Did you hear the one about the blonde crocodile?

Arlene Foster has been slammed for comments she made about Sinn Fein’s northern leader, Michelle O’Neill, in a Sunday Independent article published today.

When asked what word she would associate with Mrs O’Neill, Arlene Foster answered, “Blonde!”

Here is the excerpt in full from the paper, beginning with the journalist (Niamh Horan) asking what Arlene thought of Michelle O’Neill:

She pauses for a moment, then laughs. A bold look on her face.

“I don’t want to be sexist and I am not going to be sexist because I can’t………

“Ah go on,” I say, “it’s not sexist if it’s true.”

She smiles: “Blonde!”

I ask her to expand.

“Michelle is very attractive. She presents herself very well and she always is, you know, her appearance is always very ‘the same’. You never see her without her make-up. You never see her without her hair (looking) perfect.”

It is worth recalling that Arlene Foster claimed to be a victim of misogyny when being criticised over her handling of the RHI scandal.

Sinn Fein’s Elisha McCallion condemned Foster’s comments.

“The sexist and disparaging remarks made by Arlene Foster in relation to Michelle O’Neill are nothing short of disgraceful, ” said Ms McCallion.

“It is totally unacceptable in the 21st Century for a political leader to characterise another political leader based on the colour of their hair.

“The irony of talking about sexism and misogyny appears to be totally lost on Arlene Foster when she makes such remarks about others.

“For Arlene Foster to talk in such a disparaging manner about someone she supposedly wants to share power with once again highlights the DUP’s lack of acceptance of the principles of equality, integrity and respect.

“Arlene Foster and the DUP need to immediately withdraw these offensive remarks which do a disservice to women in politics and to equality and respect.”

 

  • WiseJeffrey

    What respect have you for their community ?

  • WiseJeffrey

    Could have been worse, like Gerry’s N Word tweet or calling unionists b*****rds.

    The very presence of Loyalists in N Ireland offends SF. Sure last week they were offended by an SAS Flag flying in Loughgall and reported it to the PSNI.

    I don’t understand why they got in a twist over a fleeeegggggg ?

    But anyways, go on Gerry break them, go on my son !

  • AntrimGael

    What respect do they deserve when they endorse Arlene and the bigoted, intolerant DUP in such numbers?

  • AntrimGael

    We didn’t start the ‘blonde’ fire to paraphrase Billy Joel. Unless SF have some control over Arlene’s gub how can they be accused of scripting this?

  • WiseJeffrey

    “Celebrate”……………facepalm

    Do you commemorate the 2 million Irish who fought for King and Country in the British Empire ?

    http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/documentary-reveals-2m-irish-men-died-fighting-for-britain-264038.html

  • eireanne3

    Unionists/Loyalists enjoy being contemptuous/manifesting lack of respect for others as contempt declares their superiority.

    When Unionists/Loyalists treat others with contempt, lack of respect, are they willing to take the responsibility for starting a chain of disrespect that will not stop?

    https://eurofree3.wordpress.com/2015/08/07/unionistsloyalists-hold-nationalists-and-republicans-in-contempt/

  • Skibo

    She was asked for one word to sum her up. She didn’t chose attractive. She chose blonde. If she had chosen attractive, there would be no story.

  • WiseJeffrey

    LOL What is the link to that nonsense site all about ?

  • Skibo

    Oh I am sorry, I thought that your comment on Faux rage gave the impression that SF should not have found offence, sure she was only joking. That was how it came across.

  • Katyusha

    Nah. According to her statement on SF’s website, she’s preparing to travel to Strasbourg to lobby for special status.

  • Skibo

    That’s it James, stay true to colour yourself.

  • james

    Eh?

  • Skibo

    Chris republicans commemorate their dead. If they are murderers, then so are all soldiers.
    Remember both the Queen and now Charles commemorated the dead of 1916. That battle was fought for Irish freedom. Republicans in the north fought for the same reason.

  • WiseJeffrey

    So using your logic what respect should nationalists expect when they endorse a bigoted, intolerant SF who is seeped in the blood of innocents in such huge numbers ?

    Take a good look at yourself before others

  • Skibo

    If you are only interested in commenting on her hair colour, could I suggest you get a copy of woman’s weekly. I assumed this site was for discussing political matters.

  • james

    SF aren’t scripting her (Arlene) – otherwise the comments would have actually given them something to work with.

    Foster’s words really don’t have anything in them. It’s the grotesque overreaction that is contrived for the thicko’s in the gallery.

  • WiseJeffrey

    “Chris republicans commemorate their dead. If they are murderers, then so are all soldiers.”

    Do you consider Loyalist Volunteers such as Billy Wright Soldiers ?

  • Skibo

    At some stage you will join us in the 21st century.

  • james

    I’ve been fairly clear I think it’s a non-story. Your comment should perhaps be better directed at Mr Donnelly.

  • WiseJeffrey

    The only Irish Soldiers were ones who fought for King and Country.

    Not a bunch of pedophile murderers like the IRA.

  • Korhomme

    Thanks for the link!

  • Backbencher

    Am I the only one, or does anyone else think this part of the world has lost the run of itself.
    She called someone blonde, by all accounts in a complimentary manner – big deal.
    I always thought republicans and a persecution chip on their shoulder but recent months have taken it to a whole new level.
    Next, Michelle will be telling us she is taking up arms because she is so badly treated, after all Marty M lead a campaign of terror because he got turned down for a job in Londonderry.

  • Granni Trixie

    I was thinking not so much of comments but not one but two posts in succession on the subject by the usual suspects.

  • mac tire

    No, it seems to me Republicans are taking advantage, during an election campaign, of the words of a gaffe prone Unionist leader.

    Arlene chose to describe Michelle as blonde when asked about her. She could have used the word attractive (which she resorted to when asked to explain). If she had have used the latter first then the former could have been used in any follow up, probably numerous times.

    Personally it doesn’t matter to me but, let’s face it, Arlene is liable to come out with anything. That she’s a potential liability over the next few weeks should worry Unionists who don’t share her views.

  • Skibo

    I have heard it all now. So the sectarian treatment of the Nationalist community within the North all boils down to Martin getting turned down for a job!
    The issue of being called a blonde is not a compliment. You know that, I know that and the amount of dumb blonde jokes everywhere is all the evidence you need.
    Defence for defences sake is all I can call a comment like that.

  • Skibo

    I didn’t realise the the IRA murdered paedophiles!
    How would you describe the pilots who bombed Dresden or the pilots who dropped the nuclear bombs?
    Can you really, hand on heart say that all actions by the British Army were lawful? Can you say that about any army?

  • Skibo

    It is just another gaff by Arlene. SF have every right to point it out. There are certain things that politicians should stay away from and appearance is definitely one of them.
    On that issue I must condemn the constant attacks on Arlene through Facebook. I think it is insulting and uncalled for and should stop.

  • Skibo

    Yes he was. He fought for a political outlook. One I do not agree with but I stand by the right of Loyalists to commemorate his passing.

  • AntrimGael

    Sinn Fein are a legitimate political party. They don’t have any blood on their hands. If you have any specific information take it to George Hamilton. Put up or shut up.

  • AntrimGael

    Have to negotiate the 18th, 19th and 20th first!

  • AntrimGael

    Is Arlene Prince Phillip in drag?

  • Other

    Women in politics being reduced to their appearance, sadly is nothing new. For the first female ex First Minister to do this to her first female counterpart is particularly damaging. Women are underrepresented in politics, public appointments, boardrooms and civic society across N Ireland. Negative, sexist and misogynistic comments like these disenfranchise all women and young girls.

  • Madra Uisce

    Crack on then, Slugger is of no importance in the grand scheme of things so quit getting your red whit and blue knickers in a twist.

  • Madra Uisce

    The Poppy has nothing to do with WW2 it is a symbol of WW1 which was a needless imperial war where the rich sent to poor to be slaughtered in their millions.

  • WiseJeffrey

    Tell me who was the Sinn Fein Councillor for Monaghan in 1987 ?

  • Skibo

    If that is so, why has the British Army been allowed to hijack it as their own personal memorial for all British soldiers of all campaigns?

  • WiseJeffrey

    I wonder why so many nationalists don’t share your view.

    Sinn Fein reported a banner commemorating Billy to the PSNI

    http://www.tyronetimes.co.uk/news/billy-wright-banner-no-hate-crime-disclosed-1-7490249

  • WiseJeffrey

    Yes the actions of bomber command were fully justified.

    The inhabitants of Dresden worked in the munitions factories that produced bombs to kill British.

    They were part of the Nazi war machine therefore a legitimate target.

    The IRA were not an Army in the meaning of the word.

  • Skibo

    As AG says Sinn Fein are a legitimate political party. We had the GFA in 1998.
    I believe a certain politician led an incursion into Monaghan a year before that.

  • Skibo

    AG that is uncalled for and should be retracted.

  • Hugh Davison

    James, you’ve just spent at least 4 hours defending the indefensible. Have you nothing better to do?

  • WiseJeffrey

    So you are stating no Sinn Fein member ever killed anyone ?

    Is that what you are saying ?

    “A SINN Fein TD is believed to have been involved in 50 murders during the Troubles, new documents reveal.”

    http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/the-sinn-fein-td-who-is-linked-to-50-murders-28951973.html

  • Skibo

    Dresden was not a military target. Bomber Harris admitted as much himself. The actions of Bomber command were to show the Germans what they were capable of.
    Churchill wrote that he wanted “absolutely devastating, exterminating attacks by very heavy bombers from this country upon the Nazi homeland”. In another letter he called it “terror bombing”.http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/world-war-two/11410633/Dresden-was-a-civilian-town-with-no-military-significance.-Why-did-we-burn-its-people.html

  • Skibo

    Well the problem of using the issue of the right of political violence is that right can be used against you also.
    The one thing I could say is that the violence of Billy Wright was directed at the Catholic population where Republican violence was directed an military and industrial targets.

  • Skibo

    What I am saying is that since 1998 SInn Fein have been a legitimate political party wedded to peaceful means only.
    As you know there are a number of political representatives within Sinn Fein who have served sentences for actions during the Troubles. That does not change that statement.

  • james

    Indefensible? Foster said she presents herself well.

    (Don’t worry – I’ve been quite productive today)

  • Hugh Davison

    Not aware of an SAS outpost in Loughgall. I’d be worried if there was. Was that flag supposed to be some kind of message?

  • AntrimGael

    I know I apologise to Prince Philip.

  • AntrimGael

    What’s this, an episode of Murder In Successville?

  • Hugh Davison

    ‘Prussian Imperialism’? The Empires of the time were: British, French, Russian and Austro-Hungarian.

  • Hugh Davison

    Suggest you read: The Sleepwalkers, by Christopher Clark.
    Needless? definitely. Criminal, on all sides, definitely.

  • Hugh Davison

    Which countries around the world? I’m interested, especially to hear about non-British Commonwealth countries.
    I can never understand why the French, Germans, Austrians, Hungarians, Greeks, Bulgarians, Serbians etc. etc. don’t wear poppies.

  • Hugh Davison

    Have you forgotten the ones who fought in French regiments against the British? Fontenoy? Napoleon’s Irish Legion?

  • Hugh Davison

    So the kids who went to school in Dresden were simultaneously working in the munitions factories? And the teachers, Doctors, Nurses, Shop assistants, etc. Collective guilt. I suppose that’s why you think all Catholics were responsible for the IRA.

  • Hugh Davison

    It would be really interesting to know what motivates you to google images of female politicians.

  • Hugh Davison

    And the Queen is still head of state there.

  • Hugh Davison

    Well, you know the answer;-) and people like WiseJeffrey are OK with that.

  • Hugh Davison

    ‘Complimentary manner’. Backbench, have you seriously never heard any ‘blonde’ jokes? Faux innocence, or what.

  • Hugh Davison

    Sorry, when was Brendan Hughes the leader of a political party expected to participate in power-sharing? Maybe for you it’s a case of ‘any taig will do’ when it comes to ridicule or disparagement.

  • T.E.Lawrence

    Ah well ! At least we know what’s on the music menu of the DUP Election Victory Party in June ! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WGU_4-5RaxU

  • T.E.Lawrence

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZqN1glz4JY Nothing nauseating about this song from the Pogues ! Worth a listen ?

  • The Irishman

    If asked to describe her physicaly, then blonde would be appropriate, but we both know that’s not what was going on.

  • WiseJeffrey

    So none have blood on their hands ?

  • The Irishman

    Well said The Living End.

  • Nordie Northsider

    Expect blonde wigs at the count centres.

  • Cináed mac Artri

    What is it about Arlene Foster than has SF so rattled? What fears motivate the Shinner faithful to target her so relentlessly? This latest spat, ‘Blondegate’, does not speak of a “confident” SF, that it is being hyped to such ludicrous heights says rather more about a lack of confidence. An inability to shrug off inconsequential reportage without retreating to Victimhood is telling.

    Of course it’s all what passes for politics in NI. The use of “blonde” and “crocodile” together signposts the message that the SF voter is required to understand.

    No doubt Gerry Adams will soon be standing front and centre for the TV cameras, with ‘The Blonde’ stage left, and telling us how Michelle O’Neill feels about it all.

  • Katyusha

    What is it about Arlene Foster than has SF so rattled?

    Nothing. Arlene is a great recruiting agent for them.

    What fears motivate the Shinner faithful to target her so relentlessly?

    Simple opportunism.

    An inability to shrug off inconsequential reportage without retreating to Victimhood is telling.

    Worth noting that both Michelle and Gerry shrugged off the “crocodiles” comment, and neither have responded to this ridiculous tiff (and nor should they, really, other than to laugh it off).
    The media does a superb job for them

  • Skibo

    Jeffrey is there any chance you could live up to the first word in your handle?
    I will say this again, one more time, 1998 is the year that the GFA was signed. Sinn Fein signed up solely to the political path. Violence has been left in the past. Either we take that as the date for politics to move on or you and I can continue to talk about the past and discuss who did what, when and why. Who has blood on their hands and who carried out the most atrocities.
    There is no criteria for who politicians should be other than they should be elected to their positions.
    Let me make this particularly clear, I do not support anyone taking anyone else’s life for a political motive.
    A great man from India said “an eye for an eye and the world goes blind”
    A great man from Africa said “If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy and then he becomes your partner”

  • grumpy oul man

    Considering Unionist exist I a continuous state of offence, triggered by anything Irish, it is amusing to hear one complain about others getting offended.

  • grumpy oul man

    It’s always themmuns fault even when Unionist do it.
    As for Nevins wisdom, I’m a little surprised he hasn’t woven this into his Athboy conspricy theory.

  • grumpy oul man

    Pray tell us wise one, what is the nonsense in the link.

  • james

    Wasn’t it a word association question? As in, what word leaps to mind first when you think of Michelle?

  • james

    Well, actually what i said was “it seemed much more of a Republican thing”, not a Sinn Fein thing, specifically.

    Mind you, Hughes was a ranking figure in the paramilitary wing of Sinn Fein now you mention it.

  • Kevin Breslin

    No I can’t believe Arlene could be this foolish after last time.

    Is this a wind-up?

    https://youtu.be/4MW_ia6eJrk

  • The Irishman

    Yes it was a word association question, and the word AF associated with MON is blonde, as in dumb blonde. But I think you already know this.
    If AF didn’t mean dumb blonde, then why would she be worried about it sounding sexist?

  • The Living End

    Do you actually know any Women?

  • The Living End

    Source?

  • john millar

    That look -One of the sexiest women ever

  • Mike the First

    Hmm. Isn’t “catty” one of those sexist words one shouldn’t be using?

  • woodkerne

    Not in an informal exchange, no, I don’t think so. As ever, idiom and context are key as to appropriateness and in the giving and taking of offence.