Respect is a word we have heard often recently in Northern Ireland. However, as a quality which is about due regard for the feelings and rights of others it has been distinctly absent from the world of our politics.
The UK was taken into the Common/Single Market, European Economic Community (EEC), without a democratic choice being offered to the UK population. A couple of years later a referendum was held and the UK population chose democratically to remain in the Common Market.
We can be reasonably sure that the muted cacophony of outrage following the intimidation of four Catholic families on the Ravenhill Road did not reach the Midland Hotel in Manchester and that the DUP did not raise the issue with their Tory friends when they addressed that conference.
As a republican socialist I would like to thank the DUP’s Edwin Poots. The statement he made a few weeks ago helped me indirectly. He was commenting on the inability of politicians at Stormont –because of the ‘sticking point’ of an Irish language act – to put a government together.
Faith matters (September 21) states that a series of seminars on the Unfinished Reformation will be held this month to mark the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther nailing his famous 95 theses to the door of a church in Wittenberg on October 31 1517.
Alex Kane – ‘Empires rise then fall–EU won’t be exception’ (September 29) – is wrong, misleads with anti-EU falsehoods and hides his true motivation in voting Leave. For Brexit Britain however, domination by a real empire will become a certainty.
I am writing this on Sunday September 24, the day before the 100th anniversary of Thomas Ashe and in memory of that a commemoration has been held in Ballymurphy. BBC2 today has also screened a documentary about Bobby Sands, his life and 66 days on hunger strike.
With the ongoing need to resolve our long-standing problems at Stormont still pressing, it is vitally important that all our politicians retain a clear focus on protecting children in Northern Ireland as our political institutions take shape.