Letters to the Editor

When anyone resorts to abuse they have already lost the argument

Iread with interest David McNarry’s letter – ‘Early election can restore will of people on Brexit’ (September 16) – and was saddened, mainly for him, in the autumn of his life, to reveal such a meanness of spirit.

David uses the sneering label of “motley crew of Marxists, republicans, Luvvies and shameless Tories”. Did no-one tell him that when you resort to abuse you have already lost the argument? Does he not understand another equally valid interpretation of such a consensus might be, they are right and the DUP wrong?

In his list who is he contemptuously dismissing as a luvvie? Surely not that much celebrated polymath Stephen Fry? Has David not realised given how poisonous this whole process has become that it’s a rare generosity of public spirit that might inform people like Fry, when other public figures are probably advised to keep their heads down and say nothing.
David quotes the cliched “will of the people” – never a tricky one for the unionists – who have their own distorted understanding of that phrase, or indeed words like democracy.
Sadly again, most nationalists here understand all too well, the user does not include them.

The animus of David’s phrase “serves the Irish right… losing £40bn of business with the UK was particularly revealing. Presumably David forgot that Ireland and the EU, unlike Russia, had no role in the UK referendum campaign, particularly not in the illegal elements of it.
As to the damage to the Irish economy he seems cavalier to the point of glee at the prospect. David  overlooks the fact that the role of governments should be, like that of doctors – first do no harm.
Viewed from that perspective, the Irish government response to Brexit has been wholly rational, in refusing to put their hands in a proverbial fire, prompted by some
right-wing nuts.
What is really odd is the Irish government and EU in being more interested in the economic interests of unionist voters and are attacked for doing so.

As to the backstop, does David not realise that it was undoubtedly developed because of the explicitly acknowledged mendacity of UK politicians?
I assume he is aware of what Cameron, a former PM and colleague, thinks of Johnson and Gove. How else would he suggest that one deals or tries to deal with people like that? Perhaps he and the DUP will find out all too soon?

FRANK HENNESSEY
Belfast BT9

 

Mr Gibney, like others, placing trust in legally obscure ‘British border poll’

It was somewhat heartening to see columnist Jim Gibney belatedly realise and publicly accept that Brexit represents “a huge opportunity for Ireland” (September 25). Unfortunately though Jim, who for many years espoused sound traditional republican values and principles, has been reduced like so many others to placing all their trust in the politically hazy and legally obscure ‘British border poll’ provisions of the Northern Ireland Act 1998, a Bill which was subjected to 494 amendments in the unelected British House of Lords.

Perhaps Jim and his fellow travellers, manifesting in the guise of ‘civic nationalism’, would do well in light of the recent Supreme Court decision to consider a question in the House of Commons (on the same day as his article appeared) from David Tredinnick MP to the (British) attorney general on the standing in law which that Brexit referendum wherein 17.4 million people voted to leave the EU would actually have. Hansard records the answer in (Vol 664) as: “The law in relation to the referendum is that it was not binding upon this parliament. It was binding in every moral sense upon those who promised the British people that it would be implemented but it was not binding as a matter of law.”

That being so, former republicans, and their newly found political carpet bagger allies from all quarters, are still apparently content to submit themselves wholly to calling for a contrived poll which is entirely dependent on the whim of a British secretary of state for Northern Ireland, with the implementation of any result in favour of Irish unity being further dependent on British politicians acting morally in relation to Irish affairs.
If the difficulties in delivering Brexit are a meter, then any confidence they have in this process re-establishing the Irish Republic is entirely misplaced and completely at odds with the Proclamation of Irish Freedom.
After all the centuries of persecution, suffering, exile, imprisonment and death in pursuit of the Irish people’s inalienable right to self-determination, how utterly sad.

P NUGENT
Galbally, Co Tyrone

 

 

Nolan Show has run its course

While recognising the excellent investigative journalism carried out by Stephen Nolan and his team in the past, if last Wednesday night’s Nolan Live is what is in store for us in future, the end of the line has been reached. His assembled guests’ contribution was symptomatic of what the Belfast Agreement has turned out to be. The Nolan research team should be congratulated for assembling such a biased panel to articulate to the viewers that the inter-communal hatred that divides unionist, nationalists and republicans still exists. That voluntary apartheid is alive and well in our province, different houses, different schools, sports  and loyalties, with low-level sectarianism continuing as before.

The only enlightenment in the entire programme was the East Belfast interviewee giving politicians a few home truths and being pilloried for doing so, with the presenter at the forefront. Bear pit is fashionable in certain circles, at the moment it could well be attributed to Nolan Live.

WILSON BURGESS
Derry City

 

 

Nigel Dodds should resign

Maybe now my MP and leader of the DUP at the Westminster parliament, Nigel Dodds, will resign in the wake of the top judges in the UK in the Supreme Court ruling against Boris Johnson unlawfully suspending parliament.
Fifty six per cent of the voters of Northern Ireland in voted to remain and in North Belfast, who Mr Dodds claims to represent, also voted to remain in the EU. Should not Mr Dodds resign now and give us an MP who listens to and respects the wishes of the majority vote in North Belfast and Northern Ireland?
Remember Mr Dodds supported Boris Johnson’s unlawful suspension of parliament. Does Mr Dodds also say that the 11 judges in the Supreme Court were wrong? My MP can’t have it both ways. Resign now and let’s have an MP who not only represents North Belfast but also lives in it.

Democracy ruled last week in the Supreme Court contrary to Boris Johnson who the DUP has constantly supported, helped to stay in power and will eventually stab the DUP in the back.

RAYMOND McCORD
Victims campaigner,
North Belfast

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