The tellparliament.net online consultation. The discussion has ranged over a number of subjects and viewpoints, from full blooded advocacy of legislation to the more sceptical view that it’s just one law to further clog up an increasingly ineffectual statute book. Others simply relate their own experiences.Here’s a couple of recent contributions:
“…nothing has ever prepared me for the prejudice and hate I have had to face for being gay. Many heterosexual men feel that they have a right to punish you verbally or physically, the women sometimes speak to you like you are mentally retarded and think you find it hard to understand the English language and everyone feels that they can freely come up to you even though you have never met them before in your life and say what they think about your lifestyle, clothes, mannerisms etc. What is wrong with people in this country?
“As an intelligent Gay man holding down a job why can heterosexual people never have a normal conversation without it turning into a patronizing speech. One woman approached me in a gay bar and began telling me how it would “hurt her heart” if her son said he was Gay and she would rather he told her he was a murderer. This is one of the main reasons for segregation and why Gay bars exist. When will it go away?”
“My girlfriend and I were both born and bred in Northern Ireland … until 2002 when we went to work in Oldham. What we saw there really opened our eyes and made us very fearful for the future of this provence. I talked to white pensioners who are reluctantly having to move from the homes because they are being persecuted by the children of Pakastini families who are moving in as soon as a house becomes vacant.
My firm’s van was criminally damaged on three occasions in broad day-light. I reported it but the police were just not interested. My girlfriend worked in a shop and was often called “white bitch”, “white scum” etc. Had a white person abused an immigrant like that they would have been prosecuted, yet her colleagues told there was no point in even reporting it. I have seen grafitti “You have your Queen but we have Your country” also “Nowhites after 6 pm” and they really meant it.
When I thought about it all, just how much immigration had increased here since the peace agreement, it made me realise this province could easily become another Oldham in a few years time. I am not a violent person, but I am not the only one who sees what is happening and the government seems to be encouraging immigration. I can realise why some people want to defend their homeland as we have to look to our children’s future.”
If you want to make you own point, go and tell them.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty