Recent instances of poster vandalism in Cork city have been described by the candidates involved as ‘disturbing’ and undemocratic.
In one example, where a poster of Deirdre Clune was defaced, a bleeding cut was drawn across her throat with a knife also drawn on the poster.
The MEP, who is hoping to retain her seat in the upcoming European election, said whoever vandalised the poster had likely not considered the consequences of their actions.
“I think it is offensive and to think there could be children looking at these as well and it’s not taken into consideration,” she told The Echo. “If they want to engage in the process, I am more than happy to engage and discourse and this is a democratic process that I’m involved in.
“I just find it extremely disturbing with young children going to school and people in general, it’s not an image they want to see.”
Fianna Fáil local election candidate Sean Coleman, who was described by his campaign director as pro-life, had to remove some of his posters after stickers were attached accusing him of being a ‘baby killer’.
Campaign director Noel Dunne said defacing posters in this way has no place in society.
“We weren’t even going to put up posters, we only started putting them up last week,” he said. “Then to see that on a Sunday morning, with people and children going to mass, it’s bad. There’s no place in society at this day and age.” There have been other instances of posters being defaced in both the city and county in recent weeks.
Fine Gael city councillor Des Cahill had a tin of paint thrown over his poster outside his home and other posters vandalised with derogatory remarks.
“While I may be a candidate, there is also a family behind me,” he said. “Attacks on me are attacks on my family and there are two teenagers and so on but whatever issues you may have you should respect the democratic form and the democratic process.
“Attacking posters and specifically targeting my house isn’t democracy and I would ask them to reflect on that.”