Where Did Ireland Go? Abortion Vote Stuns Those on Both Sides

“They felt equal to the rest of the world, that they could get a share of the luxuries of life,” he mentioned.

Pointing to the church intercourse abuse scandals, he mentioned, Ireland’s altering fortunes additionally meant that “instead of people bowing their heads whenever a priest passed by, they could actually stand up and say, ‘Hang on, Father, what happened back then?’”

Luke Hussey, 25, who comes from a working-class household, mentioned his household had jumped into the center class nearly in a single day through the increase, shopping for a automotive and going on holidays to Spain.

“It was weird, almost perverse that we were now a middle-class family,” he mentioned.

It was through the increase years, in 1993, that Ireland decriminalized homosexuality. Two years later, the nation lastly voted to permit divorce.

The referendum on abortion, many Irish mentioned, was the ultimate crack within the basis of the outdated Ireland.

The debate within the days and months earlier than the referendum launched, for some, many years of pent-up feelings and anger in opposition to the church. Mr. Barrett described it as “national therapy.” The referendum additionally pressured a nationwide debate on topics that have been lengthy taboo, particularly round intercourse.

“Ireland had a culture of silence and that’s broken now,” Mr. Tyrrell mentioned.

“To be Irish now means to be open,” he mentioned. “We’re sick of being quiet.”

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