I was upset and disheartened when I heard that, after quite a rough and difficult weekend for David Norris, he had decided to opt out from seeking a nomination for the presidency of Ireland.
Last week, lots of bad publicity came out for Mr. Norris, who, up until this point, was the most popular of the potential candidates. It emerged that he had sent a letter to Israel seeking clemency for his former partner, who was on trial for the statutory rape of a fifteen year old boy.
So, you may ask, was it wrong of David Norris to send this letter? Of course it was. It’s as simple as that. He should not have so blatantly disrespected the people of this country by seemingly sending that letter as a representative of our country. But here’s the thing – he already apologized. So why isn’t that enough? People refused to accept that his apology meant anything, even though he clearly meant it from the bottom of his heart. People make mistakes. He knows he shouldn’t have sent that letter. But he did. That’s the fact of the matter.
The problem of course with Norris’ campaign, from the very beginning, was the questions that were risen about his sexual morality. It seemed that gritty tabloids felt that, perhaps because of his sexual orientation, and his comments relating to paedophilia, that it was OK to question him about things that were blatantly inappropriate. Somehow, his efforts at the presidency were surrounded by a cloud of contempt and distrust.
But you know what really annoys me? Why weren’t we given the chance to make the decision? Isn’t this a democracy we’re supposedly living in? Clearly, Norris was bullied out of the campaign by the vicious vultures that are the media, when in reality, he should have been given the chance to run. Because at least then, the people could have decided whether or not he was worthy of this role. Our chance was yet again taken from us. Do we live in a democracy? Not really. Apparently we, the people, are no longer even consulted on matters like this.