Thursday 29 September 2016

Sport, marriage or scenery - what makes us most proud to be Irish?

Daire Courtney

Published 07/09/2016 | 14:01

Campaigners gather to celebrate a year since the historic yes vote in the Marriage Equality Referendum Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins
Campaigners gather to celebrate a year since the historic yes vote in the Marriage Equality Referendum Photo: Gareth Chaney Collins

What makes people proud to be Irish?

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Is it Guinness, Tayto or the fact that we never, ever forget to leave the immersion on?

No, it's none of those. What makes us natives most proud of being Irish is the fact that we voted for marriage equality.

The most popular answer on the SSE Airtricity #PowerOfGreen survey for the question 'What makes us proud to be Irish?' is that we were the first country to vote-in marriage equality.

In a turn of events surprising to absolutely no-one, our most relatable 'Irishism' was the constant chat about the weather.

26 per cent of people said bringing in marriage equality by popular vote was our proudest achievement; this jumped to 4 in 10 among younger people.

That was followed by our beautiful landscape. Well, it has been chosen for movies like Star Wars and let's not forget the Cliffs of Moher's few seconds of fame in The Half-Blood Prince.

Our sporting achievements came fourth, and almost half of the people surveyed picked an Irish athlete in the 'someone who represents Ireland' category.

However, none of our athletes managed to get more votes than President Michael D Higgins, who was the top pick.

When asked what qualities the Irish are known for, the top picks were 'welcoming,' 'sociable,' and 'humorous'.

To prove the welcoming label, the most popular answer for Ireland's future priorities was social justice, fairness and equality for all.

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