Why Unionism must end all contact with Sinn Féin – By David McNarry

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We Northern Irelanders are heading towards a bing bang wallop bust up between now and Christmas. Forget the media mood music of sweet nothin’s. Watch the final countdown unravel to point of Brexit, the backstop, rights and wrongs, devolution and direct rule all caught in the circumnavigation of smouldering bitterness – a crunch period in which to find out if the game plan agendas will have altered. I doubt it!

From a personal perspective my unionist flair for saying what many only dare to think to themselves tells me this – the next six months will be decision time for corporate unionism – the whole family advancing their opening gambit in a unity of purpose which nails true unionism to the mast – action to draw down the curtain on further communication with the current nationalist leadership North and South. Unionists are weary of continued confrontation, disrespect and nauseating agitation. There is no point or need to waste further effort cajoling nationalists to behave responsibly. Unionists are not in the business of playing the Sinn Fein game of a one way process. We do not like them, have nothing in common with their unity ambitions, do not trust them, do not agree with them and we do not share in their concept of executive power sharing.

It cuts deeply into my love and high regard for my fellow Northern Irelanders to see no end to division and its festering wounds. The truth hurts too. Running away from facing up to responsibility and accountability does not exonerate anyone from blame and the consequence of failure to honour the intent of the Belfast Agreement. I repudiate again those who say Northern Ireland is a failed entity, especially when such people associated themselves with ‘tearing Belfast down brick by brick.’ Such offensive sloganizing by republicans continues to belittle my people and our Country. Fearful as I am of the ultimate consequences of unionism separating from nationalism, everyone must see the necessity of a decision which accepts division. Republicans have shut the door on partnership and ruined the prospect of togetherness as Northern Irelanders.

There is not even a smidgeon of evidence to demonstrate Sinn Fein wants to avoid weaponizing their uncompromising use of division as part of their exhaustive political process to break the backs of unionists. Unionists have caught on that it is the overwhelming purpose of non-unionists to ferment division, that draws the curtain down on any possibility of moving forward. Against this reality nationalists have no chance of convincing unionism of a willingness to facilitate partnership when Sinn Fein’s credentials are applauded by nationalists as the persuaders and defenders of division.

There are more than enough unionists in all walks of life in all churches and none, to act to prevent forceful separation from the United Kingdom. Sinn Fein do not command such diversity. Their struggle is not about uniting Ireland. Their perpetual struggle is to command a majority of Northern Irelanders. Constitutional Nationalism currently eclipsed by republicanism would be very welcome to make a comeback for the well being and good of all Northern Irelanders.   

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  1. The first line is true enough, but the Brexit battle lines are probably (most certainly) already drawn. The last paragraph, however, is all over the place.

    Unionists in all churches? Well, I’m sure there are, but what influence do the churches have now (and isn’t their aim is higher than securing the UK)? The prevention of a “forceful separation from the United Kingdom” is, in reality, predicated on the outcome of a Border Poll. “Sinn Fein do not command such diversity.” What? Last time I looked their vote was high, and they have been a lot better at playing the diversity card than unionists. “Their struggle is not about uniting Ireland.” Well, perhaps not, but that is a matter of semantics, because their goal is that of a united political Ireland, and all that requires is 50% + 1. As for Constitutional Nationalism, surely it is every bit as committed to a United Ireland as Sinn Fein? Come to think of it, the whole political discourse is pointing in the direction of Irish unity and if the new British PM has to choose between Brexit and no Backstop, he’ll choose Brexit.

    For the record, I’m Unionist, Conservative, Protestant and Christian (from the lesser to the greater); but Mr. McNarry is at least 30 years out of date and he still assumes that Unionists can save the Union—they can’t.

  2. Well David I believe that we are all one and that your fundemental tenets of seperation are incorrect. You have all built powerhouses and reputations from these lines of division that have no basis in science or philosophy. Time you and thousands more jumped camp. That will be the enlightened future of us all.

  3. Gerry Mander on

    A couple of thoughts, if I may;

    – David seems rather angry and agitated in this piece, and I don’t blame him; Unionists may have made mistakes in both governance over five decades and the response to the emerging nationalist civil rights movement… but none of those mistakes even remotely justified the 30-years carnage that ensued from militant republicanism, nor the overwhelmingly disproportionate ‘reforms’ forced on N.I. from Westminster over the last 45 years… reforms that no other civilised country or region in the world would have tolerated, and last week’s disgrace in Westminster is another example of the continued disrespect and contempt that unionists continue to endure. That needs to end and the DUP need to draw a line in the sand when renegotiating the C&S deal with HM Government… and if that doesn’t work, then we need to seriously reconsider the constitutional implications of this place… and not to something necessarily that nationalists would like either.

    – David laments militant republicanism emerging over constitutional nationalism in the polls, but David, unionism had a moderate, socially-conservative, and more amenable form of constitutional nationalism to work with in 1974 with the first power-sharing Assembly… but the majority of unionism decided they didn’t want to work with them and instead engaged in a collective act of seditious treason that brought N.I. to a standstill. The rise and ultimate dominance of SF as the voice of northern nationalism is ultimately the response to the decades of political vacuum and the cultural mindset within nationalism/republicanism that ensued after the collapse of Sunningdale… don’t forget the old adage of “hubris brings about nemesis”… unionism could learn a lot if it studied the works of classical antiquity.

    – In terms of refusing to work with SF or nationalism in general, good luck with that; unionism no longer holds the numbers either in provincial or local government for such an uncompromising stance, it’s 2019 not 1959… also see last answer; that very same uncompromising attitude brought about a total of 30 years (1974-99; 2002-07) of the utterly iniquitous regime of direct rule from Westminster, where N.I. citizens were powerless in the governance of their own province. And again, if the utter affront to the principle of devolved democracy currently going through Westminster is any indication, should direct rule return in full, we won’t recognise this place within a very short period of time, such will be the extreme laws passed for N.I. by an uncaring and imperious Parliament, make no mistake about that.

    – We all know SF are in the business of division and destabilising ‘the North’… the dogs on the street know that… between their terrorist campaign of three decades, their orchestrated assault on Orange marches in the 1990’s, their refusal to give up their arsenal until literally forced to do so by Irish-American pressure, the spy ring within the NIO, the Northern Bank robbery, the Belfast city hall flag dispute, and now their holding N.I. to ransom over a ridiculous and myopic ideological agenda they couldn’t achieve by normal democratic means, we know that SF are rogues, renegades, and duplicitous rats, they’re a political cancer, they’re utter vermin, I share your views and frustrations on this… BUT they are the largest party of northern nationalism and unionism is going to HAVE to work with them, even if it makes them gag on a daily basis.

    So what’s the way forward for N.I. out of the current deadlock, both socially and politically? The February 2018 draft agreement implemented in full (with a legal caveat protecting businesses from militant Irish activists who will undoubtedly use even a watered-down ILA to pressure companies and state-funded bodies into forcibly using bi-lingual signs and services), a new Assembly election, and get back to work.

    The constitutional situation will sort itself out in the fullness of time, but N.I. needs governance, from local representatives not arrogant and ignorant MP’s from perfidious Albion… and if that means working with people you find detestable, well no-one said politics was a clean job… if you don’t do it, others will, and what THEY will impose on us will be far, far worse than anything we could influence in the power-sharing Assembly. And one last point; unionism may be glad of power-sharing sooner rather than later when left-leaning parties are the majority among members, or would you prefer a SF/SDLP/Alliance majority coalition government in Stormont…? We’ve already seen how that lot govern in Belfast City Council of late…

    It’s an existential binary choice unionism faces right now… a flawed and imperfect (but accountable) form of quasi-democracy with people we detest… or tyranny from on high by Westminster… to quote a lyric from a Led Zeppelin song; “take your pick, but be careful how you choose it”.

    Here endeth the lesson.

    • Gerry Mander,

      You ruined a perfectly credible argument by your inclusion of your own facist comments “we know that SF are rogues, renegades, and duplicitous rats, they’re a political cancer, they’re utter vermin”.

      Resorting to the language of the facist does you no service. Similar sentiments helped send the Jews to the death camps, black people to be lynched and hung from trees in Southern States of the USA and formed the backbone of the thinking of Loyalist death squads here.

      I have no doubt the thugs who tried to send Catholic man Pascal Morgan to an early grave this week in Kilkeel held similar facist views, believing that being a Catholic (70% of which support SF) that he was probably one of those ‘vermin’.

      I hope the site moderator, removes your comments because they constitute hate speech.

      • Gerry Mander on

        Ah, ‘hate speech’… the surefire way for leftists to shut down debate.

        I stand by every word I wrote, if you don’t like it, here’s a hanky for your snowflake tears…

        • Hate speech is hate speech, it matters not who calls it out.

          The rise of Farage and Trump has emboldened many who harboured latent feelings of social superiority to voice those views as if they were mainstream. They are neither appropriate nor acceptable.

  4. James. Donegal. My unionist Irish friends. Come out from under englands sackcloth and see the sun shining on a brighter Ireland, where the green white and orange flag will fly representing us all, rather than the ‘butchers apron’ which signifies subserviance, death, destruction and dominance.

    • James,

      “My unionist Irish friends” – I appreciate the sentiment, and as an Ulster, soon to be Irish, Unionist can see some of the benefits of a ‘New Ireland’. I can trace my family in Ireland back way before Partition, and have spent significant time in every one of the island’s counties. But sooner or later Irish Nationalism and Republicanism is going to have to realise that the rhetoric which forms the rest of your comment is, now, the best defence Unionists have against a United Ireland.

      You see I don’t think that I am “under englands sackcloth”; “green white and orange” has connotations other than ‘orange’ and ‘green’; “the ‘butchers apron’ ” is nothing short of a derogatory for my national flag, which symbolises for me: the family, geography, ancient and modern history and culture of the British and Irish isles to which we all belong.

      Can I live in a ‘New Ireland’? Yes. Will I vote for one? No, not at this moment; and most certainly never for as long as this kind of rhetoric continues.

        • Grumpy aul Man on

          More of the same,
          Don’t talk to themmuns,
          They are only trying to annoy us and we would never do that ( throw another tricolour on the fire and put another flag of a terror group on the lamppost)
          So circle the wagons and Bury our head in the sand, sure won’t that make them go away.

      • Isn’t this article sectarianism at its finest!
        Unionism within NI is on a slippery slope to a unified Ireland. Brexit and the DUP has done more to break away NI from Britain than SF or the IRA ever could have. The drivel that I have just read leads me to suspect that you live in the past. Mabye open your eyes past unionism. I myself support neither. I want to live in Peaceful, inclusive, prosperous, modern beautiful Island. In my view you are bred into a religion that is profoundly affecting clear rational thought.

  5. Kevin Shannon on

    Does anyone else think that David and the anonymous Gerry Mander are clutching at straws? Sorry boys … you had your chance and you blew it.
    And no amount of personal abuse will bring me or people like me round to your way of thinking.
    Nevertheless I wish you both well.

    • Unionism cut off contact with Sin Feinn in 2017.

      It’s impossible for them to be any more removed from contact with SF.


    Any politician who grasps at straws and prefers to seek to promote terrorists and attempts to pathetically embrace these murderers from my community as did McNarry at the Loyalist Community Council Meeting in East Belfast can have no credibility whatsoever. Murderers, drug dealers, convicted extortionists/paramilitary bosses who have no interest in unionism or democracy are welcomed by David Mcnarry yet victims are not unless they are victims of republican terrorists. This is 2019 not 1969. McNarry has nothing positive to offer the people of N.Ireland.

    • David gourley on

      I agree with you Raymond on Mr McNarry’s post. But regarding the idea of a united Ireland in the next 20 years i think is beyond belief. Mary Lou should have taken a helicopter ride on the 12th July Iam not in the Orange order and looked at the crowds and the people marching and then tell me we can have a united Ireland wishful thinking

  7. Kevin Shannon on

    Good man Raymond. Mc Narry has absolutely nothing to offer in his delusional bluster.
    ‘We Northern Irelanders’? (god love his wit).

  8. Gerry Mander on

    After the utter disgrace and unvarnished tyranny from Westminster yesterday, maybe it’s time N.I. ends all contact with Great Britain.

    I ceased to be a unionist on July 18th, 2019… if there’s a border poll any time soon, I’ll vote for a united Ireland; northern Protestants will at least be respected (and treated as such) there as fellow Irish men/women and not as mere tools for English political machinations.

    It ends now, it all ends now… enough is enough.

  9. David Mc Narry and his like are nothing short of dinosaurs!For supposedly educated people,they fail to grasp what really happened in this country.The only difference now is they are shooting each other verbally.

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