DUBLIN, Republic of Ireland – A pro-gay marriage Irish Senator has told journalists at Dublin Castle he hopes today’s vote will lead to change across the world, just as Ireland inspired the Bolshevik revolution of 1917.
Senator David Norris (IND), was talking about how Ireland was a “small island on the edge of Europe” but that it could have a much wider impact. The example he cited was the General Post Office (GPO) uprising in Dublin in Easter 1916.
A group took over the GPO and fought against the British Army to maintain control of it for several days. The attack was unpopular at the time as it was seen to undermine the British and Irish efforts to win First World War. Those responsible only caught the public imagination later when the British sentenced them to death, a ruling that proved hugely unpopular in what is now the Irish Republic.
However Norris claimed their actions had “inspired” the Bolshevik uprising in Russia the following year. It led to the establishment of the Soviet Union and led to the deaths of tens of millions in forced labour camps and through famine.
He said: “We hope this vote will change things, in Africa and across the world just as the Irish rebellion of 1916 led to the 1917 revolution in Russia”. His comments were met with applause from the assembled crowd of pro-gay marriage supporters.
Campaigners have been allowed into the historic Dublin Castle to celebrate the referendum result, which now looks certain to go the way of ‘Yes’ campaigners. They took to Twitter to celebrate their success and to call for a repeal of the rules banning abortion on demand in the country, leading to suggestions this might be the group’s next campaign.
The senator also told supporters at Dublin Castle that Pope Francis “wasn’t a bad fella, better than the last one but he is deluded on gay rights.” He is believed to have been referring to Pope Benedict XVI, who was widely seen as a conservative figure in the church.