David Norris | Ireland | News

Gay Irish Presidential Frontrunner David Norris Says His Campaign is Being Sabotaged

David Norris, the openly gay frontrunner in Ireland's presidential campaign, says his campaign has been sabotaged in a radio interview by a writer who brought up a 10-year-old quote in order to link his sexuality to pedophilia.

The Independent reports: Norris

In the article, Mr Norris is reported as saying: "I cannot understand how anybody could find children of either sex in the slightest bit attractive sexually ... but in terms of classic paedophilia, as practised by the Greeks, for example, where it is an older man introducing a younger man to adult life, there can be something said for it. Now, again, this is not something that appeals to me.

"Although, when I was younger, I would have greatly relished the prospect of an older, attractive, mature man taking me under his wing, lovingly introducing me to sexual realities, treating me with affection, teaching me about life."

But forced to go on RTE Radio's Today With Pat Kenny show to defend himself, Mr Norris said he was having an academic discussion over dinner about ancient Greece at the time.

The word paedophilia should never have been in the interview, as he was talking about "paiderastia" - relations between men and boys - of the ancient Greeks as part of a hypothetical, intellectual conversation, he said.

The writer, restaurant critic Helen Lucy Burke, lifted the quotes from an article she wrote about Norris a decade ago for Magill magazine. Norris claims the magazine never reprinted corrections he had made to proofs he was shown and challenged Burke to air her recording of the interview.

"Mr Norris said he has been a vocal advocate in the Seanad, Ireland's upper house, and at United Nations level, for the rights of children and women who suffer sexual exploitation." 

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Comments

  1. Who watches out for men who are sexually exploited?

    Posted by: TampaZeke | May 31, 2011 1:03:39 PM


  2. Helen Lucy Burke has issues with gay people.....she has attacked us before.....I wouldn't believe the time of day from her.
    David Norris is a hero among the gay community, he brought the case to decriminalise homosexuality against the establishment in the early '90's.......he is a great man, a great candidate and won't let the bigoted ramblings of this hate filled woman deter him.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | May 31, 2011 1:56:09 PM


  3. Helen Lucy Burke campaigned with David Norris to decriminalise homosexuality. I don't know what her agenda is, but she is most certainly not a homophobe ...

    Posted by: DayvyG | May 31, 2011 2:37:23 PM


  4. Yeah, this could be a problem. His comments are a tad too forgiving.

    Posted by: anon | May 31, 2011 2:49:34 PM


  5. Oh David Norris. I seem to recall this from 10 years ago, though, in which case how is this not old news to everyone in Ireland?

    Posted by: NaughtyLola | May 31, 2011 3:09:21 PM


  6. @davyg : well, she sure has changed her spots in recent years.........she may have supported decriminalisation but she is not a supporter of same sex marriage nor of full equality.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | May 31, 2011 3:19:53 PM


  7. This is probably the worst thing a candidate could say, but he was probably not running for office then. However, it may just cook his political goose.

    Posted by: blatherer | May 31, 2011 3:23:55 PM


  8. Remember that the Greeks would be old men in their 40s. What is more, they married in their early teens. The comparisons to homosexuality in today's culture, with its different norms and mores, is apples and oranges. But it is also stupid as hell for this politician to be talking like this.

    Posted by: candideinnc | May 31, 2011 3:31:39 PM


  9. I was actually too generous about the life span in Greece. I now read the average life span was 18. Pedophilia would almost have to be a natrual consequence of this.

    Posted by: candideinnc | May 31, 2011 3:36:51 PM


  10. Re: "average lifespan": it's not a great stat in this case since it includes the relatively large numbers of infant and child deaths. Much better would be the avg. of those reaching maturity.

    Posted by: David R. | May 31, 2011 9:51:54 PM


  11. "average life span was 18"

    What this usually means is a lot of infant and toddler deaths. People think it means everyone was young, but it's really more a case of losing half your children before they reach adulthood. Remember, families were large, very large by our standards.

    Posted by: BobN | May 31, 2011 11:07:35 PM


  12. This eternal game of "gotcha" shouldn't be rewarded. I don't care what anyone did or said 10 years ago. It's the last few years that matter, and it's what you plan to do in the future that matters.

    Does anyone believe the quality of politician we're getting has been going up, with our ever-expanding abilities to dig up everything they've ever said or done?

    Posted by: Randy | Jun 1, 2011 5:46:45 AM


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