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Make no mistake, the eyes of the world are on Ireland right now

Ireland’s Catholic past means tomorrow’s vote is being viewed with curiosity.

MAKE NO MISTAKE, the world will be watching what Ireland does tomorrow.

As the first country in the world to decide on same-sex marriage by popular vote, Ireland will irrefutably show how the country feels about a social issue that is being debated the world over.

sky news marriage Sky News is one of many international outlets in Ireland right now. Source: Sky News

Ireland makes international headlines more frequently than other countries of our size. But when we do, it’s usually because of two things.

One is Northern Ireland and The Troubles. Predictably, for example, the handshake between Gerry Adams and Prince Charles was covered beyond Ireland and the UK.

The other reason the world likes to pay attention to Ireland is often because of something that makes Ireland looks like a backward little nation.

The awful Tuam babies controversy was given prominence on news pages and websites worldwide. Ireland’s history of bowing to Roman Catholic dogma was again being discussed far and wide.

That’s another the reason people are interested in what Ireland has to say tomorrow. Or more precisely, that’s why they’re interested in who Irish people are now listening to.

If there’s any doubt about that, a few minutes scrolling through the international coverage of the referendum will confirm it.

Take Time Magazine, who this morning published this article.

PastedImage-77553 Source: Time Magazine

The short piece provides a Q&A to its international audience about what they should know about Ireland’s vote.

Right near the top is the question that many reading it will probably be thinking.

PastedImage-63815 Source: Time Magazine

They’re not the only ones.

BBC Newsnight dedicated a segment of the show to Ireland’s vote on last night’s show. The piece also focused heavily on the declining influence of the Catholic Church and conducted a vox-pop of mass-goers.

John Waters spoke on the programme and even he criticised the narrow focus on religion, arguing that many objections to the referendum are constitutionally-based.

Newsnight reporter Katie Razzall instead spoke of a “new generation” of Irish people who “preach a message of tolerance”.

One of example of this, she said, was the “irreverent comedy duo the Rubberbandits”.

Blind Boy, complete with plastic bag, was interviewed about Irish views on homosexuality and marriage. He said that the vote is a watershed moment for the Catholic Church.

‘Horse Outside’ even got an airing on the BBC before actress Simone Kirby advocated a Yes vote in-studio.

Presenter Evan Davis repeatedly expressed surprise at the speed at which marriage equality could be introduced in Ireland.

Given, he said, that homosexuality was decriminalised relatively recently and divorce more recently still.

Sky News has also been reporting from Dublin throughout today and have had live interviews with Yes campaigners Donal Óg Cusack and Colm O’Gorman.

Their Ireland correspondent also spoke to engaged couple Seamus Clancy and Lee Stinton. They told him that “the world’s going to still keep turning” if the country votes Yes.

PastedImage-79153 Source: Sky News

Channel 4 are getting in on the act with an interview with Irish author Colm Toibín.

Further afield, both Mashable and Vice have prominent articles about Ireland’s decision.

PastedImage-46776 Source: Mashable

PastedImage-58035 Source: Vice

Fox News is even sending a reporter to Dublin to cover the result.

And just to hammer the message home that the world is watching, Google News is chock-full of international coverage.

marriage world Source: Google News

Read: I get annoyed when it is assumed that older people in rural Ireland will vote No >

WATCH: The real lives affected by #MarRef – on both sides >

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About the author:

Rónán Duffy

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