Alliance cannot see that Sinn Fein-IRA is using the Irish language as a weapon

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I would like to put some flesh on the bones of Michael Long’s response (‘Nonsense about the Alliance Party’, May 16) to my letter.

First of all I would like to give an example of the first preference votes in two areas.

In East Belfast, a mainly unionist area, Alliance received 12,669 votes. In the west of the city they got 747.

With this statistic the readers can see that many unionists are being fooled (or are trying to be politically correct) by a party that cannot be described as unionist.

I will leave it to those who call themselves unionist to look at the Alliance party’s record when it comes to siding with Sinn Fein/IRA.

They have offices in places like Newtownards Road, Carrickfergus, Lisburn and Strangford. I would like to ask, “How many do they have in the west of the city?”

He mentions the Presbyterian link to the Irish language. Presbyterians came away from the Gaelic Revival when it started to be hijacked by Irish nationalists.

It is staggering that a clever person like Michael Long cannot see through the pretence of Sinn Fein/IRA in using a dead language like Irish as a political weapon against unionists.

He made a reference to being an Irish Presbyterian when speaking during the debate to back an Irish language worker, as well as trying to use Irish. How many Irish Presbyterian members speak Irish today? More important, how many would want to?

He does not happen to use the Irish Presbyterian view when it comes to other issues like gay marriage.

The other thing I would like to highlight to those of us that hold the Union dear.

The Alliance Party have published a paper on Northern Ireland having special status with the EU when it is the Republic that needs this.

This would make our position within the UK weaker. They are prepared to make Northern Ireland separate from the rest of UK who voted by more than a million people to leave the EU.

They even want to keep the four freedoms of the EU that helped to make our people vote to leave.

I do think that I have heard the same anti Unionist talk coming from others like the SDLP and, you have got it, Sinn Fein/IRA.

I think this sort of talk should set alarm bells ringing! Unionists should ask themselves the question, “Can the Alliance party be trusted with the Union?”

John Mulholland, Doagh

Michael Long: Why we backed an Irish language officer for Belfast