My first encounter this morning was with the man at Tara Street who declared “it’s time for a Labour come-back”. A few minutes later a woman told me I was great on the telly the other night and she would vote for me. But she was saddened – to the point of upset – at the apparent lack of interest in the election, especially among young people. I agreed with her that the level of engagement has been mixed. But this woman was genuinely worried that politics has almost “disappeared” – there is so little real engagement on issues that matter.
I was still thinking about what that woman said when I met with Michael and Pat Johnson this evening in Sandycove. I know Michael from my time in RTE. He and Pat were founders of the Dalkey School Project over forty years ago. They had to fight huge opposition then. But through intelligent and dogged persistence they succeeded. It was one of those victories that changed Ireland. When we rejoice in the achievements of this generation – like Marriage Equality and Repeal of the 8th – we shouldn’t forget the brave pioneers and reformers of a previous generation. Michael Johnson (whose father was the war-time journalist and author Denis Johnson) and others like him paved the way for this modern Ireland.
What a day: Tara St DART, walkabouts in Henry St. and Grafton St., media doorstep at Stephen’s Green, Blackrock with Deirdre Kingston, Ballybrack with Carrie Smyth and Denis O’Callaghan, Kilnamanagh with Denis Macken, and finishing up the road from home in Wainsfort Manor, Terenure with Pamela Kearns.
Quote of the day: It’s at the beginning of this post!