Violence and anti-lockdown protest

 

Sir, – As a retired healthcare professional, I was deeply upset at the scenes on Grafton Street in Dublin, where crowds of unmasked people congregated with no regard for the risks posed by the worldwide pandemic in which we find ourselves.

The Government has been slow to respond to that group of people who jeopardise the health of our citizens.

Do these people not realise that the hospitals are under enough pressure and our frontline staff have risked their own health for us all over the last year?

Do these blatant flouters of our health laws expect to be allowed to rock up to some emergency department and expect healthcare professionals to treat them with mutual respect? I sincerely hope not. – Yours, etc,

JOAN BARRY,

Glasnevin,

Dublin 9.

Sir, – Coverage of the recent anti-lockdown protest in Dublin is yet another depressing nail in the coffin of our civil liberties. Of course, politicians of every stripe didn’t miss the opportunity to condemn protester behaviour. 

The Garda approach was that the event was illegal from the outset, since “taking part in a protest is not a reason for essential travel”.

Really? How else can Irish citizens make the point that policymakers are making a terrible mistake, and do not have the electorate’s well-being at heart?

All the major political parties are pro-lockdown and so there is no way of expressing an opposing view at the ballot box. – Yours, etc,

JOHN FRIEL,

Kincasslagh, 

Co Donegal.

Sir, – The vast majority of people in Ireland regard Covid deniers, conspiracy theorists and anti-maskers as hopelessly deluded. Why then did the authorities give them the oxygen of publicity by shutting St Stephen’s Green on a glorious day. occasioning a violent confrontation and gifting them the reinforcing notion of being victimised by a repressive regime?

Surely they could have been shepherded into the park, locked in if necessary to allow social distancing, and allowed make speeches to their converted.

They would eventually go home or rage at the beautiful full moon that lit up the night sky.

Gardaí would be better employed handing out tea and sympathy than wielding batons. – Yours, etc,

MICHAEL

ANDERSON,

Balgriffin, Dublin 13.