What Alex said


Alex Kane is a man I like a lot. He’s cheerful, intelligent, accommodating. While he is an unambiguous unionist, he’s frank in his analysis of the need for a recognition of the Irishness of almost half the population here, and a great deal of the time he knows what he’s talking about. 

But every so often he’ll come up with a column or an idea that makes it hard to see the many good qualities he has. In fact, he has written columns that some would see as biased. The one he wrote in the   News Letter  recently shows both sides. of the man, I think.  Which you may conclude makes the column balanced or, on the other hand you may conclude it’s like the curate’s egg, good in bits.

He  opens with a brief comment on the Scottish referendum, concluding that, if the Yes vote is defeated, that won’t mean the end of it. Scottish nationalists will return to the fray and there may well be calls for another referendum in five years’ time. Ditto, he believes, is the case with republicans here. If a referendum on constitutional change were held and defeated, republicans would not simply walk away: they would redouble their efforts. In short, for nationalism in both Scotland and Ireland there is no final half-way house.

I think there’s a lot of truth in that, although I’m not so sure about Scotland. But it’s beyond unlikely that nationalists and republicans will abandon an aspiration that has throbbed in Irish veins throughout the centuries.

Alex goes on to accuse Sinn Féin of not putting flesh on the bones of what a united Ireland would look like. I think he has a point here: I too would like to know, beyond generalities, how a united Ireland would look and how it would differ from what we have now, apart from the obvious feature of deleted partition. However, when he contrasts nationalist and republican thinking here with the Scottish nationalists’ 600+ page document, he’s a bit unfair. The Scot Nats have been given the referendum they asked for. We have been, rightly or wrongly, told to forget it, referendum-wise. So a comprehensive, exhaustive document without the prospect of applying it in practice would be a bit premature here.

He contends that if a united Ireland were voted for in a referendum (on both sides of the border), unionists here would still remain unionists and every bit as British as they are today. I don’t think so. I have always believed that a large measure of people’s thinking comes from the social/political/economic situation in which they live. If, for example, today’s unionists were to find themselves an effective and respected part of the Irish nation – which I’m certain they would be – it’s perfectly conceivable that their present thinking would modify. It would be almost insulting to suggest that changed circumstances would not be followed by changed thinking.

Alex also predicts opposition and almost certainly violence if a referendum here voted for a united Ireland and moves were made to act on that democratic decision. Now he may be right or he may be wrong, but as we know, people painting a picture of coming disorder very often offer a self-fulfilling prophecy. Keep talking about the inevitability of violence and there will be violence. Besides which, it’s an odd international agreement – which the Good Friday Agreement was – where one large section of the population declares in advance that if the vote goes against them, they’ll resort to violence. Were that true, the GFA then would be a beaten docket, a waste of good trees.

Alex concludes:

“The one big thing that is missing now in Northern Ireland, in the Republic, between Britain and the Republic, and between Belfast and Dublin is a serious, detailed debate about the future. If you want to solve a problem then, at the very least, you need to begin by agreeing the nature of the problem.”

I couldn’t agree more. Independent research should be conducted, facts amassed, opinion sought, a clear and practical (and readable – no 600+ pages, please, guys) ground plan of the nature of a united Ireland should be at the top of all parties’ agenda. We still have to agree on the detail of the problem, if not its nature; and I don’t blame unionism for being fearful, when all they’re fed is some notion of a big 26-pound fish swallowing a small 6-pound fish whole.

But please: no more predictions of violence if the vote goes against you. That’s literally asking for trouble.

22 Responses to What Alex said

  1. North Munsterman August 20, 2014 at 8:35 am #

    If Nationalist Ireland produced the most brilliant “White Paper” (or Green -:) ever written on the Re-Unification of Ireland, it would be dismissed out of hand immediately by virtually all shades of Unionism. Some unionist fanatics may well go on the rampage (cue the Flag in BCC) and then they would blame Nationalists exclusively for provoking all of this with their “silly White/Green Paper”.

    Nationalists will be the majority by 2020 – and by the mid-2020’s there will be a Nationalist FM……maybe at that stage, the inevitability of a Re-United Ireland will begin to dwell on unionist minds and perhaps at that stage they may be receptive to such a White/Green Paper.

    In the interim, the GFA is the ONLY show in town – any unionists attempting to derail it, especially violently, should bear in mind that they will be undermining US Foreign policy – and that will not go down too well in Washington.

  2. Cal August 20, 2014 at 10:49 am #

    But I thought Unionists don’t do terrorism…

  3. paddykool August 20, 2014 at 10:56 am #

    We had a conversation earlier in the year about this one ,Jude .I remember writing a piece and asking about the shape of a proposed United Ireland.
    You finish this piece by stating that predicting violence would literally be self -prophesying. It is in Northern Ireland and unionism has always used it’s threat as a tactic in the past .It works for them alright. They used that tactic with the flag debacle at the Belfast City Hall only mere months ago so it’s reasonable to assume they find that kind of behaviour just fine.. There was no reasoned debate from them there .They stood back after inflaming the situation and let it burn. It burned up millions of hard -earned money that could have been used for something else.This new option of a referendum for a United Ireland would up the ante even more and have them bellowing like bulls on the street. They’ll resist this discussion as they resist any new ideas.It doesn’t matter whether it would be a good idea or not.
    Alex Kane always struck me as a pragmatic , reasonable man .He comes across on television and radio as a man capable of seeing a variety of viewpoints which probably frightens a lot of people in Northern Ireland where we’re all supposed to think in black and white. I don’t think he’d be seen as a “proper” unionist by the DuP or the OUP. Maybe ..Alliance …?
    You mention the Good Friday Agreement, but it’s crystal clear that unionism really wants to disown it .They were steered into agreeing in the first place .They didn’t actually agree at all. In their hearts they are currently working at unpicking every stitch of that agreed future while the world’s eyes are averted by the likes of Iraq and Gaza..They are standing with their backs against a hard wall with nowhere to go but they are so truculent that ultimately that would be there preference. It’s that old “No Surrender”, siege claptrap. Even now in the 21st Century they feel under siege .They’d rather eat rats than agree that there might be a better way to approach our problems. even to think about it! What has the Good Friday Agreement really delivered here .? A peace from murdering , mostly but no kind of meeting of minds. There are no reasoned debates going on between our politicians . What we need are the best debaters from each side facing off on a televised, well-chaired discussion. What we’d actually get would be a Steven Nolan or somesuch butting in all over the place as points were being made or discussed. Shrapnel flying everywhere…bearpit television….We need a Paxman to chair a thing like that. We’re back to the nonsense of unionism walking away from anything they don’t like talking about .If they can walk away from talks about marching and flags , does anyone really think they’ll sit down to talk rationally about the prospect of a united Ireland referendum.It’ll not happen.
    I would like also to see the new ideas as to how it would work. I know that Unionists would have some real voting clout in a reformed {In every sense!} New Ireland. although that’s not cut and dried either as we might then have real politics instead of tribal politics in that scenario , so unionism as such ,would no longer exist within a generation or so …except as All Ireland Unionists which is what everyone would then be anyway!. We might have Socialist “unionists” for example…or “Green” unionists or even Sinn Fein “unionists” …for the first time .
    So let’s see the economics laid out.Let’s see the cultures laid out…We’d have a lot to work with in this new Ireland full to brimming with all the new creeds, nationalities.The Irish , the Scots, the Poles, the Russians, the Germans, the French, the Indians, the Pakistanis, the Chinese and the Italians …and on and on ….all sharing their cultures throughout this New Ireland. It seems to work alright in England for the most part . with the odd hiccup …..why shouldn’t it work here?.

  4. Patrick fahy August 20, 2014 at 11:26 am #

    I dont know Alex Kane. But I do detect in his recent writings a shift from blatant, if not downright offensive comments in relation to Sin Fein and its motives, to a more public-consumption acceptable media position. In the past, it is not going toofar to say that he has been a cheer leader for all the worst elements of negative political unionism, encouraging, if not fomenting the siege histeria. Lest it be forgotten in this time of relative peace, it was precisely such utterances as Alex Kane has made in the recent past, from previous right wing unionist leaders and spokespersons which led first to attacks on civil rights marchers, and later to the murders of innocent Catholics. He has described Sinn Fein, and therefore implicitly its members and supporters as evil people with whom one should have no truck. Can Jude ask him if he still holds that view,and, if so, how the progress which he claims to wish to see can be achieved. By all means, encourage debate about the shape of a united Ireland. We need to do that, and to take on board the fears and insecurities of unionists. But we are entitled to question the motivations of those who not only are resolutely opposed to the prospect of a united Ireland, but who also threaten violence in the event of a democratic vote in favour of that course. For, make no mistake about, Alex Kane’s ‘prediction’ of violence is Alex Kane’s threat. there is no other basis for it.

  5. Perkin Warbeck August 20, 2014 at 11:29 am #

    Although today is still only Wednesday, fish is very much on the menu.

    As is evidenced by the pre-penultimate sentence in today’s blog: ”and I don’t blame unionism for being fearful when all they’re fed is some notion of a big 26-pound fish swallowing a small 6-pound fish whole’.

    Coincidentally, (or is it? we conspiracy theorists might have other views on the matter) this sentence dead-heated with the announcement that the biggest 26-pound flounder in the Free Southern Stateen gold fish bowl media, one Pat Kenny has just been signed by the six-pound UTV for a fee somewhere on the Tandragee side of 1,000,000 pounds.

    That you wee wealthy Nordies should be so lucky.

    Hopefully, he will be able to accommodate Alex Kane early on in his tenure as the biggest jelly fish in the northern telly sea. AK might just turn out to be very pleasantly surprised at just how much he and PK have in common.

    Seriously though, and in all Hughie Green-shaded sincerity, PW wishes his old classmate all the best, for Perky and Flat Pat (a flounder is a flatfish for those who are piscatorially challenged) go back a longish if not a long way. To 1956 or thereabouts. Or, if you prefer, 40 years after the 1916 Backstab and almost 60 years before today’s abundant Poppy Harvest.

    Mention is made in today’s blog also of a 600+ page document, which immediately put PW in mind of the first copy he ever purchased of another 600+page document, a novel called, I think, ‘Ulysses’. It was the green-covered Bodley Head edition and cost 25 bob in old money. Indeed, PW still has it, though it has been whittled down to a mere 600 pages. A fundamental part of the furniture in the Warbeck Necessary Room, the ‘+pages’ were removed to be used for purposes other than reading. They would be the pages dealing with the racist attack on The Citizen in Barney Kiernan’s pub. PW can be a tad sniffy when it comes to the r-word.

    One mentions this as the author of this novel, James Joyce also attended the same school as both PK and PW. Though, as has been pointed out, JJ only lasted a mere week, having been whisked out of it by the left lug by his old Cork codger of a da who refused to have his son ‘sharing a classroom with Paddy Stink and Mickey Mud’. Up so, the half mile or so to the SJ redoubt of Belvo for Joyce Minor. Or, ought that be spelled with a more slender , egg-shaped o? Like, Belv0 ?

    The school to which Joyce Major took such exception, and in hindsight, justifiably and perhaps even arguably so, was O’Connell Schools. Named for a dueller known as Deadeye Dan. The Christian Brothers had this thing about the promotion of violence, alright.

    Anyway, not only did PW share a classroom for eleven years with PK, despite being totally outclassed by the latter, he also had the p. of sharing a bus to and from: the Number 23. Climbing over the humpbacked bridge of Islandbridge we gurriers from the outlying suburbs used to look forward to one who boarded at the next stop, another classmate nicknamed Gilly, alas no longer with us, who lived with his uncle who kept a candy store in Chapleizod which features not in a shy way in Finnegans Wake. (No superfluous apostrophe s there please).

    Gilly was generous to a fault with his uncle’s candy and no more fault-filled gurriers than us found great comfort in emptying his bulging pockets of rum and butter bon bons, cough no more and bull’s eyes. Should Gilly have had an off-morning we did not worry as we always had the second next bus stop to look forward to. The stop at Parkgate Street.

    That is where PK in short pants used to board, with not his pockets but rather his precise schoolbag neatly lined with Fig Rolls, Kimberley and Mikado. Also, Afternoon Tea but these biscuits were strictly kept for the return journey. Even at the early age, PK’s ability to compartmentalise was in evidence. Keep an eye out for this admirable quality on UTV.

    All these biscuits were of the Jacob’s brand, manufactured curiously in a building not unassociated with the 1916 Backstap. Odd, very.

    This was 1956 when Pioneer Pins and (gulp) Fainni (that’s Leprechaun for Lord of the Rings) were rather more prevalent in the lapels of the FSS than Poppies. This was 1956 when the Chips had a hit with ‘Rubber Biscuit’, later to be covered with some success by The Blues Brothers.

    ‘The other day I had a ricochet biscuit
    A ricochet biscuit is the kind of a biscuit
    That’s supposed to bounce back off the wall
    Into your mouth, if it don’t bounce back, you go hungry’

    Their presence in PK’s tidy schoolbag are explained by the fact that Kenny Major was the elephant keeper in the Dublin zoo, pronounced a-zoo. He once featured in a newspaper advert for Jacob’s feeding a Big E with Assorted USA, by the trunk load.

    Which makes PK’s failure to even mention the biggest sporting Elephant in the Irish Drawing Room even once during his long and laurel-laden career in broadcasting, all the more surprising.

    One refers, of course, to the unfinished end of the Croke Park stadium, the Railway End. Now, while PK was not exactly sporty during his O’CS days where bogball was, alas, the only game in town, he did cultivate an interest in both trainspotting and stamp collecting. So, the rather incomplete Railway End must have caught his eye. Besides, it’s not that he never set foot on the emerald sward of the Croke Park Paddock (to be so designated during the upcoming roll-on Rugga World Cup).

    Mention was made here recently of the O’CS annual sports, held across the Royal Canal in Croker, of PW’s spilling his egg from his wooden spoon when within sight of the winning line at the Railway End. Mention needs to be made now of the winner that same day, in 1956, who strode majestically home in the sack race. Take a bow, PK. (Is ‘strode’ the correct verb?)

    Certainly, to PW’s knowledge, it is the last time PK has ever been sacked as he continues to stride majestically to the top of the broadcasting hill. Along the way, the sack perhaps has been replaced by the Wheel Barrow, the better to wheel his weekly pittance from the public purse home, during his dazzling Donnybrook days. This is called the W.B. factor. Which is almost Yeatsian in the poetic justice contained therein.

    And it is so called that it is an peculiar fact that those who have most use of the wheelbarrow in RTE have also the same interest bordering on the fanatical, on what was known as the W.B. game in O’CS: soccer. Not so called anymore, but variously, plain ‘football’.

    The superb broadcaster who replaced PK as the pusher of the biggest Wheel Barrow in RTE is, of course, Maid-up Marian Finucane (one almost wrote ‘Finance’). She too, mirabile dictum, never refers to R. Keane as anything other than ‘Roy’. Which is code for being a fan of the type fanatical of the football code known as the Bootyful Game.

    One seems to recall a footballer called Alex Elder from the Wee North in the 1950s. Who used to play soccer. Perhaps the younger Alex Kane is a footy fan? If so he will have lots to talk about with PK. It is, after all , our ‘erm’ national game.

    To conclude with what one started with, and what The Great Shakes once called ‘a smell, a very ancient fish-like smell’. And which still involves Ulster and the Free Southern Stateen. To wit, the upcoming All-Ireland Semi Final Clash between Donegal and Dublin.

    In the interests of better relationships between the S and the N this professional Dub called PW is willing to pass on some classified information regarding this game. Yes, some things are more important than mere tribal loyalty.

    Let Donegal note that Dublin’s preparations involve the setting up of a training camp in Howth fishing village. Why? Because Donegal have perfected the style of blanket defence first devised by Tyrone and dissed as ‘Pike Football’ by the Thinker of Templenoe, Pat Spillane. Who noes more than most about these things. Yes, ‘Pike’. A lot of folk thought he was saying ‘Puke’ football but no, or even noe, that is the way ‘pike’ is pronounced in Yerraland: ‘puke’.

    In other words, the way Donegal play smells. In ‘ a very ancient, fish like way.’ Thus, the Dublin team, even as we speak, are accommodating their nostrils to this ‘ancient, fish-like smell’ of Northern play. Every morning they wake up to the stink of hake, mackerel and herring itself.

    No wonder this top-secret training manoeuvre is called “Operation Donegal Catch-out’. It is specifically tailored to target the Donegal monofilament nets.

    Let Donegal not claim they have not been warned. Let no one claim neither that the PW is not doing his best to outreach if not indeed, overreach himself in the interests of a united in diversity island of Ireland.

  6. Freddy Mallins August 20, 2014 at 12:39 pm #

    Alex, unfortunately always struck me as being very challenged by the changing times in which we live. He is consistently scathing of Stormont. He wants to give the impression that lack of progress is borne out of the mutual hatred that SF and DUP have for each other. That’s the way he would like it, I fear. But in reality, Nationalists do not hate their Unionist neighbours. There is little equivalence. We have not been brought up to hate Protestantism, far from it. On the other hand, hatred/fear of Catholicism seems to infect all Unionist judgement. I will refrain from quoting our past President as it would allow for the invoking of Godwin’s rule and then the baby goes out with the bath water.

    • neill August 20, 2014 at 5:53 pm #

      Of course Catholics didnt hate their unionist neighbours bar the ones who served in the Police, UDR,Dog wardens or simply any unionist who was at the wrong place at the wrong time.

      Until the catholic community is more honest about its own failings dont expect anybody from the unionist community to feel any guilt about their actions

      • Jude Collins August 20, 2014 at 7:22 pm #

        Just on a matter of fact, neill – ‘Of course Catholics didnt hate their unionist neighbours bar the ones who served in the Police, UDR,Dog wardens or simply any unionist who was at the wrong place at the wrong time ‘ – that is simply untrue. And you really shouldn’t say it when you know it’s not true.

        • neill August 20, 2014 at 7:38 pm #

          Then why did so many Catholics vote for SF before the ceasefire it surely could not have been for social policies?

          Perhaps they supported the armed struggle?

          • Jude Collins August 20, 2014 at 7:50 pm #

            Seriously Neill- are you saying anyone who voted SF before ceased fires hated unionists? Come on – grown-up discussion, please…

          • Ryan August 20, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

            I could easily ask you Neill why did so many Unionists vote for Ian Paisley Snr who was a very vocal anti-Catholic bigot. And also, please stick to the facts Neill, the majority of Catholics didn’t vote for SF till after the ceasefires. Though plenty of Unionists were voting DUP while Peter Robinson was refusing to call UDA/UVF members terrorists and Sammy Wilson was helping carry dead UDA mens coffins, this was BEFORE the ceasefire, btw.

            Lets cut out the hypocrisy Neill.

      • Ryan August 20, 2014 at 7:53 pm #

        If I remember correctly Neill, the Parliament of Northern Ireland was declared a PROTESTANT parliament for a PROTESTANT people, not a Catholic parliament for a Catholic people. So who hates who, exactly?

        As for the “Until the catholic community is more honest about its own failings dont expect anybody from the unionist community to feel any guilt about their actions”

        I think that says it all about your mind set Neill.

  7. Pointis August 20, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

    In many respects I think Alex Kane is correct. I think it is widely accepted that, as Paddykool says, the majority of unionists do not see the GFA as something positive. Remember, nearly 29% of those who chose to vote north of the border voted against the GFA, the vast majority of those made up of DUP supporters.

    I think political unionism would be unwilling to compromise at this point because too much is still as it was in the bad old “my way or the highway” days.

    We are just beginning the next phase of the great reconciliation. I think many things need to change as the population balance shifts to a nationalist majority in the North.

    As Sinn Fein takes more power in councils and the assembly I believe there should be an emphasis not on greening the North but on neutralising the North and ridding the place of sectarianism.

    loyalists will in all likelihood reject a neutral environment as they rejected the fair employment recommendations on flags at Belfast City hall but it is hard to argue with democracy especially if you require the support of the British Government.

    Over time all those places which you should expect to be neutral such as main roads and town centres will be neutral. It would be reasonable to expect that no political flags, bunting or purple arches were erected in towns where a poll has suggested that less than 60% approve of such displays. The same rule could apply to Orange / loyalist marches and Nationalist marches.

    Unless there were radical changes to the ordinances of the Orange Order the 12th July should no longer be given specific schedule time on mainstream tv except as a news item and be ineligible for any public funding or to comply with charitable status.

    The Irish and British Government could help make the region a more equitable one by challenging the churches here to change their more harmful ordinances which could influence its members to consider another human being in a less than respectful manner such as the Westminster Confession of Faith.

    I personally would be in favour of an accreditation scheme which rewarded businesses and organisations which could prove that they were non-sectarian and promoted equality and good relationships. Only companies achieving the charter status would be eligible to tender for government contracts and the general public could decided whether they wanted to spend their money with a company which did not ensure that their staff and customers were not exposed to bigotry or prejudice. Fair employment tribunals would also be allowed to take into consideration any efforts expended by a company in trying to achieve a charter mark when making decisions on aggregated damages relating to employee claims of a sectarian or racial nature.

    Life here would need to be so much more equal here before any referendum would be contemplated and things will probably go a lot smoother.

    There will in all likelihood still be towns where sectarian flags hang and bigots hanker for lost privilege like old confederates of the Deep South but their time will come too!

  8. Iolar August 20, 2014 at 7:13 pm #

    Alex Kane’s opinion about the future of this Island conveniently avoids any reference to the legacy of colonialism and partition. The flag protests, generated by one democratic decision, exposed political unionism’s graduated response to the concept of democracy. Alex is strangely silent on the legacy of unionism given the evidence of educational underachievement particularly in working class areas. Talking up violent responses to political change is a variation on the theme of divide and conquer. One does not hear about threats of violence in the context of the debate on Independence in Scotland. Quite properly, the Scots are discussing economic, social and political issues. There are frequent debates about the concentration of wealth in the hands of the few, health inequalities, educational disadvantage, poverty, land ownership, pollution and the environment. There are concerns over the issue of currency. Scots who advocate an independent Scotland cite the practice in Ireland. It is possible to move through the length and breadth of this island with sterling, euro and dollar. Alex Kane needs to confront the reality that political unionism had over 50 years to develop a fair and equitable system of government, It failed as will any system that is not based on the impartial administration of justice and respect for human rights.

  9. neill August 21, 2014 at 7:42 am #

    Seriously Neill- are you saying anyone who voted SF before ceased fires hated unionists? Come on – grown-up discussion, please…

    No you come on if you voted for SF you believed in the Armed struggle and guess what community that was directed at.

    What part of that statement is untrue?

    • Jude Collins August 21, 2014 at 9:59 am #

      It wouldn’t have occurred to you that people might have voted for SF in order to end the armed struggle? Think about it, Neill

  10. neill August 21, 2014 at 10:19 am #

    Good grief Jude you have hit a new low if we give you a vote will you stop killing pretty pretty plese.

    • Jude Collins August 21, 2014 at 10:30 am #

      Ach Neill – I know you can do better than that. Resist the temptation, like a decent man.

  11. neill August 21, 2014 at 11:31 am #

    I could easily ask you Neill why did so many Unionists vote for Ian Paisley Snr who was a very vocal anti-Catholic bigot. And also, please stick to the facts Neill, the majority of Catholics didn’t vote for SF till after the ceasefires. Though plenty of Unionists were voting DUP while Peter Robinson was refusing to call UDA/UVF members terrorists and Sammy Wilson was helping carry dead UDA mens coffins, this was BEFORE the ceasefire, btw.

    Bigots yes murderers no.

    You would be surprised to know how many catholics voted for Ian Paisley senior

    I didnt say that all catholics supported murder far from it but doesnt it make you feel a little queasy that that so many people were prepared to vote for a party that supported armed struggle?

  12. michael c August 21, 2014 at 12:46 pm #

    As someone who lives a few miles west of the Bann from Paisley’s North Antrim constituency ,I can tell you that the number of catholics who voted for big Ian would fit into a phonebox.Ballymena catholics are notorious for their uncle Tommery but even they could not stoop to voting DUP.

  13. Dr Michael Hfuhruhurr August 21, 2014 at 4:00 pm #

    “You would be surprised to know how many catholics voted for Ian Paisley senior”

    I would guess the same percentage who have serious self hate issues, into swinging and who are into self harm and cutting.

    Most likely the same ratio of Protestants that vote for Sinn Fein !

    Strange that !

  14. Micheal August 23, 2014 at 8:38 am #

    I think the whole problem with Unionism is they’re trying to play politics up at Stormont but without the mindset of a politician. More often than not their decisions are based solely on whether Britain will look favorably on them rather than doing it for the good of the North of Ireland. More and more people are voting for Sinn Fein for the sole reason that they have turned into a progressive politcal party, one which is working for all denominations in our communities instead of the “we want to work for both communities” which Unionists continue to leak out every now and again in the hope it will appease the Nationalist side and to hell with all our Asian, African American and various other nationalities in out communities.

    Its so downright obvious that Unionists have absolutely no lust to progress the North in any direction other than backwards or no wanting to progress it forward (in other words) but they’ll try unrelentingly to make it look like Sinn Fein are always in the wrong even when Unionism caused the mess in the first place.

    Discussion has always been the greatest weapon Nationalism processes due to the fact that when discussion takes place Sinn Fein, hell, Nationalism in general comes out on top because Unionism is always caught out in lies and deception. The North is slowly becoming a Nationalist state and I can only think that Unionism fears the day when they will be in the same position Nationalists and Catholics were back in the day when you couldn’t walk down the street without being asked if you were a Taig or a Fenian, when there was no equality for Catholics. Catholics were treated as second class citizens and no matter how much Unionism debated and argues that this is not the case it will never change the mindset of those of us who went through it.

    The difference this time is Unionist, Loyalists and Protestants won’t be treated as scum, as dirt, they will be treated as equals, they will be treated with as much respect as anyone else. The question that needs to be asked is this, have we forgotten how hard it was for a Catholic to live in those times, have we forgotten how WE were treated by a people backed by the RUC, the Loyalist paramilitaries and Britain……only time will tell but discussion needs to happen.