Council argues over intimidation…

Sinn Fein refused to sign a motion in Belfast City Council chamber censuring an alleged campaign of intimidation of Protestants in North Belfast out of their homes, on the basis that it didn’t recognise similar incidents against Catholics.

  • Fraggle

    This is very rich coming from the DUP especially Ruth Patterson considering their behaviour towards the chinese welfare association. the DUP criticise nationalists for ‘not wanting a protestant about the place’ while they don’t seem to want chinese about the place.

    do they really expect Sinn Fein to support such a one sided motion?

  • chunkyguy

    the dup are a massive joke- they make statements without realising how ironic they are with particular reference to the last few years intimidation of catholics and ethnic minorites and then when 10 prod families move to take advantage of the housing exec scheme of buying houses due to intimidation!!!- how strange

  • Billy Pilgrim

    It’s shocking how far down the tubes the News Letter has gone since Geoff Martin moved on. Every day now they splash a huge headline across the front page making some wild allegation or other that feeds into the assumed paranoia and self pity of their readership.

    Then you read the copy and realise that the loudly-trumpeted headline (‘We’re being pushed out’, `Catholic archbishop has gone too far” or today’s “You’ve got it wrong” above Hugh Orde) is actually a quote (minus quotation marks, natch) usually from some DUP member. That’s okay for the sports page but on page one it’s incredibly shrill and irresponsible.

    A newspaper taking a particular political line is fine, but when it comes to inaccurate reporting then it has really lost something.

    If you read the report, it recounts almost as fact the allegations made by a handful of somewhat suspect unionist councillors. Yet on the pages of the News Letter these accusations morph into fact. Why? Because in the last few months the decision-makers at the struggling News Letter have decided that: a) the paper’s circulation is declining because it isn’t sectarian enough; and b) our readers want to read about how the Ulster protestant is getting shafted at every turn.

    Re. the article.

    Much is made of how protestants are being “forced out by a campaign of intimidation”. I don’t know anything about the case but, I would suggest, neither does the News Letter journalist who wrote the story. The allegations are very short on details. I’d like to know what shape this `intimidation’ took. Not saying it didn’t happen, but what are we talking about here? Houses burnt out? Shots fired? Burning crosses in the front garden? Snide remarks? Dirty looks? The silent treatment?

    If a number of Belfast councillors make an allegation, the media is entitled to report the allegation, but it should be reported AS AN ALLEGATION. But if it is going to lead with the story, with the big inflammatory headline and all, then the paper should a) speak to those against whom the allegation is made and b) as far as possible ascertain the veracity of the allegation independently.

    This however does not apply. It is typical of the recent attitude of the News Letter – as long as the headline is an attention-grabber, the journalism be damned. This report is a DFR for what is sadly an increasingly irresponsible and sectarian newspaper.

  • slackjaw

    Long time since I heard the term DFR. Cheers Billy!