Arlene Foster – Leader of the DUP in Ulster
“Nationalism is narrow and exclusive whilst Unionism stands for pluralism and multi-culturalism, there is no place in Ulster for intolerance in 2018”.
But in her follow up, she confirmed the “narrow and exclusive” policies of the DUP stating: “The DUP will never agree to the introduction of an Irish language act”.
DUP leader’s understanding of Nationalism and Unionism is at odds with the dictionary
Nationalism is described as:
The aspiration for national independence felt by people under foreign domination.(ambition, aspiration, dream – a cherished desire).
Unionism is described as:
Loyalty to the United Kingdom, especially in support of its sovereignty over Northern Ireland.
A wee bit of history – 1910 – Liberal Party government pledged to introduce Home Rule for Ireland
The “Irish Party” pressed the Liberals to pledge support for Home Rule or risk losing Irish support in parliament.
Prime Minister, Herbert Asquith told a Liberal rally that he would pursue a policy:
“which, while explicitly safeguarding the supreme and indefeasible authority of the Imperial Parliament, will set up in Ireland a system of full self-government in regard to purely Irish affairs”.
In the 1910 General Election the results were:
Liberals 274, Tories 272, Irish Nationalists 82, Labour 40.
The Irish Nationalists held the balance of power in a fraught parliament, dominated by the issue of the veto of Home Rule by the House of Lords.
The Liberal government decided to face down the Lords and called another election in December 1910 on the proposal to abolish the veto.
Through the constitutional crisis that followed the Irish Unionists in Ulster stood with their Tory allies, who in turn used their opposition to Home Rule to violently oppose the Liberal Government, thwarting peaceful efforts to achieve Irish independence leading to armed conflict and partition.
Ulster Unionist fear campaign – 1912 Irish Home Rule proposals
Inveterate opponents of Home Rule, the Ulster Unionists, largely dedicated their time and effort to portraying what self-government would be like, depicting the future in the most rich and vivid terms.
The dystopian images depicting Belfast under an Irish parliament incorporated many of the fears expressed by Unionists.
The postcard “Donegall Place, Belfast, Under Home Rule”, shows one of the landmarks of Ulster Unionism, Belfast City Hall, in a derelict and neglected state.
Self-aggrandising statues of prominent nationalists replaced those of Queen Victoria and the glorious dead of the Boer war, and the bustling city of commerce and industry was depicted as given way to pigs, cows and sheep (conventional Unionist symbols for lazy, southern Irish farming practices).
A similar scene was conveyed in another picture “Belfast Under Home Rule” in which, another symbol of the royal connection with Ireland, the Prince Albert Clock Tower, was being demolished, while a replacement, in the form of a statue of an Irish Nationalist, was being wheeled in.
Again, pasture animals were included to show the backwardness of the new Irish government’s economic policy, while the human cost was conveyed by an overcrowded poorhouse and crowds outside the Protestant Emigration Office. (BBC History)
Comment: The same tactics were used in the 2014 Independence Referendum campaign, against Scots by the Better Together fear mongering Tory and Unionist Party disgracefully aided by the unionist supporting Labour and Liberal parties.