'Keep the head up high': Support offered to Leo Varadkar following nightclub video

'Keep the head up high': Support offered to Leo Varadkar following nightclub video

Most of the emails sent to Taoiseach Leo Varadkar were supportive, with one woman writing: 'Keep on enjoying yourself, just be careful. I wish I was your age again.' Picture: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar received support from the public over a secret video that was taken of him socialising in a nightclub.

The invasion of privacy sparked nearly two dozen emails to his department, with most saying it was nobody’s business but others saying it showed a lack of judgement.

There were also a handful of angry pieces of correspondence, with one bizarrely suggesting the event was staged to help bolster the case for controversial hate speech laws.

In an email, the person said they were gay but it was obvious the video was “all a ruse to get the hate speech laws in”.

Another said they found it “discussing [sic]”, saying Mr Varadkar should resign immediately, according to emails released under Freedom of Information laws.

A larger group of people supported Mr Varadkar, with one saying: “I just wanted to let you know that as a gay man, I support you and you have a right to a private life.

“Keep the head up high and keep making us [in the] LGBQT+ community proud.” 

Another blamed the “feckin media” and said most people could not care less what people did in their private lives.

“I feel releasing ridiculous clips like this is more demeaning for the idiots … that put it out there and actually makes it into a positive situation and in many ways beneficial to you,” said the correspondence.

One person said they had seen the video, which circulated, adding: “I want you to know that I don’t care. You’re a professional; you’re entitled to your youth.” Another said they were “really disgusted” by the invasion of privacy involved.

Their email said: “It must feel very hard to be in politics at times like these. It will of course blow over but I’m sorry you’re dealing with commentary and rudeness about something so personal.” 

One email said it was “disheartening” to see somebody secretly recorded in what was supposed to be a “safe space”.

“[I] would like you to know that not everyone is as nosy or narrow-minded as the person who filmed you without your consent or the armchair commentators who are disingenuously offended.” 

Another said they were a supporter but suggested it had been an “own goal” at a time Mr Varadkar was about to resume office as Taoiseach.

“This plea comes from a supporter who admires you hugely, but I have to tell you now to reflect on what you are doing,” they wrote.

One email wrote of trying to walk the “tightrope” of public and private life and that it was not easy without “a large net to tumble on”.

Another said it was wrong to categorise it as a breach of privacy, given it had happened in a public place. 

“[It] cannot be just fobbed off as being private and nothing to do with us,” they wrote.

One woman said everybody in Government needed to be more cautious of the fact that “phones were everywhere” when they were out and about.

“Keep on enjoying yourself, just be careful,” she said. “I wish I was your age again, but I did my clubbing all over the world. Continue to take care of us pensioners.”

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