A double edged welcome in the West?

Newton Emerson finds the anti-state information being circulated (subs needed) in West Belfast to recent migrant families in West Belfast sinister. He argues that the subtext is quietly threatening, citing one line in particular: “If the PSNI asks questions about your neighbours, you should not answer them.”

Beano picked this up earlier!

By Newton Emerson

WARN is well-named. The West Against Racism Network has warned immigrants in west Belfast to avoid calling the police. The organisation doesn’t specify what the consequences of such a faux pas might be, exactly, but its ‘Welcome Pack’ leaves no doubt that the neighbours wouldn’t be one bit pleased.

Warn spokesperson Flair Campbell says: “We are just showing people the reality of living in the area and here, the natural response is not to go to the police when there is a problem.”

However, the Welcome Pack goes a bit further than that.

“The PSNI is seen by most people here as an extension of the British state and has no support,” it declares. “You should avoid calling them into the area unless it is a necessity – ie, for insurance purposes.”

Everything about this coy little piece of ‘advice’ would be laughable if the subtext wasn’t so threatening. It is a clear misrepresentation to say that the PSNI has absolutely no support in west Belfast. It is thoughtless at best to remind immigrants to the UK that their brand new nationality isn’t popular with their brand new neighbours. It is chilling to so casually imply that upsetting the neighbours is the reason “you should avoid” dialling 999.

And finally, of course, it is grimly hilarious that an exception can always be made for putting a claim in. Just in case this isn’t enough of a hint to immigrants to behave themselves, the Welcome Pack adds: “If the PSNI asks questions about your neighbours, you should not answer them.”

Characterising new arrivals as potential informers is one hell of a welcome to the west.

Apparently Warn’s respect for diversity doesn’t extend to accepting that immigrants are – by definition – not from ‘the area’ and therefore may not ‘naturally’ toe the line. You can be any colour you like, it seems, as long as it’s green. But the republican position on policing, so eloquently and coincidentally echoed by Warn, is merely the current negotiating tactic of the locally-elected political party. Why should this impose restrictions on the rights of immigrants to west Belfast?

Pubished in the Irish News today.

How would Sinn Fein (for example) react if Michael McDowell advised immigrants in his Dublin constituency to respect Progressive Democrat policy on law and order, or else?

How does Warn’s attitude differ from that of the Protestant workers in Derry who objected to Polish colleagues mourning the Pope?

Has it occurred to anyone involved that immigrants might want to join the police?

If Warn was really an anti-racist organisation it would be campaigning against the imposition of tribal politics on immigrants, rather than effectively ordering them to keep their heads down.

New arrivals to our shores have no issue with the PSNI other than its effectiveness.

If they are the victim of a crime they must be free to test that effectiveness for themselves. Telling immigrants that it is not acceptable to call the police because the police are not acceptable is a circular argument within whose empty centre lurks unmistakable menace. By passing that message on rather than tackling it head-on, Warn has totally discredited itself.

Still it is hardly alone in confusing political territory with actual territory.

Last year somebody stencilled the slogan “I’m not your stereotype” on a wall at the bottom of the Falls Road, apparently unaware that stencilling your pretentious

self-pity on the walls is a west Belfast stereotype par excellence. Luckily, as a native of Portadown, I am well aware of the stupidity of branding people by their postcode. I am quite satisfied, for example, that only a fraction of the population of Andersonstown spends its evenings in the community centre knitting bodhrans for Palestine.

I imagine that most people realise this, if they give it any thought at all. But those who would conflate area with ideology are far from satisfied with such a situation. They want us all to be their stereotypes, branded by our postcodes. The mindset that believes nobody in west Belfast should call the police is no different to that which believes everyone in Portadown should be an Orangeman.

With openly ethnic parties now in the ascendant a cult of cantonisation is claiming Northern Ireland street-by-street. Immigration subverts this agenda.

New arrivals don’t see the invisible lines we have drawn in the sand and stumble over them before our eyes, proving that the crossing is possible.

That is why we must welcome them – and why Warn’s grubby little ‘welcome’ was an absolute disgrace.

  • slackjaw

    Apparently Warn’s respect for diversity doesn’t extend to accepting that immigrants are – by definition – not from ‘the area’ and therefore may not ‘naturally’ toe the line.

    An excellent point.

    Absent from any story I have read on this so far have been the actual opinions of the welcome pack recipients. Given that everyone’s concern appears to be directed towards their welfare, perhaps someone should take the time out to ask them what they actually think of the affair?

    Alternatively, could someone point me to a source where the welcome pack recipients’ opinions have been recorded?

  • Mark Baxter

    Does Warn have close ties to, or crossover membership with any political parties in the West Belfast area?

  • slug9987

    “The West Against Racism Network”

    Does anyone find that this tendency to say “the West” instead of West Belfast rather parochial?

  • Davros

    Is WARN linked to Davy Carlin of the Belfast ARN ?
    The Anti Racism Network (ARN), in the beginning …

    It seems to be linked to Gerry Adams :

    West Against Racism Network (14 minutes)

    NvTv goes along to the launch of the West Against Racism Network’s new welcome pack for ethnic minorities coming into the area. The pack contains useful information including emergency contacts and helpful advice.

    NvTv talks to Sara Boyce (W.A.R.N.) and Glen Phillips (Féile an Phobail) who helped create the pack. Gerry Adams (Sinn Féin) launched the project.

    I wonder how it’s funded ?

  • Travis

    Does Warn have close ties to, or crossover membership with any political parties in the West Belfast area?

    You might say that, I couldn’t possibly comment.

  • joe

    Newtown Emmerson, of course is anti-republican and under his extremely thin veil of attempted impartial journalism (and his extremely weak attempts at impartial/and not so impartial humour) will use any stick with which to beat republicanism. With regard to the issues he raises I’m unaware of any instance written or otherwise, where WARN have “effectively ordered” immigrants to “keep their heads down”. West Belfast and WARN imparticular are making huge and genuine efforts to welcome immigrants into West Belfast, unfortunately I cannot say the same for Newton’s native Portadown which is recognised for its welcome of immigrants, fenians… as long as they never get to leave the place again. Newtown lives in a place called “The Pravince”, where our friendly Bobbies are the victims of the un-lawful fire-starters, where Orangeism is an expression of culture for all the family to enjoy (and not sectarian bigotry) and where all the troubles in our wee “Pravince” originate up the Falls, the Bogside, South Armagh…

  • George

    “It is thoughtless at best to remind immigrants to the UK that their brand new nationality isn’t popular with their brand new neighbours.”

    Interesting that Newton goes on about stereotypes and immediately brands all Northern Ireland’s immigrants as British. He doesn’t seem to be able to see his own invisible lines.

    These immigrants can also be Irish if they want to be. There is absolutely no onus on them to be British.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    There was talk of OFMDFM funding but the story in the telegraph yesterday suggestes the OFMDFM have not approved the pamphlet and that they are ‘looking into’ WARN’s use of the OFMDFM logo on the leaflet (ballocks, it’s copyright infringement pure and simple!).

    And the only record I have of the recipients views is:
    “Councillor Ekin, who was given the pack by concerned residents, said he was shocked by its contents.” Original Belfast Telegraph Report: Anti-racist help booklet tells immigrants to shun the police still available at time of posting.

  • slackjaw

    Perhaps I should have been more blunt: does any of you actually care what the immigrants really think, or is this issue about to become another prop for the Oooh Sinn Fein are horrible/No they’re not they’re lovely pre-election debate?

  • slackjaw

    Alternatively George they may just decide to hold on to their current nationality. You’re assuming they would want to stay.

  • slug9987

    Nationalists in NI:

    Your much loved 50/50 rule lumps ethnic minorities in with protestants and discriminates both.

  • Davros

    under his extremely thin veil of attempted impartial journalism

    That’s priceless Joe 🙂 Where on earth has Newt ever claimed to be Impartial ? His colours are firmly nailed to the mast! He makes no bones about who he is and from where he is coming.

  • slackjaw

    Actually on rereading your post you may not be assuming that at all. Hoisted by my own petard, methinks!

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    A touch cynical even by NI standards slackjaw, but this WARN crowd does appear to be militant republicanism masquerading under (a/yet another) noble cause.

    I’d like to see a Northern Ireland that welcomes it’s immigrants not burns them out of their homes (loyalists) or fills their head with hate-filled propaganda and WARNings that it would be hazardous to their health were they to be seen to co-operate with the rule of law (republicans).

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    To reiterate what I said on Everything Ulster at the weekend:

    “In recent years the PSNI have made real efforts to gain the confidence of not just nationalists, but ethnic minoirites too, with ethnic minority community liaison officers in every area. The fact that this pack of clowns are allowed to peddle their republican propaganda in an attempt to undermine the PSNI, especially on an ‘Anti-Racism’ ticket, is nothing short of obscene.”

  • fatbuster

    Hilarious that Joe should respond to this by… trotting out a postcode stereotype in an attempt to brand the author. Did you actually read the article Joe?

  • spartacus

    How pathetic: the usual crowd of whinging, obsessive, too-much-time-on-their-hands anti-republicans attempting to position themselves as the defenders of immigrants, and doing so by trying to drag down what is undoubtedly the most active and effective comunity-based anti-racist organization in the north. Led into battle by none other than Newt (I’m a middle-class unionist with a sense of humour) Emerson, armchair sectarian.

    Anyone who thinks that a pamphlet which describes nationalist West Belfast as being hostile to the RUC/PSNI would be controversial in the area is on another planet, or deliberately blinkered. Here’s an interesting question: Why didn’t Newt weigh in with a critique of the Village welcome packet (in an area with a much higher incidence of racist attacks), or the Portadown welcome packet (whose local politicans deployed anti-Arab racism to obstruct the building of a mosque? Here’s why: Because they don’t f**in have one! WARN is the only organization in the north that has gone so far as to produce a welcome packet. All you high-and-mighties might be better off logging out for a few hours and doing the same in your own areas.

  • Northern FF

    Joe, you’re an embarassment. Have you ever read any of Newton Emerson’s articles?

    For example, to claim that Emerson views the ‘Orange Order as an expression of culture for the family to enjoy’ is just total NONSENSE. His is one of the clearest voices criticising northern tribal politics that we have.

    And please Joe, leave South Armagh out of it. We understand humour.

  • Northern FF

    And Spartacus, you’re as bad.

  • fatbuster

    Is there some sort of ‘Response Pack’ circulating out there? Yet another person tries replying to this article by attacking the background/hometown of the author. What about the issue? George rather sourly pointed out earlier that immigrants have the choice to be British or Irish – and they do. So why shouldn’t they have the choice to support or not support the police, just because the might live in an area where Sinn Fein is the majority local party?

  • spartacus

    Oh, and one other thing: isn’t it strange that the only way one can redeem oneself in the eyes of liberal middle-class unionism if one lives in a ‘nationalist area’ is by sucking up to the state and its police forces? This is apparently how one qualifies as an anti-sectarian in Newt’s fantasy world. Drivel, like everything from his pen.

  • fatbuster

    No, Spartacus – what he says is that immigrants should be free “to test the effectiveness” of the PSNI. Hardly a ringing endorsement. Go back and read the article again and see if you can reply to the points it raises without resorting to forced personal abuse.

  • spirit-level

    There ought not to be any immigration anywhere in Norn Iron until a real political solution is first found.. Its too dangerous on too many levels… nothing to do with rascism at all.
    As if we ain’t got enough problems!

  • Mike

    The PSNI is seen by most people here as an extension of the British state and has no support,”

    Nice way of welcoming people who have migrated to the UK.

  • spartacus

    Northern FF:

    Away off and learn to read.

    Fatbuster:

    There it is again: ‘freedom of choice’ being wheeled out to dodge the issue, just as Newt hides behind ‘bursting stereotypes’. How empowering. Except that from everything that I’ve seen over the last several years, and from close relationships with many in the ‘ethnic minority communities’ here (hate that label), it is very clear that the PSNI/RUC are part of the problem, leaving aside completely their role here in counterinsurgency.

  • spartacus

    Fatbuster:

    How’s that welcome packet coming? And when you’re done, round up ten or twelve good people and go door to door with them. If you need some funding, Northen FF’s got some of that Ansbacher loot lying around, and committed anti-racist that he is, he will no doubt for it over, unless its being spent by his fearless leader who is busy deporting immigrants further to our south.

  • Slug9987

    I wonder if ethnic minorities want a special “welcome packet for ethnic minorities”.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    Simply pointing out the racist pricks in the village (or any other area of Northern Ireland) doesn’t excuse using an anti-racism ticket to spread republican propaganda and force the views of the majority onto a new and possibly impressionable minority. If minorities come in and find the police force unacceptable or ineffective then fair enough, let them choose not to use it based on their own experiences – but to WARN them not to engage with the police is a disgrace, and a deliberate attempt to undermine whatever the police do in their efforts to become representative and accepted.

  • Final Warning

    Incredible – You’d almost think the Shinners were trying to PREVENT progress on policing.
    Love the replies from the party hacks here by the way – “whatabout themmuns?” would seem to sum it up. Yeah, what about themmuns? Shouldn’t you be aspiring to be a little bit better than that?
    Any way you slice it this WARN thing is a disgrace – blatant politicking with people’s personal safety as well. I’d love to know just how far up the chain of command this particular piece of rot goes as well – I don’t think Flair Campbell managed this all be herself, do you?

  • barney

    The PSNI/RUC are not trusted in nationaliust areas. How would it disadvantage new arrivals to know that? It’s a fascist police force and tough luck if there are people with no qualms about saying so.

  • iluvni

    How would WARN react to those ethnic minorities who decided, against their advice, to have normal relations with the PSNI?….a little bit of ‘Village treatment’ perhaps?

  • spartacus

    Beano:

    One blogger’s ‘disgrace’ is another blogger’s political duty. Do you think that the long history of police repression and sectarianism here is irrelevant to the predicament of newly arrived immigrants? I would consider it an unpardonable derelicton of duty not to make newly arrived neighbors aware of that experience.

    Aside from that, you write as if the jury is out on PSNI relations with ethnic minority communities here. That is most certainly not the case. Either you haven’t been following this question over recent years or you are willfully blinded.

    Slug:

    I would guess that new immigrants prefer a welcome packet, and the postive gesure of goodwill that it implies, to a pipebomb. No ‘community’ has a monopoloy on racism here, obviously, but do you not think it is to the credit of activists in West Belfast (led by WARN) that within hours of an attack on Filipino neighbors they managed to mobilize 400 people from the area to show their support for immigrants and intolerance for bigotry? Where else has that been replicated? And if the answer is nowhere, then why is WARN the subject of Newt’s invective? It all boils down to anti-republicanism, like much of what passes for commentary here.

  • Final Warning

    I invoke Godwin’s law on barney.
    ‘Fascist police force’ – what tripe.
    Will you be saying that a year from now when SF are on the police board?

  • Jim Bob

    I’m surprised at Newton on his approach here.

    The most common piece of advice given to people who are questioned by Police across the UK and Ireland is not to answer questions of this nature from Police.

    This is more important now because Tony Blair has introduced the most oppressive legislation of this nature in western Europe. None of this legislation has yet been tested in the courts but it has seemingly given Police sweeping powers to ask the most outlandish and invasive questions.

    Obviously people who have just arrived in this country need to have information on how to deal with agencies like the Police. The systems in their own country may not be the same. They need to know what their “rights” are even as Blair is attempting do do away with them.

    There’s nothing sinister about this advice at all. They’re being given the same advice as they would be given in London.

    The only “sinister” thing is just how many over-egged non-stories are being given such prominence at this election time.

  • Final Warning

    Jim Bob – So this is really all about the new anti-terrorism legislation?
    Are you equating immigrants with terrorists suspects now? Or are you just desperately grasping at straws?

  • slug

    “would guess that new immigrants prefer a welcome packet, and the postive gesure of goodwill that it implies, to a pipebomb”

    But do they prefer a welcome pack for ethnic minorities to no welcome pack for ethnic minorities?

    How does one get to be on WARN’s mailing list?

  • Dec

    Perhaps if the PSNI were to announce that they will not target members of ethnic minorities living in West Belfast as low-grade informants then this issue will soon blow over.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    It’s now their political duty to persuade people that the police are their enemies? If the police really are so oppressive as WARN seem to believe, surely the new immigrants to the area would not take long realising this.

    Yes, anti-racism groups are great in principle, but I would worry that they will end up being seen in a vain similar to the civil rights movement was (rightly or wrongly) as nothing more than a cover for the IRA. Do you think race relations in loyalist areas would be improved if the anti racism groups were all seen to be fronts for the PRM?

    The answer is no. Mobilising 400 people to show bigotry was not welcome is a great feat, and had I read it in another context I would have thought “Blimey, there are plenty of decent folk in west Belfast too!” but hearing rubbish like this (and the fact that searching for WARN on google brings up a republican website as result number 3 and 4) doesn’t sit easy with me.

  • spartacus

    Slug:

    I honestly don’t understand your question. I’m guessing that WARN has open, regular meetings where they decide strategy, etc. I you live in Belfast you should contact the Anti Racist Network which operates out of the One World Center and ask them who is organizing in yor area. I’m sure they’d be happy to have you along to meetings.

    Or was that a rhetorical question?

  • Alan

    I can’t help but think that warning minority ethnics to avoid calling in the police, except in particular circumstances, is an unthought-out response to the problem of racism. Indeed, by infering that minority ethnics should follow the mores of their *host* community, WARN give the impression that assimilation is preferable to integration.

    That is simply wrong headed, and I am disappointed to see such a response from WARN, a group of people who have a difficult enough job on their hands already. There is a worrying lapse into a majoritarian mentality here.

  • Northern FF

    Neither Spartacus’ nor Joe’s comments should come as any surprise, the provo pogrom against Emerson is long standing.

    They thought they could silence him by getting him fired from his old job – but found that their actions had the opposite effect. You’d think they would learn.

    Spartacus – I do read his work, most weeks. I can’t think of a single political party or interest group in the North that he hasn’t had a go at. But I never expect facts to undermine a provo smear.

  • spartacus

    Beano:

    Why would it surprise you that republicans were active in helping to build WARN, and anti-racist activites across Belfast generally? Maybe the lesson in that is that most of your assumptions about repubblicans are wrong. The civil rights movement example is a perfect one, and underlines the narrowmindedness at the heart of your position. If there are republicans actively committed to building an anti-racist campaign, then the problem of perception (being smeared ‘in the same vain’ as the civil rights movement, as a ‘cover for the IRA’) rests with narrowminded bigots looking in from the outside. For some the very presence of republicans is sufficent to confirm that these are therefore ‘republican fronts.’ How does one confront that deep irrationality at the heart of unionism? Good question.

    You raise a serious point about organizing against racism in loyalist areas, and I think you are correct that one has to be careful not to allow this campaign to become seen as the property of one ‘tribe’ or another. I think that you would find that WARN is sensitive to that–doing everything that it can to help encourage those willing to stand up under much more difficult circumstances in the Village and elsewhere, but well aware that to be viable these groups have to be built on the ground by local people.

  • barney

    “I invoke Godwin’s law on barney.”

    It’s a fair cop, the only one here. Doesn’t change that fact that new arrivals need to know what the police are like. It would be cruel to leave our new neighbours uninformed on such an important subject.

  • spartacus

    Beano:

    Why would it surprise you that republicans were active in helping to build WARN, and anti-racist activites across Belfast generally? Maybe the lesson in that is that most of your assumptions about repubblicans are wrong. The civil rights movement example is a perfect one, and underlines the narrowmindedness at the heart of your position. If there are republicans actively committed to building an anti-racist campaign, then the problem of perception (being smeared ‘in the same vain’ as the civil rights movement, as a ‘cover for the IRA’) rests with narrowminded bigots looking in from the outside. For some the very presence of republicans is sufficent to confirm that these are therefore ‘republican fronts.’ How does one confront that deep irrationality at the heart of unionism? Good question.

    You raise a serious point about organizing against racism in loyalist areas, and I think you are correct that one has to be careful not to allow this campaign to become seen as the property of one ‘tribe’ or another. I think that you would find that WARN is sensitive to that–doing everything that it can to help encourage those willing to stand up under much more difficult circumstances in the Village and elsewhere, but well aware that to be viable these groups have to be built on the ground by local people.

  • barney

    “I invoke Godwin’s law on barney.”

    It’s a fair cop, the only one here. Doesn’t change that fact that new arrivals need to know what the police are like. It would be cruel to leave our new neighbours uninformed on such an important subject.

  • spartacus

    Beano:

    Why would it surprise you that republicans were active in helping to build WARN, and anti-racist activites across Belfast generally? Maybe the lesson in that is that most of your assumptions about republicans are wrong. The civil rights movement example is a perfect one, and underlines the narrowmindedness at the heart of your position. If there are republicans actively committed to building an anti-racist campaign, then the problem of perception (being smeared ‘in the same vain’ as the civil rights movement, as a ‘cover for the IRA’) rests with narrowminded bigots looking in from the outside. For some the very presence of republicans is sufficent to confirm that these are therefore ‘republican fronts.’ How does one confront that deep irrationality at the heart of unionism? Good question.

    You raise a serious point about organizing against racism in loyalist areas, and I think you are correct that one has to be careful not to allow this campaign to become seen as the property of one ‘tribe’ or another. I think that you would find that WARN is sensitive to that–doing everything that it can to help encourage those willing to stand up under much more difficult circumstances in the Village and elsewhere, but well aware that to be viable these groups have to be built on the ground by local people.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    So how does peddling a republican agenda on police help dispel the notion that this group is a cover for the PRM? I’m sure unionists/loyalists hadn’t entertained the notion of WARN being a republican movement, in fact standing against racism should imply being against sectarianism too, not trying to indoctrinate newcomers into it.

  • fatbuster

    Spartacus, I don’t see Emerson complaining about the members or origin of WARN here – merely asking some very pointed questions about its literature, of which the two that are sticking in my mind are:

    “How would Sinn Fein (for example) react if Michael McDowell advised immigrants in his Dublin constituency to respect Progressive Democrat policy on law and order, or else?”

    and

    “If Warn was really an anti-racist organisation it would be campaigning against the imposition of tribal politics on immigrants, rather than effectively ordering them to keep their heads down.”

    He isn’t saying the PSNI are perfect – only that immigrants must be free to decide that for themselves, regardless of where they choose to live. I think this point is incontestable.

  • GavBelfast

    Cheerleaders of the republican movement SO hate the outworkings of the organisation and the attitude it fosters in areas where it is strong being analysed and dissected by the rest of us.

    Why so?

  • PatMcLarnon

    Newton is probably embarrassed that West Belfast is, according to most available statistics, one of the most tolerant areas for the immigrants who tend to settle here. Unlike ultra intolerant Portadown.
    In Liam Kennedy fashion he has tried to smear West Belfast and those people who actually get of their ass and do something about racism.
    But it is all hands to the pump at Donegall St as the good ship Stoop heads for the rocks.

  • spartacus

    Fatbuster (more like gutbuster):

    Are you (and Newt) serious? McDowell addressing a meeting packed with immigrants? An exagerrated analogy, no doubt, but is this like the hypothetical meeting between Hitler and a group of German Jews? The very definition of fatuous nonsense, and imagine: someone actually pays him for it!

    Oh, and the bit about equating political hostility to the state and its forces as ‘tribal’… These clumsy invectives against the most effective anti-racist gruop in the north only proves how false your understanding of sectarianism is.

    And ‘free choice’? Pleazzzzz……..

    How’s the packet coming?

  • fatbuster

    Pat, now you’re doing it – attacking the fella because of where he comes from, by way of accusing him of attacking people because of where they come from. Emerson is clearly arguing against this kind of thinking. He’s also done more to slagg off Portadown than any man alive, but here he’s saying he realises Westies can’t and shouldn’t be stereotyped – and asking why WARN is attempting to do so.
    The man not ball responses here are depressing.
    Answer the question Pat – is it reasonable to expect a pre-existing political consensus in an area on immigrants?

  • fatbuster

    oops ‘expect’ should read ‘impose’. And I don’t understand the reference to ‘packet’.

  • Jim Bob

    To Final Warning

    “Jim Bob – So this is really all about the new anti-terrorism legislation?”

    In large part, Yes. The “sinister” advice reported above is the usual advice in UK generally.

    This is a non-story, to anyone who knows what’s going on more generally.

    I really am surprised at Newton on this one. Perhaps he’ll come along here and explain just what he thought he was up to here.

    Until he does. Let him consider himself well caught out in a very tabloid piece of shabby journalism.

  • Jimmy Sands

    Explain what? I wouldn’t presume to speak for the author but seems perfectly clear to me. Immigrants to the area are being warned to keep their mouths shut if they know what’s good for them in a document masquerading with breathtaking cynicism as an anti-racist initiative. The only think requiring explanation seems to be the fact that so many appear to regard this behaviour as acceptable.

  • Davros

    According to today’s Irish News Jimmy they also misrepresented the leaflet by using official symbols to which they were not entitled – presumably so these people didn’t realise they were being used by sock-puppet politicans. I don’t know why they just didn’t send people round and tell them – if you want to keep your windows don’t be seen having anything to do with the Police. Welcome to the Democratic Republic of West Belfast, Twinned with North Korea.

  • Jim Bob

    To Jimmy Sands

    “Explain what? I wouldn’t presume to speak for the author but seems perfectly clear to me. Immigrants to the area are being warned to keep their mouths shut if they know what’s good for them in a document masquerading with breathtaking cynicism as an anti-racist initiative.”

    So what it is about this advice which is so different to similar advice given out in London for example?

    If you can’t answer that question then you very obviously don’t have the point you think you have.

    All that’s happening here is that Unionism and its unquestioning support for Police is being faced with the more sceptical attitude that exists in other parts of the UK.

    Normal attitudes to Police are sprouting up in the North and Unionism is incapable of interpreting that in anything other than an oul Nornie tribal way.

    I expect we’ll see more and more of this…