Northern Ireland is indeed a place apart

Letter to the editor
Letter to the editor

To Mr JF in Coalisland.

(‘Hating the Brits’, Letters, March 6).

Any hate crime is unacceptable and I agree if ‘Brits Out’ referred to British citizens in Northern Ireland, then that is unacceptable too.

However, in most cases where this graffiti is scrawled it refers to the British establishment and its state forces, not the civilian population.

I know it is nuanced, and I am by no means excusing it, but it needs acknowledging.

Northern Ireland is indeed a strange place.

Part of the island of Ireland, a British jurisdiction, it’s people are legally Irish or British or both, can identify as Northern Irish, but there is no Northern Ireland passport.

Where it has no functioning local government and only a portion of its elected representatives acknowledge and recognise a parliament in Britain and take their seats.

Separate education systems. A place where you are defined by your religious or political persuasion.

In Britain and Ireland these two things are not relevant and barely acknowledged.

Very little cross over in politics, where each party, unlike most other democracies, will only look after the interests of their own voters and not the combined population as a whole. Indeed a place apart.

Mary Russell, Balregan, Dundalk