Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Thursday 2 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
AP Photo/Peter morrison Ukrainian politician Vitali Klitschko in Dublin city centre
# you told us
Top readers' comments of the week
Here’s our round-up of the most interesting and most popular comments from the past seven days. Did you make it in?

EVERY SATURDAY MORNING we take a look at all the best comments left on the site by our readers over the past seven days.

This week there was a lot of talk about John Gilligan, Oscar Pistorius, and, of course, Irish Ukrainians not Russians.

So here are the standout comments from the week that was.

The top 5 articles which received the most comments this week

1. John Gilligan ‘could be permanently damaged’ after shooting (312 comments)

2. Sinn Féin gain in the polls following collapse in Government support (273 comments)

2= Column: Are you frustrated by the number of ‘gay’ stories in the media? Then read on… (273 comments)

2 = Pics: Gardaí injured in clashes with protesters at European People’s Party congress (273 comments)

5. John Gilligan shot during christening celebrations in Clondalkin (261 comments)

The 5 most popular comments this week


(Niall Carson/PA Wire)

1. First up this week, Comfortably Numb wasn’t too sympathetic after John Gilligan was shot and injured by gunmen last weekend. He got a massive 4,446 thumbs up for this comment:

The calibre of hitmen we have in this country is shocking,you’d think the government would step in and give them some much needed training.

2. In second place, Dermot O Dwyer (3,283 thumbs up) wasn’t impressed with Linda Martin after a row on The Late Late Show:

Linda Martin is a head case and has never got over the fact that Ireland sent her half brother Dustin to the Eurovision instead of her one year…

3. Next up was Ali Fortune with 3,050 thumbs up on another article about John Gilligan:

Now there’s an odious little man if ever there was one.

4. A lot of people didn’t like Walmart’s St Patrick’s Day t-shirts linking alcohol abuse with being Irish. Conor Conneally got 2,611 thumbs up for this response:

Let’s sell t shirts celebrating morbidly obese people on the 4th of July in Penneys then

5. Rounding out the top 5 this week, Maggie Elizabeth Walsh got 2,276 thumbs up for her comment on John Gilligan:

no sympathy, karma is a bitch John.

Some of the best comments left on the site this week


Last weekend, Gerry Collins, who appeared in a series of hard-hitting anti-smoking HSE ad, died. He had been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer just months before. His story, his honesty, and his courage hit home for a lot of people. Niall Mullin knew Gerry:

I met Gerry after his throat cancer, he was training in the boxing gym in Bray…then he told me life was too short. He was training as hard as any of the 20 year olds there. He inspired everyone present and was a constant voice of encouragement driving and pushing you on. I was honoured to meet you Gerry your determination, advice and appreciation of life has always remained with me. Your family, friends and people you touched are no doubt very proud what you have done selflessly for the good for others.

On lighter subjects, this week was the start of Lent and giving things up for some Christians. Jane Byrne had this classic Easter story which got more than one thousand thumbs up from other readers:

I remember my mother got caught one year by forgetting to get somebody an easter egg. She gave away my walnut whip egg, promising to replace it. Sure I had the walnut whips eaten out of it and stuffed the wrappers with tissue.

Being single can be great and it can be crap. ConorBeta was pragmatic about it:

I’m single by choice. Just not my own choice.

Amid all of the horrific stories about the deaths of babies at the maternity unit at Portlaoise Hospital, readers shared their own experiences of what happened to them there. Marie Broomfield said:

I dont believe it is totally down to staffing numbers , thats an easy excuse. I believe that it has got to do with the culture at that hospital. I say this because when my son was born there in 1999 they kept trying to get my husband to leave me there and go home, although he had no transport and lived miles away plus, i wanted him there. They said it would be hours before i gave birth but it was actually only minutes away. They were also discouraging him from going into the labour ward. And after the child was born, they outwardly dissaproved of my husband carrying his firstborn child in his arms even insisting that he put the child in his cot. If my husband was not so determined he would have missed out on the whole wonderfull experience . As it turned out my child had the cord around his neck and was rushed off for oxygen, which i was totally oblivious to for obvious reasons. So if anything went wrong and they had their way, I would habe been on my own. I thought it was just down to old fashioned views about men at births and kind of forgave them for it but not now.

Frequent commenter Daisy Chainsaw shared this rather excellent story about an enthusiastic kid beneath a video about a similarly happy kid at a church:

I had to go to an anniversary mass recently and there was a folk group singing.  There was an exuberant child who really got into the singing and applauded them after the first hymn.  After the alleluia, he kept shouting “allelluia!” until he was dragged outside by a mortified parent, but not before one last “allelluia” that sounded like a defiant war cry.


Some slightly hysterical reports this week suggested that eating a high-protein diet (i.e. lots of meat) could be as bad for you as smoking. As often happens, the actual study itself didn’t quite suggest that. John Gahan’s cigarette-related comment proved popular:

Steaks should be packaged in plain packaging to deter young kids from getting hooked on their delicious succulency.


© Jonas Dahlberg Studio

A lot of people were impressed by Norway’s planned memorial at Utoya island for the people who were killed there. One questioned what it would mean for killer Anders Behring Breivik, but as Fabiana Mi said:

I guess you have to decide which is more important, worrying that Breivik will gain some sort of twisted pleasure from this memorial, or the potential for the 69 families affected to gain some sort of closure from it. I think latter outweighs the former every time

Robert Burke was pragmatic about RTE’s blooper on Monday night when the words “Irish Ukrainian not Russian” were repeated on a loop for 13 minutes:

I for one would like to welcome our Irish Ukrainian overlords

It’s rare to get a story on which all commenters agree (understatement!) but the shooting dead of one of the only white-tailed eagles in the country brought widespread condemnation from readers. Eoin O’Hagan explained the hard work that had gone into breeding the eagle:

The hundreds of people living around Lough Derg and the thousands who visited Mountshannon to see the first chicks hatched in over 100 years will be devastated to hear this news today. There is an individual in Ballinderry Co. Tipperary who should hang his/her head in shame. The hard work that has been put in by The Golden Eagle Trust to reintroduce these amazing birds is tarnished when somebody kills one. The two chicks that hatched last year in Mountshannon went through so much to survive and fledge and were seen regularly flying over Lough Derg and surrounding countryside. It’s a sad sad day when some trigger happy individual decides to shoot one of Norways and natures gifts to the people of Ireland


(Pic: Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht)

Your Voice
Readers Comments