Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Let's have more diversity, not a single identity

Mike Nesbitt's analysis of British cultural identity has been criticised in a letter from Ian James Parsley (March 27).

In doing so, Mr Parsley is demonstrating his narrow tunnel vision, presumably shared by the rest of the Alliance Party.

The genealogical make-up of British people includes Britons, Picts, Scots, Celts, Anglo-Saxons and Normans.

In these circumstances even the most materialistic philistine would appreciate the legitimacy and enrichment of cultural diversity which contributes overall to our British identity.

The imposition of a stereotype 'British norm' would be much more damaging to the Union, hence the reason for the overwhelming support for regional devolution within the UK.

Is Mr Parsley's British identity so fragile that it can be frustrated by issues such as vehicle number plates, gay marriage and the non-relaxation of libel laws. In fact, some of these issues are not connected solely to Northern Ireland, but reflect differences of opinion across other geographic areas of the UK.

Mike Nesbitt came nowhere near to promoting a "little Ulster", and, unlike Mr Parsley, did not drag religion into the equation.

What is obvious is that Mr Parsley, a representative of the Alliance Party, would like to see the imposition of a 'Big Brother Britain'.

J Doogan

Armagh

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