Friday 21 June 2019

Climate change protesters dressed in suits pour fake blood over 'innocents' outside Leinster House

Climate change activists acting as politicians pouring blood over innocents outside Dail Eireann to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency.
Photo: Tony Gavin
Climate change activists acting as politicians pouring blood over innocents outside Dail Eireann to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency. Photo: Tony Gavin
Climate change activists acting as politicians pouring blood over innocents outside Dail Eireann to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency. Photo: Tony Gavin 11/6/2019

Gabija Gataveckaite

Climate change protesters dressed in suits poured fake blood over other campaigners outside Leinster House this afternoon in a demand for more government action.

Approximately 100 protesters from the Extinction Rebellion anti-climate change group chanted outside Leinster House today as they poured fake blood over six people representing 'innocent' people who were dressed in white jumpsuits and held red flowers.

This is the latest demonstration from the group, which are demanding urgent government action on the climate change emergency bill, which they claimed the Dáil was debating today.

"We’ve had some people sitting in white suits representing the ‘innocents’ and we’ve had people in suits coming pouring blood over them, representing the blood of our children, which is on the line,” explained Patrick O’Connor, who is on the Irish branch Extinction Rebellion committee.

Climate change activists acting as politicians pouring blood over innocents outside Dail Eireann to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency.
Photo: Tony Gavin 11/6/2019
Climate change activists acting as politicians pouring blood over innocents outside Dail Eireann to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency. Photo: Tony Gavin 11/6/2019

"This event is called the Blood of Our Children event, which has been replicated by many different Extinction Rebellion groups across the world,” he said.

Mr O’Connor was dressed in a white lab coat to represent ‘science’ as he used a megaphone to warn of the consequences that the planet will face if action is not taken now for climate change.

Climate change activists Extinction Rebellion outside Dail Eireann stage a protest to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency.
Photo: Tony Gavin 11/6/2019
Climate change activists Extinction Rebellion outside Dail Eireann stage a protest to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency. Photo: Tony Gavin 11/6/2019

“I’m representing the science,” he said.

“I have read the summaries. I understand the basics of what science is saying, the science is crystal clear, our lives are at stake if we do not act now,” he said.

“At the very minimum, we need to keep the fossil fuels in the ground. At the moment, the government is trying to sabotage a climate emergency bill which is designed to keep the fossil fuels in the ground.

"After declaring a climate emergency, that is the height of hypocrisy, that is the height of not understanding that their children’s lives are at stake,” he added.

Climate change activists Eleanor Hulm and Leontien Friel-Darrell from Extinction Rebellion were outside Dail Eireann to stage a protest to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency.
Photo: Tony Gavin
Climate change activists Eleanor Hulm and Leontien Friel-Darrell from Extinction Rebellion were outside Dail Eireann to stage a protest to symbolise the violent fate faced by children growing up in Ireland unless radical action is taken on the climate emergency. Photo: Tony Gavin

Leontien Frieldarrell, who lives in the Cloughjordan eco-village in Tipperary, was one of the six ‘innocents’ who had fake blood poured over her.

“I am incredibly sticky but it’s a very powerful feeling,” she told Independent.ie.

“I’m really happy with how today went and I think we got the attention that we were looking for, wanted to bring awareness to what we were fighting for which is a future for all of humanity,” she said.

Carol Betera was also one of the ‘innocents’.

“I knew nothing about the blood,” she laughed. “I thought that was very effective, I didn’t know what they had in mind but it was a very good image.”

The blood pouring was followed by other protesters rushing out with mops and buckets, attempting to mop up the blood spill.

This was in effort to demonstrate ‘greenwashing’, a method used by companies to promote eco-friendly policies and products.

“Nothing to see here,” the protesters yelled as they swept up ‘blood’.

“Just keep using your re-usable cups and we’ll be fine lads,” they said, to the amusement of the crowd.

Paul McCormack Cooney, one of the group’s organisers, explained that shocking protests are more efficient ways to urge the public to listen to the message.

“The general public need something to kind of engage their imagination with this, it’s a lot of facts and figures and it can be quite overwhelming but with something like this it can be communicated better,” he said.

Susan Breen, who was also dressed as a ‘suit’ and poured blood over the innocents, agreed.

“Most people are absolutely fed up of standing outside places, of sending emails and just not feeling it does anything,” she said.

“So we try to make our actions colourful, inviting, fun, so that people see us and become interested so that they might pick up on our message,” she added.

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