The DUP and Ulster Unionists have missed numerous opportunities to point out that republican conduct made power sharing indefensible

After a ‘Chuckle Brother’ honeymoon Dr Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness, there began the first of various crises at Stormont

Ben Lowry’s piece on the future of unionism has provoked a number of responses (‘After a grim 2019, unionism faces big challenges in 2020s’, Dec 28).

I agree that the North of Ireland becoming a more secular place is a problem — the loss of a sense of identity in a community which was once united by the Ulster Covenant, a document which drew on a shared history linking us back to Scotland and untimely back to a common appreciation of the Bible, is a problem.

Letter to the Editor

However, it’s also worth considering the nature of the political process over the past 20 years.

Consider the decade of what is considered as stable devolution even before the current crisis.

After a short honeymoon period of Chuckle Brothers Dr Paisley and McGuinness we had a crisis over the devolution of policing and justice with Sinn Fein preventing the executive meeting for months.

And a crisis about legacy and flags
No sooner was this crisis over than we had the Haass talks
Followed by crises talks on welfare reform
Followed by a crisis around the RHI scandal
Followed by a crisis around Irish Language Legislation

There have been numerous occasions when unionists could have said republican conduct made power sharing with them morally indefensible.

Paul Quinn was beaten to death in a barn by members of the PIRA. Who used iron bar’s to beat him to death and broke every bone in his body

One thinks of Robert McCartney, Paul Quinn, Kevin McGuigan and the Florida gunrunning. Or even the fact that just weeks ago the PSNI confirmed that the PIRA Army Council continues to oversee the entire republican movement and that they remain weapons and departments —

Robert McCartney who was murdered by the PIRA

something most unionist parties were tellingly quiet about.

Yet in spite of all that there isn’t a suggestion from either the DUP or UUP that they would ever give up on Stormont.

Why? Because as far as they are concerned a system which requires power sharing with the PIRA’s political proxies — whose goal is to show that the North of Ireland is a failed political entity — is as good as it gets.

That being the case unionism will continue to be seen as the ‘problem’ when it comes to any political crisis republicans choose to engineer.

A younger generation which has grown up in a Northern Ireland where flying the flag of the United Kingdom is seen as at best as impolite and at worse a deliberate act of provocation rather than something they identify with will continue, in greater numbers, to vote for parties which are agnostic on the Union.

Ten years from now Ireland will be United and strong weither Unionists or Loyalists like itAs unionism reflects on where we will be at the end of the next decade it would do well to reflect on the mistakes made in the last two.

Certainly no one now would claim, as both the UUP and DUP have in the relatively recent past, that the Union is ‘stronger than ever’.

With many thanks to the: Belfast News Letter and Samuel Morrison, Traditional Unionist, Dromore, Co Down. For the original posting.

Author: seachranaidhe1

About Me I studied for six months training and became certified in Exam 070-271 in May 2010 and shortly after that became certifed in Exam 070-272. I scored highly in both Exams and hope to upgrade my path to M.C.S.A. ( Server Administrator ) in the near future.I also hold Level 2 Qualifications in three subjects Microsoft Word, Microsoft Powerpoint and Microsoft Spreedsheets. I have also expereance with Web Design using Microsoft Front-Page.

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