Thursday, July 13, 2006


Thursday Thoughts: 12th's awful legacy

How dare they? The following image appeared in Daily Ireland yesterday. It is an Irish tricolour that was burned at an 11th night hatefest bonfire which reads, "Fuck Mickey Bo", a reference to murdered Ballymena teenager Michael McIlveen.

I'm sure you all remember well the horrible circumstances which surrounded Michael McIlveen's death. The 15 year-old Catholic teenager was beaten to death in May of this year after being attacked by a Protestant gang.

The sick fuckers responsible for the burning of this particular Irish flag were in effect killing two birds with one sectarian stone.

The simple truth of this ladies and gentleman is that the desecration of the Irish flag, the desecration of this young boy's name and even the boy's tragic death itself are all thanks to one ugly and uncomfortable aspect of life - sectarianism.

And make no mistake this is the kind of sick sectarianism that is the very legacy of The Twelfth.

Would unionists have batted an eyelid if this was just an Irish tricolour being burned? Fuck no. But unionists need to realise that by turning a blind eye to bigoted acts such as burning the Irish flag, unionists are actually condoning sectarian attitudes. The Irish flag is an important symbol to the nationalist people and burning it sends out a truly vile message.

I have heard welcome criticism from unionists for the desecration of the boy's name but none for the burning of the flag itself. Then again, the leading figure of unionism today - Ian Paisley - was one such bigot who chose to set alight an Irish flag. So much for tolerance.

And it's all a damn shame because back in February when the riots occurred in Dublin, most Irish people like myself were appalled and condemned the arseholes responsible for the mayhem. Unionists however are unwilling to do the same for the bigots in their community.

This is what The Twelfth's legacy is. It is a legacy that promotes division and ignorance. For instance I happened to watch footage of the various "celebrations" last night throughout the country for the 12th of July and I was astonished at the number of Rangers football jerseys on show.

Apparently William of Orange was a big fan of the Gers when not riding on his white horse.

Look, if you play with fire you are going to get burned and if you glorify sectarianism and anti-Irish attitudes, people WILL get hurt.

I watched one woman on the BBC last night explaining why she loved The Twelfth:

"Ah sure it's great. This is orr culture."

What's your culture? Burning flags and disrespecting the dead? That's not a culture lady, it's a fucking disgrace.


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