The Voice Of A Generation

#TrendsterAras18 Presidential Interview Series: Senator Joan Freeman

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The #TrendsterAras18 Presidential Interview Series aims to help better inform young voters ahead of the Irish Presidential Election on Friday, October 26th. We have requested interviews with each of the six presidential candidates and have set out a list of eight questions which we believe will offer young people more of an insight into each of the presidential hopefuls.

The second candidate to accept our interview request was Senator Joan Freeman. I sat down to speak with Joan over tea in the Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin.

Page 8 of 8 :
If given the opportunity, what one piece of advice would you give to your 18-year-old self?
  • 1. Why did do you decide to run for the Presidency?
  • 2. In your opinion, what do you believe sets you apart from the other candidates?
  • 3. What do you understand the Presidents role to be in a modern Ireland?
  • 4. Can the President implement any substantial changes on issues affecting young people in Ireland or is the role restricted? If so should this be changed?
  • 5. Over the last number of years, we have seen some substantial social changes in Ireland, two of the most notable would be gay marriage and the removal of the 8th amendment, many would agree that these changes were driven by younger voters wanting a better Ireland. As President is there any further social change that you would like to champion?
  • 6. There has much discussion in the last year around lowering the voting to sixteen, what are your views?
  • 7. If elected as President and you could invite anybody over to Aras an Uachtaráin for tea, who would be your first choice?
  • 8. If given the opportunity, what one piece of advice would you give to your 18-year-old self?

8. If given the opportunity, what one piece of advice would you give to your 18-year-old self?

I suppose, do more… I didn’t travel, I didn’t have foresight really to put myself out there at eighteen, like travelling wise or anything like that… to believe in myself more, and I was going to say, not be afraid, we’re going to all be afraid anyway, you know, and as I keep saying, be afraid, but just do it anyway… I suppose fear can stop us from doing some many things really… you know when you asked me earlier, what did I think about running for this… I’ve been terrified for weeks… but I still have to do it anyway, at least when it’s over that my name was on the ballot paper, that’s the first thing, but secondly, I’m showing my own four children to be afraid and do it anyway.

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