Brendan Harkin

It’s becoming apparent that with Martin McGuinness’ resignation and the introduction of a “new blood” SF leader, the DUP are going to rely on using Gerry Adams as a shadowy bogeyman in order to enact their usual strategy of dog-whistling Unionists to “vote for us to keep themmuns out”.

NAMA, Redsky, RHI and SIF paramilitary slushfunds are just a handful of DUP scandals which stink of corruption and the mismanagement of public funds.

Alongside this the Northern Irish public and its press have been treated with arrogant contempt in favour of party politicking and posturing against the DUP’s own partners in government. The DUP have pushed policies which spit in the face of the human rights of our fellow citizens, issuing petitions of concern to block Stormont majorities and have been implicated in their own inaction over opposing paramilitarism time and time again.

If you are a DUP-voting Unionist you must ask yourself, is the DUP what you feel the people of Northern Ireland truly deserve?

The Union is secure as long as you can vote no to an Irish Unity referendum. The parties you vote for in the coming Assembly Election will ultimately not be able to change that. Though maybe you should also consider these questions:

  • Under the DUP’s watch has underachievement in education for Protestant children been given any meaningful strategy?
  • Have our public services improved and hospital waiting times reduced?
  • Has your quality of life improved?
  • Have the DUP been an effective partner in government in improving the lives of British people in Northern Ireland?
  • Will you tolerate a First Minister who is now tainted with the stench of corruption?
  • Do you feel as a British person that Arlene Foster or the DUP have done the UK proud as people’s representatives?

So ask yourselves these questions and examine for yourself what you truly want for Northern Ireland beyond arguments with Shinners about bonfires and marches. I would implore you to speak to alternative parties and discuss with them the hopes and the fears you previously voted for the DUP to represent.

You have the opportunity to decide that the people of Ulster deserve better than the corrupt arrogance being given to them by the so-called “Democratic” Unionist Party. And that Unionists deserve better than to have a dead cat with “IRA” stamped on it waved in front of their faces every time there’s an election.

Brendan Harkin is originally from Belfast and is currently based on Twitter.

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Image Credit: Nathan Stewart


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