Ian Paisley is gone

Ian Paisley speaking in London in  2010The news has been announced that Ian Paisley has died, and as is usual when somebody passes away, he is being given a bit of a whitewash, for example the Guardian story about him being a peacemaker.

There are perhaps a few things we should pause to consider because they might not be the focus of such stories …

  • He opposed the Good Friday Agreement and was only prepared to take a seat at the table when offered a position of power
  • He is described as having gone on a journey from uncompromising violent bigot to realist and ultimately peacemaker … but I would argue that his entire journey was determined by his monstrous ego and desire for power. Only when he gained the top job did he become a voice for peace
  • Let us also not forget that he was personally a major instigator of the Troubles.
  • His hatred, bigotry and rabble rousing held back the cause of peace for decades and lead to the deaths and injuries of many,many people – he sowed the seeds of hatred and sectarianism far and wide.
  • I truly choke on the concept of a guy who spent almost his entire life being an obnoxious bigot that inspired many to go out and shoot nationalists dead being labelled a “peacemaker”
  • We should also remember that his role as “peacemaker” is very much down to a true hero, Mo Mowlam, a top politician who had the courage and strength of character to tell Paisley to his face to “Fuck Off” and dragged him to the table kicking and screaming.
  • He was very much a man from a different time, a relic of the religious wars of the 17th century.

So anyway, as a tribute, I propose we hold one minute of shouting, and that is perhaps fitting for an individual who leaves the world a better place, not because of what he did, but rather by the fact that he is no longer here.

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