Time to address Catholic prejudice?

Ruth Dudley Edwards argues that the controversy over Mary McAleese’s comments and her subsequent acceptance that in Northern Ireland hatred was inculcated in Catholics as well as Protestants may have unearthed an opportunity for Northern Ireland’s nationalists to finally recognise their own prejudices against Prods (sorry, that should obviously read: Protestants).

As an aside, I note that the reading at Mass yesterday was from Matthew 5:1-12, otherwise known as the beatitudes.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    Is Edwards asking nationalists to view their own prejudices? Or is she asking them to agree with her rather jaundiced view of the north and its’ problems.
    When an article holds up Arlene Foster; Davy Adams; Ervine and O Callaghan as character witnesses one can hear the bottom of the barrel being well and truly scrapped.

    Someone needs to tell Edwards and Arlene Foster that the sectarian hatred of Catholics does in fact pre date the attacks that apparently concvinced Protestants to hate their Catholic neighbours. Bit of an own goal by the ladies concerned in attempting a tawdry piece of revisionism

    Edwards is a self described propagandist and sympathiser for Orangeism, this rather lame piece merely reinforces that view.

    Highlighting sectarianism and the main source of that sectarianism is a service that people do need reminded of. Edwards may be following Independent Newspaper policy in wanting the problems here tied up in a nice neat parcel marked IRA on it. Thankfully they wont be allowed to get away with it.

  • alex s

    Pat there was and still is sectarianism on all sides, to suggest differently is foolish

  • Jimmy Sands

    Can you point out the occasion on which she described herself as a propagandist?

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    alex s

    You are of course correct and was covered by my sentence,’Highlighting sectarianism and the main source of that sectarianism is a service that people do need reminded of.’

    Without wanting to do a Mc Aleese, the use of ‘main’ does suggest other forms not attributable to unionism.

  • dave

    Well said Ruth, sometimes the truth really does hurt, lets face it some catholic and Protestants hate each other, somepeople don’t like the Scottish or the welsh Etc.

    Were the irish not taught to hate the british? or is that just a myth or even propaganda.

    We all know that RDE is telling it as it really is.

  • dave

    Well said Ruth, sometimes the truth really does hurt, lets face it some catholic and Protestants hate each other, somepeople don’t like the Scottish or the welsh Etc.

    Were the irish not taught to hate the british? or is that just a myth or even propaganda.

    We all know that RDE is telling it as it really is.

  • dave

    Well said Ruth, sometimes the truth really does hurt, lets face it some catholic and Protestants hate each other, somepeople don’t like the Scottish or the welsh Etc.

    Were the irish not taught to hate the british? or is that just a myth or even propaganda.

    We all know that RDE is telling it as it really is.

  • Jacko

    Pat McLarnon

    What exactly are you saying – that only Protestants are sectarian? That all Protestants are sectarian, or a majority of them are, or just some?
    That Catholics aren’t sectarian – or only a very small number are?
    Do your remarks not indicate that you, in fact, have quite a sectarian attitude yourself?
    As you say, sectarianism certainly does pre-date the current round of the ‘troubles’ as anyone who knows about Fethard-on-Sea will tell you. But there is no doubt that the Provos waging a bloody sectarian campaign for 30-odd years didn’t help matters.
    As ex-provo bomber John Paul O’Doherty once remarked: “We set out to remove a border and ended up creating hundreds of sectarian borders.”

    As a matter of interest, have you any opinion on the drunken louts who stabbed a guy to death outside a Belfast bar last night? Leading provos according to RTE – which, taking Mitchell’s word for it, makes it all right. The provos can’t commit crimes.

  • maca

    “Were the irish not taught to hate the british?”
    no
    “or is that just a myth or even propaganda.”
    yes

  • Davros

    “I went to a very militantly Republican grammar school and, under its influence, began to revolt against the Establishment, on the simple rule of thumb, highly satisfying to a ten-year-old, that Irish equals good, English equals bad.”

    The Price Of My Soul by Bernadette Devlin
    Β©1969, Pan Books. pp 58-59.

    ‘British’ and ‘English’ to some extent would be interchangeable. Certainly plenty of children were taught to sing “rebel” songs that demonise England and the English.

  • maca

    Dav
    Dave said “the Irish”. In general “the Irish” weren’t of course taught to hate the English or British. That’s not to say that in some areas things might have been a tad different, esp in NI.
    Plus, of course, putting on my pedantic hat for a tic, many Irish are British and probably were not taught to hate themselves. πŸ˜‰

  • Davros

    In general “the Irish” weren’t of course taught to hate the English.

    That reminds me of the apocryphal story of GA denying membership of the IRA to children on the Falls Rd … “and why not ?” asked one bright spark πŸ˜‰

    And if I were to put on MY pedantic hat – all Irish, as Ireland is one of the British Isles, could and should be regarded as British …. but I won’t LOL

  • CavanMan

    Davros
    The official title of these islands are now the British and Irish isles,so does that mean that everyone in this islands are also irish? πŸ™‚

  • CavanMan

    these*

  • Davros

    By my line of thinking , yes, the populations are so intermingled that the classifications have little meaning …. and I’m not convinced about this renaming malarkey πŸ˜‰

  • Robert Keogh

    Davros,

    the population genetic data does not support your assertion. 90% of the population of Ireland(a) have a common genetic heritage that is distinct and different from the populations in either England, Scotland, Wales or any other European country. The closest relatives to the Irish population are the Basques. The other 10% are primarily Nordic and Anglo-Saxon.

    The English people are primarily Angles and Saxons with Picts, Jutes and myriad of others that raided Britain between the Romans and 1066.

    (a)Those born there, obviously not those who have emmigrated here.

  • Davros

    I disagree RK. Genetics, like statistics, can be used to justify any argument especially your racial one. And as I disapprove of racism, I’m not interested in your thoughts.

  • CavanMan

    Their are valid points which can be made,implying that all the irish(and not just 20% up north)however it is my opinion,that the irish are not british,and that the celtic people of scotland/wales/Ireland(north and south) have more in common with each other than with england.
    The Term British in my opinion is just a term used by the english to claim authority over the majority of these islands.

  • Davros

    Cavanman – I read a while back that there are upwards of one million people born in Ireland living in GB. Add to that the number of second and third generation and I wouldn’t be surprised if there aren’t as many “Irish” people living in GB as live in the ROI.

  • Moses

    Stop being so precious Davros.

    We aren’t discussing racial superiority.

    Saying that genetically, there are some differences between Irish and English is not racism Davros.

    God forbid Ireland be distinct from England or ‘Britain’.

    Next thing, you’ll be telling us that Irish is a Germanic language.

  • Robert Keogh

    Davros,

    Racism:
    1. The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others.
    2. Discrimination or prejudice based on race.

    Illustrate how my pointing out your error about the intermingledness of the peoples on these two Islands is racism?

    The facts I stated are backed up by population genetics studies carried out by the Department of Genetics at TCD.

  • Davros

    Moses – please explain to me how one can talk of genetic differences between “celtic” peoples and non-celtic peoples without race raising it’s ugly head ? This celt blethers is either cultural – so how do genetic differences arise ? is there a deedly-dee gene ? – or racial.

  • Davros

    RK- I’m not interested in your nonsense, Ta VM.

  • Robert Keogh

    Davros,

    RK- I’m not interested in your nonsense.

    You are only displaying your ignorance.

  • Robert Keogh

    Davros,

    before I leave, YOU were the one to raise the issue of race. Genetics demonstrates that there is no such thing as race, the markers used to identify populations (note the term population not race) do not have any phentoypic manifestations.

    Take a moment to read what I posted instead of projecting your own opinions/interpretations upon it.

    The fact you leapt from genetic differences to racism illustrates your complete lack of knowledge of the field and the concept.

  • Davros

    So be it RK πŸ™‚ If Teddy K or any of his ilk ever becomes president then I’ll worry about you and yours.

  • IJP

    The official title of these islands are now the British and Irish isles

    When was this decided?!

    If the Irish rebel songs (in fact termed ‘pub songs’) I’ve just been listening to on a CD in my car are anything to go by, Davros has an entirely legitimate point. One song includes clear reference to ‘pure Irish blood’ and links it clearly to a future where ‘we’ (i.e. those of ‘pure Irish blood’) will have ‘freedom’. God knows what’s supposed to happen to the rest of us…

  • IJP

    Since they seem to start boxing matches in the UK at 2am to suit US television these days, could we not just get Davros and RK in a ring one of these nights to sort it out once and for all? πŸ™‚

    (Alliance man in pro-violence stance…)

  • Moses

    I never mentioned CELTIC Davros. Are you in a bad mood today?

    As I understand it, the majority of people in Ireland have pre-Celtic genes since the Celts didn’t come to Ireland in large numbers.

    Is it hard for you to accept that Ireland is distinct from Britain? That is the case even after intermingling.

    Language, surnames etc…

    For me, it’s not a matter of race or anti-English feeling. But sometimes I wonder when people cause a fuss anytime someone tries to highlight the fact that Ireland and England aren’t one and the same.

  • abucs

    Yes Moses, i agree that the Irish are probably genetically pre-Celtic, with strong celtic cultural tendancies including language which were aquired from celtic migrations.

    As far as sectarianism. Surely that started with the British colony and subsequent apartheid laws based on religion ?

  • Hector

    I think its worth mentioning that all humans, regardless of ethnic or national identity, share 95% of their genetic material with Chimpanzees.
    Cultures and identities are socially constructed not genetically determined.

  • abucs

    Agreed,
    98% chimpanzees and 94% with dogs (apparently).
    Woof Woof.

  • Alan

    Thank you Hector and Abucs.

    One question for the racists out there, precisely what percentage of difference are we expected to believe can dismiss the obvious and overwhelming percentage of similarity between us?

    What utter drivel some people post!

  • Robert Keogh

    Hector,

    humans … share 95% of their genetic material with Chimpanzees …

    The DNA sequence of Chimp and Human genes (coding regions) are 96% identical at the nucleotide level. The vast bulk of both genomes are non-coding and are nowhere near as evolutionarily preserved.

    The key differences between both species lie in the evolution of promoter and regulatory dna regions where a single point mutation can have a major impact on body pattern and development.

    Alan,

    racists don’t need evidence to support their positions, never have, never will.

    Reminds me of David Duke’s analysis of NI – he couldn’t understand why two white christian peoples were fighting each other. Struck me as the most incongrously black humour I’ve read about NI and he was being sincere.

  • Robert Keogh

    IJP,

    Since they seem to start boxing matches in the UK at 2am to suit US television these days, could we not just get Davros and RK in a ring one of these nights to sort it out once and for all? πŸ™‚

    Heh. I’m game if Davros promises not to deploy his Dalek minions πŸ™‚

  • Alan

    Shakes a cynical head!

  • Henry94

    IJP

    One song includes clear reference to ‘pure Irish blood’ and links it clearly to a future where ‘we’ (i.e. those of ‘pure Irish blood’) will have ‘freedom’.

    What’s the name of the song? I can’t place it.

  • Brian Boru

    Great Blog this one.
    I think its fair to say the question of Identity
    counts for c.90% of the troubles in Northern Ireland.
    First we’re all human … that’s easy.
    Then we all have different coloured skins..
    Problems begin here..but not for the vast majority in our Isles.( as most of us are white)
    Then there is nationality…. more problems particularly for the Unionists who insist they are British? The Irish in the Republic know they are Irish. The English know they are English.
    Religion…. more problems.. same God? same saviour Jesus Christ?
    All our problems as regards are differences are so silly really, as none of us have a choice where/ when we’re born, so chance could make us Protestants or Catholics.
    Hume made this point of course.
    So lets break down the barriers!

  • Nathan

    “As you say, sectarianism certainly does pre-date the current round of the ‘troubles’ as anyone who knows about Fethard-on-Sea will tell you.”

    In a roundabout way you’re saying that the RC church had a thorny past. Yes, they certainly did but to be fair they were willing to remove some of the painful thorns when a generous and explicit apology was made to the local CofI community for this.

    Moreover, the widespread assumption is that all RC republicans in the area supported the boycott brigade comprising of one Fianna Failure TD and the Romanist hierarchy. This is wholly inaccurate. The RC leader of the old IRA in the locality not only pleaded with de Valera to break the boycott but also encouraged old IRA vetarans in the Wexford locality to make the journey to Fethard and purchase all they needed from the affected shops.

    By living up to the true vocation of Irish republicanism, the local leader of the old IRA reassured Protestant republicans, most notably Hubert Butler, that the philosophy we had thrown our weight behind amounted to more than just meaningless rhetoric.

  • Jacko

    Nathan
    I never confuse authentic Irish republicanism with the sectarian provo variety. My point was that Pat McClarnon displays all the sectarian attitudes he lazily, conveniently and almost exclusively lays at the door of Protestants.
    I mentioned Fethard merely to indicate that any of us can pluck something out of the air to reinforce a point, but it gets us nowhere.

  • Davros

    What do people mean by “Celts” ? It’s a vague term.
    Different groups can be classified as “celts” depending on criteria used.

    Moses – The celt thing came up in the post about which you accused me of being precious πŸ˜‰

    The blood/race/culture thing needs sorted out, appropriate in this centenary year.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    Jacko,

    you obviously can’t read or you would see that my points on sectarianism were in fact clarified and I did recognise that unionism was not the only source of same. I suspect you mentioned Fethard as it was the only claim to whataboutery to hand as your bizarre drift into the murder at a Belfast bar indicates.

  • Nathan

    Jacko
    “I never confuse authentic Irish republicanism with the sectarian provo variety.”

    Indeed, modern day provisionalism doesn’t have the faintest idea of what is required to be a well rounded republican. They assumed their ‘right’ to a bigger and grubbier armed struggle, and by doing so they actually betrayed those Protestants who authetic republicanism might have persuaded.

    “I mentioned Fethard merely to indicate that any of us can pluck something out of the air to reinforce a point, but it gets us nowhere.”

    Agreed

  • DessertSpoon

    No matter who you are, where you were born, what class you think you are, what your skin colour is, what church you go to or don’t go to, your sexual preference………..this list could go on. Someone will hate you. dislike you or discriminate against you because of it. Is it right? No of course not. Are some more guilty than others? NO – everyone does it, in varying degrees maybe but everyone does it.

    People hate. One of our worst qualities as humans. So to answer the question posed by the thread is it time to address Catholic Prejudices? Yes it’s time to address all prejudices and accept that in NI no-one side is more culpable than the other, two wrongs don’t make a right and an eye for an eye just leaves you blind. Corny but true.

  • Jacko

    Pat McLarnon

    “Jacko,you obviously can’t read.”

    Pat, I can read you like a book, old son. Like a book.

  • Jacko

    Pat McLarnon

    “Jacko,you obviously can’t read.”

    Pat, I can read you like a book, old son. Like a book.

  • Jacko

    Pat McLarnon

    “Jacko,you obviously can’t read.”

    Pat, I can read you like a book, old son. Like a book.

  • Jacko

    Pat McLarnon

    “Jacko,you obviously can’t read.”

    Pat, I can read you like a book, old son. Like a book.

  • Jacko

    Pat McLarnon

    “Jacko,you obviously can’t read.”

    Pat, I can read you like a book, old son. Like a book.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    Yes Jacko likewise, again and again and……

  • dave

    Hey lads and lasses, i only asked a simple question.

    “Well said Ruth, sometimes the truth really does hurt, lets face it some catholic and Protestants hate each other, some people don’t like the Scottish or the welsh, etc.

    Were the irish not taught to hate the british? or is that just a myth or even propaganda.

    We all know that RDE is telling it as it really is.”

    The answer is: The IRA (monomanics) who hate anything british not only are they terrorist paramilitaries and crimminals but are also racist and guess what, the loyalists have the same type of people in the community who are also terrorist paramilitaries and crimminals and racist to boot, just another bunch of monomanics.

    like i said Ruth Dudley Edward’s tells it the way it is, honestly some people can’t see the wood for the trees. Time to get rid of the free loading paramilitaries.

  • IJP

    Henry

    Must say it wasn’t familiar to me either – it made reference to ‘Vikings came’ and ‘Cromwell’ too. Next time I’m in the car I’ll look at the CD sleeve to get the name.