Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Minister must reflect on education stance

THANK God for the sensible views of your religion correspondent, Alf McCreary (Saturday Review, July 6), on the education debate.

Emotive words have been used in this debate, including 'apartheid' and 'segregation', describing the position as similar to those of blacks in South Africa and the USA prior to the great changes there. I don't believe for one moment that Catholic education is responsible for deep sectarianism in any part of our society and Peter Robinson must reflect on his innuendo that it does.

The First Minister must also reflect on his own community and how aspects – overwhelming aspects, such as marching and marching and marching, not to put to fine of a point on it – ensure that any gain made by integrated education would be cancelled out in the formative years of early adulthood.

Peter Robinson is simply trying it on at a difficult time for the Catholic Church with, it seems, Martin McGuinness's permission.

Yes, Sinn Fein and the DUP thrive on division, as Bishop Donal McKeown said, and any notion that integrated education would ultimately be welcomed by them when the chips are down is foolhardy. It may be a bullish moment for Peter Robinson, but he shouldn't allow his confidence to override the memories of what the DUP and Sinn Fein succeeded in doing during the Troubles.

Is there a sectarian hatred in existence now that isn't of their doing?

JOHN O'CONNELL

Derry

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