Category Archives: Protestantism, unionism and loyalism

The DUP’s bigotry and incompetence bring the house down

In last month’s blog I wrote that Northern Ireland was now “a modern region with a power-sharing government in which nationalists enjoy a new equality and confidence.” I was wrong. A fortnight later the Stormont Executive collapsed when Martin McGuinness … Continue reading

Posted in General, Northern Ireland, Protestantism, unionism and loyalism | 1 Comment

My politician of the year is a lesbian loyalist from Belfast

The most impressive politician I met in 2015 was Julie-Anne Corr Johnston, a 28 year old member of Belfast City Council, representing the small left-of-centre Progressive Unionist Party (PUP), many of whose members are former UVF prisoners. Julie-Anne is a … Continue reading

Posted in Cross-border cooperation, General, Northern Ireland, Protestantism, unionism and loyalism | 5 Comments

Why Northern loyalists are running scared of a shared future

Returning to the fearfulness and narrowness of loyalist Belfast after a trip through the magnificent landscapes and massive social contradictions of South America is to come back to earth with a bump. But I had promised myself back in January … Continue reading

Posted in General, Northern Ireland, Protestantism, unionism and loyalism | 1 Comment

What happened to the North’s Progressive Presbyterians?

My summer reading in recent weeks has been a fascinating book called Dissenting Voices: Recovering the Irish Progressive Presbyterian Tradition1, by the former head of the Simon Community in Northern Ireland, Roger Courtney. It features short biographies of 300 ‘progressive … Continue reading

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British-Irish friendship and the marginalisation of Unionism

The big international news story about Northern Ireland this week – the first for many years – is Gerry Adams’ arrest and questioning in connection with the Jean McConville murder case. I have just returned from nine days abroad so … Continue reading

Posted in British-Irish relations, General, Protestantism, unionism and loyalism | Leave a comment