Monday, May 14, 2007


I have to take my hat off to Sinn Féin on this one. The Ulster Unionists want the NI Assembly to rejoin the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association. It sounds a pretty toothless forum, but it's bound to be more than a mite distasteful to militant Republicans. Nonetheless, SF's Mitchel McLaughlin has said his party will not oppose the idea because it recognises membership is important to Unionists.
At one level this is no big deal. Some MLAs will now be able to talk shop with people from Canada and New Zealand. Yawn. But it's far more than that. Unionists may have a right to talk and associate with others who value the British elements in their cultures, but the SF of the bad old days would have just sneered as they got on with it. Mitchel's open acknowledgement of this Unionist 'need' pays greater tribute than I could to where his party has got to and it's the kind of tolerance we're going to have to see from both sides.
Well done, Mitchel. Big move.


At 6:20 p.m., Blogger JG said...

Well said, John. I agree completely. I also find the fact that you're calling him "Mitchel" quite funny! :)

At 8:19 a.m., Blogger B.U. said...

Er, no humour intended.


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