What of unionism in our inevitable united Ireland?
With the Brexit debacle and the changing demographics re-igniting the debate around national reunification, the obvious questions arise as to how the unionist/loyalist political and paramilitary constituency will react.
The inevitability of Irish reunification is now plain for all to see except the King Canute-like, never-never-never, not an inch, this we shall maintain brigade of naysayers.
The most interesting question to my mind is once the reason d’être of unionism ( the maintenance of the Union) is cast aside in the new Ireland, where will unionism and loyalism go?
Will unionism morph into an Irish Conservative party representing the sectional business interests of the protestant/ loyalist community? Will it contest seats in areas such as Donegal or Dublin looking to grow its influence outside of its traditional Ulster heartland?
Will loyalism simply wither and die or fade into the West Brit mentality? Will we see the DUP-UUP merge with other Irish conservative parties?
These are interesting days.
Personally I await reunification as a means to have real politics emerge on the whole island of Ireland around left- right-centrist politics, which will come to the fore once the sectarian nature of the Northern State is dismantled and with the national question finally settled, we can push for a socialist alternative to all the neo-liberal austerity which has crushed society here over the last decade.
Let’s forward the conversation on reunification. Let’s push for a referendum.
Lets get voting!
Fra Hughes, Belfast BT14