A happy and safe 12th of July (just remember it belongs to us all)

I got my first live call from an Orange demonstration from a dear and highly valued Orange friend (and, god help him, an Arsenal supporter) at about 8.45 this morning, with the sound of the bands in the background. I’m pretty sure if you’d asked my 1982 self, I might not have had such kindly thoughts, but a lot of water has travelled under the bridge since then.

Most Orange demonstrations these days pass off without any need for comment. From Mark McGregor’s great on-the-ground work in the past, we’ve discovered that they run from a family centred traditional Christian celebrations (which pretty much covers most rural events) to a pretty grim drinking fest in which local people are treated with a complete lack of consideration.

The Parades Commission are getting dog’s abuse from all and sundry. But we know that an attempt to push them out of the way and take their arbitration services into OFMdFM were pretty roundly rejected by most stakeholders. In lieu of a proper political resolution, the PC is the best we have.

It is pretty grim that it is the Orange that is having to compromise this year in Ardoyne by accepting that they be bussed in early in order to miss a now officially sanctioned protest in Ardoyne. But at least that protest now has some official status. And the right to demonstrate is an important one in any democratic society.

The right to endanger life is not.

In any other space, it ought to be possible to have demonstration and counter demonstration in the same space at the same time. Perhaps next year, or the year after they will. Is 100 yards of road worth all of this commotion. Clearly so far as the organisers of the protest are concerned it is.

But it is a puzzle to me that those who protest so vehemently against ‘marching Orange feet’ hold so proudly to a Republican emblem that immortalises that same Orange tradition in its own flag. It is also ironic that sentiment against the Catholic church is possibly now more intensely felt amongst these self styled Republican communities than by the average Orangeman.

There’s no short cut to the future in Belfast or anywhere else in Northern Ireland. There are too many dead, injured and exiled stretching back over generations. This will have to be engaged with over and over and over again. Both sides will be as tough as their commitments bid them be.

But despite some nationalist fantasies to the contrary, the Orange tradition is going nowhere anytime soon. And nor are the Catholic and growing non Orange unionist populations. In the meantime, it might pay all (Republican as well as Unionist) to remember they and their tradition cannot not completely own any date on the calendar.

So to all, a happy and safe 12th of July whatever you’re doing and whatever it means to you…

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  • PeterBrown

    MJ

    With respect i’m actually saying everyone is bad – and trying to persuade others to abandon the position you outline…

  • Mister_Joe

    Understood ,Peter. I wasn’t specifically referring to you. There are some posters who should not be fed/encouraged in any way.

  • tyrone_taggart

    PeterBrown
    “an organisation which remembesr a terrorist in this way is not sectarian?”

    Yes

    For example:

    Menachem Begin and Yasser Arafat both won the Nobel prize for peace.

  • The Lodger

    Taggart,

    Did they do anything for peace which justified that prize?

  • tyrone_taggart

    The Lodger

    “Did they do anything for peace which justified that prize?”

    I don’t know? I just know you cannot call the Nobel team who picked them sectarian.

  • PeterBrown

    TT

    I’m assuming your nominating Mr McCuaghey for next tears Nobel prize then, if not come up with a valid comparison?

  • The Lodger

    “I don’t know? I just know you cannot call the Nobel team who picked them sectarian.”

    Taggart,

    Why not? Do you know who they were, what their backgrounds were etc? Did you agree with David Trimble being awared the Nobel Peace Prize?

  • tyrone_taggart

    Terrorist Organization Member Profile:
    Edward Carson
    Aliases:
    n/a

    Organizations:
    Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) (Founder)
    Current Location:
    Deceased

    Biography:
    An Irish lawyer and politician, Sir Edward Carson was born on February 9, 1854. Despite being born in southern Ireland, Carson strongly opposed British Home Role of Ireland and became a leading unionist, known as the ?uncrowned king of Ulster? and the founding father of Ulster Unionism. He organized a private army with the express intent of resisting Home Rule in January 1912. This private army, the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF), was the first loyalist paramilitary group. Carson died on October 22, 1935 and is not known to have engaged in any actual fighting. A statue of Sir Edward Carson, erected by Carson himself in 1932, is located in front of the Northern Ireland Parliamentary Building in Belfast

    http://www.start.umd.edu/start/data_collections/tops/terrorist_organization_member.asp?id=261

  • The Lodger

    Taggart,

    Why the random information about Edward carson?

  • tyrone_taggart

    The Lodger:

    PeterBrown wanted a ” valid comparison?”

  • The Lodger

    Taggart,

    Did Edward Carson get awarded the Nobel Peace Prize?

  • PeterBrown

    IAnd Carson is a valid comparison with McCaughey? I’ll expect him to appear on GAA medals then what with his TCD hurling history…better not hold my breath for his name to be pulled out of the hat!

  • tyrone_taggart

    PeterBrown

    “And Carson is a valid comparison with McCaughey? I’ll expect him to appear on GAA medals”

    “A hurling competition named after Unionist leader Edward Carson will form part of an event to take place at Stormont Castle as part of this year’s Féile an Phobail. The West Belfast Festival will hold a competition in which participants will attempt to hit a ‘sliotar’ the furthest at Stormont.”
    http://www.4ni.co.uk/northern_ireland_news.asp?id=114197

  • PeterBrown

    In your home county of tyrone – I think not, just like he wasn’t actually an active terrorist, but head of a paramilitray organisation which never fired a shot until 1st July 1916….and then in a different uniform.

  • The Lodger

    Taggart,

    McCaughey was a sectarian terrorist murderer and Carson was a renowned international statesman. What on earth are you talking about?

  • Republic of Connaught

    You’re right, Mick. The 12th of July belongs to Ireland. The battle was here, after all.

    But as long the as the Orange Order treat the day not as one of respect to their past, but of sectarian triumphalism over the modern day Catholics of Ulster, then I’m afraid the OO will gain little but disgust across Ireland, and most of Britain too.

  • tyrone_taggart

    PeterBrown

    “I think not, just like he wasn’t actually an active terrorist”

    That would make him a terrorist. Gun runner.

    Edward Carson of the Larne gun-running proclaimed

    “I’ll see you through this business, if I should have to go to prison for it.”
    Bardon

  • headtheball

    RoC

    “sectarian triumphalism”

    You might read it that way but look at the slogans: “No surrender”, “Not an inch”, “This we will maintain”.

    Those don’t read like triumphalism to me; more like defiance.

    I’m no Orangeman, but I think that examining the defiance aspect might get us closer to the Orange mindset.

  • headtheball

    t_t

    “That would make him a terrorist”

    I think not. A good example of a terrorist act would be, say, the Abercorn bomb. Carson was never involved in any shit like that.

    A better analogy for Carson would be the founding fathers of the USA who similarly defied the British Crown.

  • andnowwhat

    Headtheball

    That’s the IRA (the old one) you’re thinking about. Carson would be more in line with the confederates.

  • headtheball

    Hi andnowwhat,

    I can’t see your analogy. Of the 4 examples mentioned (old IRA, American revolutionaries, the Confederacy, Carson) Carson was the only one who was definitely NOT a secessionist.

  • tyrone_taggart

    headtheball

    “I think not.”

    Most Republicans would say that of the people who was in the IRA/….

    As for (Peter Brown)“he wasn’t actually an active terrorist” or carrying out ” the Abercorn bomb” I think would apply for most leaders of illegal organisations.

  • Decspur

    Hi I see this topic has moved on quite a bit but I want to comment on the title…..

    After reading the title how on earth can you claim the 12th is a day for everyone after the incident outside St Patrick’s chapel? Elderly men standing around not seeing a problem with this outrageous provocative actions.

    I want to make it clear as a Londoner and a Brit to all you Orange men there is nothing British about what you are doing and we do not want you to associate yourselves with us. Britain is an all inclusive, multi cultural society which you guys are no where near ready to engage in.

  • headtheball

    t_t

    Sorry, that’s casuistry. You are conflating “illegal” with “terrorist”. An illegal organisation is not necessarily a terrorist one (viz the “underground” that got black slaves out of what would become the Confederacy, the similar organisation that got allied airmen out of occupied Europe, the people around Mahatma Gandhi, the United Irishmen, and so on. All illegal back in the day but certainly not terrorist.)

    I hold no brief for Carson, BTW, just a fondness for the English (as for the Irish) language and I don’t like to see either abused. Your argument amounts to saying: “Like most terrorist leaders he did not sully his own hands but his organisation did, therefore he was a terrorist.”

    Sorry, nice try but no banana.

  • tyrone_taggart

    “headtheball (profile) 14 July 2012 at 1:41 pm
    t_t

    Sorry, that’s casuistry. You are conflating “illegal” with “terrorist”.”

    You need to take your argument up with START whom I quoted:

    “The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) was established in 2005 as a U.S. Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence,”

  • The Lodger

    Taggart,

    Can you clear something up for me please? Are you seriously comparing Sir Edward Carson QC with that murdering terrorist gurrier McCaughey?

    Seriously?

  • PeterBrown

    Decspur

    Whilst I agree with your criticism of the incident at St Patricks to judge the whole Twelfth on this one incident is like judging England football matchers from the tiny minority who go to cause trouble and the Republic of Ireland at euro 2012 by those who went 450 miles out of their way to chant IRA slogans at the England team. the vast majority of members of the order want no part of this type of behaviour and we trust that our leadership like that of the FA will do their utmost to ensure that it is not repeated although liek Engalnd and RoI football fans we can only do our best. Our best on Thursday clearly was not good enough in this particular situation and many oif us are preapred to accept that but in every other area we were better

  • fordprefect

    The Nobel “Peace” prize, war criminals like Henry Kissinger won that you know! Headtheball, you mean a terrorist act like the UVF blowing up McGurks Bar?

  • fordprefect

    The 12th of July does not belong to us all, It belongs to a crowd of eejits who want to traipse past and through NCR areas!

  • tyrone_taggart

    The Lodger
    Taggart,

    “Can you clear something up for me please? Are you seriously comparing Sir Edward Carson QC with that murdering terrorist gurrier McCaughey?”

    I am not comping anyone. Carson terrorist is seen as a terrorist by START with out any input from me.

    START:
    “The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) was established in 2005 as a U.S. Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence,”

  • Submariner

    PeterBrown (profile) 13 July 2012 at 10:57 pm
    In your home county of tyrone – I think not, just like he wasn’t actually an active terrorist, but head of a paramilitray organisation which never fired a shot until 1st July 1916….and then in a different uniform.

    The UVF played no part in WW1 Peter you are falling for yet another loyalist myth.

  • PeterBrown

    Submariner

    You could be right and the respected historian could be wrong I suppose, but then would I be falling for another myth only this time not a loyalist one….

    http://www.1914-1918.net/36div.htm

  • Submariner

    As i said Peter the UVF took no part in WW1. Members of the UVF like Redmonds Irish volunteers opted to join the british army.

  • The Lodger

    “I am not comping anyone. Carson terrorist is seen as a terrorist by START with out any input from me.”

    Taggart,

    Can you show mw where this ‘START’ outfit have stated that “Carson terrorist is seen as a terrorist” without any input from you?

  • The Lodger

    “As i said Peter the UVF took no part in WW1. Members of the UVF like Redmonds Irish volunteers opted to join the british army.”

    Submariner,

    The UVF enlisted en masse at the specific request of Lord Kitchener and formed battalions based on their UVF units which then became the 36th Ulster Division of the New Army.

    To say that the UVF took no part in WW1 is simply moronic.

  • The Lodger

    Taggart,

    Do START also claim that John Redmon was a terrorist?

  • Stu DeNimm

    >more or less sectarian than any other
    >religious movement,

    Surely when most of us use the word “sectarian” we mean to say something negative. That must require something more than just limiting membership of an organization to people of a particular religion, if the purpose of the organization is to promote that religion. The Catholic or Presbyterian churches are not sectarian in any sense in which the word is useful. To the extent that the purpose of the OO is to promote Protestant religion, it’s perfectly reasonable for it to accept only Protestant members, since only they are likely to further the goals of the organization. To the extent that the purpose of the OO is to promote unionism, a political position, then we could usefully call it “sectarian” if it turns away any Catholics who sympathize. To the extent that its purpose is to intimidate Catholics and promote discrimination, its membership policies are beside the point.

    Obviously all three of those strands are present in the Orange, with different individuals and lodges representing different points.

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    Republican charged for attempted murder:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-18881917