I believe there is a staggering lack of substance in official media commentaries relating to the same sex marriage vote at Stormont on Monday.
What I find equally striking is that I should be writing to the editor of The News Letter rather than The Irish News, because I am a practising Catholic in communion with the church’s teachings.
However, in tandem with my increasing distance from commentary in the latter is an increasing rapprochment to the convictions expressed in the former. That is, lucid, dispassionate, profound observations and sincerely-held convictions relevant to the issue at hand, conveyed in a most compelling and non-hostile manner, which provide substance for thorough, informed debate.
The irresistable, seismic shift in the previously unquestioned foundations of my Northern Irish Catholic identity began when I found myself somewhat bemused that the DUP attracted my vote in a mock election held in my workplace in May.
Moreover, listening to callers including the Rev David McIlveen, Jim Allister, the SDLP’s Carmel Hanna, Sinn Fein’s Catriona Ruane and those identified by their Christian name only, it was the first two, in my view, who actually articulated several key issues at the very heart of the vote in Stormont to redefine marriage (on yesterday’s Nolan Show with Conor Bradford).
Dismissed as raising ‘controversial issues’ and interrupted with glib references to time running out, I was rather shocked that Conor Bradford should use his personal views to silence them; “I wouldn’t see it like that”; concluding the debate abruptly with the absurd statement, “We didn’t get to the tip of the iceberg”.
Notwithstanding the question of BBC bias; much debated of late; I was wholly alienated by perceived and self-styled ‘Catholic’ representatives voicing their own personal hostility – if not animosity – to the person expressing an alternative viewpoint.
Their angry reactions and glib catchphrases proffered neither relevant nor convincing argument on the actual issue at hand.
Perhaps you will publish my letter with a view to ascertaining whether I am not the only
practising Catholic who finds themself in communion both with Catholic Bishops, Protestant church leaders and the DUP?
Ms RM, By email