This ‘brutal’ election: language, please.

BBC’s ‘Sunday Sequence’ had an interesting discussion this morning, about whether this needed to be a ‘brutal’ election (that was Arlene Foster’s word for it, even before it began). It was a thought-provoking discussion and I’ll come back to it in a minute, but let me first consider (beggin’ your pardon) Donald Trump.

Gerry Adams says that if he’s invited to the White House on St Patrick’s Day, he’ll go. There’s been a lot of will he/won’t he over Enda Kenny on the same matter. It’s easy to see why Gerry Adams would say he’d attend: for a long time unionist politicians wouldn’t partake in interviews if there was a Sinn Féin politician on the panel. Some wouldn’t even sit in the same studio as them.

And then when the peace talks and the Good Friday Agreement appeared on the horizon, unionist politicians talked about the need for a period of ‘decontamination’. Others spoke of the need for republicans ‘to be house-trained’. Fast forward to more recently, and we had the mooing sounds that DUP politicians would direct at elected women representatives when they stood to speak. And fast forward again to very recently, and you had a  DUP politician talking about the need to hold their nose when they found themselves close to Sinn Féin counterparts.

Those were the matters the panel on ‘Sunday Sequence’ considered today, and they were as one in their detestation of such language. I couldn’t agree more.

I detest Donald Trump. I think he has conned millions of vulnerable people in the US, I think he’s racist and mysoginistic in his language, I think he falls short at so many points, it’s  hard to accept that he’s the legally-elected President of the United States. But though I detest him, I try not to refer to him as an animal. Or sub-human. Or part of a lesser breed.

Nobody on the Sunday Sequence panel said it directly, but the animal language and jeering came exclusively from the unionist politicians’ ranks. It springs from a desire to see their opponents as not just inferior but in some sense sub-human – incapable of engaging in the kind of rational discourse and behaviour that would be expected from normal people.

This isn’t just ignorant, it’s dangerous. If you can persuade people that a part of the population has the characteristics of animals (did I mention breeding like rabbits/vermin?), you’re half-way to saying they can be treated like animals and are not deserving of the normal human rights everyone else is entitled to.

So of course it’s going to be a bare-knuckle election. Of course barbs are going to be hurled at political opponents. But let’s hope that no politician from any party will descend into the animal-world clabber, in an attempt to attach horns and hooves to their opponents.

153 Responses to This ‘brutal’ election: language, please.

  1. Perkin Warbeck February 5, 2017 at 1:20 pm #

    Language can be a tricky thing, Esteemed Blogmeister.

    Though 2017 among the Chinese Community of Norneveland is the Year of the Rooster, one wonders if something did not get lost in the translation where the Yunes are concerned?
    .

    This is not at all without the bounds of possibility, considering that Yuan is the currency of China.

    THE YEAR of the ROSTER

    DUPes look upon her as an icy imposter
    She U-turned from the UUP, did Foster!
    Thou’ Rooster, G knows
    Like O. Oder has two o’s
    Will it be Sam, Jeff or Dodds to defroster?

    • paddykool February 6, 2017 at 10:23 am #

      So you reckon they are already sharpening the knives Mighty Perk? Arlene has been somewhat subdued of late , come to think of it….

  2. fiosrach February 5, 2017 at 2:14 pm #

    One word sums up the attitude of the settler community here,Jude. Racism. It has ever been their attitude to the coloured people whose lands they stole and ‘granted’ to pay off their hired mercenaries. To people who can’t speak their version of English. Take a look at how they have butchered the Irish language so that it resembles something akin to English. Droim becomes drum, Béal Feirste becomes Bell fast. Anything to remove the taint of the people they have conquered and robbed. Of course you get a class of people who are only too willing to trot after them.

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 5, 2017 at 5:07 pm #

      How do you come up with this stuff?!

      Of course ‘Droim’ becomes ‘drum’ and ‘Beal Feirste’ becomes ‘Bell fast’, when transliterating that’s what people do, they phonetically transplant the imported word to fit their own accent.

      Russian shares numerous words with French and German but they’re spelt differently.

      Furthermore, accents change a great deal over the course of a century so who’s to say that ‘Droim’ didn’t sound as ‘drum’ when it was first transliterated.

      Also, they did the same in Scotland. Not ‘the English’ but the Scots themselves.

      “Anything to remove the taint of the people they have conquered and robbed”

      That makes no sense, if that were the case then Larne would be called Oldfleet, Carrickfergus called Fergusrock and other towns would be loosely translated and anglicised e.g. Belfast – Farsetmouth, Ballymoney – ‘Boghomestead’, Ballymena – Middleton, Dromore – Greatridge but they’re not.

      They have their original names albeit the English and/or Scots equivalent.

      Ergo, you’re wrong. Simples.

      • fiosrach February 5, 2017 at 6:46 pm #

        To follow on,simples, perhaps you can explain how Desertcreat is acceptable on signage but Díseart dhá Chríoch is greeted with Fee fi fo fum, I smell a fenian. Portadown is acceptable but Port an Dúnáin causes apoplectic spasms in unionist circles. Shure it’s only a name. No. It’s obviously more than a name. It’s racism, pure and simple. As I’m sure you’re aware Hawaii is a state of the USA and is governed as such. We are not a part of Britain but we are governed as such. Why? Are we an inferior race unable to govern ourselves?

        • MT February 5, 2017 at 9:35 pm #

          “It’s racism, pure and simple.”

          You’re the racist, calling the Protestant community ‘the settler community’ and accusing them of theft.

          “As I’m sure you’re aware Hawaii is a state of the USA and is governed as such. We are not a part of Britain but we are governed as such. Why? Are we an inferior race unable to govern ourselves?”

          We’re a part of the UK and governed as such.

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 10:59 am #

            The U.K. Is not a country but a state.

          • Gearóid February 6, 2017 at 8:43 pm #

            The protestant community MT is a settler community, and yes, they are guilty of theft. An old dear was on the talkback show today lamenting the fact that the Irish language is ‘alien’ to her. Funny, when I’m in Spain, the Spanish language is alien to me too. You see, most people just don’t get it. What happened in the 15 and 1600s here in Ireland is absolutely directly responsible for the difficulties we’re all experiencing today and every day here in this manufactured but failed state. The North Of Ireland is just another example of a British Fuckup! One of many disasters it has left in it’s wake across the globe. We are simply ALL it’s victims, you too MT. Anyway, getting back to the old dear, of course she’s gonna feel alienated in a country of which her ancestors were planted, (is there another term to describe a plantation of people). Where the planters disenfranchised the indigenous population, tried their best to completely annihilate their language, customs, rights, religion and finally……the people themselves. Here’s the rump MT, we’re unbeaten, unbent and about to come back stronger than ever. The planters, (for planters read DUP, PUL, UUP, PUP ETC ETC) would do well to eat just a tiny piece of humble pie because fortunately enough, above all else MT, we’re a forgiving people. Onwards to the Republic.

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 6, 2017 at 8:30 am #

          “To follow on,simples, perhaps you can explain how Desertcreat is acceptable on signage but Díseart dhá Chríoch is greeted with Fee fi fo fum, I smell a fenian. Portadown is acceptable but Port an Dúnáin causes apoplectic spasms in unionist circles.”

          Easy, unfortunately Gaelic has been politicised.

          The above examples do not support your earlier accusations of racism with regard to the importation of Irish words into English, those are clearly two different topics.

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 11:08 am #

            American Indian languages have been politicised too,I suppose? The britisher empire builders (and others) used this tactic everywhere. They overwhelmed the natives by force and guile. They denigrated all aspects of those people. Their language,religion,way of life – they mocked them all until the natives themselves nearly believed them and would turn on their own and ‘forsake the old ways’. To try and obliterate the original language is still their aim as I point out to you. Look again.

      • Colmán February 6, 2017 at 1:31 am #

        “Furthermore, accents change a great deal over the course of a century so who’s to say that ‘Droim’ didn’t sound as ‘drum’ when it was first transliterated.”

        You can tell that it wasn’t pronounced thus through reading the internal rhyming in Irish poetry. Droim was never pronounced drum. Although it may have sounded like it was to people that didn’t speak the language. This is why Dromore has not been transliterated as such. And is not pronounced as such to this day.

        A good example of what Fiosrach is talking about is Roundstone in County Galway – Cloch na Rón in Irish. Eden for Éadan ect.

        Denying that there was not linguistic conquest in Ireland is like denying the sky is blue.

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 6, 2017 at 8:33 am #

          Yet they came to the exact same conclusion in Scotland of their own academic accord e.g. Drumnadrochit, yet it’s just seen as simple transliterating yet somehow here it’s ‘conquest’ and ‘racism’.

          Could ye’s all just get a grip please?

          • Colmán February 6, 2017 at 1:58 pm #

            Get a grip on what? There is no point in arguing with someone who has reached their conclusions inspite of the facts. The conquest of Ireland and Scotland did indeed happen. And part of this was contra the Gaelic languages. Why do you think that such bitter feelings towards Gaelic exist up to this day both in Scotland and Ireland?

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 12:45 pm #

          “Get a grip on what? There is no point in arguing with someone who has reached their conclusions inspite of the facts.”

          Zigactly! Fiosrach claims racism regarding transliteration of place names, the fact that they were transliterated and not re-named is clear eveidence to the contrary.

          ” The conquest of Ireland and Scotland did indeed happen.”

          As I never claimed otherwise that would be irrelevant.

          ” And part of this was contra the Gaelic languages. Why do you think that such bitter feelings towards Gaelic exist up to this day both in Scotland and Ireland?”

          In Scotland there’s very little in the way of bitter feelings to Gaelic, at worst it’s ridiculed in a similar fashion to how Dubiners may look upon Irish Gaelic.

          As for Ireland (Northern) it’s a big topic, go to Sluggerotoole.com if you want insight on this topice.

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 12:40 pm #

      “American Indian languages have been politicised too,I suppose? The britisher empire builders (and others) used this tactic everywhere. They overwhelmed the natives by force and guile. They denigrated all aspects of those people. Their language,religion,way of life – they mocked them all until the natives themselves nearly believed them and would turn on their own and ‘forsake the old ways’. To try and obliterate the original language is still their aim as I point out to you. Look again.”

      More straw man stuff.

      You claimed racism regarding place names I pointed out to you that the vast majority of place names in NI retained their original names albeit in an understandably transliterated fashion.

      Had your assertion been correct then the whole show would have been completely re-named in an English fashion.

      “To try and obliterate the original language is still their aim as I point out to you”

      Whose ambition? Linda Ervine? The British government which really doesn’t give a stuff?

  3. Pointis February 5, 2017 at 3:17 pm #

    I agree Jude, and what is an important point that you didn’t labour on is the fact that all these dehumanising comments and actions came in a time of peace when the war had been over for 15 or 20 years, leading many to believe that being an Irish Catholic made you the animal but supporting Sinn Fein just made you a lower order animal.

    In relation to Gerry Adams agreeing to visit the White House on St. Patrick’s day I think he is wrong solely on the fact that I think that all such actions have the effect of sanitising the unacceptable.

    Donald Trump and his administration have just implemented actions which have the objective of banning Muslims from entering the United States and plans to implement measures to monitor the activities and movements of muslims within the country. He also plans to move the United States Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem which is part of the occupied territories illegally held by Israel in direct contravention to United Nations proclamations.

    If Gerry Adams pays homage to Donald Trump in the Whitehorse while Trump continues to discriminate against our Muslim brothers and sisters then he might as well book his speaking tour of Israel and the Israeli settlements. As far as I am concerned you do not add credibility to anyone who endorses apartheid. Gerry Adams should know that better than most.

    If Gerry Adams had any sense he would have said I will consider any invite if he received one now he will have egg on his face if he doesn’t get one.

  4. Mark February 5, 2017 at 4:43 pm #

    For fiosrach above, I have previously gotten into trouble for referring to the other’s as ‘settlers’, foreigners might be a better reference since, they swear their allegiance to a foreign state, even when on holiday in Ireland.
    Whenever I am in another country, on my holidays, I treat their culture’s with respect, especially the indigenous people of Australia whom, like us, did not request foreign influences.
    As I pointed out to Joe earlier, I am fed up of the bully boy nonsense from these others. I grew up a couple of mile from the diamond and Loughall, have lived with it all my life, even one lical pouring himself out of a car one afternoon calling us all wee fenian fuckers, as we dandered home from national school.
    Now they’re fire fighting, having been shown up for the lying thieves they are, as before, they have shown themselves unable to be bound by the eight and ninth commandments, at least I can go to confession were I to sin, perhaps aware of this, they’re trying to obtain their benefit pre death.

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 5, 2017 at 5:31 pm #

      ” foreigners might be a better reference since, they swear their allegiance to a foreign state,”

      Right, so Hawaiians aren’t Hawaiian because they swear allegiance to Washington? American Samoans aren’t Samoan because they swear allegiance to Washington?

      Are Siberians not Siberian because they may be happy with being ruled from a city thousands of miles away?

      Are Azerbaijanis in Iran not Azerbaijani because they may be happy with Tehran rule?

      You’re logic is flawed and border line racist.

      Did you ever stop to consider that part of the reason why some Irish people aren’t buying what nationalists are selling because of the poor job of the nationalist pitch this past century?

      “could we interest you in some Roman Catholic Theocracy?”
      “No thankyou”

      “What about demolition of memorials for yours (and our) war dead?”
      “No thankyou”

      “Hmmmm, tricolour perhaps?”
      “No, we’re grand”

      “Well, you’re obviously foreign then”

      The fact of the matter is that for various reasons some people prefer different political arrangements without having to default to the ‘we speak the same language ergo we must be together’ stance of nationalism, if the nationalistic stance was the default of society (a recent advent i.e. post WWII) then there’d be no word for Switzerland or Belgium.

      The Scots are happy enough to be ruled by a ‘foreign’ power as are the Welsh and to varying degree so are other crown dependencies and such like such as the Isle of Mann.

      This ‘you’re with us or a foreigner’ nonsense is borderline racism, especially considering the genetic make up of the ‘natives’ i.e. Gaelic, Anglo, Norman, Norse etc

      I’m sorry you had nasty experiences growing up in perhaps the most sectarian part of the land, it’s clearly left it’s mark on you but it doesn’t oblige you to forsake logic and reason.

      • Pointis February 5, 2017 at 8:34 pm #

        I think you must mean “some Scots” are happy enough to be ruled by a ‘foreign’ power as some Scots would not be happy to be included in that sweeping generalisation.

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 5, 2017 at 8:43 pm #

          Correct Pointis, duly noted.

      • MT February 5, 2017 at 9:41 pm #

        It’s not borderline racism: it’s clear racism.

        By the way, when and where does all this ‘swearing allegiance’ take place? Is it done in secret? If so, how does Mark know about it?

        • Mark February 6, 2017 at 10:02 am #

          Dia duit ar maidín MT, do us a wee favour and point out where Mark mentioned knowing about ‘swearing allegiance’ here?

          • MT February 6, 2017 at 11:53 am #

            “Dia duit ar maidín MT, do us a wee favour and point out where Mark mentioned knowing about ‘swearing allegiance’ here?”

            On this blog. 4.43pm yesterday.

          • Mark February 6, 2017 at 4:42 pm #

            That was ‘swear’.

  5. Mark February 5, 2017 at 5:43 pm #

    AM, has something upset you?

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 5, 2017 at 6:31 pm #

      Yes, regarding a group of Irish people as ‘foreigners’ because they don’t share your political outlook.
      (For those that refer to themselves as ‘British only’ then fair game, they’ve made their own bed)

      • Mark February 5, 2017 at 6:54 pm #

        No apologies, I love winding oeople up.

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 5, 2017 at 8:43 pm #

          Great, that’ll make arguments for a united Ireland so much more convincing…

      • PF February 5, 2017 at 9:58 pm #

        Am

        “(For those that refer to themselves as ‘British only’ then fair game, they’ve made their own bed)”

        So you’re saying that view is not racist?

        What about ‘Americans only’, or ‘Germans’, or people living in Ireland who identify as ‘Polish’?

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 6, 2017 at 8:35 am #

          Well, Americans, Germans and poles in Ireland would presumably describe themselves as Americans, Germans or poles living in Ireland, not ‘Irish’ per se?

          • PF February 6, 2017 at 11:23 am #

            Well, yes, so what about those living in Ireland who describe themselves as British?

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 12:53 pm #

          “Well, yes, so what about those living in Ireland who describe themselves as British?”

          Well PF, this is one of my major arguments against hard line unionists/British nationalists denying their Irish right, if you discard your Irish identity then how are you not, in a manner of speaking ‘a foreigner’?

          During the days of Anti-Home Rule at least Carson et al saw themselves as Irish, ergo, they were Irishmen who wished to remain in the union, it’s difficult to argue with that.

          Northern Ireland is the Irish part of the UK, I don’t see why we should deny ourselves this Irish entitlement.

          • PF February 7, 2017 at 3:43 pm #

            Am

            I pretty much agree with your comments, especially, “…I don’t see why we should deny ourselves this Irish entitlement.”

            I have no issue at all with considering myself to be Irish and British.

            However, there may be (are) some living in Ireland who (for whatever reason – probably the variety of nationalistic tensions we all have to live with) identify as ‘British only’ and do so as a way of prioritising their political outlook, but it doesn’t mean we have to treat them differently. It may also be the case that they simply and automatically opt for the umbrella term ‘British’ rather than English, Scots, Welsh or Irish.

            I don’t really see that it’s a problem.

            Perhaps they just need to be encouraged to embrace a broader identity.

  6. fiosrach February 5, 2017 at 6:54 pm #

    Could you specify who you have in mind as”a group of Irish people”. Where do these people reside? Are they ex pats like the English in Spain?

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 5, 2017 at 8:42 pm #

      Yes, unionists in the north who consider themselves to be Irish.

      • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 11:15 am #

        I don’t think ‘unionism’ is a race. It is a political point of view which some settlers cling on to.

        • giordanobruno February 6, 2017 at 12:00 pm #

          fiosrach
          How many generations are required in your view before people are no longer settlers?

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 12:35 pm #

            How many generations must pass before you stop being Britishers in Ireland and become Irish? Unless,that is, if you really really must hold on to your fond Middle English ideas of what Britain used to be. Imagine yourself 5,10,20 years from now and you’re living in a re-United Ireland. What essential British things will you not have? Newspapers? English? Protestantism? Women’s institute? Fish and chips? Union flags(for the really desperate)? the vote? Contraception? I don’t necessarily mean you personally. It will come as a big shock when you find that the umbilical cord is only attached on one side.

          • giordanobruno February 6, 2017 at 1:19 pm #

            fiosrach
            None of that applies to me thanks.
            However you did not say how many generations are required.
            Are people whose ancestors have been here for 400 years say still settlers because they are unionists?
            That seems a strange and even offensive view though I am sure you do not mean it to be.

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 2:48 pm #

            If people are only in Ireland for one generation and want to integrate and be Irish,then I am more than happy to accommodate them. If, however, they have been here for hundreds of years and still are determined not to be Irish, what can one do? You can’t force them. A superiority complex is very hard to erase. I find it offensive that they find being Irish so demeaning.

          • Scott Rutherford February 6, 2017 at 3:53 pm #

            Fiorach

            Can you define for me what “being Irish” is?

            Do you need to speak the Gaelic language to be Irish?
            Do you have to be Catholic?
            Be of the Nationalist/Republican political persuasion?
            Do you have to be a GAA fan?

            It would be interesting to hear what people who’s ancestors came here maybe 300+ years or more can do before they are Irish.

          • giordanobruno February 6, 2017 at 4:58 pm #

            fiosrach
            So would you call all unionists settlers then?
            Some of them whilst being in favour of the union would no doubt consider themselves British and Irish, or even just Northern Irish which seems to have become more popular in recent years. What about them?
            I mean you are going to have them here for the rest of your life whether in a United Ireland or not so it is hardly their temporary address.
            It just sounds like unnecessary bitterness to me though not as bad as ‘the others’ which someone came up with.

          • PF February 6, 2017 at 5:24 pm #

            “Imagine yourself 5,10,20 years from now and you’re living in a re-United Ireland. “

            Perhaps it will be a re-United Ireland in a re-United Isles.

            And, as the last 100 (I’ll limit it to that) have demonstrated, the political designation of a State (e.g. Northern Ireland, RoI etc.) doesn’t necessarily stop people identifying with a particular national identity.

            In 5, 10, 20 years, and in a re-United Ireland, I’d still be identifying with the breadth of the family of nations within these isles. I’d be identifying with Scots and Irish Gaelic, with the folk music of the Isles, with the mythology and legend of the Isles, with the history of the Isles, with The Children of Lir and Robin Hood, with Scottish and Irish reels and jigs, and with Holst, with the Book of Kells and the Lindisfarne Gospels, and so on and so on and so on.

            Oh, yes, and fish and chips, you know, like Beshoff’s, Dublin?

          • PF February 6, 2017 at 7:22 pm #

            fiosrach

            Am I to assume you have no answer to this point?

            Still working on your dates?

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 9:35 pm #

            Scott, all that is required is that they want to be Irish. You can’t be both British and Irish. You can live in Ireland with British citizenship but if you have British nationality you cannot have Irish nationality. Never mistake nationality and citizenship.

          • Scott Rutherford February 6, 2017 at 9:53 pm #

            Seems a odd thing to say Fiosrach.

            I personally only feel a British citizen. I have a Irishness to me culturally that’s for sure, but what I feel I am in my bones is a Ulsterman.

            The thing is though that’s just how I feel, but culture and identity are individual decisions and I certainly wouldn’t tell people who or what they are. It’s simply not my place nor do I think it’s yours.

            You certainly can be British and Irish if that’s how you feel and it seems natural enough to feel a mix of both culturals in your being as we are closely linked. Britishness is Irishness and Irishness is Britishness in my opinion. We are closer to one and another culturally than say we both are to the Italians or the French.

            I am British, Irish and a a Ulsterman they are not mutually exclusive.

          • PF February 6, 2017 at 10:01 pm #

            “You can’t be both British and Irish.”

            I have clearly demonstrated how one might be British and Irish, or Scottish and British, or Manx, or Cornish, or an Ulsterman, or English and British.

            You didn’t comment, though.

            And you have an awfully narrow and exclusive understanding of what it means to be Irish.

            Beyond that, your reply to Scott lacks logic:

            To the question:

            “Can you define for me what “being Irish” is?”

            You wrote:

            “Scott, all that is required is that they want to be Irish.”

            You have yet to tell us what Irish is.

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 1:05 pm #

            “You have yet to tell us what Irish is.”

            I suppose believing the Irish people in their entirety on this island to be allowed to govern and decide for themselves, without British interference or any other outside country, would be a good starter? If folk wanna be governed under British or any other foreign law then perhaps they should go to where British law is accepted I.e Britain? Hardly unreasonable? Transnationals could get dual passports if they so wish, in the interests of equality and all that.

          • Scott Rutherford February 7, 2017 at 1:22 pm #

            WT so by your argument you have to be a supporter of a UI in order to be Irish.

            Do you not think your confusing a political position and a cultural identity?

            There may be people born and reared in the south who aren’t supporters of a UI. Do you not consider these people to be Irish?

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 2:22 pm #

            Scott, if I wanted to ruled and governed by China then I should declare I am Chinese. Simple really.

            Btw, they may well be people in the south who oppose a UI but they may well also be of the ilk who took part in the counter revolution in 1921? You know, the ones who were quite fond of a foreign country ruling them and all that. P.s I know of born and reared free staters who declare they are British, full stop. Must be empire mentality thing bless their red, white and blue cotton socks.

          • PF February 7, 2017 at 3:32 pm #

            WT

            “I suppose believing the Irish people in their entirety on this island to be allowed to govern and decide for themselves”

            Scott has already covered this, but, it appears that your sole definition of what it means to be Irish a particular political position.

            No cultural awareness, no breadth, no inclusivity, no diversity, nothing to do with a shared history, language etc. That’s pretty poor.

            “if I wanted to ruled and governed by China then I should declare I am Chinese. Simple really.”

            Nonsense.

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 4:03 pm #

            “Scott has already covered this, but, it appears that your sole definition of what it means to be Irish a particular political position.”

            No it isn’t my ‘sole definition’. I said it would be a ‘good starter’ followed by a question mark. Let’s not ignore the elephant in the room and then we can all live in peace to decide what are hobbies and interests are.

            Btw, I could also say it is ‘nonsense’ for one to claim they are Irish and British but that would just be my opinion also.

          • Scott Rutherford February 7, 2017 at 4:10 pm #

            Well WT I would dispute your argument that you must be a Nationalist in order to be Irish. The reasons why are obvious im sure.

            Leaving that aside though what are the other prerequisites if Nationalism is the first one?

          • PF February 7, 2017 at 5:35 pm #

            WT

            “I said it would be a ‘good starter’”

            In other words, without that, nothing follows. I must first be anti-British before I discuss my other Irish “hobbies”. That’s what your view amounts to.

            So what the political position must I rule out if I am to be Irish?

            “Btw, I could also say it is ‘nonsense’ for one to claim they are Irish and British but that would just be my opinion also.”

            You limited the definition “Chinese” to being ruled by China.

            I think the ‘nonsense’ is clear enough.

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 7:02 pm #

            “WT

            “I said it would be a ‘good starter’”

            In other words, without that, nothing follows. I must first be anti-British before I discuss my other Irish “hobbies”. That’s what your view amounts to.”

            Nope. Again I said it would be a good starter; just firing it out there sort of speak. But seeing as you have dismissed it entirely sure why don’t you educate me as how you would view to what or even how we all qualify as to be Irish? I await your obvious superior knowledge on the matter with cap ready to be doffed.

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 7:08 pm #

            “Well WT I would dispute your argument that you must be a Nationalist in order to be Irish. The reasons why are obvious im sure.

            Leaving that aside though what are the other prerequisites if Nationalism is the first one?”

            Nope I pondered would it be a ‘good starter’ if we Irish could strive to rule and govern ourselves without foreign interference? Please explain why Irish people shouldn’t be permitted to decide for themselves? It’s hardly unreasonable?

            Leaving aside that, could you tell me what you believe should qualify one to be ‘irish’? I am genuinely interested.

          • PF February 7, 2017 at 7:37 pm #

            WT

            “Nope. Again I said it would be a good starter; just firing it out there sort of speak.”

            OK, let’s run with that.

            The ‘Irish’, who cannot be British (you have said that), should (in your view) be those who “on this island (should) be allowed to govern and decide for themselves, without British interference.”

            So, as a Unionist, an Irish Unionist, that excludes me. I cannot be Irish and seek union with the other nations of the isles.

            Why?

            But, if you are saying something different…

            “But seeing as you have dismissed it entirely sure why don’t you educate me as how you would view to what or even how we all qualify as to be Irish? ”

            No, I didn’t. I merely asked why that should be the starting point.

            Being Irish can mean a multitude of things – place of birth, living on the island, cultural identity, but, crucially, it need not preclude Irish people like me being Unionists or also identifying as British.

            ” I await your obvious superior knowledge on the matter with cap ready to be doffed.”

            Wise up and quit playing the victim.

          • PF February 7, 2017 at 7:43 pm #

            WT

            Quit clearly, you are the one limiting the definition of what it means to be Irish – not the the unionists who post here.

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 8:32 pm #

            “Being Irish can mean a multitude of things – place of birth, living on the island, cultural identity, but, crucially, it need not preclude Irish people like me being Unionists or also identifying as British.”

            ‘Irish people like me……..also identifying as British’? I feel for you there but you are more than welcome to live in Ireland; an Ireland were all the people are free from British rules and government. Sure what’s the harm in that?

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 8:34 pm #

            “Wise up and quit playing the victim.”

            Yes sir*doffs cap* lol

          • Scott Rutherford February 7, 2017 at 8:42 pm #

            WT I would define someone as Irish if they were born on this Island. Also I would say someone who is descended from Irish people could certainly say they have a Irish identity without ever being born here as they probably were exposed to the culture without ever having to set foot on this Island by their parents.

            What is Irish culture?

            Its the sounds, voices, literature, music, art, pastimes, humour, Craic, landscape, food, drink, legends, sports, etc etc.

            It’s a big melting pot really and it’s belongs to me and every other person also regardless of whether we aspire to a UI or not.

          • PF February 7, 2017 at 9:20 pm #

            WT

            I see you’re still struggling to describe what it is to be Irish without resorting to a singular political position.

            ” I feel for you there”

            You feelings, whatever they are, don’t amount to an argument.

            “Sure what’s the harm in that?”

            Who said there was any harm in it? Certainly not me. I fully support the right of all Irish people to determine their own future – and some decided to align themselves with the other, and various, nations of the isles: Scots Gaelic, Welsh Gaelic, Manx Gaelic, Cornish Gaelic, Ulster-Scots, Anglo-Scots and English. And, speaking personally, I wouldn’t want to see the Irish Gaelic left out of the family.

            There is no *requirement* that Ireland, just because it is an island, be either united or independent.

            “Yes sir*doffs cap* lol”

            Well, I’m not the one using the language of inferiority.

            Beyond all the rhetoric, you have yet to explain anything.

            Scott

            “It’s a big melting pot really and it’s belongs to me and every other person also regardless of whether we aspire to a UI or not.”

            You want to be careful there, you’re sounding very inclusive!

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 12:57 pm #

          I see. So, all those unionists from my village with names like O’Neill, Kelly and Donnelly are in fact ‘settlers’?

          If settlers means ‘foreigners’ then how are you not being racist when you have aligned a nationality (or excluded from a nationality) and entire group of people?

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 1:03 pm #

          ” You can live in Ireland with British citizenship but if you have British nationality you cannot have Irish nationality. Never mistake nationality and citizenship.”

          ‘British’ is an umbrella identity that’s why people like Edmund Hillary (Kiwi) and even Ghandi (in his early days) saw themselves as ‘british’.

          It’s more akin to ‘Roman’ citizenship back in the days of the empire, as Asterix highlighted that he was a Roman citizen despite being a Gaul.

          Yes, it’s a cartoon but it was very very on the ball.

          Edward Carson was both Irish and British.

          Most of the top generals in WWII were regarded as Irish (and obviously British too).

          THe British vs Irish identity thing is simply a toy of both British and Irish nationalists.

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 1:06 pm #

          “Scott, all that is required is that they want to be Irish. You can’t be both British and Irish. You can live in Ireland with British citizenship but if you have British nationality you cannot have Irish nationality. Never mistake nationality and citizenship.”

          I think Fiosrach what you mean is that people want to be YOUR version of Irish, preferably Irish nationalist.

          Never confuse nationalism for identity….

  7. giordanobruno February 5, 2017 at 7:34 pm #

    Is it not clearly hypocrisy to condemn Enda Kenny for considering meeting Trump, but seek to let Gerry of the same hook, even though he and Donald are of course old friends.

    • Pointis February 5, 2017 at 8:46 pm #

      I would have to agree, to show deference to this man is to spit in the eye of courageous people who fought and died opposing racism, discrimination and inequality all over the world.

      Gerry could just as easily go and celebrate St. Patrick’s day in any other Irish American city or better still how about hosting an inclusive event in Ireland for Palestinians, Syrians and other muslims who might be affected by Mr Trumps racism.

    • Argenta February 5, 2017 at 11:15 pm #

      Gio
      I think we need an unambiguous statement from Jude about whether he would agree that Gerry going to the White House was a good thing.Would’nt it be great for the two Presidents to meet?!!

      • Wolfe tone February 6, 2017 at 8:36 am #

        “think we need an unambiguous statement from Jude about whether he would agree that Gerry going to the White House was a good thing.Would’nt it be great for the two Presidents to meet?!!”

        Would that be ‘clarification’ you are seeking?

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 9:06 pm #

          “I suppose believing the Irish people in their entirety on this island to be allowed to govern and decide for themselves, without British interference or any other outside country, would be a good starter?”

          I’d say it wouldn’t otherwise a person is identity-less until they’re old enough to formulate a political opinion which would mean that there’s no such thing as ‘Irish’ infants, when clearly Irish infants do exist.

          “If folk wanna be governed under British or any other foreign law then perhaps they should go to where British law is accepted I.e Britain? Hardly unreasonable? Transnationals could get dual passports if they so wish, in the interests of equality and all that.”

          The application of a legal model is a flimsy definition of ones identity, are Indians who wish that Britain was still in charge of India ‘not Indian’? Clearly not.

          • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 9:20 pm #

            Oh ho here’s comes the heavy hitters!

            “The application of a legal model is a flimsy definition of ones identity, are Indians who wish that Britain was still in charge of India ‘not Indian’? Clearly not.”

            They’d probably say no, but they have serious problem. And anyway Britain isn’t still in charge of India so it matters little.

          • Am Ghobsmacht February 8, 2017 at 12:24 am #

            “Oh ho here’s comes the heavy hitters!

            “The application of a legal model is a flimsy definition of ones identity, are Indians who wish that Britain was still in charge of India ‘not Indian’? Clearly not.”

            They’d probably say no, but they have serious problem. And anyway Britain isn’t still in charge of India so it matters little.”

            But you still attach a national identity to the preference of governance which involves thought and contemplation.

            Ergo, how is it possible to be an Irish baby if the definition of Irish involves thought and rationalisation?

          • giordanobruno February 8, 2017 at 7:53 am #

            AmG
            Just to add my tuppenceworth I would say there is a difference between nationality and national identity.
            The state confers nationality on its citizens but national identity is a personal thing, so individuals may feel they belong to a group even if they are not formally recognized as such.
            In our case here, we have all been recognised as having Irish nationality and in the North we are given British nationality too. On a personal level we can accept or reject eiither of those.
            So anyone can be both Irish and British legally and as a mater of personal identity.
            Of course there are those who carry resentment for what was done 400 years or 800 years ago and refuse to recognise the partitioned government.
            In their case I suppose only the true government of Ireland could confer nationality,which would be,well,the army council I guess.
            Where do we get our application forms?

      • giordanobruno February 6, 2017 at 9:54 am #

        Argenta
        An unambiguous statement from Jude? Hmm…

  8. Wolfe tone February 5, 2017 at 9:12 pm #

    Why shouldn’t Adams go to meet Trump? Ok he has banned refugees from specific Muslim countries but so did Obama(Iraq). Added to that Obama bombed and murdered innocents in several countries and Trump most likely will too. Not much difference so why the double standards? I sincerely hope people don’t allow Hollywood millionaire celebs make up their minds for them, after all they are actors.

    • Pointis February 5, 2017 at 9:31 pm #

      I think I have already explained why he shouldn’t go to this event as it adds credibility to this racist. Anyone with the slightest socialist credentials will know that the US is an imperialist power and has subjugated countries across the globe like the British, French, Dutch, Portuguese, Spanish, Germans, Italians etc. Barrack Obama and Clinton were responsible for needless deaths as were the Bushs so they were all bad. Bad as these individuals were, they were not as Narcisisistic or openly racist is Mr Trump.

      • Wolfe tone February 6, 2017 at 8:34 am #

        “Bad as these individuals were, they were not as Narcisisistic or openly racist is Mr Trump.”

        So if they were privately racist etc would that be ok? I have seen several black men and women claim Clinton is racist. I would also say Clinton and Obama are as much a narcissist as Trump is, maybe even more. Btw I have also heard several black people voice their support for Trump. Are these people uneducated?

        P.s I have seen the outcry from the Clinton media wailing that Trump has defended ‘killer’ Putin by suggesting the US isn’t ‘innocent’ either. He even had the audacity to point to the half million Iraqis killed by the US. Alas his interviewer countered by stating ‘that is different’. These are the people wailing and squealing that Trump is a bigot etc etc. It really looks like these wailers truly do believe in American exceptionalism………do you?

        • Pointis February 6, 2017 at 12:37 pm #

          Wolfe you have made the fatal error of assuming that anyone who is opposed to Trumps racism would automatically be a supporter of Clinton or Obama! Not so!

          If someone is privately racist it is not ok but since it is private it would seem fairly obvious that we wouldn’t know about it and therefore wouldn’t be talking about it so it would play no part in any considerations made about those individuals.

          In relation to the black Trump supporters we have no way of determining their educational levels short of seeing their qualifications but I think it would be specious to say that Trump wasn’t a racist because he has black supporters as it would be to say that the Nazis were not anti-Semitic by virtue of the fact that some Jews served in the German Army during WW2

          • Wolfe tone February 6, 2017 at 12:53 pm #

            “Wolfe you have made the fatal error of assuming that anyone who is opposed to Trumps racism would automatically be a supporter of Clinton or Obama! Not so!”

            Really? You could’ve fooled me. Would you be as objectionable if the bearded one was contemplating going to meet Hilary this paddys day?

  9. Brian Patterson February 6, 2017 at 9:27 am #

    The whole business of trotting over to Washinton to present the President with the umpteenth specimen of what is essentially a garden weed is an embarassment. You can be sure Dónal Mór will toss it in the bin before Enda’s aftershave has dissipated. Though he may keep the Slovenian Waterford container as a spitoon. Every American President in history has been a war criminal. Time this odious cringeworthy forelock tugging was consigned to history.Gearóid na . Féasóige is devoid of shame.

    • paddykool February 6, 2017 at 10:47 am #

      Yes Brian …the wee green weed that terrorises the grass on my back lawn every summer. It strangles the new young blades of grass as they struggle for the sun …

      • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 11:12 am #

        No,paddy. That’s clover. A real Irishman would know that.

        • paddykool February 6, 2017 at 3:58 pm #

          Here’s alittle something to chew on fiosrach..”The results show that there is no one “true” species of shamrock, but that Trifolium dubium (Lesser clover) is considered to be the shamrock by roughly half of Irish people, and Trifolium repens (White clover) by another third, with the remaining fifth split between Trifolium pratense, Medicago lupulina, Oxalis acetosella and various other species of Trifolium and Oxalis. None of the species are unique to Ireland, and all are common European species, so there is no botanical basis for the widespread belief that the shamrock is a unique species of plant that only grows in Ireland”…so how ow do you know that it’s all ” simple” clover in my garden , fiosrach?….and what’s a fairy story like the one about Ireland and shamrock got to do with being a real Irishman anyway? What were we before that auld “shamrock”yarn was spun?

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 6:29 pm #

            Jeez,harry,you’re very tetchy getting.

          • paddykool February 7, 2017 at 8:50 am #

            Just saying, fiosrach….

    • Pointis February 6, 2017 at 2:55 pm #

      Well Wolfe if you can find any example of me showing support for Hillary Clinton you are a good one! I feel sorry for the American people that in the end they had such poor choices for President. I am a sceptic of the Corporate machine and the mainstream media but I cannot condone someone who would like to discriminate against Muslims the way Catholics and Jews were discriminated against in the past.

  10. paddykool February 6, 2017 at 10:44 am #

    You’ll notice that when i referred to Mr Trump in my piece last week it was in comparison to a cartoon pig and not the real article of which I have the greatest respect.I’ve no problem referring to him as animal though because that is simply what we all are. He’s not sub-human either ; he is an example of one of our human species who has lived the life of a spoiled child into late adulthood and now the latest toy his money has bought is the White House.He’s very rich so he can do that but he has no political skill .How could he have …he’s never been a politician ? He’s not part of a lesser -breed either; he’s uniquely the most unfit human -being to ever become president of the world and one who has no notion of the laws and constitution of America.
    His latest tweet has been to call a legally appointed judge …”a so-called, Judge” which certainly brings his notion of legality into question already .it will eventually occur to everyone that they have actually voted into power a”so-called president” with no presidential skills to offer.

    • Wolfe tone February 6, 2017 at 11:39 am #

      So PK lets cut to the chase. Do you welcome Trumps statement that the US ‘isn’t innocent’ when it comes to ‘killers’? Did you ever think an acting US president would ever say such a thing about his own country? The outrage by those who oppose him over this statement should be truly revealing and educational for most people. How we in Ireland would love to see a ‘most unfit human being’ to become a British prime minister and speak so honestly.

    • giordanobruno February 6, 2017 at 11:56 am #

      paddy
      Wriggle all you like but Jude has made it absolutley clear. No comparing people to animals.
      He is going to be very disappointed in you (as am I ).

      • billy February 6, 2017 at 12:29 pm #

        we the ordinary punters on here cant even use our everyday language about the likes of obama,mandela,the mayor of london ect or they scream racist.as you say,very disappointing.

    • paddykool February 6, 2017 at 4:14 pm #

      Let me make it perfectly cleargio that I have no respect whatsoever for Donald Trump and I will continue to support all the caroonists and satirists throughout the world of ideas who paint the man in the most outrageous colours and words .He deserves all of it and more for his crassness, blatant foolishness , misogyny and bigotry..If those are the only weapons available , then use them ,I say. I draw the line at insulting a real pig by comparing this woeful human -being to such an inteligent creature.That wouldn’t be fair at all.By the way Wolfie , we are separating the USA from the man here. We all know of the foreign political shenanigans nations get up to in other countries.The Native Americans were never treated very well for one thing .closer to home we do not have to look too far either.

      • Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 8:36 am #

        So I take it you don’t credit his pointing out of previous US foreign policy re killers? So no matter what he does you will never credit it? I have no doubt if Obama had uttered similar words he would have received high praise indeed. This hypocrisy and double standards from the wailers will only ensure he is in office for longer than, ironically, the wailers would wish, as they simply refuse to pay attention but rather pontificate and declare they are right and everyone who disagrees is wrong.
        Meanwhile back in the hypocrisy world, some ‘intelligent'(?) people in Dublin have proposed giving Obama the freedom of the city. Jesus wept.

  11. MT February 6, 2017 at 11:52 am #

    “The U.K. Is not a country but a state.”

    What’s the difference and why does it matter?

  12. MT February 6, 2017 at 11:55 am #

    “I don’t think ‘unionism’ is a race. It is a political point of view which some settlers cling on to.”

    You don’t need to think it’s race to be racist. Your language and attitude towards whom you call ‘settlers’ is what makes you racist.

    • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 12:45 pm #

      Racism usually infers that you regard other peoples as inferior. Irish are a race, English are a race but settlers or Protestants are not. Settlers are people who have been settled in a country not their own – either by force or necessity. Some continue to hang on to mammy’s apron like the “Ulster nation” and some grow up like the Americans. Do not attribute sectarianism to me. I am just a simple racist not necessarily regarding other races as inferior. I mean how can you look down on an African surgeon with three degrees and seven languages as inferior?

      • billy February 6, 2017 at 3:31 pm #

        hows having degrees change what he is or where hes from.

        • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 3:43 pm #

          It doesn’t,Billy. It just shows that he’s as good as you.

          • billy February 6, 2017 at 5:55 pm #

            just in your opinion.us mortals on here are not allowed to use everyday language to compare unlike some comparing presidents to pigs.otherwise i could explain in detail how wrong you are.

  13. MT February 6, 2017 at 1:11 pm #

    “Racism usually infers that you regard other peoples as inferior. Irish are a race, English are a race but settlers or Protestants are not. Settlers are people who have been settled in a country not their own – either by force or necessity. Some continue to hang on to mammy’s apron like the “Ulster nation” and some grow up like the Americans. Do not attribute sectarianism to me. I am just a simple racist not necessarily regarding other races as inferior. I mean how can you look down on an African surgeon with three degrees and seven lan”

    It is clear from the above that you view British people in Ireland as a group with disdain, unwelcome and you don’t belive they should be here or enjoy the same rights as Irish nationalists. That’s pretty racist and sectarian.

  14. fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 1:33 pm #

    British is not a nationality. Welsh or Scottish is. I resent the interference by the British government in my country’s affairs. I resent their imposition of partition and their continuing support for their intransigent settlers. Apart from that I don’t have any strong feelings about our easterly neighbours. I also believe that the British people would leave us alone if it wasn’t for their war mongering politicians. The Scots, as fellow Gaels, and the Welsh are especially welcome here as long as they integrate.

    • Willie D. February 6, 2017 at 3:49 pm #

      So, it’s the British National Party and English Defence League argument transferred to Ireland. Whatever happened to all that stuff about cherishing all the children of the nation equally? As to the Scots being fellow Gaels, only the 40,000 or so native speakers of Scottish Gaelic can be classified as Gaels in any meaningful sense. In terms of some people being “natives” and some being “settlers,” as Ireland was uninhabited and uninhabitable up to about 10,000 years ago, everybody currently living on this island is descended from ancestors who migrated here from elsewhere, i.e. we are all settlers, a term that could be applied to most humans, apart from the few who stayed put in East Africa.

      • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 5:04 pm #

        The rules are that you can’t go back any further than 1690 and I only think that people who want to be Irish should be here not those who perpetually for the ‘mainland’. On your other point the term Scottish Gael is broader than those who speak Gaelic as is Irish Gael. So, to sum up. All the people who want to be part of the nation should be cherished equally. That’s fair, no?

        • PF February 6, 2017 at 5:27 pm #

          “The rules are that you can’t go back any further than 1690…”

          Or any other arbitrary figure we choose?

          Here, let’s play a game. We could call it ‘date bingo’.

          Eyes down.

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 5:45 pm #

            Well, we know that the world is only 6000 years old so you pick a date that suits you. I would pick 1605 which was the start of serious settlement in Ireland.

          • PF February 6, 2017 at 7:21 pm #

            Why don’t you leave the religious bigotry out of it? You have no idea who I am or what I believe about the age of the earth – which has nothing to do with thinking it to be 6000 years old.

            But now you say the key date is 1605.

            So which are you going for 1690?

            1605?

            1922?

            This is *your* argument, not mine; you make it.

          • PF February 6, 2017 at 7:25 pm #

            ” I would pick 1605 which was the start of serious settlement in Ireland.”

            And the people who were in Ireland before 1605, where did they come from?

  15. Freddie mallins February 6, 2017 at 2:24 pm #

    It reminds me of the Ali G sketch when a ludicrous Sammy Wilson was asked if he was Irish or British and when responded condescendingly that he was in fact British, was then asked if he was just over here on holiday. It appeared to sum up the absurdity of the unionist position for a real ‘British’ audience.

  16. fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 2:54 pm #

    The settlers from Britain are very indignant that the world should dare consider them to be horses just because they are temporarily resting in a stable. They still look down on the horses whose accommodation they have been ‘granted’ by a farmer who didn’t own the stable in the first place.

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 9:09 pm #

      “temporarily”

      Why do you say this?

  17. MT February 6, 2017 at 3:54 pm #

    “British is not a nationality. Welsh or Scottish is.”

    That’s a matter of opinion and not relevant.

    “I resent the interference by the British government in my country’s affairs.”

    The British government doesn’t interfere in your country’s affairs. Northern Ireland is part of the UK.

    “I resent their imposition of partition and their continuing support for their intransigent settlers.”

    ‘Partition’ was passed by Parliament in order to facilitate the wishes of the people here as best as possible. There are no ‘settlers’.

  18. MT February 6, 2017 at 3:56 pm #

    “It appeared to sum up the absurdity of the unionist position for a real ‘British’ audience.”

    It summed up the absurdity of the position that British and Irish are mutually exclusive. A position held by many on this blog, such as fiosraich.

  19. fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 5:13 pm #

    Who decided that these islands should be called the British Isles. It certainly wasn’t the Irish. So it is a fact that there are two main islands. Britain and the British seem happy enough. It’s the Irish bit that confuses me. Certainly you can live in Ireland and have British citizenship as in Spain or France but you are not British. By virtue of being descendants of settlers you have been allowed to have British citizenship but you don’t have British nationality – like the Gibraltarians. Simples.

    • PF February 6, 2017 at 5:32 pm #

      “Who decided that these islands should be called the British Isles.”

      It’s OK, fiosrach, it probably happened before 1690.

      Not that we’re counting or anything!

    • PF February 6, 2017 at 5:34 pm #

      Is there any particular reason why an island, just because it is an island, must have only one national identity?

      • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 5:49 pm #

        Before 1922 this island was a unit. Somebody must have divided it. Who has form for this division and sectarianism?

        • PF February 6, 2017 at 7:17 pm #

          So, hang on. First, you have a new date now without explaining why you choose the first.

          Secondly, from what date are you counting the start of the unit?

          And thirdly, you didn’t answer the question:

          “Is there any particular reason why an island, just because it is an island, must have only one national identity?”

          • fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 9:26 pm #

            I’ll go with any date. You pick one that suits your argument. Unitary any time before partition. And thirdly, no.

          • PF February 6, 2017 at 10:11 pm #

            fiosrach

            “You pick one that suits your argument”

            As I said already, it’s your argument, your raised it, you defend it. I don’t care what date you pick. But try to pick one which deals with history not one which suits your argument – the latter is propaganda.

            “Unitary any time before partition.”

            *Any time”?

            Perhaps brushing up on your historical facts would be in order.

            “And thirdly, no.”

            So now you can make an argument which explains why Ireland must have a single national identity…

            Any time you are ready.

  20. Freddie mallins February 6, 2017 at 5:17 pm #

    Go and ask you’re average orange order marcher or fellow traveller and they’ll spit at the very idea of being Irish. They’ll remind you that they’re British and proud. So you can’t have it both ways with respect.

  21. pjdorrian February 6, 2017 at 5:27 pm #

    For those of your readers that are younger, they could perhaps get an idea of what the SF had to put up with when they first took seats in Belfast City Council by reading Mairtin O Meulliors book ‘The Dome of Delight’. Fortunately, loose lips gave SF some information that was Sooooo embarrassing one DUPer retired.

  22. Gearóid February 6, 2017 at 9:25 pm #

    For MT…..as above……in case he missed it!

    The protestant community MT is a settler community, and yes, they are guilty of theft. An old dear was on the talkback show today lamenting the fact that the Irish language is ‘alien’ to her. Funny, when I’m in Spain, the Spanish language is alien to me too. You see, most people just don’t get it. What happened in the 15 and 1600s here in Ireland is absolutely directly responsible for the difficulties we’re all experiencing today and every day here in this manufactured but failed state. The North Of Ireland is just another example of a British Fuckup! One of many disasters it has left in it’s wake across the globe. We are simply ALL it’s victims, you too MT. Anyway, getting back to the old dear, of course she’s gonna feel alienated in a country of which her ancestors were planted, (is there another term to describe a plantation of people). Where the planters disenfranchised the indigenous population, tried their best to completely annihilate their language, customs, rights, religion and finally……the people themselves. Here’s the rump MT, we’re unbeaten, unbent and about to come back stronger than ever. The planters, (for planters read DUP, PUL, UUP, PUP ETC ETC) would do well to eat just a tiny piece of humble pie because fortunately enough, above all else MT, we’re a forgiving people. Onwards to the Republic.

    • PF February 6, 2017 at 10:15 pm #

      I’m afraid, Gearoid, that the following must rate as one of the most incoherent arguments I’ve ever read.

      “The protestant community MT is a settler community…”

      Leaving aside the clear historical differences between “Protestant” and “Presbyterian”, given that the prior to the time of Christ Ireland couldn’t have been anything but pagan, by your definition, Catholics must be “settlers” and ‘thieves’ as well.

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 8:03 pm #

      “The protestant community MT is a settler community, and yes, they are guilty of theft.”

      Today’s Protestants descend from a mix of Scottish, English, Welsh and Irish (with snippets of Norman, Norse (same thing?) and Hugenouts).

      Today’s Catholics descend from an mix of Scottish, English, Welsh and Irish (with snippets of Norman, Norse.

      So, if the first group are guilty of theft then so are the second.

      Furthermore, if todays Catholic’s form the bulk of the republican community then principally speaking they should be glad that an aristocracy was brought down (people seem to forget that your average Gael owned very little in the way of land).

      “An old dear was on the talkback show today lamenting the fact that the Irish language is ‘alien’ to her. Funny, when I’m in Spain, the Spanish language is alien to me too.”

      A sad state of affairs indeed, same happens in Dublin now and again with people speaking Gaelic and being lambasted by Dubs for being pollacks.

      “You see, most people just don’t get it. What happened in the 15 and 1600s here in Ireland is absolutely directly responsible for the difficulties we’re all experiencing today and every day here in this manufactured but failed state.”

      Bad decisions were made all round methinks. Wales and Scotland (according to Irish nationalists) were treated badly too yet they haven’t inherited the same malice or division.

      “The North Of Ireland is just another example of a British Fuckup! One of many disasters it has left in it’s wake across the globe. We are simply ALL it’s victims, you too MT. Anyway, getting back to the old dear, of course she’s gonna feel alienated in a country of which her ancestors were planted, (is there another term to describe a plantation of people).”

      So, if it’s sweeping generalisations that you want then as a rule of thumb there’s a decent chance that her ‘planter ancestors’ at one point either called themselves Irish, played Shinny/hurling or indulged in what you would call ‘Irish culture’. The past 100 years have undone that culture.

      “Where the planters disenfranchised the indigenous population, tried their best to completely annihilate their language, customs, rights, religion and finally……the people themselves. ”

      False.

      Mythology.

      Nationalist circle-jerking.

      There are bucket loads of evidence to show this not to be the case for a long time.

      Inconvenient facts include: Over half of the first wave of Presbyterian planters spoke Gaelic

      Gaelic became the main market place language in some ‘settler’ areas.

      Granted, they weren’t fond of the Catholic religion but courtesy of the counter revolution you can see why but the rest of your accusations are simple context free summary which will fall apart under scrutiny.

      “Here’s the rump MT, we’re unbeaten, unbent and about to come back stronger than ever. ”

      Who’s ‘we’? Obviously you don’t mean ‘Irish’ people because that would include Protestants and unionists too, wouldn’t it?

      “The planters, (for planters read DUP, PUL, UUP, PUP ETC ETC) would do well to eat just a tiny piece of humble pie because fortunately enough, above all else MT, we’re a forgiving people. Onwards to the Republic.”

      Do you actually have any Protestant or unionist friends or do you just gleefully remember the bitter oranges just like most other nationalists on this page?

  23. fiosrach February 6, 2017 at 10:55 pm #

    PF, I am not trying to make an argument that an island should be one unit unless of course all the people on the island so wish. Nor am I interested in your history lesson about all the various factions, tribes or invaders that existed in Ireland’s gene pool. We’ll go back to the Act of Union when us lesser tribes were united to the great white chief in London. The island was a unit then. In 1922 the island was divided under threat of Lloyd George’ s war. But the trouble really started in 1605 at the time of the great land theft and we are left now with,to quote, the rancid residue.

  24. PF February 6, 2017 at 11:05 pm #

    fiosrach

    This is a welcome comment:

    “PF, I am not trying to make an argument that an island should be one unit unless of course all the people on the island so wish.”

    But one somewhat contradicted by:

    “the trouble really started in 1605 at the time of the great land theft and we are left now with,to quote, the rancid residue.”

    “Nor am I interested in your history lesson about all the various factions, tribes or invaders that existed in Ireland’s gene pool.”

    Why not? It’s important. And is a central part of the story we must tell which is bigger than your own.

  25. MT February 6, 2017 at 11:40 pm #

    “The protestant community MT is a settler community”

    How do you define ‘settler community’? Aside from east African communities are there any non-settler communiities? Are settler communities allowed? Should they be repatriated? To where? At what point in time did settling become unacceptable? Is it acceptable now?

    “, and yes, they are guilty of theft.”

    An entire community is guilty of theft? Has a file been sent to Barra McGrory? He might need some extra resources. Will all his Protestant employees have to recuse themselves as they will be under investigation by the Catholics?

    “What happened in the 15 and 1600s here in Ireland is absolutely directly responsible for the difficulties we’re all experiencing today and every day here in this manufactured but failed state.”

    What difficulties are we all experiencing? Most people enjoy a very comfortable life.

    What states aren’t ‘manufactured’?

    “We are simply ALL it’s victims, you too MT.”

    In what way am I a victim? I don’t feel like a victim. In what way are we all victims?

    “Anyway, getting back to the old dear, of course she’s gonna feel alienated in a country of which her ancestors were planted,”

    How do you know her ancestors were planted? Maybe they weren’t. How do you know your ancestors weren’t planted? It seems highly unlikely that everyone who has a ‘planted’ ancestor feels alienated.

    “Where the planters disenfranchised the indigenous population, tried their best to completely annihilate their language, customs, rights, religion and finally……the people themselves.”

    If you’re referring to the penal laws, these were enacted by the Irish Parliament, not ‘the planters’, the vast majority of whom didn’t have the vote. What evidence do you have that ‘planters’ tried their best to completely annihilate indigenous language, customs, rights, religion and people?

    “Here’s the rump MT, we’re unbeaten, unbent and about to come back stronger than ever. The planters, (for planters read DUP, PUL, UUP, PUP ETC ETC) would do well to eat just a tiny piece of humble pie because fortunately enough, above all else MT, we’re a forgiving people. Onwards to the Republic.”

    There are no planters. The Plantation took place over 400 years ago and they are all long dead. Even if you choose to label people based on your assumptions about their ancestry, the majority of Protestant migrants at that time were not planted. There has also been lots of inter-marriage, subsequent migration, religious conversions in the intervening 400 years.

    Stop being racist. Stop using pejorative terms to label and demonise entire groups of people.

    • Gearóid February 7, 2017 at 11:21 pm #

      The old truth hurts, eh MT?

      • Am Ghobsmacht February 8, 2017 at 12:31 am #

        “The old truth hurts, eh MT?”

        I think he nailed the painful truth;

        “There are no planters. The Plantation took place over 400 years ago and they are all long dead. Even if you choose to label people based on your assumptions about their ancestry, the majority of Protestant migrants at that time were not planted. There has also been lots of inter-marriage, subsequent migration, religious conversions in the intervening 400 years.”

        If what he said was wrong then please enlighten us Gearoid.

  26. MT February 6, 2017 at 11:41 pm #

    “You can’t be both British and Irish.”

    More nasty racism.

  27. Freddie mallins February 7, 2017 at 12:05 am #

    It seems that 400 years is an eternity when it comes to the plantation and the mere mention of it ludicrous, but when it comes to the battle of the Boyne, well that’s worth remembering like it was yesterday.

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 7, 2017 at 8:05 pm #

      The most depressing arrangement of 12 letters and digits in the English language for me is ‘remember 1690’.

      I much prefer “Did ye know 1690 was about banking?” and watch as faces crumble into confusion.

  28. MT February 7, 2017 at 12:12 am #

    “It seems that 400 years is an eternity when it comes to the plantation and the mere mention of it ludicrous, but when it comes to the battle of the Boyne, well that’s worth remembering like it was yesterday.”

    I’m sure those demonising Protestants today by dismissing them as ‘planters’ and ‘settlers’ would be among the first to object to Catholics being demonised today because of events at the time of the Battle of the Boyne.

  29. Freddie mallins February 7, 2017 at 12:19 pm #

    By the way MT, I an not dismissing you as either of those things. I merely wished to highlight the level of hypocrisy that exists in some quarters. F

  30. Wolfe tone February 7, 2017 at 9:08 pm #

    PF

    I am just being mischievous mo chara. Don’t take it to heart. I can’t help at times to wind, I blame Gio, he brings out the worst in me lol. I know where you are coming from and I hope you know where I am coming from too? And sure we can both agree or disagree with each other without taking it thick. Btw, still think there’s no harm in believing all of us on this island should and could make a good fist of being one nation.

    • PF February 7, 2017 at 9:27 pm #

      WT

      “Don’t take it to heart.”

      To do that would be a dangerous thing on this website!!

      No offence taken about anything.

      “And sure we can both agree or disagree with each other without taking it thick.”

      Of course.

      ” still think there’s no harm in believing all of us on this island should and could make a good fist of being one nation.”

      I see no reason why not either. Indeed, my, much expressed, preference would be a kind of federal arrangement allowing for a United Ireland working with all of the other Celtic nations of the isles (and the English, of course!).

      Sounds like a win-win to me.

    • giordanobruno February 8, 2017 at 7:29 am #

      wolfie
      And here I was thinking I brought out the best in people!

  31. fiosrach February 7, 2017 at 9:46 pm #

    And you talk about other people living in a fairy land. Why not an independent sovereign Gaelic Federation of the 6 and 26 and no britishers?

    • PF February 7, 2017 at 11:03 pm #

      “And you talk about other people living in a fairy land.”

      I haven’t talked about anyone living in fairyland.

      Why don’t you make a coherent argument against it… indeed, a coherent argument for or against anything would be a novelty.

    • PF February 7, 2017 at 11:09 pm #

      Oh, and yes…

      “no britishers?”

      You want nothing to do with the rest of the Gaels of the isles?

      “Why not an independent sovereign Gaelic Federation of the 6 and 26”

      Yes, why not. Now start making an argument and convince me, instead of telling me I can’t be Irish and British.

      I’m for inclusion, not the exclusion of the rest of the family.

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 8, 2017 at 12:29 am #

      ““Why not an independent sovereign Gaelic Federation of the 6 and 26”

      Yup, I’d be up for that.

      • fiosrach February 8, 2017 at 11:10 am #

        Too late,guys. The offer has been withdrawn. We only deal with honourable people who sign deals including the finer details and do not later deny that they signed them.

        • Am Ghobsmacht February 8, 2017 at 1:05 pm #

          Called your bluff?

        • PF February 8, 2017 at 1:15 pm #

          So, what’s this Ireland of yours going to look like?

          You don’t seem to know.

  32. Beachguy February 8, 2017 at 6:52 am #

    A former loyalist paramilitary once told me that just as there are Irish Americans so too are there Irish British of which he was one.

    And MT , partition was passed by parliament at the point of the gun.

  33. MT February 8, 2017 at 7:27 am #

    “And MT , partition was passed by parliament at the point of the gun.

    Just like Irish independence, then.

  34. MT February 8, 2017 at 7:34 am #

    There’s a strain of sectarianism in extreme unionism, but visitng Jude’s blog reminds us of the strain of racism in extreme nationalism m

    • Am Ghobsmacht February 9, 2017 at 1:16 am #

      Yup, whenever I concede that the idea of a UI is a valid one I just visit this site and order is restored.

      They don’t get it.

  35. MT February 8, 2017 at 8:08 am #

    “Just to add my tuppenceworth I would say there is a difference between nationality and national identity.
    The state confers nationality on its citizens but national identity is a personal thing, so individuals may feel they belong to a group even if they are not formally recognized as such.”

    By that argument there is no English, Scottish or Welsh nationality, there was no Irish nationality before 1922, no Polish nationality before 1918 etc.

    What your are referring to is citizenship rather than nationality, though states often conflate the two and describe the former as the latter.

    • giordanobruno February 8, 2017 at 9:18 am #

      MT
      Maybe we are mixing terminology a bit. I think nationality, as in what the state legally confers, is more or less interchangeable with citizenship in practical terms.
      National identity would include English Scottish and Welsh though their passports would record nationality as British.

      • fiosrach February 8, 2017 at 11:12 am #

        Do you mean that there is no such thing as a Scottish or Welsh passport?

  36. MT February 8, 2017 at 10:57 am #

    “Maybe we are mixing terminology a bit. I think nationality, as in what the state legally confers, is more or less interchangeable with citizenship in practical terms.
    National identity would include English Scottish and Welsh though their passports would record nationality as British”

    States have arrogated the term nationality to imply that only they have the power to determine it. They don’t. Nationality exists (as an identity) independently of states.

  37. Brian Patterson February 9, 2017 at 12:36 pm #

    I just want to.make one small point in support of Paddykool. Not that he needs my help. But here goes. There is no mystique about shamrock. It is not confined to Ireland. In fact I remember when much of it was imported from what was then Czechoslovakia to make up for the deficit here. The word shamrock is a corruption of “seamair óg” which means no more or less than young clover. If next Patrick’s day you decide in the words of the great old song ‘The Wearin’of the green” to “take your shamrock from your hat and cast it on the sod” then it will verily “take root and flourish there though underfoot ’tis trod”. Better still, as I did, plant it in an old black cooking pot. By the end of the summer, if left in the rain and the sun, and watered during dry periods it will have produced a magnificent perruque of rich luxuriant green CLOVER. Irish Taoisigh would be better advised to bring over fresh spring battles from which the White House cook could at least make soup. Or borrow a bunch of thistles from our Caledonian cousins. And hope he suts on them.

  38. Brian Patterson February 9, 2017 at 12:38 pm #

    Typos ‘fresh spring NETTLES’. …..”and hope he SITS on them”