Anger and frustration have been widely expressed on social media at the decision of thousands of people to ignore social distancing restrictions and march through Dublin city centre yesterday. 

Many commentators were also critical of news outlets who covered the protest without any critical observations of the breach of the lockdown which has seen people being unable to attend funerals or be with loved ones when they died.

 

Some 400 people commented under an Irish Times Facebook posting of an article reporting on the protest – but almost all of the comments seemed to express anger, frustration and disbelief that the event has taken place during the pandemic.

Others on Twitter agreed, saying the mass protest “insulted everyone that lived within the restrictions and our frontline staff who have repeatedly asked us to stay at home”.

 

And while there was solidarity for the family of George Floyd, there was also anger at what many saw as the selfish actions of protesters.

“Did George Floyd die to give these pompous ego maniacal idiots the right to give my Grandmother Covid and kill her?” posted Free Speech Ireland.

 

There was also a hostile reaction to a Twitter status from radical left-wing TD, Bríd Smith, who posted a video of the protest, which she appeared to be attending.

“Yes, powerful. But not very thoughtful or respectful to the memory of 1,600 families that could not gather to honour their dead,” said one comment.

 

“Shame on you. Of course black lives matter and this is an extremely important issue. However the lack of social distancing at your march was disgraceful. People are dying , literally choking to death of COVID and you could care less,” said another.

 

One commentator pointed to what he saw as hypocrisy: