Who could be afraid of equality?

The News Letter has an article highlighting a further use / abuse of a Petition of Concern to block equality legislation with somewhat less outrage from the usual quarters.

Sandra Overend of the UUP’s attempted to repeal Article 71 of the 1998 Fair Employment and Treatment Order. This is the article which exempts schools from Fair Employment legislation.

Ms. Overend’s attempt was defeated by a Petition of Concern by Sinn Fein and the SDLP.

On the UUP’s website Ms. Overend stated:

The continuation of this exception which dates back 40 years to the original drafting of Fair Employment legislation means that the 17,000 teachers working in schools in Northern Ireland are not protected in employment law against discrimination on the grounds of religious belief.
It is quite unbelievable that Nationalist Parties, who never tire of shouting about equality and civil rights, are vetoing an attempt to end this license to discriminate through the device of a Petition of Concern.
This is happening at the same time as a Shared Education Bill is passing through the Assembly. How on earth can we have Shared Education when the teaching workforce is kept effectively segregated, facilitated by a 40 year old loophole in Fair Employment legislation?

From the News Letter:

An SDLP spokesman said that the party supports equality of opportunity for teachers.
He added: “However, the Ulster Unionist Party gave one day’s notice of amendments which would fundamentally change teacher recruitment. Education reform should not be dealt with through amendments tacked on to the end of other substantive pieces of legislation.”
Sinn Fein MLA and education spokesperson Chris Hazzard said that the party “will not support rushed amendments in relation to equality and employment legislation being brought to the floor without a proper process of consultation and debate”.

It is only fair to leave the last word to Sinn Fein’s leader on the topic of equality:

And what’s going to break them is equality. That’s what’s going to break them – equality.
“Who could be afraid of equality? Who could be afraid of treating somebody the way you want to be treated?”

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  • Cosmo

    cue: fair employment legal industry rolls up sleeves and licks its lips. and of course, taxpayer pays.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Still being highly selective, barnshee, but more fulsomely I see. Are you really attempting to suggest that there was no discrimination against Catholics in the 1960s! Wow, a real “lie on your belly with your toes in the air” act!!!!!!! And that hint of eugenics “lite” with all this emphasis on the old themuns “breeding like rabbits” trope! Not so much the elephant in the room as the polarised sectarian cobra in the corner. If allocation was primarily on genuine need, the numbers issue is certainly a bit of a clincher, and only becomes problematic if seen through a sectarian filter that qualifies need by religion. As I’ve mentioned before, you are using this material as some kind of clincher where it is actually a strongly opinion based representation of the issues.

    And even in the context of the body of scholarship you are referring back to you are continuing to be highly selective about what you present, like a lawyer suppressing or downplaying any negative issues that may harm his clients case. The NICRA was triggered by the Benburb case, but the grievances that had seeded it went well beyond a single issue, as I imagine you well know. If you examine close detail instead of simply swinging a few generalisations about, even in the CAIN archive you will soon find many, many instances of discrimination by the majority against the minority, that drive a coach and six across what you are trying to say, but that’s an occupational hazard for anyone trying to prove the black crow white, after all.

    As I remember it, the definition of “whataboutery” is to attempt to balance out wrongs so as to excuse them in the case of ones own side. There is no “excuse” for any discriminatory behaviour from any quarter such as was rife throughout both communities in the 1960s and earlier, but the ability of Catholics to effect things was far, far more limited than the established power vase of the majority community. My own position would be to find discrimination loathsome for any quarter, rather than to attempt to simply dismiss genuine cases of discrimination by a balancing act. Germany lost massive numbers on the eastern font in the last world war, but no matter what Neo-Nazis try and argue, this does not cancel out any of the holocaust………

  • Croiteir

    There goes state funding for the Orange Order and Bands uniforms

  • Croiteir

    Catholicism does not teach that Protestants, or for that matter anyone else who is not a Catholic, cannot go to Heaven.

  • Croiteir

    Bear in mind in the south that the Church of Ireland requires a certificate also. Perhaps unionists want that changed and the special treatment that Protestant schools receive removed. That would of course destroy the vulnerable minority Protestant communities in rural Ireland

  • Robin Keogh

    If i am correct, the last census showed an increase in the Souths Protestant population. I have argued before that Protestant schools especially those with low numbers should enjoy state funding in order that they can maintain their ethos based education. The question is not about Protestant or Catholic schools, in my view. The question is about fairness in employment. A teacher should have access to win employment in any school regardless of their own personal beliefs.

  • Jollyraj

    Certainly one can see there might be a lot of deviation from the standard on the History syllabus…

  • Jollyraj

    Perhaps if a few Protestant teachers were hired it might encourage others that there was actually a point in applying?

  • Jollyraj

    “got a link for that?”

    no evidence apparently needed, in this case..

  • Croiteir

    Once again we see the catholic sector coming under attack by those who wish to usurp its role in society and the identity of its adherents to pursue their own narrow agenda, this time they have the sheer brass neckery of enveloping their partisanship in a rights flag of convenience. in fact it is the opposite – a direct attack on the right of the parent as the primary educator to choose the education that suits their child best, which iss backed by European human rights and recently the Canadian Supreme Courts, (a common law court system?). The right to hold a particular viewpoint within the law, and parents’ right to have their children educated in their religion, are fundamental freedoms which the like of Sandra Overend would be better employed defending.

  • Croiteir

    I disagree completely, the school has the right to protect its ethos which is enshrined in Human Rights in Europe. Whether the school wishes to exercise this right is of course up to its own discretion.

  • Robin Keogh

    And how is hiring a teacher from a Protestant faith going to damage the ethos of a cathokic school?

  • Croiteir

    Can they teach from a Catholic perspective?

  • Gaygael

    So Crotier, are we going to start funding faith schools of all types? All the major ones and then all the variations of their splits?
    Or is it just Catholicism that gets this special treatment?

  • Croiteir

    Absolutely nothing to stop them, Protestantism surrendered their schools to the state when the state was run for the interests of Protestants. That was a mistake. They will now be taught according the ethos of the state, a secular interest and Protestantism will decline.

  • Robin Keogh

    Math is Math, French is French, Prose is Prose, geography is geography unless their are differences between the Catholic and Protestant understanding of cloud formation whats the problem.

  • Croiteir

    The problem is not that Maths are maths, etc. The problem is the attitude that thinks that the teaching of facts, an utilitarian approach, is what education, and specifically Catholic education is about. That is why the limited life view that goes with that ethos cannot be part of Catholic, or indeed catholic, education. And therefore people with that world view have no place in the schools.

  • Croiteir

    I have no problem with anyone setting up their own schools – I would actually support them. as for the money aspect it suffers from the same limitation as any other right. Provided that the school is sustainable there should be no problem.

  • Robin Keogh

    I dont actually understand what u mean by that 🙁

  • Gaygael

    Catholic schools are funded by the state. Why should one branch of Christianity be provided such privilege? So if other faith groups set up schools, the state will be expected to fund them?

  • Croiteir

    It is not limited to anyone – as seen by the Gaelscoil and integrated sector and the Free Presbyterian schools, anyone can set up schools, you also have the right not to send a child to a school. and yes, the state is expected to fund viable schools.

  • PeterBrown

    Strangely Turgon is required to produce evidence (ironically this is a thread about double standards!)

  • Gaygael

    I don’t think the state should fund faith schools.

  • Jollyraj

    Indeed. One suspects many on the soft Republican* fringe are slipping and a-sliding ever further into the habit of thinking that discrimination against Protestants is justified – because of things that may or may not have happened in the past. Dangerous ideological territory. We see this sort of creeping cancer in Fermanagh these days, too. *The harder core of Republicanism is, evidently, already firmly ensconced in said crater.

  • Jollyraj

    How about a school to promote Islamic values for Muslim kids while we are about it?

  • Jollyraj

    And, if it were the case that Protestant teachers were not applying, why not? Are we to assume Protestant teachers don’t want teaching jobs?

  • Jollyraj

    Explain, please.

  • barnshee

    Not before time

  • barnshee

    You are not paying attention– Roman catholic schools are exempt by law from Equality legislation no redress under Fair employment

  • barnshee

    Sigh -they can`t meet the criteria to apply

  • barnshee

    You better speak to the local convent school then The items in quotes are there for a reason ( they were delivered within the last year)
    Happy to identify the school

  • submariner
  • submariner

    Should we just take his word for it? Arnt you meant to be a solicitor?

  • Gaygael

    Nope. No special measures. If people wish to fund it privately go ahead. The state should be neutral.

  • PeterBrown

    Interestingly are the Free P schools the only one on that list not currently state funded?

  • PeterBrown

    Cue being defeated by a specific exemption from anti discrimination laws which this thread is all bout….

  • PeterBrown

    Hundreds Submariner? Wikipedia would beg to differ and in fact puts the total number of convictions without even separating out the terrorist offences

  • Dominic Hendron

    My understanding is that the CCMS want change.

  • Brendan Heading

    the school has the right to protect its ethos which is enshrined in Human Rights in Europe.

    What ethos is that ? “Prods out” ?

  • Brendan Heading

    I went to St Malachy’s which is one of the major Catholic grammar schools in Northern Ireland. There were few substantive differences with my friends who went to BRA just up the road. We were taught the same subjects, in pretty much the same way, according to the same cirriculum. There were differences in RE of course, and the kinds of sports played during an after school. But that was about it.

    If I recall correctly a total of three or four people took Religious Studies for A-Level. Not long after I left St Malachy’s they had to appoint a layperson, for the first time, as President of the college because they ran out of priests to fill the job (Dr. John Morrin if I recall correctly). St Joseph’s seminary, which was physically and culturally attached to the school, had to close a few years ago because there are so few people entering the priesthood.

    Whatever you think this “Catholic ethos” thing is, I don’t think it’s working out in the way that you expect. We’ve had many generations of this way of educating children and yet church attendances are dropping through the floor, and churches are facing closure all across the country. Educating children apart on the basis of their religion is severely damaging to our society and it needs to stop.

  • Dominic Hendron

    That has never been said in my presence and if it was I would have challenged it

  • Alan N/Ards

    SF and the SDLP have been trying to deny parents the right to have their children educated at Grammar schools.

    The right to hold a particular viewpoint within the law, and parents’ right to have their children educated in their school of choice, are fundamental freedoms which the like of SF and the SDLP would be better employed defending. Methinks they are being a tad hypocritical in their support of schools, which are selective by religion, but not supportive of schools which are selective in a academic way.

    BTW, my sons Grammar school has catholic teachers on the staff.

  • submariner

    A couple of things Alan. The SDLP and SF are against academic selection not Grammar schools. Schools are not selective by religion as many non Catholic children attend Catholic schools mainly due to their excellent action academic record. http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/education/every-one-of-northern-irelands-top-five-schools-is-a-catholic-grammar-30140937.html

  • Alan N/Ards

    Do catholic children not get priority over non catholic’s when places are at a premium?

    SF say that they are in favour of children from all backgrounds being educated together and that is their reason for ending academic selection. I don’t have a problem with that. The problem I have is that they want to stop people like me choosing the school that is best suited to my children.

    In Newtownards there are are two post primary schools. One is a Grammar and the other one isn’t. The nearest one to me is the High School. If SF had of got their way, my son would be attending it. This school was put in formal intervention by the board a couple of years ago and numbers are falling. The teachers are on guard duty at the gates every morning as the behaviour of some (and it is some) of the kids is so bad. My son (when in P7) said one morning as we passed the school, “Daddy, I don’t want to go there next year”. Why would I, as a caring parent, allow my son or daughter to go there. My children enjoy going to school but, if SF/SDLP had their way my son and daughter would be having nightmares. I, like catholic parents, pay my taxes, so my children’s right to an education of their, and my choosing, is just as important as theirs.

  • Croiteir

    I do – or else give those parents a tax break – but then I am not aa statist

  • Croiteir

    So do I – not there business – there business is to ensure the education meets the minimum standards

  • Croiteir

    That is by their choice as they are eligible.

  • Croiteir

    If they taught Protestants cannot go to Heaven they were wrong. It is that simple. I do not need to speak to the school.

  • Croiteir

    The Church teaches it is the One True Faith – so every Catholic should believe it – it is part of the creed.

  • Croiteir

    No – I doubt if the Europeans are interested in promoting Prods Out

  • Croiteir

    and therein is the reason why fewer went on to be priests I would suggest

  • Croiteir

    Hence you cannot understand the ethos of Catholic Education

  • Dominic Hendron

    The creed says, “I believe in one holy Catholic and apostolic church” how do you interpret that as the one true Faith since it is aspirational. You are not asserting anything against anything else, your are expressing an evolving inclusive hope which you believe to be true

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Certainly not the case now. when I’ve conducted history tours I’ve quickly found that both ends of the community are quite uninformed from their schooling about our actual history. If Alice Stopford Green could say in an obituary of Frank Bigger in 1927:

    “this generation, which lives practically without any historical background”

    how much truer is this today after nearly 90 years!

  • MainlandUlsterman

    I think we have to balance the rights of parents against the rights of children to be treated fairly and not get a worse schooling because of their socio-economic background. No child’s education should depend on who their parents are. That is a fundamental principle of having a fair society and having social mobility to me. I would therefore move towards the ending of all private education and any form of selection in the system not based on the child’s own performance and educational needs. Sorry, religion has no place in determining which school someone should go to – and religious bodies should step the f*** back from seeking to influence how our children should be educated. No one – no one – should be allowed to take away the birthright of every child not to be discriminated against in educational provision on the basis of irrelevant factors such as money or their parents’ religious beliefs. Churches should stick to religious education and leave the rest the f*** alone.

    Sorry for the vehemence, btw, my kids’ C of E primary school is bedevilled with the unhelpful interference of the local vicar – who of course sends his own kids to private school. You couldn’t make it up. I’m also amazed at how the English – even progressives – have this big blind spot over the scandal of private schooling. How can anyone be serious about fairness in society without wanting to scrap them as soon as?

  • Greenflag 2

    ‘There is nothing the RC church will not agree to in exchange for the means to protect and control its own congregation.’

    Control more so than protect I’d say and maintaining their ‘market share ‘ of the future revenue stream . At the risk of invoking Godwin – the RC Church agreed not to publicly oppose Hitler -in return for direct debit contributions from it’s followers/ members salaries and wages which were then sent directly to RC Finanzamt . Not that the Lutheran Protestants opposed HItler’s plan either . The ‘men of God ‘ put their Mammon before their faiths apart from a small minority who spoke out and did’nt survive the war .

    God needs money , and martyrs and people dressed in black who like telling other people how they should live their lives or else . Fortunately in the western world their influence is not what it used to be. Stake burnings are no longer in fashion .

  • Greenflag 2

    Apart altogether from the people losing ‘religion ‘ celibacy is simply not a lifestyle that would appeal to 99.9999999% of human beings of either sex . It’s to coin a phrase unnatural and the failed attempts of many ‘priests ‘ to deny their own nature has had some tragic consequences for others and themselves .
    In this respect anyway Protestantism and Judaism and even Islam are more ” human being” orientated than the RC Church .

  • Greenflag 2

    Ethos would indicate ‘behaviour ‘ within a belief system . From what I understand some behaviours of the clergy were entirely contradictory to their supposed beliefs . Not that the same doesn’t apply in other walks of life but then those other walks of life don’t pretend to be God’s direct representative on Earth, Mars , Venus or Uranus either etc !

  • Greenflag 2

    Protestants in the Republic don’t have to work as Gardai . There are much better jobs on offer which don’t require working anti social hours and are less dangerous and where you have a much smaller chance of coming face to face with criminals or the seediest aspects of modern life .

    Still being a cop in Ireland or the UK is a lot safer than being a cop in the USA where your chances of being killed on the job are probably 100 times what they are in either the UK or Ireland .

    In Northern Ireland being a cop means a State job in a province where state jobs offer more than can be afforded by the private sector . The reasons for this state of affairs have all to do with Northern Ireland’s existence as a separate jurisdiction from the rest of the island . Some day the penny will drop – when its too late of course but then thats history eh ?

  • Croiteir

    I will leave that between them and God

  • Croiteir

    Really – on what basis do you say that?

  • Croiteir

    It is not aspirational – it is affirmative. The sole Church of Christ is that which our Saviour, after his Resurrection, entrusted to Peter’s pastoral care, commissioning him and the other apostles to extend and rule it.. This Church, constituted and organized as a society in the present world, subsists in the Catholic Church, which is governed by the successor of Peter and by the bishops in communion with him.

    As The Nicene creed says it is the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. That are the marks of the True Church. The Church of Christ – founded by Christ with Peter as its first Pope.

  • Greenflag 2

    Natural science and personal observation over extended periods in cultures other than Ireland or the UK . Clerical celibacy is imo ‘ weird . I can understand why the RC Church instituted the practice in the Middle Ages but we are no longer living in the Middle Ages although for some of us those times might be closer than we might think.

  • Croiteir

    So just you opinion then. And what exactly do you mean by natural science?

  • Greenflag 2

    Sure you will . It’s the easy way out – Allah Akbar and all that gullible nonsense . God’s will etc . Every religion has their ‘get out of jail ‘ free card apart from the purist of ‘grace ‘ evangelicals who have managed to convince themselves that their God does’nt reward good works etc as credits towards an eternal seat on cloud nine but will only ‘save you and others ‘ by grace -which could mean that if mighty Jehovah is in the middle of a bad day ( a million years ) bad day – then all of humanity is going nowhere for Homo Sapiens has only been around for 150,000 years .

    The heaven magicians will come up with any ould nonsense to keep their grip on the naive and gullible .

    Charles Darwin not Pope Leo XIII

  • submariner

    The problem I have is that they want to stop people like me choosing the school that is best suited to my children.

    Exactly how does being opposed to academic selection stop you choosing a school for you children

  • Croiteir

    Okay then. I believe that ethos would be defined by the behaviour instructed or influenced or having the characteristics of a group. In that case the actions of the clergy to which you refer were not in that ethos. As to the judgement on them I leave that to God. as for this world that also is not in my power to administer. i leave that to the courts. There is no get out of jail free in there. No matter how hard you look. As for the rest of the rant about Jehovah i will let that pass with all the comment it deserves. As to Darwin or Leo – I much prefer Leo and his teaching on social justice over anything Darwin may have done.

  • Greenflag 2

    Thats true but they insisted at least when I was at school that they had to be especially good people even very very very good people being Protestants to get past the pearly gates whereas we Catholics well those of us who were less than squeakily clean had an easier entree onto cloud nine by virtue of happening to be Catholics and anyway a timely sorrowful confession just before the Grim Reaper’s arrival would be enough to avoid having to share Purgatory or Limbo for a near eternity with millions of impatient Prods or others .

    What a load of ould horsemanure . If they were’nt brainwashed as children they’d never get them to believe this rubbish as educated adults .

  • Dominic Hendron

    I see a “field hospital”

  • Brendan Heading

    The reasons are pretty straightforward. People don’t believe in God anymore, mostly because they’re generally better educated; and the church lost a lot of credibility when physical and sexual abuse scandals became more widely known.

    The popularity of the church is artificially inflated because non-believing parents are compelled to have their babies baptised to ensure they can enter a school. This is, essentially, fraud in plain sight, which the church actively encourages.

  • Brendan Heading

    so it’s “promoting” now. What is it they’re promoting ? What part, exactly, of European human rights law outlines what you claim is the right to run schools in accordance with a religious “ethos” ?

  • Brendan Heading

    Agreed. When I said “protect” I meant “maintain the integrity of”, ie the church are acting in a way which they think preserves the congregation.

  • Croiteir

    Let me repeat – for you seem to have misread. It is NOT promoting, clear enough now?

    Article 2 of the First Protocol – closely aligned to article 9

  • Brendan Heading

    The word “promoting” was introduced to the conversation by you.

    Article 2 doesn’t require that schools teach in accordance with parents religious beliefs. It merely requires that the education system “respects” this. The Article imposes no requirement upon states to provide any kind of religious instruction or schools that teach a specific “ethos”.

    Your entire line here is self-evidently bogus. The entire French state education system is rigidly secular. Yet no prosecutions have been taken under this article.

  • Croiteir

    I know it was – never denied it. I just wanted to correct your misinterpretation of what was said. Now it appears that you like to go further by accusing me of something I did not write. But anyway.

    As for Article 2 it does not require the State to establish new types of education, rather it gives individuals a right to access educational facilities that already exist.If a pupil is excluded from school the exclusion must be both necessary and proportionate.

  • Saint Etienne

    “The Unionist government were more than happy to give the Catholics their “own” schools, and the Catholic church was more than happy to accept this arrangement.”

    Not quite. in the 20s Lord Londonderry wished to create a state education system with clear separation from all religions. The chief opposition came from the Roman Catholic church.

  • Saint Etienne

    “Bear in mind in the south that the Church of Ireland requires a certificate also.”

    Protestant schools in the Republic cannot employ teachers on the basis of their religion.

  • Greenflag 2

    Preserving the congregation AND maintaining the revenue stream would be my take but then I’m a dyed in the wool skeptic of all religion while acknowledging that there are genuine priests /pastors and ministers among the ‘scoundrels’.

  • Greenflag 2

    The science of nature -Events since the big bang 13.7 billion years ago approx and the big ‘birth ‘ about 3.5 billion years ago and the fortuitous run of good luck humanity has had to arrive where we are today . DNA rules okay and it doesn’t care for individuals human , plant or animals . It just is .

  • Brendan Heading

    Now it appears that you like to go further by accusing me of something I did not write.

    If you would record your view clearly and unambiguously it would not be necessary for me to try to infer what you are attempting to say. You still haven’t defined what “catholic ethos” is, and when you go on to say that the EU “does not promote” something, it’s fair to draw the implication that you are suggesting that it does promote something else. Anyway …

    If a pupil is excluded from school the exclusion must be both necessary and proportionate.

    Who is being “excluded”, and how, if a school, as a consequence of having to apply standard employment law, finds itself having to hire a non-Catholic physics teacher ?

  • Brendan Heading

    I’m sure that is true to some extent, but believing that the government at the time were serious about creating a secular education system would require believing that it was a government that took any kind of care to reflect the concerns of the RC church.

    It’s more likely that the government looked at it, shrugged their shoulders and said “well, we’ll have our schools and they’ll have theirs, which suits us all just fine”.

  • Croiteir

    If you cannot comprehend a clearly written and concise reply I can do nothing for you.
    I have defined it in this thread if you look. But if you cannot see it I will repost for your edification.
    The portion of the quote you used was referring to the rights of the parents of the school not the teacher. If you can put your question again more coherently I will answer it. I would not want to confuse you further.

  • Saint Etienne

    No Brendan, it’s a matter of public record that the education minister gave up a Westminster career in order to contribute to Ulster. He was a firm believer in integrated education and sought to create the conditions for this from the outset. It was the churches and primarily it has to be said the Roman Catholic church, which impeded true integrated schooling in Northern Ireland.

    It’s too easy to blame the old Stormont regime for every division we find. The reality was much more complex and should be explored more, as we find nationalism unable to countenance neither voluntary opposition nor equality in education, this lazy narrative needs to be challenged.

  • Brendan Heading

    SE,

    Back up a wee second. You are reading into my comments something I didn’t say.

    I regard unionists and nationalists as being equally complicit in the creation of the system we’ve got. I’m not trying to absolve nationalists of any blame for this. I support the UUP’s attempted amendment. You might want to read my other comments on this thread before you make any assumptions about who you think it is I’m defending.

    Nonetheless, it is a fact that the unionists were in power at the time this system was created. You’re asking me to believe that they reluctantly bent the knee to representations from the Catholic church. It might suit them to suggest this, but I don’t believe it for a one second.

  • Brendan Heading

    I’m very familiar with the tactic you are using – avoid being specific or directly quoting the documents that you claim back your position, and then accuse the person disputing you of being unable to comprehend you. I’m happy that the record above shows your evasiveness and there is no need for us to repeatedly go around in circles.

    I know that European human rights law doesn’t create a pass for this kind of position, for several reasons.

    Firstly, Stormont isn’t allowed to debate bills or amendments that violate human rights law. The Speaker’s Office has to certify that provisions are compatible and within the competency of the Assembly.

    Secondly, the UK had to obtain a derogation from European provisions so that schools in Northern Ireland were permitted to operate an exception from European law concerning discrimination. I’m not aware of any other such exception anywhere else in Europe. It is clearly not the case that Northern Ireland is the only place where human rights provisions on education are being upheld.

    Thirdly, I note the position of the Equality Commission in the following report. It states :

    The Commission is aware that it is a basic human right of every parent to be able to choose for their child to be educated in a school of any particular religious belief, or in one of no religious belief. There is no evidence to suggest that removing the Exception will in any way affect parents’ decisions to enrol their children in schools with a particular religious ethos.

    Removing the Teachers Exception has nothing to do with creating a secular or an integrated education system. It will not automatically herald an end to the system of denominational education which presently exists.

    QED.

  • Saint Etienne

    As I said Brendan, it’s a matter of public record. If you won’t believe someone on the internet, pick up a history book and acquaint yourself with it.

    I made the link to today’s nationalist policies as the myth that the old Stormont government was at fault for every division we have is what their latent support for discrimination is based on.

  • PeterBrown

    No evidence was required when it was alleged about the security forces why is it required for the Gardai? And why tell lies about the UDR? And how is my job relevant – is this a court case?

  • Sir Rantsalot

    I don’t see the problem with requiring teachers of a specific religion in a faith based school. How can a protestant teach according to a Catholic belief based ethos?
    How could an atheist teach Islamic religion in an Islamic faith based school?
    Try and get over the mentality of looking for a way to pretend your tribe is being wronged in some way.

  • Gaygael

    Just for your faith or all faiths?

    We disagree.

  • Brendan Heading

    What I don’t believe is your characterisation of the public record (whatever that is – I’m sure the public record on this matter is wide and varied), that unionists were serious about building a secular education system and fought tooth and nail until they were stopped by the Church.

    I repeat, once again, my view that the church was, and is, hostile to integrated education. That doesn’t mean that the unionists were serious about implementing it. Neither nationalists, nor unionists, are serious about reforming this society in a way that unites community – they never have been.

    If you wish to the point to the parts of the public record that specifically contradict this view, go right ahead. Appointing a liberal minister (and then sending him home again 4 years later) isn’t, in and of itself, a sign of deep commitment on the part of the government at the time.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Zorin, Turgon has occasionally threatened to have me removed from the site for having both a sense of humour and family with some actual experience of the real world out there beyond that great wall of ice that surrounds the wee six (and the mentality of other unquestioning Covenantor admirers of the old status quo). I’m afraid the problem is that he seems unable to actually answer what I’m posting and distracts attention from this by habitual man-playing, something he is now doing against a few others who possibly challenge him as well. He repeats the same tropes (accusations of lying, bad faith, etc) and these oft repeated cliches in themselves rather discredit what he’s saying without any real need for direct challenge. And, as the sole neo-Jacobite of my year I experienced far worse abusive treatment from the bourgeois “Loyalist manqué” fellows at my school…………..

    On the other hand Turgon frequently breaks rank on this kind of petty silliness with an excellent posting which startlingly highlights some issue of real value, which I imagine is why his “robust invective” is seldom challenged from the control room. He often has my up votes, but I think I’ll hold off on actually so commending the comment above.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Yes, Jarl, and with my own particular circumstance (Anglo-Irish accent – suggesting”landlord” to some– and then rather leftist politics with a pacifist civil rights for all slant) I’ve had that particularly honed nasty treatment from both sides myself all my life.

    Neither camp has anything to crow about in terms of tolerance, although I’m always moved to find real kindness from individuals who can look past the categorisation and respect unaggressive difference in another. This is something which used to be much more common before the violence erupted, and I’m glad I have memories of a very different Antrim.

  • Croiteir

    As I keep saying – for all

  • Zorin001

    I was moved to comment as my Father grew up in “The Big House” as the son of the cook and gardener and until a falling out a few years ago our respective families were very close,

    I’ve heard similar stories to yours from some of my “Uncles”, Anglo-Irish of the old school so the anecdotes you present ring true to me.

  • Granni Trixie

    Basil McIvor was well respected by the seminal integrated movement.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Thank you Zorin. I’m well aware that Turgon may simply be unfamiliar with people of my background, especially those of left/liberal leanings, a rather rarer breed here than over the water. He clearly has trouble with a more sophisticated understanding of the situation here, that sees some value in aspects of both Ireland and the Union and wishes the debate to be without personal rancour, and without the recourse to a violence that would efface comment.

    I long tried to debate with him, but he has developed a number of ways of trying to block any debate with the points he makes, stating that he has no interest in debate on the site. Despite this I’d still feel that his voice is a most valuable contribution to the site which could only strengthen through honest debate.

    I have a lot of time for submariner, who states that he was in the navy, and certainly while he is willing to criticise Unionism, is not criticising protestants in any post I remember. The problem with many of those posting against him is that they fall into the populist mistake of conflating Unionism and Protestantism, seeing the terms as simply interchangable. In my opinion they are failing to note that one is a secular political ideology while the other is a confession of religious belief, two very very different things.

  • Croiteir

    1 – the issue was the use of the word “promoting” just for recap I said they were not promoting Prods out. But anyway I am bored with it and will not reply to you on this any more as you clearly cannot accept it.
    2. I do not deploy tactics – I am flattered that you believe me to be so clever – I just comment on the matter to hand. Perhaps you are reflecting your own opus operandi?
    3. I know that European law does allow access to existing schooling as a Human right under the article 2 – As catholic schools exist their is a right to them. QED
    4. Can I get a reference to that derogation? I would like to read it
    5. I note that it on consultation with the public the report initially got no replies and when further advertised for opinion by adverts in the three main regional daily newspapers it only got 12 replies. Hardly ablaze with public sentiment. In fact, ike a lot of these luvvie issues the general populace do not care. But sure they give the chattering classes something to chatter about. In short they tried to create an issue to justify their existence and it fell on its face. I would not consider thatProfessors Dunn and Gallagher are neutral commetators on the subject either, I really do not know why you use this report, one which is obviously commissioned to pursue an agenda, as an appeal to higher authority to justify your position. It does not.