Never Mind The Barack Here’s The Queen..

Dublin’s view on The Queen and President Barack Obama’s visit to Ireland

By Aimée McCarthy and Eve Sherlock.                                      

Following the announcement that both Queen Elizabeth II and President Obama will be making state visits to Ireland this coming May, the Irish people have aired mix reactions to these historic plans.

The Queen will be the first reigning monarch to visit Ireland since it gained independence in 1922.  Recently elected Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, has labeled the stay “long overdue”, in stark contrast, on the other side of the spectrum, Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams commented that it was “premature”.  It has been reported that dissident republican groups will protest during the Queen’s stay, which is expected to cost the Irish taxpayer €8m to cover security costs.

During the Taoiseach’s visit to the White House for the St. Patrick’s Day festivities, President Obama accepted the offer to visit the hometown of his ancestors, Moneygall in Co. Offaly ahead of other state visits throughout Europe. This has caused a lot more excitement among the Irish press, and in turn, the people, who are hoping it will signify a vote of confidence in Ireland internationally, following the EU bailout last December.

It seems the press has taken to both visits very differently, portraying the Queen’s visit in perhaps a slightly more negative light, while there seems to be no queries about how expensive it will be to host President Obama in the same month.

The Queen with Barack and Michelle Obama

Ronan Sharkey, 20, Rathfarnham:

“I didn’t actually know the Queen was coming to Ireland, but she’s welcome here, I don’t mind the Queen.  But if it’s going to cost the taxpayer up to €8m I wouldn’t be up for her coming over.  I’d prefer to spend the money on Obama coming over than the Queen.  I’d definitely respect Obama more than the Queen.  I don’t think the Obama visit is overhyped like he is the US president and he is a big deal. He is the most powerful man in the world so there ought to be hype for him coming over”

Kathleen Moriarty, 56, Donaghmede:

“I think the Queen’s visit will be good for Ireland.  If it’ll create a bit of revenue for Ireland then that’s good!  Irish people went over to England when there was nothing here and they fed us and gave us work so it’s time to welcome the English people here in Ireland.  My husband’s from England so I’d definitely welcome the Queen.  Whatever has happened in the past should stay in the past; we should get over it realistically.  It’s time to move on.  It’s definitely a positive thing that the queen is coming over here. It’ll do the country well.  The Irish built half of America sure.  An Irish-man built the White House.  Obama will do well for Ireland.”

Laura O’Brien, 23, Dundrum:

“I think people will be angry about the Queen’s visit, not because they’re angry about England or their representation in Ireland, but they are still angry over the recession.  The Irish people are still angry over the economy and they will take the blame out on the Queen visiting and the amount of money it will cost to protect her while she is here.  Anger at the political system in Ireland will be misdirected towards the Queen.  I think the only aspect of the visit that is important to Irish people is certain political agreements that happened in the north in the 90’s and the Queen’s visit would not really consolidate relationships between the two countries.  It is a bit over-hyped.  I think it would symbolise a lot more to the English people.  I’m very excited to hear Obama is coming to Ireland.  The Queen is only a monarch, she is not a political figure so I don’t really care about it to be honest”.


3 responses to this post.

  1. […] Never Mind The Barack Here’s The Queen.. […]


  2. Posted by tony on May 12, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    i think its the uk taking the pish we just gave ireland a bail out
    now lets send the queen over and see if we can get some of that money back ,,,,brilliant idea ,,,NOT!! she could have and she does have the money to provide her own safety ..i think Irland should say to her you want to visit fine you pay your own way like anybody else would


  3. Posted by tony on May 12, 2011 at 2:05 pm

    same goes for barak obama


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