Paddy Duffy, a director with SpunOut.ie, makes his controversial comments in an article written for an American website.
And he also claims the people of Donegal have more in common with people in Glasgow that with people in Cork!
Said Duffy: “The reality is that green post boxes in Strabane will not make Strabane any happier or more prosperous a place to live in. It will not make the villages between Strabane and Derry that paint their curbs red, white and blue and brandish union flags and ensigns any more favorable to Ireland, or any less attached to Britain.
“It will not change the fact that whatever the nationality of the people who live in those villages, they can probably trace their family roots as far back on this island as anyone.”
And he went on: “Besides, a lot of Donegal Catholics have Scottish planter lineage too who converted at some point along the way. They’re hardly more Irish because of that. Britain handing over the deeds to Northern Ireland would not have any positive transformative effect. Combining our forces will not create a land of milk and honey.
“As the recent Life and Times survey bears out, this isn’t a niche opinion. Most people in Ireland, northern Catholics or otherwise, are much more concerned about tackling social and economic matters than eternally gazing through a national prism. Besides, Ireland has always been much more complex and interwoven than the irredentists like to imagine.
“Taking Donegal as an example, we have much more tangible connection with Glasgow than we do with Cork, lovely a place as it is. It’s much easier and quicker to get to Glasgow from Letterkenny than it is to Cork too.
“People where I’m from who live in the Republic often do a lot of their shopping, socialising and even working across the border, the presence of which forms no impediment to traveling or interacting. In Padraig Pearse’s proclamation nearly one hundred years ago, he talked about freedom and liberty, about equal rights and opportunity, about pursuing happiness and prosperity.
“As our access to the world and its different cultures becomes greater and greater, so long as we fight for those principles does it really matter what flags are flying overhead?
“And then there’s the good old irredentists, the ones who maintain the Brits are occupying the six counties and that Ireland is for the Irish, whatever the hell that means. None of these have any real life application. I’ve lived on the border basically all my life and I don’t understand the fervency towards what is and has always been an infeasible pipe-dream.”
The article on Irish Central did provoke some debate.
One person responded: “What rubbish!!Of course it makes a difference.Northern Ireland,North East England and parts of Scotland are the poorest parts of the UK.Money makes money and it is drawn down South towards London and it’s surrounding counties.Northern Ireland is massively subsidized by the rest of the UK.Northern Ireland Catholic men have the highest unemployment rate of ANY group in the UK,while Northern Ireland’s Protestants have the second lowest.Do you want me to go on?”
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