Are some victims campaigns more acceptable than others?

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Never one to pull his punches, in today’s Irish News Newton Emerson gets down to asking an important question of Relatives for Justice, the director of which Mark Thompson has written:

The bill is a direct consequence of the failure to independently deal with the past in an inclusive and holistic way and as such should not be progressed in isolation to a wider process of inclusive truth recovery. Ideally this issue should be the opportunity to now convene meaningful and substantive discussions on how best we deal with the past.

It’s very hard to disagree with that statement. And indeed RFJ does a lot of important work not just campaigning but supporting for the victims of state violence. But the inconsistency Emerson notes here boils down to the depiction of activism though the legislature as somehow out of bounds of that holistic approach, and activism through the courts, the police ombudsman, the coroner, pressure for international intervention etc as firmly in.

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