hear some music, that I can describe as “workers blues” we hear some more inspiring speeches from other folk..that guy from the Sociology Dept in UCD, another guy from Dublin Bus, that woman, Ann Moore, who got evicted from her house with Richard Boyd Barret, that other woman from Our Lady’s Hospital comparing the e.voting cost of storage to the need of monies needed for our sick children, much much less than the storage costs of said evoting machines..mmm, I am more and more getting annoyed, I hear my voice roaring, I am not shy or embarrassed to speak up now and roar anymore in this crowd..mmm. I may not know all these speakers names, but I am inspired, I feel maybe just maybe, Ireland has not lost soul or democracy.
After an hour or so, the organisers confirm that we are going to march up from the Dail to the GPO, myself and my friend look at each other, will we just shoot off and pick up the car and go home, or do we march on. We march on, I look back at that building, Leinster House, I see on the news every day and see some hangers on, we march on and boy am I glad we did, the rain is heavy, but as we pass Trinity College, marching on the “road”, car horns start beeping support and I feel great, chanting “power to the people” and some chant ” I don’t know were I have been” to the tune of some army US film. We get to the GPO and a few more cheers and speeches. I feel somewhat liberated, have I found a voice, a place I can join with others and demonstrate, me an “ordinary decent citizen”, not affiliated to any group or sector in society as such ? this protest with speakers, chanting under the GPO is done in a peaceful manner, again I am inspired. I look at some of the organisers, gosh, I could be their mother, I am 39 mmm and I look at this new generation of “adults” and think, mmm (again) and again, I am inspired. I look forward to next Tuesday and beyond, I am hoping that this will become stronger.
We stroll back to the car and I go home, immediately back to my normal life of sorting stuff out for the kids and housework. I am just one “ordinary citizen of Ireland” who is frustrated and angry that this government, who have no mandate, can go ahead and make serious significant decisions that are going to effect all current generations, my 3 children and perhaps at this stage their grandchildren. They imply, that their way is the only way, as I become a bit more politicalised and more “what is economics” savvy, I say NO, this is wrong, there has got to be another way.
Yours, just an ordinary citizen.
Posted by Bertie Basher