Tuesday, November 08, 2005


Top Ten Tuesday - Unionist gripes

To say unionism is a negative political ideology would be a bit of an understatement. Surely the most ardent unionist supporter would have to concede that unionism is and always has been most effective and cohesive when it is in opposition to something. Enemies bring out the best in unionism, be they real or imaginary. With that being the case, it's not surprising that unionism has alot of gripes and seeing as there seems to be alot of whingeing from unionist circles these days (mostly from Dr Evil and the gang) I thought that for this week's edition of Top Ten Tuesday I'd list the top ten unionist gripes. So without further ado:

1. United Ireland - Of course this is the main gripe for unionists. The idea of all Irish people in Ireland coming together in one Irish state. The siege mentality is still prevalent within unionism and despite the fact that many real and legitimate concerns about a United Ireland have now disppeared, imaginations still run wild regarding how this all-Ireland state would function.

2. Blocked marches - God forbid we stop some unionists marching down nationalist roads and deny them their right to antagonise the locals! Unionists cannot grasp why nationalists oppose these marches which hark back to the days of unionist dominance over Irish nationalists. The violence from the Orange Order a few months back still hasn't given them food for thought!

3. The past - Don't mention the oppression! Many unionists don't like it when the past is brought up as evidence of their shocking abuse of power. The discrimination that nationalists suffered in the NI state is a non-issue and is dismissed as 'MOPEry'. And you really don't want to mention the discrimination whilst throwing in the word 'Nazi'...

4. The Irish Republic - Unionists don't like the state of IRELAND having a role in events in 'Northern IRELAND'. Northern nationalists feel an affinity with southern nationalists but unionists want nothing to do with southern nationalists thus alienating themselves from northern nationalists! A vicious circle. Do they care? Do they 'eck! As far as they're concerned, the Republic has no right to interfere in the North's affairs!

5. Colombia Three - This is an interesting one. Three men who are from the Irish Republic who got involved in an international dispute and yet unionists feel so strongly about the issue that they bring it up with the EU and even send MPs to visit Colombia! Now remember - it's not acceptable for the South to take an interest in the North's affairs but it is OK for the North to take an interest in the South's affairs! Hypocrisy? Of course not!

6.Irish nationalism - Of course it's unacceptable for nationalists to be nationalists! How dare Sinn Féin desire a United Ireland! How dare Fianna Fáil take on a Republican stance! It is all so very insulting towards unionists don't you know?!

7. Cross-border structures - This is the new complaint. Any structure which is seen to promote the idea of co-operation and cohesion is of course frowned upon.

8. Irish flag - As evidenced in recent days, the Irish tricolour is looked upon as a hate symbol. On bonfire nights, many unionists delight in burning the Irish flag. In that sense it is a hate symbol. It symbolises their hate.

9. Irish anthem - Amhran na bhFiann is of course vehemently opposed. Apparently it sends out a bad message to the unionist community. The fact that the majority of the Irish people don't know what the words are in Irish never mind English is unimportant!

10. St. Patrick's Day parade - The most recent issue. Apparently wearing the colours most associated with Irishness, green, white and orange, sends out a bad message! A message of hatred and intolerance! Orange Order parades in which NO Catholics are permitted to join in the festivities are perfectly acceptable but an expression of Irish culture is totally unacceptable! Hey, fair is fair right?!

So there you have it. The top ten unionist gripes. Feel free to comment on my choices or to offer up some of your own. (I'm sure you can offer up plenty more!)


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