An iconic gay bar in Ireland was the target of homophobic graffiti this week, but the city and community quickly responded to clean away the hate. Vandals spray-painted an anti-gay slur on the building next to the PantiBar in Dublin, with an arrow pointing at the famed drag venue. The club’s owner, Dr. Panti Bliss-Cabrera (a.k.a Rory O’Neill), told the Irish Examiner the act was clearly premeditated and that an investigation is underway. Dublin is currently celebrating Dublin Pride 2021 throughout the month of June.
"It was very clearly planned and premeditated, rather than a spur of the moment thing," O’Neill explained.
Bliss-Cabrera posted a picture of the vandalism to Twitter which struck the building next to the PantiBar, saying the act had happened “during the night.” The picture showed the spray-painted homophobic slur "pedo bar" along with a large arrow pointing toward PantiBar.
Luckily, Dublin officials were quick to dispatch a cleaning team "straight away" and the graffiti was quickly removed.
In a later post to Twitter, Bliss-Cabrera thanked the team for their rapid response in removing the offensive, homophobic graffiti.
The case has been referred to Gardaí, the Irish national police, for an investigation of criminal damage.
This is the third anti-gay act in Ireland in less than two weeks. Pride flags flown in front of the city and council halls in Waterford were torn down in two separate incidents. The replacement flags were torn down on Saturday, June 12, after the original flags had been torn down and burned on Monday, June 7. The Gardaí arrested an unnamed man in his 40s and charged him with criminal damage for the first incident. It was unclear if he was connected to the second attack on the flag as well.
"A truly despicable act," Waterford Mayor Damien Geoghegan tweeted.
The multiple incidents against the LGBTQ+ community have taken place as Ireland celebrates Pride this month. Waterford concluded its celebrations last weekend, while Dublin is celebrating Pride online throughout the month. The Dublin Pride Parade and March will take place virtually Saturday, June 26. The city’s celebrations conclude Monday, June 28, to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.